December 10, 2013
Tuesday Edition
Ombudsman Office deliveres CFPB annual report

Last week, the CFPB's Ombudsman's Office delivered its annual report to Director Richard Cordray. Items discussed in this year's report include:

  • Keeping up-to-date with CFPB developments
  • Notification of CFPB events and speaker requests
  • Elevating concerns in the examination process
  • What to expect during the examination life-cycle

Additionally, the ombudsman considered the importance of balancing feedback between consumer and trade groups, feedback pertaining to the regulatory processes, meetings of the CFPB's Consumer Advisory Board and councils, and information presented in the Consumer Complaint Database.

Several items of interest concerning the CFPB's notification of events and concerns about keeping up-to-date with respect to CFPB activity appear on pages 15 and 16 of the report. For example, consumer and trade groups shared with the ombudsman that it is challenging to keep up to date with CFPB activity across the agency's website.

One of the ombudsman's recommendations is to maintain a digest of all updates to consumerfinance.gov, and a checklist opportunity for users to subscribe to each available CFPB sign-up rather than searching for sign-ups on each page of the site.

CUNA will continue to urge the Bureau to improve its efforts in transparency, and the League is supportive of this and other recommendations contained within the ombudsman's report.

Click here to read the full annual report.

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Washington wire

Privately Insured Credit Unions Joining the Federal Home Loan Bank System
On Tuesday, Rose Bartolomucci, president/CEO of Towpath Credit Union in Akron, OH, testified on behalf of CUNA at a hearing on pending regulatory relief proposals before a House Financial Services Subcommittee. Bartolomucci particularly spoke in favor of, H.R. 3584 which would permit privately insured credit unions to join the Federal Home Loan Bank System. This needed fix would allow the nation’s 132 privately insured state-chartered credit unions access to increased liquidity through the FHLB and ensure more services for their members.

Privacy Notification
CUNA and the League continue to press the Senate to pass the privacy notification legislation (H.R. 749 / S. 635). The House version was passed in March. CUNA and the League have been pressing the Senate to pass this by unanimous consent. One senator has placed a hold on the bill and CUNA is working with Senate leadership to get that hold released. This legislation is a candidate for “wrap-up” at the end of session.

IOLTA
IOLTA bill (H.R. 3468) passed the Financial Services Committee in November, and CUNA and the League have been encouraging leadership in the House to schedule it for consideration on the suspension calendar. It is not among the bills scheduled to be considered this week, so it will probably be considered in January.
 
Reg D Study Bill
CUNA and the League encourage cosponsors for H.R. 3240, our Reg D Study bill. The bill currently has 14 cosponsors, including Reps. Patrick Murphy (D-FL) and Dennis Ross (R-FL). Most of the cosponsors are members of the Financial Services Committee. The hope is that this will be a candidate for the suspension calendar early next year.

Click here to read the full legislative update.

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InfoSight spotlight: Suspicious Activity Reports

An effective Bank Secrecy Act compliance program will be able to recognize that certain transactions are suspicious in nature. A credit union must know its members to be able to make an informed decision as to the suspicious nature of a particular transaction and whether to file a Suspicious Activity Report (SAR).

SARs can be filed on any transaction occurring in any department. SARs must be filed no later than 30 days after the date of initial detection of facts that may constitute a basis for filing a SAR.

Remember that the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) has mandated that the SAR reports (and Currency Transaction Reports) be filed electronically through the BSA E-Filing System beginning July 1, 2012.

For the resources your credit union needs to remain in compliance, visit the Suspicious Activity Reports topic of InfoSight.

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NCUA opens first 2014 grant round in February

The National Credit Union Administration announced last week that it will begin accepting applications for its first round in 2014 for technical assistance grants beginning Feb. 3.

Low-income designated credit unions can individually receive up to $16,500 in funding for three grant categories:

  • A new Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) certification
  • New products
  • Student internships

NCUA will provide $481,000 in total funding during the first 2014 grant round. The application period runs Feb. 3 through Feb. 14, 2014. Credit unions may apply online here.

New for 2014, NCUA will provide $2,500 each to as many as 40 credit unions seeking a CDFI certification. Certified CDFIs may apply for funding from the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Community Development Financial Institutions Fund. The CDFI Fund provides funding for financial institutions serving low-income people and communities that lack adequate access to affordable financial products and services.

For more information click here.  

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In This Issue
Tuesday Edition
Ombudsman Office deliveres CFPB annual report
Washington wire
InfoSight spotlight: Suspicious Activity Reports
NCUA opens first 2014 grant round in February
LSCU & Affiliates Media


2013 Leadership Development Conference Wrap Up
Check out a wrap-up video from the Leadership Development Conference, Nov. 5-8. The video features some of the speakers and attendees. Make plans to attend next year. 

2014 CUNA GAC
CUNA President/CEO Bill Cheney promotes CUNA's 2014 Governmental Affairs Conference.

Upcoming League Events
Dec. 11 Document Security Program Info
Dec. 12 Steps to Effective Expense Control
Dec. 17 Reg E vs ACH Rules
Dec. 18 Questions Board Members Need to Ask
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