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NCUA Seeks Comments on Sweeping Regulatory Reform Plan

Mon, Aug 28, 2017

The National Credit Union Administration is inviting credit union stakeholders to read and comment on a package of regulatory reforms recommended by an internal agency task force.

The task force has recommended changes that would be adopted in the coming four years to clarify, improve, revise, or eliminate regulations. The NCUA Board approved posting the proposal in the Federal Register for a 90-day comment period, and a copy of that notice is available on the agency’s website here.

“The need for a forward-looking regulatory structure that offers meaningful relief without undermining safety and soundness is quite clear,” NCUA Board Chairman J. Mark McWatters said, “and these recommendations serve as a roadmap for a thoughtful process to achieve that goal. This undertaking represents a more significant and comprehensive regulatory relief effort than the agency has pursued in the past. We initiated this effort in the spirit of the administration’s executive order requiring regulatory review, even though the NCUA is not covered by the order.”

“We have made significant progress in the area of regulatory relief in the years following the financial crisis, and this proposal takes that effort to another level,” Board Member Rick Metsger said. “A great deal of work went into developing these recommendations. The task force scoured all the agency’s regulations, looking for ways to make improvements. I hope credit union stakeholders will take time to review this plan carefully and offer comments.”

The agency’s regulatory reform task force was created earlier this year after the NCUA, an independent federal financial institutions regulator, voluntarily chose to comply with the spirit of Executive Order 13777, which requires federal agencies to conduct regulatory reviews.

The task force’s recommendations assess regulatory changes in terms of the time and resources necessary to implement them and the potential benefit to credit unions. All regulatory changes will require an affirmative vote by the NCUA’s Board.

Regulatory review is already part of the NCUA’s culture. Since 1987, the agency has conducted a three-year rolling review of all its rules. Though not required by law, the NCUA also has participated in the Economic Growth and Regulatory Paperwork Reduction Act regulatory review process. If the internal task force’s recommendations are adopted by the Board, they would, in effect, supersede those previous efforts.

The agency already has taken steps towards reform in several areas covered in the proposal, including field-of-membership, alternative capital, asset securitization, and appeals to the NCUA’s supervisory review committee.