May 01, 2019

NCUA, SBA launch three-year collaboration

SBA/NCUA Administrators during signingThe NCUA and Small Business Administration (SBA) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) Tuesday aimed at increasing awareness of SBA programs and bringing small business and credit unions together.

In 2015 and 2017, NAFCU signed MOUs with former SBA Administrators Maria Contreras-Sweet and Linda McMahon, respectively, and has since worked closely with the SBA to improve access to credit union small-dollar loans to small businesses across the nation.

The NCUA-SBA MOU launches a series of initiatives, such as webinars, training events and media outreach that will increase credit unions' understanding and usage of SBA-backed loans and resources. According to a release by the NCUA, there has been an increase in commercial lending by federally insured credit unions, with credit unions reporting more than $71 billion in outstanding commercial loans. Since October 2017, nearly 200 credit unions have participated in the SBA guaranty program.

"The credit union mission is grounded in the concept of providing affordable financial products and services tailored to meet their member’s needs, and that includes helping Americans start or expand businesses," said NCUA Board Chairman Rodney Hood. "Credit unions are well-situated to understand and work with their local businesses and entrepreneurs to extend affordable credit. I am delighted that we will be working with the SBA to help credit unions make these important investments, and I want to encourage credit unions to learn more about SBA programs."

"I look forward to our two agencies collaborating on shared best practices, educational initiatives, and increasing our support of current and future entrepreneurs," said SBA Acting Administrator Chris Pilkerton.

Gail Jansen, vice president of business services and operations at Kinecta Federal Credit Union, recently urged the SBA and Congress on behalf of NAFCU to work together to protect and strengthen the SBA's 7(a) loan program by not raising fees on small lenders and small businesses.

NAFCU has been active on SBA lending issues, and met with former Administrator McMahon earlier this year  to discuss credit unions' participation in SBA lending programs as well as website accessibility concerns under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and efforts to modernize the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA). The association looks forward to continuing to partner with the SBA to provide webinars, like this one how to navigate SBA One,  and other resources for credit unions to learn about SBA loan products.