A shutdown of the federal government Tuesday will not halt the NCUA’s operations, the regulator said Monday in a release.
Federal agencies were funded through Monday, and because Congress could not agree upon a funding deal in time, non-essential staff will not report to work Tuesday.
As an independent, self-funded agency, the NCUA said it does not rely on congressional appropriations, so the shutdown will not apply to the Alexandria, Va.-based regulator.
NCUA Board Chairman Debbie Matz on Monday encouraged credit unions to maintain a state of readiness to help their members who may be affected by a potential government shutdown.
“Members will have questions and they will have needs, so credit unions should have plans to respond if Congress does not pass legislation to keep the government running,” Matz said.
“Credit unions that serve federal workers and the military have responded before to members’ financial needs resulting from furloughs, reimbursement delays, suspension of government programs or the closing of federal buildings housing branches. They need to prepare to do that once again,” she said.
In April 2011, NCUA issued guidance through a Letter to Credit Unions, urging federally insured credit unions to take steps in the event of a federal government shutdown, including:
- Ensuring policies provide flexibility to respond to members’ financial needs.
- Preparing for service interruptions if a shutdown affects access to credit union offices located in federal buildings.
- Prudently working with affected members, including providing advances to individuals receiving direct deposits from the federal government.
- Developing contingency plans with respect to participation in government programs that may be affected by a federal government shutdown.
- Communicating response plans to members, staff and volunteers in a timely manner.
Consistent with safety and soundness, the NCUA said, credit unions also may want to consider offering special programs to assist members who need short-term loans, create loans with special terms and rates, or offer payment flexibility.