Everywhere I go around the country, credit union professionals have a lot to say to me about overregulation and the challenges they are facing from too much red tape and too little flexibility. But one of the most pressing issues facing the industry – the avalanche of regulation from the CFPB – has a simple solution. Change the single-director structure to a five-person commission.
NAFCU has been advocating for this reform for years, and it is more important now than ever before. Right now, the bureau’s structure is in legal limbo, making things even more difficult for the overregulated credit union industry.
In October 2016, a three-judge panel in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit ruled that the bureau’s existing structure – a single director who could only be removed for cause – is unconstitutional. The court did not shut down the bureau, but it gave the president increased power to supervise and remove the director. In the meantime, amid ongoing legal challenges, the CFPB’s future is somewhat unclear.
Changing to a five-person commission, as advocated by NAFCU, would create an environment where more voices could weigh in on the bureau’s efforts to protect consumers, and it could help avoid more unnecessarily broad regulation that hurts credit unions while doing little to rein in bad actors on Wall Street.
NAFCU staff will continue to advocate for this crucial reform and to monitor other issues on the regulatory front, including the Military Lending Act, field of membership, risk-based capital and cybersecurity. The regulatory landscape is complex, and we know it’s difficult for community institutions to keep up.
NAFCU is also preparing compliance tips and guidance for credit union professionals planning to attend our upcoming 50th Annual Conference & Solutions Expo in Honolulu, Hawaii, June 13-16. The week will be an excellent opportunity for credit union leaders to gather in one place and discuss the top issues affecting the industry today. Like so many NAFCU events, it will be a great chance to network with other professionals, learn new tricks of the trade and hear the latest on what’s happening in Washington.
I hope to see you there – but don’t wait until June to get in touch with us. NAFCU depends on its members’ voices to help us provide the best, most effective advocacy around for the credit union industry. Keep us updated on your compliance concerns and challenges, and we will keep doing our part in Washington for you.
Our members are what make us great – and we can’t wait to see you in Hawaii to celebrate all we’ve accomplished together.