Board set to decide 2021 budget/OTR today

(Dec. 18, 2020) With a rare second monthly meeting scheduled for today (Friday, Dec. 18), the full-complement NCUA Board will consider the 2021 budget for the agency, which includes an increase of 1 percentage point for the overhead transfer rate (OTR), the rate at which the agency transfers funds from the federal savings insurance fund to the operating budget of the agency to cover its “insurance-related costs.”

More coverage of the meeting, which ensues after NASCUS Report’s deadline, will be included in next week’s report.

The board is expected to approve the $342.5 million budget as proposed, although likely on a split vote. Board Member Todd Harper has voiced objection to the lack of funding for consumer protection compliance staff in the budget and has said he would not support the budget unless that funding was put into place. Board Chairman Rodney Hood has no such objections; newest Board Member Kyle Hauptman (a Republican appointee like Hood) is expected to follow Hood’s lead on the budget.

For its part, NASCUS has taken no position on the budget, except with respect to the increase in the OTR, which would be 62.3% in 2021 (up from 61.3% in 2020).

In testimony two weeks ago before the NCUA Board at its public briefing about the 2021 budget, NASCUS urged NCUA to consider making changes to how it allocates expenses through the OTR to insurance-related activities, in order to ensure balance, equity and that more funds are available to cover any losses that may occur due to the financial impact of the coronavirus crisis.

“The 1% increase in the OTR for 2021 means there will be $3.3 million less to cover losses by the fund,” NASCUS’s Lucy Ito told the board. She noted that NASCUS recognized its recommendations cannot be implemented for 2021, but that the state system hopes they would be considered for future budgets. “We want to work with NCUA,” she said.

Friday’s board session is scheduled to get underway at 10 a.m. ET, and is being live-streamed via the Internet.

NCUA Board Agenda for the Dec. 18, 2020 meeting