Pro-Conversion Coalition Forming in Response to NCUA’s Recent Actions on CU-to-Bank Conversions

From CU Times

WASHINGTON – (3/2/2004) A coalition appearing to consist of banking groups and some private firms has formed to fight any changes to legislation or regulation governing credit union conversion to mutual bank charters.

The goal of the Coalition for Credit Union Charter Options will be to keep open the option for credit unions to convert to the thrift — or mutual savings bank — charter, the Coalition wrote in a “limited distribution” press release. The group’s efforts in Washington are being coordinated through the lobbying firm Butera and Andrews, which has a number of different banking clients.

“ NCUA has been holding up recent conversion filings and has actually overturned a legal vote in favor of conversion,” said James J. Butera, acting executive director of the Coalition. “After five and a half years of reluctantly but even-handedly administering the revised statute, NCUA is now trying to rewrite the law which instructed the agency to institute new regulations that would facilitate statutorily authorized conversions.”

While the Coalition official members are being kept confidential, the Coalition revealed that 22 state banking associations signed a February 3, 2004 letter to the Senate Banking Committee objecting to the NCUA’s recent regulatory stance.

(James Butera can be reached at 202-347-6875; www.butera-andrews.com)

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