July 24, 2014

NAFCU notes concerns over USPS banking bill

July 25, 2014 – NAFCU Vice President of Legislative Affairs Brad Thaler wrote Rep. Cedric Richmond, D-La., to express concerns that Richmond's bill to allow the U.S. Postal Service to provide financial services could have unintended consequences for credit unions.

"The USPS is going through extreme financial challenges and taking on a new mission of providing financial services would be a challenging task, putting it under pressure to raise revenue from this new authority," Thaler wrote. "NAFCU believes that consumers are best served by not-for-profit institutions that can offer a full range of financial services and establish relationships with them, such as credit unions.

"Credit unions are well-equipped to offer the under-banked with full service financial products, but are often limited by outdated laws and overregulation," he continued. "We would welcome the opportunity to work with you on your goal of providing financial services to underserved populations and ways that credit unions can help."

Thaler also pointed out that while Richmond's legislation includes a measure giving credit unions the opportunity to work with the USPS in providing financial services, the field of membership rules for credit unions would likely prevent that from being possible.

In May, House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa, R-Calif., sharply criticized the suggestion from the U.S. Postal Service's inspector general that the agency expand to provide non-bank financial services.

NAFCU will continue to monitor the debate on postal reform for its potential impact on credit unions.