Toomey adds CUNA-supported amendment to Senate panel-approved relief package

May 22, 2015

WASHINGTON (5/22/15)--In the midst of Thursday's Senate Banking Committee markup of a broad regulatory relief package for financial institutions, Sen. Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) introduced a CUNA-supported amendment to provide even more respite from the burden of rules that credit unions and others face. It was adopted 13-9 with bipartisan support.

Toomey's provision would increase the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) examination threshold to $50 billion in assets--five times the current $10 billion cutoff.

CUNA and the Independent Community Bankers of America are the only two credit union or bank trade associations that have worked to support this higher threshold. CUNA Deputy Chief Advocacy Officer Sam Whitfield said CUNA appreciates the regulatory relief efforts of Toomey and all the senators who are working to move reforms forward in Congress.

CUNA strongly supports the change, although only a small number of credit unions fall above the $10 billion mark, because raising the cap would be recognition that credit unions have a different incentive structure as not-for-profit financial institutions.

CUNA also advocates for including an automatic adjustment of the threshold, indexed for inflation.

Toomey's relief amendment joins three credit union-specific regulatory relief provisions, as well as more than a dozen other relief items that benefit credit unions, already found in the package introduced by Sen. Richard Shelby, the panel chair, this month. The bill passed by a party line vote of 12-10. (See related story: CU reg. relief needs cited during SBC vote for Shelby package.)

The higher CFPB exam threshold is also carried in a CUNA-supported stand-alone bill introduced in March, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Examination and Reporting Act (S. 482).