The African-American Credit Union Coalition said it “unequivocally supports” the NCUA’s proposal to create a Minority Depository Institution preservation program.
At issue is a July 25 interpretive ruling and policy statement from the NCUA that outlines the program’s design, including its criteria for eligibility.
According to the NCUA, credit unions with 50% or more of minority members and management would be eligible to receive minority credit union status through the program. Most credit unions with the designation would have access to the regulator’s Office of Small Credit Union Initiatives’ resources and grant programs.
Mandated by the Dodd Frank-Act, the MDI aims to preserve and promote minority ownership in the credit union industry, the NCUA said.
The AACUC said it is hopeful that the MDI will be fully funded to achieve the goals of the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery and Enforcement Act, wrote AACUC Chair Lynette Smith and AACUC Vice Chair and Advocacy Chair Mark Brantley in a Sept. 25 letter to NCUA Secretary of the Board Mary Rupp.
In 1998, Congress created the FIRREA in response to the failure of the Federal Savings and Loan Insurance Corp., which insured the deposits of insolvent savings and loan institutions, the NCUA said.
Section 308 of FIRREA established goals for preserving and promoting minority depository institutions but only applied to the FDIC and the Office of the Thrift Supervision, according to the NCUA.
In 2010, the NCUA, Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System were included under the Dodd-Frank Act.
“(The MDI) program’s outreach efforts can include application process webinars for potential MDI’s, workshop sessions at trade conferences, and a comprehensive marketing campaign to increase awareness,” the AACUC wrote.
The coalition said it also encouraged the NCUA’s Office of Minority and Women Inclusion “to collaborate, if it hasn’t already, with the original FIRREA regulatory counterparts (such as the FDIC and the Office of Thrift Supervision) for suggestions and ideas that have been successfully implemented.”
The AACUC said it is optimistic about the NCUA’s willingness to form collaborating partnerships with organizations.
“The AACUC stands ready, willing and able to be a resource partner,” the coalition wrote. “Currently, on a case-by-case basis, the AACUC provides mentorship to credit unions that are in need of technical assistance or asset/liability management expertise.”
In addition, the AACUC said it is in the process of expanding its biographical database of credit union experts who “are well versed in the areas of compliance, board governance and strategic planning to name a few.”
The NCUA comment deadline for the MDI preservation program was Sept. 30.