According to the OTS list, the last application for a credit union to convert to a federal thrift charter was from Beehive Credit Union, Salt Lake City, on Sept. 10, 2007. The agency has listed that a decision is required on the Beehive application by no later than July 30.
Alan Theriault, CEO of CU Financial Services, attributed the slow pace of applications to uncertain economic times and unauthorized interference from the NCUA in the credit union conversion process.
"Face it. NCUA has been acting as little more than a cheerleader for the industry as has not been authorized by the Congress to put so many obstacles in the way of a process that Congress wanted to be no more difficult than any other charter change by any financial institution," Theriault said.
But he also conceded that economic uncertainty and downturn may have also played a role in leading some CUs to put any possible charter change plans on hold.