Written by Steve Van Beek
Proponents of Dodd-Frank and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau tried to tell credit unions that Dodd-Frank and the CFPB would be good for credit unions. The playing field would be leveled and the regulatory burden would be lowered on small institutions.
Here is a snippet from Elizabeth Warren's testimony before the House on May 24, 2011:
"A significant part of our mission will also be to help level the playing field for smaller lenders, such as community banks and credit unions. We recognize that the regulatory pressures on banks have increased substantially over time. While regulatory costs may be manageable on a per-account basis for the largest financial institutions, for smaller businesses, all the complicated rules, extensive paperwork, and expensive compliance reviews can be daunting. If we continue on our current regulatory trajectory, traditional banks and credit unions will be put at a further disadvantage that could push many out of business.
American consumers are best served by a strong and diversified financial services industry. Many community banks and credit unions embrace relationship lending, and they often work in partnership with the families they serve. Some smaller institutions provide a banking presence in otherwise-underserved communities, both in our cities and in rural areas. If community banks and credit unions continue to face competitive pressures triggered by a complex regulatory system, then those institutions will not be as able to serve American families. In that case, not only do the banks lose, but families lose as well.
The CFPB is committed to working with smaller institutions to reduce regulatory costs. We have already begun that work, and we are pleased to report to Congress that the spirit of openness and cooperation expressed by community banks and credit unions has been extraordinary. The mortgage disclosure integration project is one area in which we are seeking to reduce regulatory burdens, and we expect that it will serve as an excellent test case as we design our ongoing processes for how the consumer bureau and smaller institutions can work together to increase the ability of these institutions to spend less time on regulations and more time serving America’s families." (Emphasis added).
Now, I want to ask a question to credit unions: Does what is stated above match what the CFPB has done in the past 6 weeks as indicated below?
- TILA/RESPA Proposed Rule (1099 Pages)
- HOEPA/High-Cost Mortgage Proposed Rule (293 Pages)
- August Final Rule on Remittances (168 Pages) which Amends the February Final Rule (417 pages)
- Mortgage Servicing Proposed Rules - TILA (313 Pages) - RESPA (442 Pages)
- Higher-Risk Appraisals Proposed Rule (211 Pages) - New!
- Regulation B Proposed Rule - Free Copies of Appraisals (53 Pages) - New!
So, here is my question to the CFPB: Is proposing 2996 pages of new regulations - within a six week period - how you envisioned "working with smaller institutions to reduce regulatory costs"?
And now a question for proponents of Dodd-Frank and the CFPB: Is this what a level playing field looks like?