The establishment of a national clearing house for brokers to cut through the red tape of state-by-state licensing is one step closer to reality. On Thursday the National Association of Registered Agents and Brokers Reform Act of 2013 passed the U.S. Senate Banking Committee after markup. The bureau would be known as NARAB and would have a 13 member board appointed by the president and confirmed by the Senate, in addition to requiring federal criminal background checks for all brokers who become members.

“This bill streamlines the licensing of registered agents and brokers while maintaining strong, state regulation of the insurance industry and protecting the ability of state insurance regulators to regulate insurance markets and protect consumers,” Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.), the sponsor of the bill along with Sen. Mike Johanns (R-Neb.), said in a statement.

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