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ALEXANDRIA, Va.-In sharp contrast to the highly anticipated July board meeting, the NCUA Board considered three minor, uncontroversial issues during its 23-minute June board meeting. July’s board meeting is expected to raise a few eyebrows with Treasury and bankers regarding the member business lending rule, which the agency and trade associations opposed in their official comment letters. The board members got a reprieve at the June meeting with only minor technical amendments to two rules and the initiation of a statutorily required review of regulations under the Economic Growth and Regulatory Paperwork Reduction Act of 1996. CUNA Associate General Counsel Mary Dunn said the association is working in consultation with its Federal Credit Union Committee, but predicted that some of the items it would be looking at would include the investment rule and regulations to add to RegFlex. NAFCU Director of Regulatory Affairs Gwen Baker commented that they would be waiting to see what their constituents have in mind, while NAFCU President and CEO Fred Becker suggested that credit union governance issues would be one matter on the list. The NCUA Board unanimously proposed a face-lift to a rule concerning loan participations with updates and clarifications to certain definitions to conform to the CUSO rule and to add greater flexibility for credit unions to engage in loan participations. The proposal for Part 701.22 brings the definition of “credit union organization” in line with the CUSO rule and adds state and federal government agencies to the definition of “financial organization” to provide credit unions greater flexibility in choosing participation partners. Comments are due within 60 days after publication in the Federal Register. Another proposed rule, regarding share insurance (Part 745), would provide parity with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. The proposal would clarify how revocable trust accounts are established and insured; continue deposit insurance coverage following the death of a member or after a merger for six months until accounts can be restructured to maximize insurance coverage; and explain coverage of Coverdell Education Savings Accounts (formerly Education IRAs). The proposed rule was issued unanimously with a 60-day comment period. Finally, NCUA initiated its obligations under EGRPRA to reduce regulatory burden by requesting public comment on regulatory and statutory requirements regarding “applications and reporting” and “powers and activities.” EGRPRA requires that the federal financial regulators request comment on various categories of regulations at regular intervals in 10-year cycles. The regulators then have to publish an overview of the comments in the Federal Register, along with a discussion of the issues, and “eliminate unnecessary regulations to the extent that such action is appropriate.” The entire process is expected to take three years. Comments are due 90 days after the Federal Register notice. -

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