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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

EXAM, REG ISSUES DISCUSSED WITH NCUA
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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GOLF TOURNEY RAISES 68k FOR PAC updated 05/22/15 11:17 AM
Record Amount Contributed to Cause
More than 150 credit union CEOs, executives, professionals, and industry vendors took part in the 2015 Multi-Chapter PAC Golf Tournament in Valencia, CA last week, raising more than $68,000 for the California Credit Union League’s Political Action Committee.

Target/MC Settlement Fails updated 05/22/15 10:16 AM
Target/MC Settlement Fails
Target's $19 million proposed settlement with MasterCard failed to receive the required 90% participation rate from issuers, meaning the settlement will not happen, according to an announcement from MasterCard and one of the attorneys representing five card issuers fighting the settlement.

CU Direct Acquires Intuvo updated 05/22/15 10:02 AM
CU Direct-Intuvo Deal Reaches for 'Holy Grail' of Indirect Lending
The oft-repeated complaint by credit unions that members brought in through indirect auto loans are difficult to make "real" members has been addressed by CU Direct's purchase of Intuvo, a marketing automation software company.

CUES Next Top CU Exec Challenge updated 05/20/15 09:45 AM
Nominate a Standout Future Leader for the 2015 CUES Next Top Credit Union Exec Challenge
The industry’s first competition recognizing the incredible young credit union leaders is back for year number six! The search is on for the 2015 CUES Next Top Credit Union Exec. This program for the industry’s future leaders is powered by Currency and in partnership with DDJ Myers.

LEAGUES AND CONGRESS SEEK CLARITY updated 05/19/15 09:17 AM
Identifying Merchants After a Breach
California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues President and CEO Diana Dykstra has written to the general counsels of Visa and MasterCard seeking official guidance as to whether credit unions can identify a merchant responsible for a data breach.

NCUA'S REVIEW: YOUR VOICE MATTERS updated 05/19/15 07:59 AM
Comments on Regulations Needed
Do you want to change a credit union regulation? Then let your voice be heard.

WHAT LENDING GROWTH REVEALS ABOUT CA updated 05/19/15 07:48 AM
'Millennials' and The New Car Market
So what’s driving credit union lending in California? For starters, try those shiny new sedans and pick-up trucks cruising the streets by the likes of young adults in their late teenage years, 20s, and early 30s.

Toolkit to Address Medical Debt updated 05/18/15 12:08 PM
The National Credit Union Foundation Releases Medical Debt Toolkit for Members
Credit unions looking for information and tools to help members with medical debt now have an added aid, a Medical Debt Toolkit, recently released from the National Credit Union Foundation (the Foundation).

CMG, AACUL AGREEMENT REACHED updated 05/14/15 11:26 AM
Agreement Balances Strong Financial Support for Leagues While Enabling Insurer to Invest for Policyholder Benefit
CUNA Mutual Group and state credit union leagues, represented by the American Association of Credit Union Leagues (AACUL) Executive Board, have agreed in principle to a new three year $64 million marketing agreement. The agreement, effective Jan. 1, 2016, will help ensure credit unions have a strong local voice to advocate on their behalf.

GROSSE, OPP, ORAM ON CO-OP BOARD updated 05/13/15 11:58 AM
Coast-to-Coast Represented on CO-OP Board
Three new members, located in New York, Idaho and California, were elected to the Board of Directors of CO-OP Financial Services during its Annual Shareholders meeting held on May 7.

CU PROFESSIONALS CUDEs CERTIFIED updated 05/13/15 10:16 AM
Foundation’s CU Philosophy Training
Marina Miller and Shannon Workman of California based SchoolsFirst FCU were two of 47 credit union professionals, one of the largest classes yet, to become Credit Union Development Educators (CUDEs) after being guided by dedicated program facilitators and mentors through the intensive Credit Union Development Education (DE) Training from the National Credit Union Foundation (the Foundation). The Spring 2015 DE graduating class included credit union movement representatives from across the U.S, as well as a representative from Trinidad and Tobago. The Spring DE training was held April 29-May 6, 2015 at the Lowell Center on the University of Wisconsin campus in Madison, WI.

CA CUs RANK HIGH IN RECENT STUDIES updated 05/12/15 08:20 AM
Financial Health, Debt Quality, Performance
When compared to their counterparts across the United States, a handful of California credit unions in all asset categories are gaining notable strength in financial health, debt quality, and performance as 2015 shifts into spring.

LEAGUE SUPPORTS DATA SECURITY BILL updated 05/12/15 08:18 AM
Tougher State Standards on Retailers
The California Credit Union League has announced its support for Assembly Bill 83 (AB 83) by Assemblyman Mike Gatto (D-Glendale), which would require businesses to enhance data security standards to protect consumers’ personal information using “reasonable security procedures and practices.”

CEO: CUs AND THRIVING IN 'THE SHIFT' updated 05/12/15 02:06 PM
Discusses Industry's Preparation for Change
Can credit unions distinguish between a “temporary disruption” and “fundamental change?”

CUS MEET WITH SPEAKER ATKINS updated 05/11/15 08:42 AM
Talks Financial Literacy and More
Today, credit union leaders met with Assembly Speaker Toni Atkins (D-San Diego). The first San Diegan to serve as assembly speaker, Atkins represents assembly district 78, which includes the Southern half of coastal San Diego County encompassing Solana Beach, Del Mar, Coronado, and Imperial Beach with 88 percent of the district’s voters residing in the city of San Diego.

THINK 15 RAISES $100K FOR CMN updated 05/08/15 10:39 AM
CMN Receives Large Donation
A total of $100,000 was raised in donations to Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals (CMN) at the THINK 15 Conference held May 5-8 in Colorado Springs, CO., sponsored by CO-OP Financial Services.

CUNA: CUs WANT ADVOCACY, CHOICE updated 05/06/15 11:04 AM
System Structure and Governance Questioned
Preliminary findings of the Credit Union National Association’s (CUNA) System Structure and Governance Task Force show that credit unions want better advocacy and more choice from their trade association.

ROYCE ON MBL: 'FAR FROM OVER' updated 05/04/15 12:38 PM
Asks for Members to Contact Congress
Rep. Ed Royce, R-CA, communicated to credit union leaders on Monday regarding ongoing efforts to raise the member business lending (MBL) cap, as well as his parity legislation to re-categorize non-owner occupied residences as residential real-estate loans (H.R. 1422).

THE MILITARY LENDING ACT AND CUs updated 05/04/15 04:04 PM
Congress Attempts to Assist
Last week the House Armed Services Committee considered and passed the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) of 2015. For credit unions, the section pertaining to the Military Lending Act was of considerable importance.

AMENDED COMMON BOND RULE PASSED updated 04/30/15 02:46 PM
NCUA Votes 2-1
Today, the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) approved a rule that would limit credit unions' use of associational common bonds to add to fields of membership (FOM).

DATA BREACH BILL: CAMPAIGN LAUNCHES updated 04/28/15 09:50 AM
Twitter, Facebook, and Email
More than 30,000 credit union members received an actionable email alert through the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues’ Connect For The Cause program this week regarding Senate Bill 961, the Data Security Act of 2015.

NCUA AGENDA: ASSOC. COMMON BONDS updated 04/28/15 09:01 AM
RBC2 Comment Letter Update
The National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) board will consider a final rule on field of membership (FOM) and associational common bonds at the upcoming April 30 board meeting.

ELLIOT EISENBERG ADDED TO CONFERENCE updated 04/28/15 03:36 PM
'Accelerating Success' This Week
Interpreting the meaning of variable economic indicators can be difficult, but economist Elliot Eisenberg offers irrefutable proof the economy is improving: In 2014, the tooth fairy left an average of $4.36 per lost tooth, a whopping 25 percent increase over 2013. Eisenberg, who specializes in making the minutia of economics fun, is among the speakers at Catalyst Corporate’s upcoming Accelerating Success Conference, set for April 30-May 1 at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas.

NCUA TESTIFIES ON REG. BURDENS updated 04/24/15 02:31 PM
House Financial Services Committee
National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) Director of the Office of Examination and Insurance Larry Fazio testified yesterday before the House Committee on Financial Services along with other U.S. banking regulators. Topics covered include the 2nd version of the risk-based capital rule and access to industry interactions. In addition there were considerable conversations about how to protect smaller financial institutions from regulation intended for large Wall Street banks.