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ICBA Criticizes NCUA’s Rules on Underserved Areas and Credit Union Conversions

Washington, D.C. (June 23, 2006)—The Independent Community Bankers of America (ICBA) criticized the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) for its recent actions with regard to its underserved area policy and credit union conversions.

"ICBA commends NCUA's Board for deciding to limit the addition of new underserved areas to multiple common bond credit unions, but the final rule doesn't address the problem of those non-multiple common bond credit unions that received prior approvals in violation of the Credit Union Membership Access Act," said Chris Cole, ICBA regulatory counsel. "NCUA should retroactively revoke those prior approvals. Otherwise, those credit unions will be able to continue adding new members in violation of the law."

ICBA is also disappointed that the final rule does not address other aspects of the underserved area policy. ICBA believes that before a multiple common bond credit union is allowed to expand into an underserved area, NCUA should ensure that it fully serves individuals of modest means.

"ICBA opposes any attempt by NCUA to impose additional obstacles on the right of a credit union to convert to a mutual savings bank," said Cole. "The proposed rule on credit union conversions will further complicate the conversion process and make it more difficult for management to comply with the disclosure requirements."

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