Even though most credit unions would be exempt from being examined by the proposed Consumer Financial Protection Agency under an amendment passed by the House Financial Services Committee yesterday, CUNA and NAFCU are holding out for more.
“A basic premise of the credit union movement is to never be divided against itself in any way,” CUNA President/CEO Dan Mica said in a statement. “A key principle of ours in approaching financial regulatory reform has been for examination authority to remain with credit unions’ primary regulator. We cannot support legislation that would apply this principle only to a portion of the nation’s credit unions, as envisioned in this amendment.”
Mica said CUNA would try to work out a compromise, but if one cannot be reached the trade group would oppose the bill.
NAFCU Executive Vice President of Government Affairs Dan Berger said the amendment “is a step in the right direction, but it does not go far enough in giving credit unions much needed regulatory relief. While well-intentioned, the amendment would impose an arbitrary asset limit on credit unions, one that is considerably lower than the $10 billion limit proposed for banks and thrifts. At the very least, credit unions should be given parity with other financial institutions.”
He added they will continue to push for a total exemption from the “costly and unnecessary regulatory burden” for credit unions that are subject to oversight by the NCUA.
The amendment, sponsored by Reps. Brad Miller (D-N.C.) and Dennis Moore (D-Kan.) and passed by a voice vote, exempts credit unions with less than $1.5 billion in assets and banks with less than $10 billion in assets from being examined by the CFPA. Those financial institutions would be required to comply with regulations that the agency issues, but the examinations would be done by their safety and soundness regulator, though the CFPA could have someone on the examination team.