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L-R: Lucy Ito, EVP and COO of the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues; Dennis Flannigan, CEO of Great Basin FCU; Liz Whitehead, Region V Director for the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA); Dave Gunderson, CEO of Credit Union of Southern California; and Sharon Lindeman, Vice President of Regulatory Advocacy for the Leagues

updated 03/28/14 11:05 AM
Leagues, CEOs Relay Concerns
In a continuing effort to effectively communicate regulatory concerns, representatives from the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues joined other western state league officials and credit union CEOs in a meeting with National Credit Union Association (NCUA) Regional Director Liz Whitehead (Region V) last week.

Nevada credit unions moved back to Region V from Region I as of Jan. 1, 2013. California credit unions moved back to Region V from Regions II, III, and IV by Jan. 1 of this year.

The Leagues’ representatives included President and CEO Diana Dykstra, Executive Vice President and COO Lucy Ito, and Vice President of Regulatory Advocacy Sharon Lindeman. Joining the Leagues were Dave Gunderson, CEO of Credit Union of Southern California and the Leagues’ Regulatory Advocacy Committee chairman, and Dennis Flannigan, CEO Great Basin FCU.

“The meeting was a tremendous success,” Gunderson said. “Liz Whitehead and her team invested several hours to listen to our comments, perspectives, and recommendations. It was refreshing to discuss the NCUA and credit unions’ common goal of ensuring safety and soundness, as well as some respectful dialog regarding different strategies to achieve this goal.”

Flannigan added: “The meeting entailed good open constructive communication and discussion of the exam survey and other key issues. Liz Whitehead and her senior staff all seemed practical and hesitant to strict oversight without considering the context.”

Lindeman noted that the event provided an “excellent opportunity” for open, collaborative dialogue about regulatory and examination issues. "We appreciate Director Whitehead making time in her schedule to hear our concerns,” Lindeman said.

CUNA Exam Survey Report
The Leagues obtained an advance copy of the CUNA/League 2013 Exam Survey Report, which provided a basis for good dialog, including:

  • Region V exams are improving across the board. This is not true of other regions.
  • Region V attitudes towards exams were improved in 2013 (25 percent were dissatisfied) compared to 2012 (30 percent were dissatisfied). Nationally, there was a slight decline (in 2012, 25 percent were dissatisfied; and in 2013, 27 percent were dissatisfied).
  • Region V credit unions saw a substantial improvement in the use of Documents of Resolutions (DORs) between 2012 (46 percent) and 2013 (39 percent). Nationally, there was little change in examiners’ use of DORs (in 2012, 43 percent; in 2013, 41 percent).
  • Region V exams more closely resemble the exam experience of the other regions, but gaps remain. For example, in 2013, Region V credit unions were 30 percent more likely overall to be cited for one of the five most common exam issues than credit unions in other regions (compared to 38 percent more likely in 2012).

As to the use of DORs, Region V senior staff commented that their objective of the exam modernization and changes to DORs is not to ensure the number reduces, but to ensure the DORs are used for material findings—those that could cause a credit union to fail.

In regard to Region V exam findings, the five most common exam issues included: loan policies, Allowance for Loan Losses (ALL), strategic planning, interest rate risk, and loan concentration. Whitehead said the higher percentage of findings in Region V could simply be a result of the region having a higher percentage of larger credit unions.

The Leagues encourage all California and Nevada credit unions to complete the joint CUNA/League Exam Survey in 2014. The aggregate data will help ensure California and Nevada credit unions’ exam experiences are captured, and any negative trends can be brought to the region’s attention.

Supervision Consistency and Quality Control
In an effort to realize greater consistency across all NCUA regions and in examinations from credit union to credit union, NCUA has adopted two programs since California and Nevada credit unions were previously part of Region V. First, all NCUA examination staff are now guided by the National Supervision Policy Manual (NSPM), the agency’s internal policy for supervisory operations and procedures.

Second, all regions, including Region V, now routinely carry out Quality Control Reviews (QCRs) to specifically identify and address exam inconsistencies. Credit unions that experience quality control issues may contact Region V staff directly or via the Leagues.

Risk-Based Capital
The proposed risk-based capital rule was discussed, including remarks on how an examiner can require even greater capital than the proposed rule sets for an individual credit union.

Whitehead commented that any “individual minimal capital requirements” would have to go through the regional director and to the NCUA board for approval; that such a requirement would not be established by an examiner. In addition, a credit union can appeal the decision.

The Leagues strongly oppose any greater authority for the NCUA to impose additional capital requirements on a case-by-case basis. The Leagues encourage credit unions to review the proposal, the information and resources available on the Credit Union National Association’s (CUNA) website and in PowerComment, and submit a comment letter to NCUA on this and many other concerns with the proposal before the May 28 deadline. The Leagues also encourage credit unions to register for and attend NCUA Chairman Debbie Matz’s June 26 “Listening Session” in Los Angeles. Due to space constraints, registration is limited to 150 people.

Also, click here to access CUNA’s Risk-Based Capital Action Center.

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Plus, Flood Insurance Webinar
Federal credit unions can continue to make payday alternative loans (PALs) under changes to the Military Lending Act (MLA), which became effective Thursday, according to the Credit Union National Association (CUNA).

Delegates visit California
As reported earlier this week in the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues’ Advocacy Blog, a WOCCU delegation from the Dominican Republic visited the League to learn about best practices for running an advocacy program.

3 WAYS TO SUPPORT LOCAL CMN KIDS updated 10/05/15 03:26 PM
Events on CU Day, and at 'REACH'
In the coming weeks, there will be three ways to support your local Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. First up is Shop for Miracles on Oct. 15. That will be followed by a couple of events at the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues’ REACH Conference in November in Palm Desert.

PAY TRIBUTE TO THOSE WE HAVE LOST updated 09/30/15 10:41 AM
'In Memory'
During REACH 2015, the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues will once again take a moment to honor and remember credit union leaders who had a significant impact on their credit union or credit union organization and passed away in the last year.

2016 'GAC' ROOM BLOCK OPENS updated 09/29/15 08:48 AM
CUNA-League Event: Feb. 22-25
The Credit Union National Association’s (CUNA) 2016 Governmental Affairs Conference (GAC) room block has officially opened, which means those who plan on attending can reserve their lodging early.

‘RBC STOP-STUDY ACT’ TO BE REVIEWED updated 09/29/15 08:17 AM
Committee Hearing This Week
Tomorrow, the House Financial Services Committee will review H.R. 2769, the Risk Based Capital Stop and Study Act—a bill that would halt the National Credit Union Administration’s (NCUA) risk-based capital proposal until further study is assessed.

NV REP. TITUS SENDS SUPPORT LETTER updated 09/25/15 09:41 AM
Member Business Lending Rule
As reported earlier today in the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues’ Advocacy Blog, members of Congress from the California and Nevada Congressional Delegation continue to show their support for credit unions. This morning, Rep. Dina Titus (D-Las Vegas) submitted a support letter to the NCUA for their proposed revisions to the member-business lending (MBL) regulation. Titus joins 8 other Members of Congress from our two states who have responded favorably to MBL rule.

Recap of CU Accomplishments
The California Credit Union League reported a successful year for credit unions as the California Legislature adjourns for the 2015 legislative session. The League advanced data security legislation, helped defeat two high-profile bills that would’ve been detrimental to credit unions, and garnered several other legislative accomplishments during the past year.

RISK-BASED CAPITAL 2 updated 09/18/15 11:09 AM
Rep. Vargas Leads New Comments
As recently reported in the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues’ Advocacy Blog, last week on Capitol Hill, Rep. Juan Vargas (D-Chula Vista) led 11 of his colleagues from California and Nevada in sending a letter to the NCUA raising on-going concerns with the agency's risk- based capital (2) proposal. The Vargas letter was initiated by a request from the CA & NV Leagues and was advocated as a top priority during the Leagues' Hike the Hill to Washington, D.C. last week.

NCUA Redefines Small CUs updated 09/18/15 10:17 am
Threshold Raised to $100MM in Assets
The NCUA Board voted unanimously in favor of four supervisory actions Thursday, including one that will change the definition of “small entity” in the Regulatory Flexibility Act from credit unions with less than $50 million in assets to credit unions with less than $100 million in assets.

At its open board meeting, the agency first approved the expansion of the community charter for the $342 million Charlotte Metro Federal Credit Union in Charlotte, N.C., to include 10 counties in the Charlotte metro area. The credit union previously served Mecklenburg County only.

Increased CA/NV Backing of H.R. 1188
As reported earlier today in the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues’ Advocacy Blog, the California and Nevada delegations have made big gains in terms of support for H.R. 1188, legislation to raise the member business lending cap.

NEW WCMS TRUSTEES updated 09/17/15 02:52 PM
Janclaes, Rivera Joining Board
Partners FCU President and CEO John Janclaes and SkyOne FCU President and CEO Eileen Rivera will be joining the Western CUNA Management School (WCMS) Board of Trustees.

CU LEADERS MEET WITH ASM. BILL DODD updated 09/16/15 09:28 AM
Address Current/Upcoming Legislation
As recently reported in the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues’ Advocacy Blog, Travis Credit Union hosted a gathering with Assemblyman Bill Dodd (D-Napa) the team at Travis educated Asm. Dodd on their suite of financial literacy and community empowerment programs to help all including the underserved. The group also addressed current and upcoming legislative issues impacting credit unions including data security, EMV implementation, PACE lending reform, and state charter enhancements.

'HIKE THE HILL' MAKES IMPACT FOR CUs updated 09/15/15 12:12 PM
Plus, CU T-Shirt PAC Fundraiser
Last week credit unions from California and Nevada "hiked the hill" in the halls of Congress, advocating for regulatory relief, support of the National Credit Union Administration’s (NCUA) member business lending rule, and other important items.

Officials Listen to CU Leaders
The second day of last week’s “Hike the Hill” event in Washington, D.C. was devoted to regulatory issues, where credit union leaders met with representatives from the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) and Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB).

CUs GO CASUAL FOR KIDS updated 09/14/15 12:58 PM
Miracle Jeans Day Nets Money for CMN
On Sept. 9, staff at credit union branches throughout California and Nevada traded in their normal work attire for jeans—and raise money for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. It was all part of Miracle Jeans Day—a day set aside to go casual for kids.

CUs ACTIVATE FIRE RELIEF FUNDS updated 09/14/15 12:22 PM
Monies to Help California Victims
Several fire relief funds administered by credit unions, the California Credit Union League, and other organizations have been created to help communities ravaged by the Valley Fire in Middletown, CA (90 miles north of San Francisco) and other fires in Northern California.

LEGAL FIGHT ON CAs SURCHARGE BAN updated 09/14/15 11:14 AM
Credit Unions Represented
As recently reported in the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues’ Advocacy Blog, last week CUNA filed an amicus brief in support of California Attorney General Kamala Harris’ defense of the CA law prohibiting merchants from imposing a surcharge on consumers who chose to use a credit card in lieu of payment by cash, check or similar means.

Session Ends with Passage of Resolution AJR 25
As recently reported in the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues’ Advocacy Blog, both houses of the California legislature adjourned their regular session for the year on Saturday, September 12. The Senate and the Assembly are gone until January unless they decide to convene for a special extraordinary session to meet on healthcare and transportation funding.

SOCIAL MEDIA PLAN = LOAN GROWTH updated 09/11/15 12:09 PM
Contribute To The Bottom Line
Explore a proven social media plan that has been used by credit unions nationwide to significantly grow their loan portfolios and contribute to the bottom line.

NCUA Chair Sends Response Letters
As recently reported in the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues’ Advocacy Blog, Debbie Matz, Chair of the National Credit Union Administration has begun sending replies to the 8 Representatives of the California Congressional Delegation who wrote letters in support for the proposed member-business lending rule.

GET READY TO CRASH THE GAC 2016 updated 09/10/15 12:31 PM
Application Deadline October 31
Represent your credit union and the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues at Crash the GAC 2016. The Cooperative Trust, in partnership with Credit Union National Association (CUNA), is now accepting applications for Crash the GAC 2016. Those interested in the program—which provides scholarships for up-and-coming credit union professionals to attend the CUNA Governmental Affairs Conference—must submit their applications by October 31, 2015. New this year, applicants will be required to submit a 60 second video instead of an essay.

Harmful Bill Thwarted
As recently reported in the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues’ Advocacy Blog, the League's advocacy team defeated SB 308 (Wieckowski D-Fremont) which would have dramatically increased the amount of assets a debtor could shield through bankruptcy leaving credit unions and their members holding the bag. The bill received only 21 votes on the Assembly floor vote—20 votes short of what the bill needed for passage. The League's advocacy team will continue to monitor this and other legislation through the last day of this year's legislative session on September 11th.

Foundation Board Nominations Open updated 09/10/15 03:13 PM
Seeking Nominations for Three Seats
The National Credit Union Foundation (the Foundation) is currently seeking nominations for three board seats. Volunteers serve up to three terms of three years each on the Foundation Board, as long as they are re-nominated by the Foundation Nominations Committee and re-elected by the Foundation Board.