Following the years of effort it took for the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief and Consumer Protection Act (S. 2155) to be constructed, introduced and signed into law, CUNA President/CEO Jim Nussle said credit unions are continuing to build on that momentum toward additional relief. In an interview with the Washington Examiner this week, Nussle spoke about achieving regulatory relief in today’s climate, the future of the credit union movement and more.
“We recognize what we did in regulatory relief took us two, three years to build toward. So while we know that's not maybe on the agenda for June, we have to keep building,” Nussle said. “We have to build the case for it, we have to build our grassroots strength, we have to talk to our members of Congress and senators, we have to be advocates to the administration. All of those are ways that we can, I believe, get us prepared, get us ready for what may come next.”
Nussle noted how the provisions in S. 2155 will ultimately free up credit union capital that can be put to good use in communities credit unions serve, ultimately delivering a boost to the overall economy.
He highlighted the positive direction that Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection Acting Director Mick Mulvaney has taken towards additional regulatory relief, and how certainty at the bureau is essential for financial services going forward.
“We'd like to know what the future of the CFPB is even going to be. I mean, part of the reason that it is so uncertain, and it's been you know bantered back and forth in sort of a partisan way, is that it has this one-director sort of system…We'd like a commission system,” Nussle said. “We'd like to establish a commission for the CFPB going forward. We think that, for instance, a five-member commission would be a much stronger message to the certainty of the future than having it blow with the political winds if you will or the predilections of a single director.”
Nussle also cited CUNA’s regulatory burden study that found more than $6 billion per year is locked up in credit unions just to keep up with regulatory requirements.
“The regulatory burden, paperwork-wise, is almost like having to read 17 Harry Potter novels as an example. That's how many pages there are. And it's not as good as Harry Potter, obviously,” Nussle said. “Just dealing with that is huge. Particularly for a small institution, of which most credit unions are.”