To kick off its January Hike the Hill, the Missouri Credit Union Association (MCUA) arranged a meeting with Elizabeth Vale and Barton Shapiro of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) on January 17 in Washington D.C. For the second time in five months, Missouri representatives were able to communicate directly with Vale about issues facing the industry. Vale stressed the importance of open communication between credit unions and the CFPB.
“Stay in touch with us, the point of you and us is that you all make us better,” says Vale, CFPB assistant director for community banks and credit unions. “We are not in the field, you are. So it’s important for you to pass on what you’re hearing, what’s working and what isn’t.”
Nine Missouri credit union representatives met with Vale and Shapiro in person while an additional 10 participated via conference call. During the hour-long meeting, participants discussed regulating non-banks, rulemaking procedures, mortgage processes, consumer protection and education and future plans of the CFPB.
“The recent appointment of our permanent director, Richard Cordray, is significant because it allows us to supervise and regulate non-banks,” says Shapiro. “We’re trying to create a level playing field across the marketplace. And we’re eager to get that [issue] settled.”
MCUA representatives communicated that credit unions are looking forward to the review of non-banks because it might help resolve predatory lending issues in the marketplace.
“This conference call combined with the on-site visit to CFPB is just one of the ways MCUA is strengthening the federal lobbying and regulatory advocacy component of representation of Missouri credit unions,” says Mike Beall, MCUA president/CEO.
Before the meeting ended, Vale offered her insight on the future of the CFPB and credit unions.
“We are very partial to credit unions," says Vale. “We know yours wasn't the model that was broken, and we want to preserve and protect credit unions. The future looks good. We have a great relationship with CUNA and Richard [Cordray] believes in you all.”
The following credit unions attended the meeting in Washington, D.C.: