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In June, this paper accused me of putting "the financial interests of the nation's biggest banks before small retailers and consumers" when I voted to delay an onerous regulation that I feared would increase banking fees and hit the wallets of Americans who are already struggling in this economy.

Last week, Bank of America announced it would implement a $5 monthly fee for those using debit cards. If you use your debit card just once - to buy groceries, gas or school supplies for your children - you will be charged the $5 fee. Bank of America is not the first bank to charge for checking accounts, as SunTrust started charging a $5 fee on its checking accounts this summer and Regions Financial will start a $4 fee next month.

At a time when Florida's unemployment rate remains above 10 percent, we should be easing the burden of government regulation and lowering the costs of financial transactions in the process. Unfortunately, consumers are feeling the costs of a government that has extended its reach further into the economy with the so-called Wall Street "reform" bill.

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