Removing Barriers Blog

CUNA Staff and Credit Unions Attend SBA Office of Advocacy Roundtable on Small Business Lending

Credit unions traveled from throughout the country to discuss the CFPB’s request for information (RFI) about collecting additional data on small business lending at a Small Business Administration (SBA) Office of Advocacy Roundtable. 

The CFPB’s RFI stems from Section 1071 of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (Dodd-Frank Act) which amends the Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA) to require financial institutions to compile, maintain, and report information concerning credit applications made by women-owned, minority-owned, and small businesses.  

CUNA has previously weighed in on this RFI with the CFPB and the SBA Office of Advocacy noting that they support the intent of this potential rule but have serious concerns that unintended consequences of overly burdensome regulations in this area could have the effect of limiting access to small business loans for credit union members. 

The group reiterated many of these concerns to CFPB staff, SBA staff, and SBA Office of Advocacy staff. Specifically, the representatives urged the CFPB to exempt credit unions from any additional data collection requirements for small business loan data since credit unions are serving unique fields of membership in an already consumer friendly way. Additionally, they reiterated concerns that any data collected for this effort would be a very small percentage of the market, and would largely be useless when compared to the large Wall Street banks for the purpose of drawing any policy conclusions because of credit unions different rules for business lending. 

The credit union representatives at the meeting included Jason L. Herlitzke from Summit Credit Union, Steve Hazan from State Employees Credit Union of Maryland, Stephanie Sievers from ANECA Federal Credit Union, and Mira Ness from New York University FCU, as well as Leah Dempsey CUNA’s Senior Director of Advocacy and Counsel. 

CUNA plans to continue to engage with the CFPB, the SBA, and the SBA Office of Advocacy about this potential rule and will continue to push for Congressional efforts which modify Section 1071 of the Dodd-Frank Act.