CUNA sent a letter to Senate Banking Committee leadership ahead of the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection's (BCFP or Bureau) Director nomination hearing. The letter was written to Chairman Crapo and Ranking Member Brown in support of the nomination process and urges Congress to support a bipartisan commission for the Bureau.
"Stability of leadership and clarity of mission are critical features of any efficient and effective regulatory body," the letter reads. "Credit unions look forward to working with a new permanent BCFP Director, one that we hope will recognize the unique structure of credit unions and the enormous benefit credit unions provide to American consumers in need of financial services."
While credit unions view this as a positive development, CUNA continues to advocate for legislation that provides for a multi-person, bipartisan commission to lead the Bureau, as was originally proposed by the Obama administration in 2009. In April, several financial trade associations wrote to Congress in support of H.R. 5266, the Financial Product Safety Commission Act of 2018, which would transition the governance structure of the Bureau from a sole director to a five-person commission.
“Proponents of the Bureau have historically hailed it as a regulatory agency with an obligation to fairly and independently administer federal consumer protection law,” the letter reads. “However, the current structure has proven to be the Bureau’s fatal flaw and has resulted in an agency that is only independent from the minority political party.”
Appointment of a bipartisan commission provides consumers a steady approach to regulation. CUNA encourages the bureau to continue engaging credit unions in its external outreach to gain a better understanding of credit union business model, specifically as it relates to how regulations affect operations and service to consumers.
Ms. Kathleen Kraninger has been nominated as the permanent Director to the BCFP.