Interim President/CEO of the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues David Chatfield told Credit Union Times today he thinks the NCUA seized the $876 million Arrowhead Credit Union because someone in the agency "had an axe to grind."
Chatfield said he's reviewed Arrowhead's May financial reports and said he doesn't believe the San Bernardino, Calif.-based credit union's financial condition merited its June 25 conservatorship.
"I was on the NCUA Board, and I know there are always two sides to a story," Chatfield said. "But in this case, Arrowhead was building back reserves and reducing delinquencies I think it was pretty darn clear they were on their way back to recovery, and there was no logical reason for the NCUA to take them over."
When asked who in the NCUA might have a vendetta against Arrowhead and former President/CEO Larry Sharp, who had a reputation for challenging regulators, Chatfield said, "it may have just been an attitude on the part of a number of folks who took advantage of an opportunity to take over this credit union."
Furthermore, Chatfield said the NCUA acted to seize Arrowhead before the sale of branches to Alaska USA FCU was finalized, and before other capital restoration strategies showed improvement on Arrowhead's balance sheet.