As Prepared for Delivery on November 18, 2021
Thank you, Cherie and Heather, for this presentation. Cherie, I’d like to extend my special thanks to you for taking the lead on the NCUA steering group monitoring the economic impact of the pandemic on the credit union system.
I’ve said on many occasions that COVID-19, with all its terrible downsides, created a forced experiment that accelerated innovation and forever changed our thinking on working remotely. Remote flexibility is one of the few upsides from the pandemic.
Monday, we announced the NCUA was extending the authority of federal credit unions to hold meetings remotely. Because NCUA has allowed itself the option to meet remotely, this accommodation for credit unions is more than appropriate.
While the loan participation and PCA relief measures are set to expire December 31, 2021 and March 31, 2022 respectively, the Regional Directors have the authority and discretion to work with credit unions if needed. It is still not ‘business as usual,’ and I urge credit unions to work with the regions if they feel the need. In general, I support moving these kinds of decisions to the regions, where staff are closer to the day-to-day challenges faced by credit unions.
We understand that the changes to the Call Reports are causing some concern. While we believe the more streamlined reporting will ultimately be beneficial for credit unions, the burden of change falls heavily on smaller institutions. The NCUA must take this into consideration and adjust expectations accordingly. As we inch our way back to normal — whatever that turns out to be — I expect the NCUA to remain flexible.
Raising the participation loan cap does not appear to have created additional risk to safety and soundness. This could be another opportunity to take something positive from the pandemic. I’d like to call on my fellow board members to consider extending the deadline on the cap and investigate the benefits of raising it permanently.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman. That concludes my remarks. I do have a couple of questions.