Credit union group reveals proactive advocacy plan ahead of upcoming Congress.
As the 118th Congress begins this week, NAFCU has detailed an advocacy agenda that, as in past years, asks credit unions to play offense on some issues and defense on others.
“NAFCU advocates for a legislative and regulatory environment that allows credit unions to grow so they can serve more Americans and the Main Street small businesses they rely on,” the organization said, in announcing the agenda.
The trade group noted further, “NAFCU will advocate against laws and regulations intended to address bad actors that place unfair burdens on credit unions, oppose frivolous litigation and restrictions that hinder credit unions’ ability to serve members, and seek exam modernization and consistency.”
CU Tax Exemption, NCUA Board, Mergers
On the defensive side, the group said it will continue to fight to preserve the credit union tax exemption, while at the same time pushing policymakers to expand investment options for institutions.
While no legislative proposals to eliminate that tax exemption have surfaced in recent years, banking trade groups continue to push Congress to take that action.
NAFCU added it will continue to fight any effort to expand the NCUA board. For many years, NASCUS has called for the board to be expanded to five members, with at least one member being a person with state credit union regulatory experience.
The trade group also said it will fight any effort to expand the Community Reinvestment Act to include credit unions and will oppose proposals that would restrict credit union and bank mergers.
FOM Rules, CDFI Certification, Share Insurance
While the trade group did not endorse any specific legislative or regulatory proposals, NAFCU’s agenda additionally urges lawmakers and regulators to:
–Change field of membership and housing finance rules to assist credit unions’ work in their communities.
–Modernize the Federal Credit Union Act to change provisions that NAFCU said stunt credit union growth.
–Streamline the application for CDFI Certification. The CDFI Fund is currently reviewing comments on a proposed overhaul of the process, which credit union trade groups have strongly criticized.
–Oppose efforts that would authorize postal banking and authorize the NCUA to assess a share insurance premium.
–Rein in the CFPB by changing its structure. Credit union trade groups have said that the bureau should be governed by a commission, rather than a single director. NAFCU specifically noted that the CFPB should make greater use of its power to exempt certain financial institutions from its rules.