This week: NCUA to vote on RBC delay; Lawmakers work on spending bills
It's a busy week in Washington with Congress in session working to finish various bills before the end of the year, including the fiscal year 2020 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) and a dozen spending bills before current government funding expires Dec. 20. In addition, the NCUA Board and Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) hold their last meetings of the year.
- NCUA: The NCUA Board meets Thursday and is expected to finalize a delay to the implementation of its risk-based capital (RBC) rule and the 2020-2021 budgets, as well as receive a briefing of the normal operating level (NOL) for the 2020 National Credit Union Share Insurance Fund (NCUSIF). Related to RBC, NAFCU has previously shared several recommendations for the board to consider and has urged the NCUA to work with Congress to amend the Federal Credit Union Act to achieve "comprehensive capital reform." The association last week also sent a letter recommending the agency return the NCUSIF's NOL to 1.3 percent.
- NDAA: Members of the conference committee charged with reconciling the Senate and House versions of the bill are expected to release the final report soon. NAFCU remains active on Capitol Hill advocating against the inclusion of a harmful provision – included in the Senate-passed bill – that would treat big banks the same as a local military installation's not-for-profit credit union when it comes to nominal leases. Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Jim Inhofe, R-Okla., had offered a "skinny" version of the bill in case an agreement wasn't reached.
- Government funding: Congress passed a continuing resolution last month to extend funding to Dec. 20; authorization for the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) is also tied to this deadline. Lawmakers are attempting to finalize a dozen fiscal year 2020 spending bills before funding expires. Another short-term spending bill could be passed in order to avert a government shutdown if agreements on the individual bills aren't reached in time. NAFCU has shared its concerns with Congress about the harm caused to credit union members by funding lapses and continues to advocate for full funding of programs used by credit unions.
- FOMC: The Fed's monetary policy-setting arm cut rates for the third time this year during its last meeting in October. However, NAFCU Chief Economist and Vice President of Research Curt Long expects no change to rates at the end of this week's meeting due to the committee's outlook on the economy. The meeting begins tomorrow and concludes Wednesday.
Also happening on Capitol Hill this week:
- Tomorrow, the House Financial Services Committee begins a markup of nine bills that cover issues including cybersecurity, mortgage access, student lending, credit scores, and minority depository institutions.
- Tomorrow, the House Small Business Committee will review the Small Business Administration's (SBA) 504/Certified Development Company (CDC) program. The SBA last week finalized a rule to streamline CDC corporate governance requirements, which NAFCU supported as it will bolster credit unions' 504 lending to members.
- Wednesday, the House Agriculture Committee will hear from agricultural lenders as it reviews credit conditions.
- Wednesday, the Senate Commerce Committee will markup more than a dozen bills, including one related to robocalls. As Congress considers legislation to target illegal robocalls, NAFCU has urged lawmakers to protect credit unions' communications with members.
- Wednesday, the Senate Small Business Committee will consider the nomination of Jovita Carranza to be SBA Administrator. NAFCU works closely with the SBA to expand access to credit union small-dollar loans for small businesses across the nation; in September, the two signed a new Strategic Alliance Memorandum (SAM) to strengthen their partnership.
Other NAFCU happenings this week:
- The association's final conference of 2019 – the CFO Summit – kicks off Wednesday in Huntington Beach, Calif. Attendees will explore issues such as the current expected credit loss (CECL) standard, economic trends, NCUA examinations and more. See the agenda.
- Wednesday, NAFCU is offering a webinar on Regulation CC compliance issues and best practices. Register for the webinar.
- The association will meet separately with the CFPB and Federal Home Loan Banks of Dallas and Chicago to discuss issues facing credit unions.
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