Service Survey Seen As Opportunity To Shine

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NCUA Board Member Gigi Hyland, who has attended many a GAC as a member of the audience, made her debut on the GAC stage.

"The role of the regulator is to ensure safety and soundness...Safety and soundness has to be balanced with regulatory flexibility," Hyland offered. "Your job is not to avoid risk but to manage risk. NCUA's job is to ensure you are managing risk. We must make sure, when we are promulgating rules, that we don't discourage you from taking risk."

With that, Hyland hit some of the same topics her fellow members of the board touched on, as well: the need to refine risk-focused exams and final revisions to the Regulatory Flexibility rule and the fact that the agency's initiative to measure CU's service to the underserved is not going to lead to CRA-like requirements for credit unions.

"I unabashedly believe in credit unions. I believe credit unions can make a difference in people's lives," she said. Even so, NCUA must be seen to be responsive to Congressional inquiry into CU's service to the underserved.

Hyland urged those credit unions that find themselves on the list of 481 CUs to be surveyed to see it as an opportunity to do everything they can to show all their efforts to reach out to their membership.

"Provide in glorious detail all that you do," she exhorted. "This is an opportunity to shine. This is an opportunity for credit unions to define this issue. The House Ways & Means Committee kicked the ball to credit unions. This is an opportunity for you to define how you serve members. Not bankers, not Capitol Hill, you, the credit union system."

Hyland also discussed the issue of credit union-to-bank conversions. Noting that the agency has very little leeway in its dealings with conversions, Hyland added, "NCUA can't regulate greed."

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