Removing Barriers Blog

Keeping member credit unions and leagues current on what and why we are doing for advocacy efforts including legislative, regulatory and state governmental affairs.
Posted May 31, 2020 by CUNA Advocacy

The Senate will consider a number of federal judicial nominations. 

The House of Representatives will be holding committee meetings this week but will not hold any votes on the House floor.

CUNA's Chief Advocacy Officer, Ryan Donovan posted a 6-minute video with three things to know: 

  • CUNA, ACCUL, and the Leagues wrote to the SBA & Treasury re: PPP loan forgiveness; 

  • NCUA Chairman weighs in on TCPA emergency petition; and 

  • Phase 4... the dance continues. Watch now!


Posted May 29, 2020 by CUNA Advocacy

The Small Business Administration (SBA) announced it is setting aside $10 billion of Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Round 2 funding to be lent exclusively by Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs). CDFIs work to expand economic opportunity in low-income communities by providing access to financial products and services for local residents and businesses.   

The PPP ran out of its initial $349 billion in funding, and Congress approved a second round of $310 billion in April. Of that, $60 billion is allocated to insured depository institutions with below $50 billion in assets. The $10 billion set aside for CDFIs announced Thursday comes out of that $60 billion.

Posted May 28, 2020 by CUNA Advocacy

CUNA sent a letter to the NCUA supporting their technical amendment necessary to help credit unions that made PPP loans.

Posted May 28, 2020 by CUNA Advocacy

The NCUA penned a letter to credit unions on their updated approach for conducting examinations offsite. 

Posted May 28, 2020 by CUNA Advocacy

Credit unions interested in using the National Credit Union Administration’s streamlined process for obtaining Community Development Financial Institution certification have until Sunday, May 31 to apply.

Posted May 25, 2020 by CUNA Advocacy

The House of Representatives will consider several bills under suspension of the rules.

Posted May 22, 2020 by CUNA Advocacy

CUNA and other organizations filed reply comments to their petition to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) calling for Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) relief for calls made from financial institutions to consumers related to the pandemic. CUNA and the organizations filed the original petition March 30, calling for COVID-19 related communications to fall under the TCPA’s Emergency Purposes Exception.

The organizations followed up in April to call on the FCC to immediately grant the petition, as delaying is putting credit unions and other financial institutions at risk as they focus on serving members and communities through the pandemic.

Posted May 21, 2020 by CUNA Advocacy

Investments in the Treasury’s Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI) Fund pay off, CUNA Chief Advocacy Officer Ryan Donovan wrote to all 535 Congressional offices. CUNA has called for a $1 billion appropriation for the CDFI Fund, which gives grants, equity investments and other awards to certified CDFIs.  

“Small but crucial investments can pay dividends in helping moderate- to low-income families who are particularly vulnerable during this economic crisis,” Donovan wrote. “CDFIs take a market-based approach to supporting economically disadvantaged communities, helping neighborhoods that lack access to financing foster and sustain a prosperous future.”

Posted May 21, 2020 by dyi

The NCUA Board adopted an interim final rule on PCA, issued a proposal on joint ownership of share accounts, and received a briefing on the Share Insurance Fund. 

Posted May 20, 2020 by CUNA Advocacy

The CFPB will provide an additional 60 days for the public to comment on its Supplemental Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) on time-barred debt disclosures.  The extension is intended to allow stakeholders additional time to comment on the rulemaking as a result of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.  

The comment period will now close on August 4, 2020.

In the Supplemental NPRM, the Bureau proposes to prohibit collectors from using non-litigation means (including calls) to collect on time-barred debt unless collectors disclose to consumers during the initial contact and on any required validation notice that the debt is time-barred.  The NPRM also proposes model language and forms that debt collectors could use to comply with the proposed disclosure requirements.

Posted May 19, 2020 by dyi

NCUA announced the launch of its new Culture, Diversity, and Inclusion Council

Posted May 18, 2020 by CUNA Advocacy

CUNA's Chief Advocacy Officer sent the email below to all 535 Members of Congress.  We continue to advocate for Congress to remove the arbitrary member business lending cap.

Posted May 17, 2020 by CUNA Advocacy

The Senate will consider a number of federal judicial nominations.

The House of Representatives is expected to be in recess.

The Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee will hold a full committee hearing: "The Quarterly CARES Act Report to Congress."

Witnesses: The Honorable Steven T. Mnuchin, Secretary, Department of the Treasury; and The Honorable Jerome H. Powell, Chairman, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System.

Posted May 17, 2020 by CUNA Advocacy
On Friday evening, the Small Business Administration (SBA) and Treasury released an application for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan forgiveness.  Below you will find the press release. SBA and Treasury Release Paycheck
Posted May 15, 2020 by CUNA Advocacy

Earlier this week, the House released CARES 2 -- the Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions (HEROES) Act of 2020.  Prior to the scheduled consideration on the House floor, CUNA wrote to Speaker Pelosi and Minority Leader McCarthy sharing concerns and feedback on the legislation.  The House passed the latest round of COVID-19 stimulus legislation by a vote of 208-199.

“House passage of the HEROES Act starts a process for a new round of recovery legislation intended to help consumers, small businesses and the economy in general weather and rebuild from the crisis,” said CUNA President/CEO Jim Nussle. “We were happy to see a number of the provisions that will help credit unions remain in a position to serve their members and communities, but we were disappointed that the legislation includes several provisions that would actually make it more difficult for consumers and small businesses to access safe and affordable financial services.”

Posted May 14, 2020 by CUNA Advocacy

The NCUA board will consider a proposed rule on joint ownership accounts, as well as two interim final rules at its May 21 meeting.

The meeting is open to the public, but will be open via live audio webcast only, starting at 10 a.m. (ET).

The full agenda is:

  • Quarterly update on the National Credit Union Share Insurance Fund;
  • Proposed rule on joint ownership share accounts;
  • Interim final rule on overdraft policy; and
  • Interim final rule on prompt corrective action.

Posted May 14, 2020 by CUNA Advocacy

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) this week released a statement and frequently asked questions (FAQs) document outlining the responsibility of credit card issuers and open-end non-home secured creditors during the pandemic. The statement outlines billing error responsibilities under Regulation Z, while the FAQs cover the payments and deposits rule and the open end (not home-secured) rules.

According to the statement, the CFPB will take a flexible supervisory and enforcement approach during the pandemic regarding the timeframe within which creditors complete their investigations of consumers’ billing error notices.

Posted May 14, 2020 by dyi

The FHFA announced that a payment deferral option would be available by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac for homeowners who are currently in COVID-19 related forebearance

Posted May 11, 2020 by CUNA Advocacy

CUNA wrote to Senate Banking Committee Chairman Crapo and Ranking Member Brown prior to the Committee's virtual hearing with financial regulators.  The hearing's witnesses include: NCUA Chairman Hood, FDIC Chairman, OCC Chairman, and the Vice Chairman For Supervision at the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System.

In the letter, CUNA wrote about communications with the NCUA since the onset of the crisis.  CUNA leaders have spoken with Hood several times, and CUNA and Leagues have also provided the agency with input on additional policies to help increase member service, several of which NCUA has acted on.

NCUA has allowed military personnel to count toward the low-income credit union designation, issued guidance on remote and virtual board meetings, implemented a rule to relax appraisal requirements, acted quickly to expand the Central Liquidity Facility and other actions since the onset of the pandemic.

“Notwithstanding the breadth and depth of the action NCUA has taken so far to help credit unions weather this crisis, more needs to be done,” CUNA’s letter reads. “We take this opportunity to highlight several areas where NCUA and Congress should take action to ensure that credit unions remain in a position to serve their members during this crisis and into recovery.”

Recommendation actions fro

Posted May 11, 2020 by CUNA Advocacy

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) issued its final rule on remittances, which comes after strong CUNA engagement with the CFPB to finalize the rule. The rule raises the “normal course of business threshold” to 500 remittance transfers per year, up from the current 100.

“The CFPB’s final remittances rule will help credit union members access safe and affordable remittance services from their credit union. We appreciate the CFPB for having given consideration to the concerns we expressed during the rulemaking process and making changes to the final rule. While we continue to believe an even higher exemption threshold is appropriate, this rule should result in more options for consumers which is always important, but even more so during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said CUNA President/CEO Jim Nussle.

Posted May 10, 2020 by CUNA Advocacy

The Senate will convene at 3:00 pm on Monday and resume consideration of the nomination of Brian D. Montgomery to be Deputy Secretary of Housing and Urban Development.

The House of Representatives is expected to be in session to consider “CARES 2” … emergency legislation regarding the coronavirus pandemic.

Posted May 07, 2020 by CUNA Advocacy

NCUA Chairman Rodney Hood announced that military personnel will now be able to count toward a credit union earning the Low-Income Credit Union (LICU) designation. CUNA requested this change in its engagement with NCUA, most recently in a letter sent to Hood in March.  Shortly after the announcement, the Chairman, members of the Agency's staff, the CEO of Inclusiv, and a Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Treasury conducted a webinar with CUNA to discuss the announcement and resources for LICU credit unions.  Interested in learning more - watch the recorded version of the webinar here!

The LICU designation means low-income members comprise more than 50% of a federal credit union’s membership, and entitles the credit union to certain statutory benefits, including being able to accept non-member deposits from any source, offering secondary capital accounts, member business lending exemptions and the ability to apply for grants and low-interest loans from NCUA.

Posted May 07, 2020 by CUNA Advocacy

On Tuesday, CUNA President/CEO Jim Nussle discussed how credit unions are serving members during the pandemic, and what the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) could do to help, with FHFA Director Mark Calabria. CUNA previously wrote to Calabria outlining ways the agency could help credit unions assist members better.

“Credit unions have a vested interest in keeping members in their homes and have worked diligently throughout this crisis to work alongside members to offer assistance and other relief as necessary,” Nussle said. “I shared this with Director Calabria, as well as the feedback we’ve heard from our members about what policy changes could help credit unions increase outreach to affected members and communities, and I thanked him for his time.”

Posted May 07, 2020 by CUNA Advocacy

The CFPB issued clarifying frequently asked questions (FAQs) related to Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA) compliance for Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans.  

Under ECOA, creditors are generally required to notify applicants within 30 days of receiving a “completed application” of the creditor’s approval, counteroffer, denial or other adverse notice regarding the application. 

Posted May 06, 2020 by CUNA Advocacy

CUNA joined more than 100 organizations from around the country in sending a letter to Congressional leadership and appropriators to continue its push for increased Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI) funding due to the coronavirus disease.  

Posted May 06, 2020 by CUNA Advocacy

CUNA's Chief Advocacy Officer wrote to all 535 Congressional offices to highlight how credit unions are helping those affected by COVID-19 and how they are ready to do more.  


Posted May 05, 2020 by dyi

The Federal Housing Finance Agency extended several loan origination flexibilities currently offered by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac designed to help borrowers during the COVID-19 national emergency. 

Posted May 03, 2020 by CUNA Advocacy

The House of Representatives was expected to be in session this week.  However, the House leadership cancelled this week’s session.

The Senate is back in session on Monday, with a 5:30 pm confirmation vote on Robert J. Feitel to be Inspector General of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.  In addition, the Senate may vote to reauthorize the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act.

 

Posted May 01, 2020 by CUNA Advocacy

The CFPB hosted a conference call meeting of its advisory groups, including the Credit Union Advisory Council. The call focused on the state of consumer financial services during the COVID-19 pandemic and the associated economic slowdown. 

The call began with remarks from CFPB Director Kathy Kraninger highlighting the challenges consumers are facing and how the CFPB has responded to assist consumers and provide flexibility to providers.  In particular, the Director noted the Bureau’s financial education efforts focused on student loan borrowers and servicemembers and expressed concern about the growing frequency of fraud schemes targeting vulnerable groups, especially older Americans.