Dual Examinations in N.C. Prompt Special League Meeting

January 27, 2012 - CU Times - By Jim Rubenstein

The North Carolina Credit Union League said it plans to have a special meeting next week to discuss how to “protect our credit unions” after the NCUA’s decision to require dual exams following State Employees’ Credit Union’s disclosure of its CAMEL score.

The president/CEO of the trade group, John Radebaugh, said the meeting will be next Wednesday at its Raleigh headquarters.

Meanwhile, Radebaugh said, the league continues “on a daily basis” to gather information from the North Carolina Credit Union Division, which authorized the CAMEL disclosure, and the NCUA.

The NCUA said the dual exams are necessary to protect the NCUSIF and the credit union system.

League officials said state-chartered, federally insured credit unions are “clearly frustrated at having to undergo dual examinations” that will simply “add to the already unprecedented regulatory burden” borne by North Carolina CUs.

SECU CEO Jim Blaine said the score was disclosed in a gesture of transparency to members and that he regrets the NCUA’s decision. SECU also has pointed to approval from state regulators and North Carolina Attorney General's office in making the disclosure.

Radebaugh, the league head, said the dual exam costs now faced by state charters “is made worse by the fact that our credit unions are enduring this burden despite being safe, sound and well capitalized.”

He said the meeting next week will be “to allow credit unions to ask questions and share their perspectives – as well as their needs and concerns.”

The league “is committed to supporting our state chartered credit unions as they cope with dual examinations, and a key way we can do this is by listening,” the league president said.

An NCUA spokesman said its position on the topic is contained in a Jan. 12 letter from NCUA Region III Director Herbert Yolles to all North Carolina state-chartered, federally insured CUs that publishing the CAMEL rating was “an unacceptable release of exempt records of NCUA rules and regulations.”

Meanwhile in New Jersey, in a separate meeting devoted to CEO exasperation over NCUA exam policies, the New Jersey Credit Union League said it is starting a separate program, called “NJ READ” devoted to helping CUs cope with exam practices.

The league said its members continue to find “an overabundance of inconsistencies and potential overzealousness” by examiners. A series of roundtable meetings began this week, the NJCUL said.