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WASHINGTON — No riots broke out. But when the issue of the NCUA corporate credit union came up CUNA’s Governmental Affairs Conference, there was plenty of animated discussion.At two sessions-including a last-minute meeting scheduled at 8:00 a.m. on a Monday-the largest room in the convention center was filled to capacity as attendees listened and vented.Terry West, chairman of CUNA’s corporate credit union task force, opened Monday’s session by saying, “You can save time by not discussing your anger and frustration. We already appreciate that.”CUNA President/CEO Dan Mica told the crowd that while he understood their anger, “this is a substantive problem that doesn’t need a lot of finger pointing and second guessing. It needs a substantive solution.”West, also the president/CEO of Vystar Credit Union, assured the crowd that his committee was doing all that it can to come up with alternative ideas for replenishing the NCUSIF besides levying a premium on natural person credit unions.“There is not a single alternative, it has to be a combination of factors,” he explained.Most of the questions to West, Mica and others at that session were prefaced by expressions of irritation that natural person credit unions were paying for the problems faced by the corporates.But several panel members said that while the share insurance increase wasn’t set in stone, because of the cooperative nature of the credit union system, the costs of the rescue would be spread throughout the system.CUNA General Counsel Eric Richard said someone asked him privately what would happen if he didn’t pay the premium. Richard said, “I told him there are a lot of steps along the way, but the government could throw you in jail.”During their remarks to the conference, all three NCUA Board members acknowledged the concerns of credit union leaders and promised to carefully consider all the alternatives that were being presented.NCUA Chairman Michael E. Fryzel said, “There are no easy choices,” for solving the problem. He explained that his board acted to rescue the corporates-with a $1 billion capital infusion into U.S. Central and a guarantee of credit union deposits at corporates-”because the problems are systemic and require a systemic approach.”In an interview after his speech, he joked that CUNA should be grateful to the NCUA because the board’s action “probably increased attendance at their conference in a year where they thought attendance would be down.”Neither Fryzel nor Board Member Gigi Hyland endorsed or rejected any of the proposed solutions for replenishing the NCUSIF.Hyland said the corporate system “has helped credit unions thrive” and promised to read every comment letter submitted on the topic.She said they would focus on capital issues, credit risk and governance issues as it considers ways to restructure the corporate system.NCUA Vice Chairman Rodney Hood said they would consider a range of alternatives but singled out the possibility of using the Central Liquidity Facility to provide capital as one solution. Although the NCUA Board cannot make that move without statutory change,Hood said there “won’t be one particular superbullet to get us through this crisis.”During the NCUA’s reception, at which credit union executives and volunteers had a chance to speak individually with board members and regional directors, many of the comments focused on the potential costs of the premium on the NCUSIF.“I think you’re doing a great job in hard times, but the premium increase is going to really take a bite out of us,” one credit union executive was overheard saying to Fryzel.NCUA’s senior staff members tried to calm nerves of credit union executives during a session on the agency’s rescue plan.NCUA Executive Director David Marquis said the goal of all their actions was to ensure “stability and liquidity” and to avoid natural person credit unions pulling money out of corporate credit unions.Scott Hunt, NCUA’s director of the Office of Corporate Credit Unions, said their goal is to minimize losses to corporates by avoiding having them sell off bonds during a sluggish market.“We want to prevent corporates from having to sell securities in this market, which would basically amount to a fire sale,” he said.–[email protected]

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