ATM USA Director of Operations and ATMIA IAD Committee Co-Chair, Tony Mercer, joined the ATM Industry Association (ATMIA) and other members for the association’s annual “Fly-in” in Washington, D.C. This event was the first visit to the US Capital for the organization and its members since 2019 due to COVID closures.
“It is important for key members of the ATM industry to get involved in advocacy efforts,” said Mercer. “Seeing firsthand how legislation is crafted and meeting our elected representatives gives us the opportunity to understand the thought process behind many of the laws that are affecting the ATM industry. And it allows us to communicate a better understanding of how ATMs operate.”
Meetings with legislators included discussions about the Payment Choice Act, which is has been crafted by the House to prohibit U.S. businesses from refusing to accept cash as a form of payment. There was also discussion about the growth in physical ATM attacks and thefts. While many states, including Kansas and Missouri, are taking action to put stiffer laws on the books to protect ATMs, there is no such movement currently at the federal level.
The group also took the time to request, for further clarification, the level of risk for money laundering at ATMs in the BSA/AML exam manual. The risks of such activity are low throughout the industry and specific examples of such involving ATMs have not been forthcoming.
A special thank you to ATMIA, ATMIA USA Executive Director, David Tente, GRG Co-Chair John Hagy and Elizabeth Gorz of MetaBank, and Chas Thomas of Thorn Run Partners for organizing and leading the event, group and discussions with lawmakers.
“The meetings on Capitol Hill were very productive and the representatives we spoke with were very receptive to our concerns,” noted Mercer. “I would encourage everyone involved with ATMs to get involved - not only at the national level, but with their local and state legislators. The more lawmakers communicate with us directly, the better we are heard.”