Credit unions are capable of handling the corporate crisis on their own "without asking for a government bailout," according to the outgoing chairman of the Missouri Credit Union Association, Betty Clark.
Addressing MCUA's annual business meeting in Jefferson City this week, Clark, who also is president/CEO of the $110 million United Credit Union of Mexico, said she understands "there are pockets in the country" where troubled CUs would need assistance but funding the corporate system is something "that we can do our selves" despite the severe cost.
"There are too many hands out" seeking bailout money and credit unions should not be the ones in that role, said Clark adding also she appreciates the CUNA policy that the industry must make a case for NCUSIF backup funds because if not done now CUs could get passed over when a crisis hits.
In providing financial support to CUs, Clark reminded the Jefferson City audience that the trade group's leadership is committed to "helping you get through this difficult time" and on that score the $500,000 return of 2009 association dues and a 23% reduction in fees "will be of some comfort."
"That will not cure all ills, but it is something," said the United CU CEO.
Separately, Keith Morton, NCUA Region IV Director in Austin, Tex. who also is a U.S. Central Bank conservatorship board member, told the Missouri group "we have to support the corporate system and if we don't, the losses you book now will be nothing.
"It's a reality of the situation that we are facing," said Morton. "The natural person credit union, while taking a hit, is very sound and in good position to weather this storm right now."