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CUNA 'Inside Exchange' Lays Out Case For Ending Corporate Fund Assessments

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WASHINGTON (8/16/13)--The clear case for swiftly ending corporate credit union stabilization fund assessments is one of many topics touched on in the Credit Union National Association's latest Inside Exchange video.
 
The overall status of the corporate stabilization fund, liquidity and the outlook for assessments are also discussed by CUNA Executive Vice President of Communications Paul Gentile and CUNA Chief Economist Bill Hampel.



The National Credit Union Administration, at its July open board meeting, declared a corporate credit union stabilization assessment of eight basis points of credit unions' insured shares as of June 30. That payment is due Oct. 16.
 
CUNA has noted that with the improvement of the performance of the NCUA's legacy assets, stabilization fund assessments should no longer be necessary after the 2013 payment. The range for any additional assessment for 2014, if any, will be set by the NCUA board in November.

Tax Reform 'Road Show' Continues In San Francisco

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WASHINGTON (8/16/13)--House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp (R-Mich.) and Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) plan to continue their "tax-reform" tour early next week in San Francisco and the Silicon Valley.

The pair have set an Aug. 19 visit with mobile payment provider Square Inc. and an Aug. 20 trip to computer component manufacturer Intel.

The focus of the California trip will be how a simpler and fairer tax code can help spur innovation and boost America's economy, the legislators said in a joint release.

This will be the third stop on their tax tour, which was organized to give the congressmen an opportunity to talk with a range of Americans and businesses--from large multinational corporations to small, family-run businesses, and to individual taxpayers.

The two lawmakers visited multinational corporation 3M Company and Baldinger Bakery in an early July trip to Minneapolis. They met with owners and employees of third-generation, family-owned Mrs. G's TV & Appliances and The Hub Centers for Meeting and Collaboration in a late-July visit to Philadelphia, Pa.

The tax policy leaders have planned a "blank slate" approach to reform legislation, which would remove all tax expenditures from the code and would add back in those that make the grade. In the midst of this tax reform effort, credit unions and their members are using Credit Union National Association and state credit union leagues' resources, social media sites including Facebook, and micro-video site Vine, to tell their legislators, "Don't Tax My Credit Union!"

This pro-credit union message is also being shared through Twitter feeds, CUNA's Twitter handle @CUNAadvocacy and the hashtag, #DontTaxMyCU.

The Don't Tax My Credit Union social media presence has placed pro-credit union tax status messages before more than 1.5 million social media users each day, hitting lawmakers with about 10,000 contacts per day. Nearly 715,000 contacts have been made since CUNA launched "Don't Tax My Credit Union."

Use the resource link for more about the "Don't Tax My Credit Union"campaign.

NEW: Wisconsin Sen. Baldwin Voices Support For CU Tax Status

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MADISON, Wis.  (8/16/13, UPDATED 8:30 a.m. CT)--U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.) told a standing-room-only crowd of credit union supporters in Madison, Wis., Wednesday that she fully backs credit unions' continued  tax status as corporate tax-exempt institutions.
Click to view larger image U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.) announced Wednesday her support for credit unions' tax-exempt status during a visit with the Madison, Wis., offices of the Credit Union National Association, CUNA Mutual Group, the World Council of Credit Unions and the Filene Research Institute. (Photo provided by CUNA Mutual Group)
 
Credit unions provide essential services to their members and communities that would otherwise go unmet," she said. "I have long supported and will continue to advocate that as not-for-profit financial cooperatives, credit unions deserve their tax-exempt status. As we move forward with comprehensive tax reform, I will continue to monitor the situation to ensure that access to credit union loans will not be put out of reach for Wisconsin families and small businesses."
 
Her remarks were made during a visit with employees of CUNA Mutual Group, the Credit Union National Association, the World Council of Credit Unions, members of the Wisconsin Credit Union League, and the Filene Research Institute.
 
Baldwin expressed pride in having the opportunity to represent the headquarters of CUNA, CUNA Mutual Group and the World Council. She noted that cooperative businesses are consumer-centric business models that add significant value for families and communities.
 
"Sen. Baldwin understands clearly that credit unions are not-for-profit cooperatives that continue to earn their tax status by providing benefits to consumers and communities in a direct and tangible manner," explained Tom Liebe, league vice president of government affairs. "Baldwin continues to be a strong and consistent supporter of cooperatives of all kinds and we are indeed fortunate to have her thoughtful and informed voice in the U.S. Senate."

Credit unions have urged Congress to preserve their tax status by launching a website, www.DontTaxMyCreditUnion.org, and a nationwide campaign reminding the 96 million credit union member-owners about the financial benefits they would lose if credit unions' tax status were eliminated through congressional tax reform efforts.

Since the start of the recession in 2007, Wisconsin credit unions' members have saved more than $1 billion.  Nationwide, between 2005 and 2011, credit unions have saved their members between $4.3 billion and $8 billion each year. Moreover, their presence in the marketplace moderates the pricing of banks, which provides about $10 billion in benefits to all consumers every year.

New Mortgage Exam Procedures Set Out By CFPB

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WASHINGTON (8/16/13)--Updated examination procedures for Truth in Lending Act (TILA) and Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) compliance were unveiled by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau on Thursday.

"We are committed to transparency around our examination process...So we have worked hard to provide industry with advance notice of what we will be expecting. That, in turn, will improve compliance and benefit consumers," CFPB Director Richard Cordray said.

The latest updates address exams for Ability-to-Repay/Qualified Mortgage, high-cost mortgage, and appraisals for higher-priced mortgage loans regulations. New amendments related to the escrows rule and credit card regulation changes are also covered in the exam procedure update.

The exam procedures, according to the CFPB, will help financial institutions and mortgage companies understand how they will be examined for CFPB rules that:
  • Require lenders to evaluate a borrower's ability to pay back a loan;
  • Ban or limit certain points, fees, and risky features;
  • Require servicers to provide monthly statements and disclosures;
  • Restrict dual-tracking;
  • Require access to servicing personnel and a fair review process; and
  • Require creditors use a licensed or certified appraiser.
The CFPB has now released exam procedures for mortgage origination rules issued through May 29 and mortgage servicing rules issued through July 10. More releases are planned.

For more on the exam procedures, use the resource link.

CFPB: Who Pays For Remittance Transfer Mistake?

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WASHINGTON (8/16/13)--The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau wants to make it perfectly clear that under its new remittance rule a remittance provider will not have to pay if an error occurs in a transaction due to incorrect or insufficient information provided by remittance requester.

The bureau has issued a "clarificatory amendment and technical correction" spelling out that its rule allows remittance providers to deduct fees and taxes related to the unsuccessful remittance transfer attempt from the total amount of funds that were provided by the sender for the transfer.
 
The fees and taxes would be taken from any money refunded to or re-sent by the remittance requester.
 
The bureau in recent days also released an updated version of its small business guide for the remittance rule, and produced a video with even more information on the rule.
 
Under the final rule, remittance transfer providers are required to provide prepayment and receipt disclosures to the consumer sender that include the exchange rate, certain fees and taxes associated with a transfer, and the amount of money that will be received on the other end of the transfer. Remittance transfer providers will also be required to investigate disputes and correct errors. The rule has a scheduled effective date of Oct. 28.