(Oct. 1, 2021) Payments systems, digital currencies, transition by large credit unions to specialized oversight by NCUA, the evolution of mortgage servicing in the wake of the Great Recession, and climate change were all topics for discussion between larger credit unions and state regulators at the first Credit Union and Regulator Engagement (CURE) event this week.
Sponsored by NASCUS and made possible, in part, by the Dual Charter Resource Initiative (DCRI), the inaugural CURE event brought together 28 credit union leaders, regulators and others from several states (including California, Iowa, Illinois, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Washington and Wisconsin).
Participants attend by invitation only; leaders of state-chartered credit unions with assets of $4 billion – $10 billion are eligible to be invited.
Speakers at the inaugural CURE event included: Dr. Nina Chen, New York State Department of Financial Services director of sustainability and climate initiatives; Chuck Cross, CSBS SVP of nonbank supervision and enforcement section; Diana Dykstra California/Nevada Credit Union Leagues president and CEO; Dan Gonzalez, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago vice president; Scott Hunt, director, NCUA Office of National Examinations and Supervision (ONES); Sharmynn Powell, Eastern Caribbean Central Bank chief risk officer; Meredith Ritchie, Alliant Credit Union SVP, general counsel and chief ethics and government affairs officer, and and Ken Schaafsma, Alliant Credit Union chief risk officer.
“The group was highly engaged in the topics at hand, as well as with each other,” said NASCUS’ Ito. “It was terrific to see differing points of view being brought to the table to better the industry.”
She said, for example, the group worked together to consider potential issues associated with climate change as a safety and soundness issue for credit unions. That included the very real threats of fires, floods, sea-level rise, and environmental catastrophes, and the effect of those events on future access to insurance and lending decisions. Also compelling, Ito said, were views expressed on the challenges of quantifying risk related to climate change, exercising proportionality in imposing reporting requirements on smaller financial institutions versus international banking entities, and reaching uniform standards between federal and state programs. “There was a common theme of ‘stronger together’ consistent with each discussion,” Ito said.
CURE is one of the initiatives sponsored by NASCUS and the DCRI, a partnership between the state system and key organizations within the credit union system at large committed to strengthening the state credit union charter by pursuing progressive legislation and regulation, building relationships to foster charter innovation, guarding against unnecessary federal pre-emption and expanding awareness of options available to state-chartered credit unions.
The next NASCUS/DCRI-sponsored event is the Exchange, Nov. 1-2 in Phoenix (an invitation-only event for regulators and leaders from credit unions with more than $10 billion in assets).