Long-Term Oil Spill Impact Seen as Mississippi Concern
The near-term economic fallout from the BP oil spill on Mississippi credit unions appears to be under control but the worry remains on the long-term impact on the tourist trade, the state's top regulator said Wednesday.
Disaster recovery regulations, which grew out of the 2005 hurricane have served financial regulators satisfactorily with current application to the Gulf Oil disaster, said Allison.
State examiners, he said, are prepared to be flexible and understanding of Gulf conditions as they impact the economic livelihood of charter boat owners, the shrimpers, the restaurants and all the others that depend on the tourist business.
"We'll be looking at it with open eyes," said Allison, noting also that like elsewhere there remain small Mississippi CUs that continue to struggle in the recession. The oil spill has compounded their problems forcing a number to seriously consider mergers.
In some instances, his department "has encouraged struggling credit unions to look for partners," said Allison. He said there are five to six CUs of the 28 state charters that might be in that category.