New Hampshire, Vermont, and Maine leagues meet with CFPB Director after hearing in Maine

Following a debt-collection field hearing in Portland, Maine, on July 10, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) Director Richard Cordray held a separate meeting with credit union members and top-level representatives of the New Hampshire, Vermont, and Maine credit union leagues on key credit union topics, including regulatory burden.

Overdraft protection plans, student loans, and mortgage rule concerns, including exemption levels and foreclosure issues, were among the top items covered during the conversation, according to Dan Egan, president of the New Hampshire Credit Union League, Massachusetts Credit Union League, and the Credit Union Association of Rhode Island.

Maine Credit Union League President/CEO John G. Murphy also emphasized the regulatory burden that credit unions face today during the meeting.

"The burden is significant, and we would like to see the agency use its authority to exempt credit unions from a number of requirements. Credit unions didn't cause the financial crises and broader exemptions would limit the burden on credit unions without undermining consumer protection," Murphy told News Now.

Credit unions are also concerned about what the agency may impose on credit unions for ongoing data collection requirements, and what plan B is for the bureau if it is determined the agency acted without due authority when it issued rules under the Dodd-Frank Act, Murphy added.

Michael L'Ecuyer, CEO of Bellwether Community Credit Union, Manchester, NH, and a member of the Credit Union National Association's Board of Directors, also asked the CFPB to take into consideration the implementation of its provisions. "It is important for the CFPB to have adequate training and clear procedures to assist examiners in conducting examinations and in providing a public road map for implementation. The meeting confirmed that the CFPB is sensitive to the volume and timing of new mortgage rules and the impact on compliance," he said.

Also participating was Association of Vermont Credit Unions President/CEO Joseph Bergeron.

CUNA Deputy General Counsel Mary Dunn noted recently that CUNA, the state leagues, and credit unions have worked diligently to pursue a number of improvements in CFPB rules, which the agency has acted upon.

Such improvements include:

  • Limited liability for credit unions under the remittances rule;
  • Allowing certain loans to be considered as qualified mortgages even if they don't meet all of the QM requirements;
  • Delaying the effective date of the prohibition on financing of single premium insurance;
  • Loss mitigation processing improvements for small servicers; and
  • Avoiding licensing requirements under the mortgage loan originator rule.

Dunn added that CUNA continues to emphasize to the CFPB growing concerns about the regulatory burdens faced by credit unions and that credit unions should be exempt from a number of CFPB requirements.

The CFPB's debt-collection event featured remarks from Cordray, as well as testimony from consumer groups, industry representatives, and members of the public.