Iowa Bankers Op-Ed Calls for NCUA to Focus on Its Job

With the Senate holding a confirmation hearing tomorrow for two nominees — Rodney Hood and Todd Harper — to the three-member National Credit Union Administration board, Iowa Bankers Association President and CEO John Sorensen today said it was a fitting moment to recognize that the agency is “out of touch and needs a new direction.” In an op-ed in the Credit Union Journal, Sorensen flagged numerous problems at the agency that he said “acts like a trade group protecting the industry that it is charged with overseeing.”

NCUA has a record “of doing virtually everything the [credit union]industry asks,” he wrote — including loosening field of membership requirements, permitting a massive expansion of business lending authority, authorizing an excessive appraisal threshold increase and promoting CU purchases of banks.

“NCUA is putting its thumb on the scale in the marketplace through its actions, when it is supposed to be focused on ensuring that credit unions operate in a safe and sound manner,” he wrote. “Members of the NCUA board should stop drinking the industry Kool-Aid and focus on the job they’re there to do.”