FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
ICBA Criticizes Proposed NCUA Disclosures for Credit Union Conversions
Washington, D.C. (Oct. 4, 2004)-The Independent Community Bankers of America (ICBA) has criticized new disclosure and voting requirements proposed by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) for credit union conversions. "These disclosure and voting requirements are an attempt to obstruct the right of a credit union to convert to a mutual savings bank charter," said Camden R. Fine, ICBA president and chief executive officer. "They are so misleading and slanted that one can only assume that NCUA is trying to discourage credit union members from ever voting for a conversion. The proposal should be immediately retracted." NCUA's proposal would require that converting credit unions include a four-part disclosure statement with every written communication to a member concerning the conversion and that an independent entity conduct a conversion vote. In a letter to the NCUA, ICBA said NCUA's proposal exceeds its statutory authority under the Credit Union Membership Access Act (CUMAA) and violates CUMAA's requirement that the rules be no more restrictive than those for charter conversions by other financial institutions. ICBA suggested that the NCUA focus on improving the transparency and quality of the disclosures routinely given by federal credit unions and that credit unions be required to file a Form 990 like other not-for-profit organizations, disclosing the compensation of their highest-paid senior managers.