Legislative & Political News

Another ADA Lawsuit Dismissed

In another victory for credit unions facing litigation over unclear Web site requirements under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), a federal district court in Virginia found that the plaintiff in the lawsuit did not have standing to sue the credit union because he was not eligible for membership and would not likely use the credit union's services.

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Meet NJ’s Three Newest Assembly Members

With three Assembly members taking up new posts in the Murphy Administration, local party organizations picked individuals to fill the vacancies, and Trenton welcomed the three new lawmakers this month. Each will have to run in a special election in November in order to serve the remainder of the two-year term.

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CFPB Seeks Feedback on External Bureau Engagements

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) issued a Request for Information (RFI) Wednesday on the bureau’s external engagements. Specifically, the bureau is seeking comments and information from interested parties on ways to engage the public and receive feedback on the work of the agency.

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CU Structure, Mission Detailed in Joint-Letter to Senator Finance Chairman Hatch

"Credit unions have been, and will continue to be, the best avenue for Americans to gain access to the financial system," CUNA and NAFCU wrote to Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) Wednesday. The letter was sent in response to a letter filled with credit union misrepresentations sent by Utah bankers to Hatch.

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CUNA and Cornerstone Take Legal Action in Texas ADA Case

WASHINGTON – Credit Union National Association and Cornerstone Credit Union Association last night filed an amicus brief supporting a credit union in Texas that’s facing a frivolous lawsuit alleging Web site non-compliance under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

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CUNA’s Dempsey talks TCPA Petition, Relief Possibilities

The Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) is impacting consumer-friendly communications between credit unions and their members, CUNA Senior Director of Advocacy and Counsel Leah Dempsey told a Federal Communications Bar Association panel discussion Thursday. Dempsey explained the ways for relief outlined in CUNA’s petition for TCPA relief to the Federal Communications Commission.

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Draft Data Breach Bill is Consistent with CUNA/League Principles

Draft legislation addressing data breaches was released Friday, two days after a CUNA witness testified before a House Financial Services sub-committee on how these breaches harm credit unions. The draft bill, from Reps. Blaine Luetkemeyer (R-Mo.) and Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.), contains the principles CUNA's witness said should be part of any legislation.

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$735.7M Stabilization Fund Distribution Approved for 3Q 2018

CUNA/league advocacy resulted in the NCUA board approving share insurance fund equity distributions at Thursday’s meetings, with the dividends expected to go to eligible credit unions in the third quarter of this year. CUNA was the only national trade association to advocate for the closure, and subsequent merger of, the Stabilization Fund into the Share Insurance Fund, which will result in equity distributions totaling $735.7 million in 2018.

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House Passes ADA Bill, Small Step in Right Direction

The U.S. House yesterday passed legislation to address public accessibility concerns under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Ahead of passage, lawmakers on the House floor clarified their intentions to address Web sites in the bill.

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Solution Needed as Breach Costs and Frequency Rise, CU Witness Testifies

Merchant data breaches occur far too often and the cost to credit unions to cancel and reissue debit and credit cards continues to rise, CUNA witness Kim Sponem told a House Financial Services sub-committee Wednesday. Sponem, president/CEO of Summit CU, Madison, Wis., testified before the sub-committee on financial institutions and consumer credit on CUNA’s behalf.

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Rep. Woodall Pledges to Work w/ CUs on ADA Lawsuit Solution

As the House prepares to consider a bill that is a step toward addressing frivolous litigation under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), Rep. Rob Woodall (R-Ga.) said he plans to work with credit unions to find a solution to threats they face due to uncertainty in the ADA. Credit unions are facing legal threats and actions due to this uncertainty, and CUNA and the state leagues are pressing policymakers to find a solution.

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CUNA Calls for ADA Hearing, Steps to Curb Frivolous Lawsuits

Congress should help credit unions and other small businesses address lack of clarity with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) that is resulting in abusive litigation, CUNA wrote to Rep. Ted Poe (R-Texas) Wednesday. The letter was in support of Poe’s bill, the ADA Education and Reform Act (H.R. 620), which is scheduled for House consideration this week.

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DOJ Responds to Congressional ADA Web Site Questions

The Department of Justice (DOJ) is evaluating whether promulgating specific Web accessibility standards through regulations is “necessary and appropriate,” according to a letter sent this week. The letter was sent in response to a letter signed by 61 members of Congress requesting guidance on how the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) applies to Web sites.

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Stabilization Fund Rebates on Today’s NCUA Agenda

The NCUA board will discuss the process of getting rebates to credit unions from the closure of the Temporary Corporate Credit Union Stabilization fund today. NCUA closed the fund Oct. 1 of last year, and said rebates are expected in 2018.

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CUNA Witness to Testify on Breach Effects, Solution at House Hearing

CUNA witness Kim Sponem will discuss the impact of data breaches on credit unions and members with a U.S. House Financial Services sub-committee Wednesday morning. Sponem, president/CEO of Summit CU in Madison, Wisconsin, will testify on CUNA’s behalf at a financial institutions and consumer credit sub-committee hearing titled “Examining the Current Data Security and Breach Notification Regulatory Regime.”

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President’s FY2019 Budget Proposes CDFI and CDRLF Funding Cuts, Changes to CFPB

President Donald Trump released his proposed budget for fiscal year 2019 (FY2019) Monday, which among other things, proposes abolishing the Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI) Fund and NCUA's Community Development Revolving Loan Fund (CDRLF), and bringing the CFPB under the congressional appropriations process.

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House Hearing on Data Breaches Wednesday, CUNA Witness to Testify

A CUNA witness will discuss the harmful effects of data breaches and the importance of data security legislation Wednesday before the House Financial Services Sub-committee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit. Kim Sponem, president/CEO of Summit CU (Madison, Wis.), will testify on CUNA’s behalf at a sub-committee hearing titled “Examining the Current Data Security and Breach Notification Regulatory Regime.”

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House to Vote on ADA, Regulatory Relief Bills; NCUA to Discuss NCUSIF Distributions

Tomorrow, the House Rules Committee will consider three credit union-supported bills focused on addressing issues with the ADA and providing credit unions with regulatory relief. On Thursday, the NCUA Board is expected to discuss future equity distributions from the National Credit Union Share Insurance Fund (NCUSIF) as it votes on a final methodology for distributing the refunds to credit unions during its open board meeting. It will also receive a quarterly briefing on the share insurance fund and discuss 2017 share insurance fund equity distribution.

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After Brief Shut-Down, Congress Passes Two-Year Budget

The House and Senate worked into the early hours Friday morning to pass legislation to fund the federal government for two years, ending a brief government shut-down.

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CUNA Meets w/ DOD, Regulators on MLA Issues

CUNA met with Department of Defense (DOD) officials and representatives from federal financial regulators, including the NCUA and CFPB, Wednesday to discuss clarifications relating to the Military Lending Act (MLA) guidance. CUNA sent a letter to the DOD last week requesting an immediate change to MLA guidance, which was a primary topic of discussion at the meeting.

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World Council Provides FSB w/ CU-Relief Suggestions

The World Council of Credit Unions (WOCCU) generally supports the Financial Stability Board’s (FSB) proposal on ways to improve stability of too-big-to-fail banks, but urged the board to make several changes in the final version to reduce potential regulatory burdens on credit unions.

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Short-Term Funding Bill Passes House

The House passed a short-term funding bill Tuesday evening in an attempt to avoid another government shut-down. The measure funds the government through March 23. It now heads to the Senate for consideration.

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CUNA's Facebook Push for S. 2155 Support Gets 800K Hits

Impressions of CUNA’s Facebook ads in support of the Senate’s bipartisan regulatory relief bill total more than 800,000 as CUNA continues its push for floor consideration of the bill. CUNA strongly supports the Economic Growth, Regulatory Reform and Consumer Protection bill (S. 2155) and launched the second phase of its nationwide grassroots push in mid-January.

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Mortgage Choice Act Passage Urged

CUNA and other trade organizations wrote to House leadership Monday urging them to support the Mortgage Choice Act (H.R. 1153), which is scheduled for House consideration this week. Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D-5) is a co-sponsor of the bill, which would exclude affiliated title insurance charges and escrowed homeowners’ insurance premiums from the points and fees calculation.

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CUNA Pushes for Removal of Problematic Part of MLA Guidance

CUNA and the Defense Credit Union Council (DCUC) asked the Department of Defense (DOD) to remove a problematic question from its guidance on the Military Lending Act (MLA). While CUNA has additional concerns with the guidance, it seeks immediate withdrawal of Question and Answer 2 (QA2) due its seeming inconsistency with the text of the MLA regulation.

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CU Tax Status Rumblings Begin Anew

On Wednesday the chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, which has oversight on tax policy, sent a letter to NCUA Chairman J. Mark McWatters outlining concerns that credit unions are evolving away from their original tax-exempt purpose and raising questions about recent changes to field of membership (FOM) rules.

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CUNA to Continue Push for CFPB Commission after Court Ruling

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) structure is constitutional, and its director can only be removed with cause, a U.S. appeals court ruled Wednesday (see related article above). The decision in PHH Corp. v. CFPB erases a lower court ruling that the CFPB’s structure is unconstitutional.

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More on Appeals Court’s CFPB Ruling

In a reversal of the court panel’s previous opinion, the full U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit sitting en banc Wednesday upheld the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s (CFPB) constitutionality in the PHH Corp. lawsuit. 

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CUNA Responds to Senate Finance Committee Chair’s Letter to NCUA

CUNA President/CEO Jim Nussle outlined the many ways credit unions continue to fulfill their statutory mission in response to questions posed in letter from Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) to NCUA on whether credit unions are evolving beyond their original purpose (see related article above).

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Appeals Court Rules CFPB Structure Constitutional

A federal appeals court ruled today that the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's (CFPB) single-director structure is constitutional, reversing an earlier federal decision that the agency’s structure violated the separation of powers.

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GAO Report Notes Weaknesses in Regulators' Rule Assessments

A report published Wednesday by the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) found weaknesses in the way financial services industry regulators assess the impact proposed rules could have on small institutions and the economy.

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Consumer Protection Essential in Fintech, CUNA tells Sub-Committee

Products and services from fintech companies should offer the same consumer protections as those offered by regulated entities, CUNA told a House sub-committee Tuesday. In a letter to the House Financial Services sub-committee on financial institutions and consumer credit, CUNA expresses concerns that a lack of regulation could lead to an unequal playing field of credit unions.

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Need for Regulatory Relief Noted in SOTU

CUNA President/CEO Jim Nussle said CUNA is pleased President Donald Trump addressed the need for regulatory relief in Tuesday’s State of the Union. Regulatory relief is a key pillar of CUNA and the league system’s 2018 advocacy agenda and the center of the Campaign for Common-Sense Regulation.

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SOTU, Fintech Hearing this Week

CUNA will be engaged with a number of activities on both sides of Capitol Hill this week, including President Donald Trump’s first State of the Union Address, and several hearings. CUNA will be watching Trump’s address closely, and hopes to see the President talk about regulatory relief and what it means for credit unions.

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Push for Senate Passage of S.2155 Continues, Financial Trades Call for Vote

The ABA, ICBA and NAFCU joined CUNA yesterday in asking Senate leadership to bring the bipartisan regulatory relief bill to the Senate floor for full consideration. In a joint letter the financial trade associations sent to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), the organizations highlighted how the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief and Consumer Protection Act (S.2155) would benefit consumers.

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MOBILE Act Passes U.S. House

The House voted 397-8 Monday night to pass the credit union-backed Making Online Banking Initiation Legal and Easy (MOBILE) Act of 2017 (H.R. 1457). The bill would allow financial institutions to use electronic copies of identification for purpose of identity verification.

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Rep. Frelinghuysen Will Not Seek Re-Election

12-term Congressman Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-11) announced yesterday that he will not seek re-election in November. He joins a growing list of Republican lawmakers who have decided to retire including another 12-term incumbent from New Jersey, Congressman Frank LoBiondo (R-2). LoBiondo announced in November that he would not seek re-election. 

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NCUA Proposes Call Report Changes, Approves Strategic Plan

The NCUA board approved a request for public comment, approved its strategic and performance plans and issued a proposed rule at Thursday’s board meeting. The board also received a briefing on a final civil money penalty inflation adjustment.

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CFPB Finalizes Prepaid Accounts Rule, Includes CU-Requested Delay

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) finalized changes to its prepaid accounts rule, including delaying the rule’s implementation several months beyond what credit unions requested. CUNA requested in August the bureau delay the rule until at least October 2018, and the bureau delayed it to April 1, 2019.

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Fed Chair-Nominee Confirmed by Senate

The U.S. Senate voted Wednesday evening to confirm Federal Reserve Governor Jerome Powell as the next chairman of the central bank yesterday. Powell's confirmation cleared the simple majority needed to succeed current Fed Chairwoman Janet Yellen when she steps down February 3.

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Policy Shift at CFPB Bodes Well for CUs

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) Interim Director Mick Mulvaney said the bureau will focus on enforcement against bad actors, a direction CUNA has urged the CFPB to take over the last few years. Mulvaney, writing in the Wall Street Journal, also says the bureau will engage in more formal rulemaking and less regulation by enforcement.

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Overdraft Concerns Reiterated in Letter to CFPB

CUNA reiterated that the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) should recognize that many consumers utilize overdraft services knowingly and intentionally. The letter was sent in response to a bureau request to the Office of Management and Budget to conduct an online survey of ATM/point of sale overdraft practices and policies, specifically the overdraft disclosure form.

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NJ Unemployment Edges Down to 5.0 Percent

Preliminary monthly estimates released last week by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) indicate that New Jersey total non-farm employment decreased by 11,400 jobs in December, to a seasonally adjusted total of 4,126,600, as the state’s unemployment rate edged down by 0.1 percentage point to 5.0 percent.

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Data Theft Surpasses Dubious Milestone, Now Exceeds Physical Assets Survey Finds

For the first time on record, data theft has surpassed the stealing of physical assets, according to Kroll’s annual global fraud and risk survey. The survey found that roughly 30% of businesses reported they had suffered information theft, loss or attack in 2017. Also, around 40% of executives reported their companies suffered a virus or worm attack.

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Think Tank Supports CUNA-Backed Regulatory Relief Bill

Think tank Third Way published a post Monday in support of the CUNA/League-backed Senate regulatory relief bill (S. 2155), calling it a bipartisan compromise that could “un-tap the benefits of more lending in the U.S.” Third Way describes itself as a “strong supporter” of the Dodd-Frank Act, and says while it has done good work in “protecting us from another calamity,” it might have done too much reining-in of community financial institutions.

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Federal Government Re-Opens, Funded to Feb. 8

WASHINGTON -- President Donald Trump signed a House and Senate-passed continuing resolution Monday night to fund the federal government through Feb. 8. NCUA and Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) operations were unaffected with the agencies remaining open during the three-day shut-down.

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CUs Assisting Members During Government Shut-Down

The federal government shut down starting Saturday morning as lawmakers failed to reach an agreement on funding issues. Most federal agencies have discontinued nonessential operations. Since it is not funded through the appropriations process, the NCUA will continue to operate during the shut-down.

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ADA Web Site Accessibility Resources Available

CUNA and the state leagues have made available a number of resources designed to help member credit unions ward off potential legal threats under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

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CFPB, Mortgage Relief Bills Pass Financial Services Committee

The House Financial Services Committee (HFSC) passed four CUNA/League-backed regulatory relief bills in a mark-up that included a total of 17 bills. A number of committee members cited credit union support for the bills, and Rep. Scott Tipton (R-Colo.), specifically cited CUNA’s support for one.

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HMDA Regulatory Relief Bill Passes House

The House voted 243-184 Thursday night in favor of the CUNA/League-backed Home Mortgage Disclosure Adjustment Act (H.R. 2954) that would raise the reporting threshold for certain HMDA requirements.

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CFPB Announces RFIs on Consumer Protection Functions

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) issued a call for evidence to ensure it is fulfilling its consumer protection functions, the bureau announced Wednesday. Acting Director Mick Mulvaney said the series of Requests for Information (RFIs) will be forthcoming in the Federal Register in the coming weeks.

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Equifax Judge Provides Updates in Class-Action Breach Suit

The judge in the Equifax data breach lawsuit made several decisions and set deadlines last week for the case. CUNA filed its lawsuit in October, in response to a data breach that exposed information of as many as 145 million consumers.

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State Bank of New Jersey Bill Introduced

To help fulfill a campaign promise made by Gov. Phil Murphy, Sen’s Nia Gill (D-34) and Richard Codey (D-27) have introduced legislation (S885) to would create a State Bank of New Jersey.

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Credit Union-backed Bills to See Floor Consideration, Committee Mark-up

Action is expected this week on several CUNA/League system-backed regulatory relief bills, one that is expected to see House floor consideration and others that will be marked-up by the House Financial Services Committee. The House is scheduled to consider the Home Mortgage Disclosure Adjustment Act (H.R. 2954), which would provide credit unions and other small lenders relief from Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA) reporting requirements.

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CUNA Launches Next Phase of Grassroots Support for Senate Regulatory Relief Bill

CUNA launched the second phase of its nationwide grassroots advocacy support of the Senate’s bipartisan regulatory relief bill this week after urging Senate leaders last week to give the bill floor consideration. The Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief and Consumer Protection Act (S. 2155) is strongly supported by CUNA and the state leagues.

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Murphy Takes Oath of Office, Sets Stage for a Progressive Era

Philip (Phil) Dunton Murphy took the oath of office as New Jersey’s 56th governor yesterday at twelve noon in the Patriots Theater of the Trenton War Memorial in front of hundreds of state and local government officials and politicos from across the state.

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Fiordaliso Nominated for BPU President

Incoming Governor Phil Murphy has tapped Joseph Fiordaliso, currently a commissioner on the state Board of Public Utilities (BPU), as the agency's new president.

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CUNA, Leagues, CUs Continue TCPA Relief Push in FCC Meetings

CUNA, league representatives, and individual credit unions continued the push for regulatory relief under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) in a series of meetings with Federal Communications Commission (FCC) staff to open 2018. CUNA previously submitted a petition outlining ways the FCC could provide relief for credit unions.

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Senate Banking Committee to Discuss BSA Reforms

Following votes on numerous nominations including those to chair and vice chair the Federal Reserve Board, the Senate Banking Committee will hold another hearing on reforming and strengthening Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) enforcement. Tomorrow's hearing will feature witnesses from the Treasury and Justice departments. A hearing on the same topic last week featured witnesses from the private sector, including a representative from The Clearing House Association.

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CFPB Relief Bill Mark-Up, SBA 7(a) Program Hearing This Week

With the House and Senate back in session, the House Financial Services Committee is poised this week to mark-up more than a dozen bills, including one that would provide credit unions regulatory relief from the CFPB.

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Inaugural Day in Trenton, Murphy to Take Oath of Office at Noon

At eleven this morning officials from the three branches of state government and countless local officials and politicos from across the state will gather in the Patriots Theater of the Trenton War Memorial for the inauguration Ambassador Philip “Phil” Dunton Murphy as the 56th governor of New Jersey.

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Governor Christie Signs Electronic Lien & Titling (ELT) Mandate

Governor Chris Christie signed into law NJCUL-requested legislation (S2968) that mandates establishment of an electronic lien and titling (ELT) system for New Jersey motor vehicles to replace the current paper system. The legislation received final legislative approval on the last day of the 217th Legislature. The measure passed the Senate 36 to 0 in the afternoon, and the Assembly 59 to 8 at 8:20 p.m.

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CUNA, Leagues, CUs Continue TCPA Relief Push in FCC Meetings

CUNA, league representatives, and individual credit unions continued the push for regulatory relief under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) in a series of meetings with Federal Communications Commission (FCC) staff to open 2018. CUNA previously submitted a petition outlining ways the FCC could provide relief for credit unions.

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Governor Christie Signs Bipartisan Bill to Draw Amazon’s HQ2 to New Jersey

Governor Chris Christie Thursday signed bipartisan legislation authorizing billions of dollars in state tax incentives to draw Amazon’s second headquarters, known as HQ2, along with 30,000 to 50,000 new jobs, to New Jersey. Governor Christie has urged Amazon to consider Newark as the ideal location, and the new law (A-5340/P.L.2017, c.282) will produce the majority of $7 billion being offered in State and city tax credits to Amazon’s HQ2 to locate in the Garden State.

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Updated IRS Withholding Tables Now Available

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has released Notice 1036, which updates the income-tax withholding tables for 2018 reflecting changes made by the tax reform legislation enacted last month. This is the first in a series of steps that the IRS will take to help improve the accuracy of withholding following major changes made by the new tax law.

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FOMC Members Express Differing Opinions on Rate Hikes

Federal Reserve Bank of NY President William Dudley yesterday reiterated his support of the Federal Open Market Committee's (FOMC) decision to increase interest rates. Dudley said "above-trend growth" offsets the low inflation that has made some on the committee more cautious toward rate hikes.

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CU Supporter Ed Royce to Retire from Congress

Congressman Ed Royce (R-CA) has joined the growing list of Capitol Hill lawmakers who will not seek re-election in November. Royce, who announced Monday his intention to retire from Congress at the end of this term, earned a reputation for being a credit union champion having introduced a number of pro-credit union bills during his tenure.

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CUNA Sets Free, Members-Only ADA Webinar for Jan. 18

Registration is now open for a CUNA members-only webinar featuring updates from CUNA and CUNA Mutual staff on litigation threats related to Web site compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The free webinar is scheduled for Thursday, Jan. 18, from 3 to 3:45 p.m. (ET).

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Bill to Strengthen SBA's 7(a) Oversight Introduced

Bipartisan legislation was introduced this week to increase the Small Business Administration's (SBA) oversight authority over its 7(a) loan program. Many credit unions participate in the program which helps mitigate loan risk and maximize small-business lending within their statutory member business loan (MBL) cap.

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Bill to Impose Fines for Credit Bureau Data Breaches Introduced

Senate Banking Committee members Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Mark Warner (D-VA) introduced a bill Wednesday that would create penalties for data breaches occurring at credit reporting agencies.

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ADA Website Accessibility Advocacy Page Launched

As CUNA continues to push for solutions to credit unions facing legal threats on Web site accessibility under the Americans with Disabilities Act, it has launched an advocacy page outlining the current situation and steps CUNA is taking. Credit unions are facing increased legal threats due to confusion over Web site compliance with the ADA. CUNA has been working with the Department of Justice and Congress to solve the issue.

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Governor-Elect Murphy’s Cabinet Taking Shape

Governor-elect Phil Murphy announced shortly after his election that Lt. Governor Sheila Oliver would also serve as commissioner of the Department of Community Affairs. In the weeks that followed his election and in the run up to his inauguration next Tuesday, Governor-elect Murphy is rounding out his selections for cabinet posts.

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Court Rejects CFPB Leadership Challenge

The U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia ruled Wednesday that President Donald Trump has the authority to appoint a director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). The case, English v. Trump, centered on whether Leandra English, picked by departing Director Richard Cordray, should serve as director rather than Mick Mulvaney, who Trump named interim director.

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BSA Regulatory Relief Changes Outlined for Senate Banking Committee Hearing

It is important to strike a balance between costs to financial institutions and the benefits of Bank Secrecy Act (BSA), anti-money laundering (AML) and Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) regulations, CUNA wrote Tuesday to Senate Banking Committee leadership. The letter was entered into the record for the committee’s hearing on reforming and strengthening BSA enforcement.

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Support for House Regulatory Relief Bills Outlined Prior to Sub-Committee Hearing

CUNA outlined its support for two regulatory relief bills prior to a House Financial Services subcommittee on financial services and consumer credit hearing Tuesday. One bill would exempt community financial institutions from Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) rules, while the other would delay data collecting requirements under the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA).

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CUNA, Leagues Call for Floor Consideration of Senate Regulatory Relief Bill

CUNA and leaders of the 38 credit union leagues representing all 50 states and the District of Columbia wrote to Senate leadership Tuesday to urge floor consideration of the Senate’s bipartisan regulatory relief bill. CUNA and the Leagues strongly supports the Economic Growth, Regulation Relief and Consumer Protection Act (S. 2155), which was introduced by a bipartisan group of legislators in November and passed the Senate Banking Committee in December.

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Senate Leadership, Committee Chairs Take Shape

Senate President Steve Sweeney Tuesday announced the committee chairmanships and memberships for the 218th Legislative Session. The Senate leadership was sworn-in at the Senate’s organizational meeting along with the members of the state Senate.

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New Legislature Convenes, CU Supporter Coughlin Takes Assembly Helm

The 218th New Jersey State Legislature was sworn-in Tuesday, and long-time credit union supporter Asm. Craig Coughlin (D-19) took over as speaker of the General Assembly. Coughlin replaced Asm. Vincent Prieto (D-32), who served two terms as Assembly speaker, the third most powerful position in state government.

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CUNA Backs Bill to Modernize U.S. AML/CFT Regime

CUNA wrote in support of legislation Thursday that would modernize anti-money laundering/countering the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT). The Counter Terrorism and Illicit Finance Act was introduced by Reps. Steve Pearce (R-N.M.) and Blaine Luetkemeyer (R-Mo.).

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Financial Education from CUs is Essential for Consumers, CUNA Tells CFPB

Credit unions resources used for financial education and literacy can be strained by regulatory costs, CUNA told the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) in a letter sent this week. Responding to a bureau proposal to renew Office of Management and Budget approval for information on financial coaching for veterans and low-income consumers, CUNA outlined credit unions’ role in financial education.

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Push for ADA Web site Clarity Continues, GAC Breakout Session Scheduled

CUNA remains engaged in combating predatory class action threats related to Web site accessibility requirements surrounding the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), CUNA President/CEO Jim Nussle wrote to members Monday. Credit unions have been hit with increasing lawsuit threats over uncertainty about ADA Web site requirements.

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Regulatory Relief, BSA Hearings This Week

A House Financial Services subcommittee will conduct a hearing on two credit union-backed regulatory relief bills, and CUNA will also be engaged in several other Congressional hearings this week. The bills will be considered Tuesday as part of a House Financial Services subcommittee on financial institutions and consumer credit hearing on proposals for a more efficient federal regulatory regime.

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ELT Mandate Gets Final Legislative Approval, Heads to Governor

NJCUL-requested legislation (S2968; A1943) that would mandate establishment of an electronic lien and titling (ELT) system for New Jersey motor vehicles to replace the current paper system received final legislative approval late Monday evening, the last day of the 217th Legislature. The measure passed the Senate 36 to 0 in the afternoon, and the Assembly 59 to 8 at 8:20 p.m.

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Key Points of Federal Data Breach Legislation Outlined

CUNA joined with several other organizations Thursday and wrote to House Energy and Commerce members in support of federal legislation to protect personal information and ensure consumers are notified of a data breach in a timely manner. The letter was sent to Reps. Greg Walden (R-Ore.), committee chairman and Bob Letta (R-Ohio), chairman of the subcommittee on digital commerce and consumer protection.

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ELT on Senate and Assembly Calendars Today, Last Day of 217th Legislature

Today is the final day of the state’s 2016-2017 legislative session but before the 218th Legislature convenes tomorrow, both the state Senate and Assembly are poised to give final legislative approval to NJCUL-requested legislation (S2968; A1943) that would mandate establishment of an electronic lien and titling (ELT) system for New Jersey motor vehicles. If passed by both chambers, the measure will be sent to Gov. Chris Christie for his consideration before his term ends on January 16.

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Former N.J. Governor Brendan Byrne Dies at Age 93

Former New Jersey Governor Brendan T. Byrne, who, during his two-terms as governor, left an enduring legacy in New Jersey that ranged from preserving 1.1 million acres of the state’s Pine Barrens, creating the state’s first income tax, and signing a law to legalize casinos in Atlantic City, died Thursday. He was 93 years old.

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New Jersey Participates in Nationwide Settlement with PHH Mortgage Corp

Department of Banking and Insurance Commissioner Richard J. Badolato announced Wednesday that New Jersey is participating in a 47-state legal settlement with PHH Mortgage Corp. The settlement with the Mt. Laurel – based company will assist borrowers harmed by PHH Mortgage during 2009-2012, due to severe operational deficiencies in the firm’s mortgage servicing.

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CUs Should be Exempt from Stress Testing, CUNA Maintains in Comment Letter

CUNA maintains credit unions should remain exempt from stress testing requirements, as Congress intended, in a comment letter on NCUA’s proposed rule on capital planning and supervisory stress testing. NCUA’s proposal would remove some of the capital planning and stress testing requirements currently applicable to certain covered credit unions and and provide a multi-tier graduated schedule for credit union compliance.

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2018 CUNA Advocacy Agenda Outlined

CUNA’s 2018 advocacy agenda is to revolutionize the operating environment for credit unions. This agenda has four main points: reduce regulatory burden, expand and protect credit union powers, enhance payment security and preserve the credit union tax status.

in Legislative & Political News
District Court Hears Arguments on Preliminary Injunction Request on CFPB Leadership Challenge

U.S. District Judge Timothy Kelly heard arguments on Dec. 22 for a preliminary injunction request filed by Leandra English challenging President Trump's appointment of Mick Mulvaney to serve as interim director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). CUNA is participating in the case having filed an amicus, or friend of the court, brief.

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CFPB Announces CUNA-Requested Delay of Prepaid Rule

CUNA’s request for a delay in the effective date of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s (CFPB) prepaid accounts rule has been granted to allow additional implementation time, the bureau announced Thursday. It also expects to issue a final rule amending parts of the prepaid rule.

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Senate Examination Bill Backed by CUNA

CUNA wrote in strong support of a Senate examination fairness bill Wednesday, viewing it as a strong step toward ensuring regulators conduct fair exams. The Financial Institution Fairness and Reform Act (FIEFRA) (S. 2237) was introduced by Sens. Jerry Moran (R-Kansas) and Joe Manchin (D-W. Va.).

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Tax Reform Nearing Reality with CU Exemption Intact

WASHINGTON -- With a House vote Tuesday afternoon and Senate action overnight on the conference report for the Republican tax reform legislation, the bill now awaits a second House vote to approve a technical correction before heading to the president.

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