CUs Are In Fight For Their Lives; NCUA Needs An Overhaul, Not More Of The Same

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Say it ain't so!

Regarding the NCUA announcement that NCUA Director of Examination and Insurance David Marquis has been named Executive Director of the agency (CU Journal, Dec. 8), given the high-handed shenanigns that have gone on in many credit unions over the period that Marquis headed exam and supervision, I kept waiting...

To reward Marquis as the new COO is another brush-off for credit unions needing reassurance that their fund is being protected.

The time for the separation of the regulator and the NCUSIF is now-before even more damage is done. Marquis's promotion is proof that the NCUA Board is either unwilling or unable to provide that protection.

Credit unions must unite and demand congressional action to place our fund under separate administration-an administration that reports to the movement on its actions and efforts to mitigate losses to our fund. No amount of budgetary increase or examiner hiring will refocus the examination process on issues of safety and soundness without good leadership at the top.

On the heels of Marquis' promotion comes the following CU Journal headline: "Regulators Faulted In Big CU Failure Tied To Florida Real Estate Speculation."

Failure Not Shocking, Response Is

So, I'm having a little trouble here...The news that regulators failed to do their job in the Huron River failure is not a shock. Their response to the Inspector General's findings is. A promise to do better is simply not enough.

This cost $100 million, and that was one credit union in Michigan. There were two other cu's involved in the same scam. Where does the buck stop or is it simply shifted around with no one held accountable? So Big CU got $40 million and NCUA eats the rest. Can't tell you what a warm feeling that gives me.

Now Michigan CUs get to compete with Big CU, which has been insulated and enriched with our dollars and we get to watch our members money pay off the rest of the losses. Excuse me, who got canned for the failure to timely identify this fiasco? After all $100 million is real money.

Now to the future! The Michigan regulator didn't do its job so NCUA, which also didn't do its job, is going to oversee them more closely. Huh, I'm getting warmer and fuzzier by the minute. Is anyone else as outraged by this disgusting series of events and the admission that what happened has happened without consequence? Frankly, I am at a point that replacing the whole bunch with a newer, more focused regulator would be welcome.

Credit unions are in a fight for their lives and we have many who would love to see us consolidated and compressed into a more manageable form, if not simply eliminated.

That would occur at great peril for our members who would see their choices slimmed dramatically. Regulators play an important role in determining that the cu community doesn't get too carried away with issues related to safety and soundness. Nothing is more important and distractions like BSA, Patriot Act, Red Flag etc. and for that matter anything that shifts that focus must be resisted.


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