The Federal Credit Union January-February 2014 - (Page 56)

FROM THE PRESIDENT'S DESK Enough Is Enough By Dan Berger, NAFCU President and CEO F ewer than half of the rules in the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act have been finalized. Since the enactment of the Dodd-Frank Act, more than 800 credit unions have closed their doors - in no small part due to the incredible increase in regulation and the creation of the CFPB. How many more credit unions will have to close their doors when regulators get around to finalizing the rest of the rules? In October, NAFCU focused on the issue of compliance for its Economic & CU Monitor - a report that showcases a meticulous compilation of data from our member credit unions every month. The survey found that almost 38 percent of credit unions in our membership are planning to increase their education budgets. Why? The vast majority - 84 percent - said compliance was the reason. Around 74 percent also cited the other side of the coin: regulations. "Recent increases in regulatory and compliance burdens require credit unions to invest in education and training for board members, executives and staff," according to the Monitor. "Credit unions are under more pressure than ever to keep pace with rulemaking from regulatory agencies." Legal compliance expert Adam Maarec recently wrote something similar in American Banker: "When the CFPB was formed in 2010, many skeptics feared it would set policy by enforcement. Two years later, they have been proven right." NAFCU was among those skeptics, and it was the only financial services trade association to oppose credit unions of any size being placed under the CFPB's direct regulatory authority. CFPB Director Richard Cordray has, himself, pointed out several times in industry speeches and in testimony before Congress that credit unions were not to blame for the financial crisis and do not engage in the irresponsible lending practices the CFPB is targeting. After all, the Dodd-Frank Act specifically calls out Wall Street in its name. Why should credit unions be lumped in with Wall Street and payday lenders? They shouldn't be. And after years of Congress watching the credit union industry struggle with overregulation and the rising costs of just keeping up with compliance needs, something has to give. The regulations weren't meant for the credit union industry, so they shouldn't be the cause of more irreversible damage to the industry. NAFCU was the first to come out with a plan for how to stop the encroaching regulatory burden in its tracks: our fivepoint plan for regulatory relief that we introduced in February. The five points have been incorporated into several pieces of legislation: in particular, the Regulatory Relief for Credit Unions Act, from Rep. Gary Miller, R-Calif.; the Credit Union Small Business Jobs Creation Act, from Reps. Ed Royce, R-Calif., and Carolyn McCarthy, D-N.Y.; and the Capital Access for Small Businesses and Jobs Act, from Reps. Peter King, R-N.Y., and Brad Sherman, D-Calif. The need to finally give credit unions some regulatory relief is something that's agreed upon by legislators on both sides of the aisle. Even regulators understand that credit unions were not the intended target of the post-crisis tsunami of regulation. Now that we're all on the same page, it's time to act. Enough is enough. Tell Congress and regulators to pay attention to the needs of the credit unions serving their communities - and to act now, so they'll still be there to serve those communities tomorrow. The regulations weren't meant for the credit union industry, so they shouldn't be the cause of more irreversible damage to the industry. 56 THE FEDERAL CREDIT UNION JANUARY-FEBRUARY 2014

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of The Federal Credit Union January-February 2014

Voices & Opinions
From the Chair
Inside NAFCU
Business Talk
2014 Economic Outlook: Slow Speed Ahead
Waging the War Against Cyberthieves
Meet Rick Metsger
2014 NAFCU Vendor Directory
Getting to Know...
Compliance Central
Inside NAFCU Services
From the President's Desk

The Federal Credit Union January-February 2014