July 24, 2015

Matz: More FOM rule changes ahead

NCUA plans, before this year-end, to propose additional changes to its field-of-membership rules to permit more-expansive community charters, underserved areas and occupational charters, agency Chairman Debbie Matz told lawmakers Thursday.

Matz, testifying before the House Financial Services Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit, said NCUA would support changes to the Federal Credit Union Act to ease FOM restrictions. She said, for example, that NCUA would welcome a legislative amendment to allow community-chartered credit unions to add underserved areas to their membership fields.

NAFCU welcomes this work. The association in May sent the agency a field-of-membership white paper that provided recommendations for eased rules. With that white paper, NAFCU reiterated its longstanding view that NCUA should utilize the statutory authority it has now to make FOM rules more workable and productive for federal credit unions.

Matz also noted regulatory relief items expected this year from NCUA. These include:

  • a final rule to permit qualified credit unions to securitize their assets;
  • a final rule easing member business loan rules;
  • issuance of a proposal to allow supplemental capital to be counted toward credit unions' risk-based capital ratio (under an RBC rule still in proposed form and expected to take effect in 2019).

In written testimony, Matz also indicated that the agency will solicit comments on the overhead transfer rate methodology every three years in conjunction with its public review of its strategic plan.

Matz also noted the agency has proposed to raise the "small" credit union asset-size threshold from $50 million to $100 million for regulatory relief purposes. That proposal was issued in February.