The National Credit Union Administration approved measures on Thursday to reorganize its main office and give the agency more flexibility to act when emergency mergers are necessary.
The Office of Small Credit Union Initiatives is being closed while the Office of Credit Union Resources and Expansion will be created to take over various responsibilities of the former small credit union office as well as some of the functions of the Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access and the Office of Minority and Women Inclusion. The Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access name will be changed to the Office of Consumer Financial Protection.
This reorganization includes the closure of two agency regional offices, effective Jan. 2019, but those closures will be subject to a separate rule to come before the Board in 2018.
“The agency’s commitment to small credit unions has not changed,” NCUA public relations specialists John Fairbanks said in an email. “The Office of Small Credit Union Initiatives is being reorganized and will become the Office of Credit Union Resources and Expansion. So, while OSCUI is technically ‘closing,’ there will be a new office serving small credit unions along with the other responsibilities.”
Martha Ninichuk, the director of OSCUI and future head of CURE, echoed this sentiment in the most recent NCUA report.
“CURE’s primary mission will be to assist credit unions through all the various stages of expansion and strategic development,” Ninichuk said in the report. “The Office of Credit Union Resources and Expansion is the result of a reconfiguration and repurposing of the existing Office of Small Credit Union Initiatives and portions of our Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access. The new CURE office will be comprised of three consumer access divisions to help credit unions grow. It will also have one operations unit that will develop online training, manage our minority depository preservation program, and administer our grants and loans program, as well as other initiatives.”
The NCUA board also amended a rule in its Chartering and Field of Membership Manual in order to provide the agency more flexibility in situations warranting emergency mergers.
Currently, the definition requires NCUA to project a credit union to fall into at least one of three net worth categories over a period of time in order to be found in danger of insolvency. The rule the board approved lengthens the time period for two of the three current categories by six months and adds a fourth category to include CUs that have been granted or received Section 208 assistance within the 15 months before the regulator determines that the CU is “in danger of insolvency.”