Credit unions ask Congress to ease regs

Industry advocates are pushing Congress to ease regulations on credit unions during the lame-duck session.

In a letter to Senate Majority Leader Harry ReidHarry Mason ReidDems search for winning playbook Dems face hard choice for State of the Union response The Memo: Immigration battle tests activists’ muscle MORE (D-Nev.) and Minority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellSessions: 'We should be like Canada' in how we take in immigrants NSA spying program overcomes key Senate hurdle Overnight Finance: Lawmakers see shutdown odds rising | Trump calls for looser rules for bank loans | Consumer bureau moves to revise payday lending rule | Trump warns China on trade deficit MORE (R-Ky.), the National Association of Federal Credit Unions (NAFCU) called for a number of measures.

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The group is asking Congress to pass legislation to eliminate what the NAFCU says is redundant paperwork. The Privacy Notice Modernization Act of 2013 would allow financial institutions to stop mailing annual privacy notices to customers if the documents are accessible online.

The group is also asking lawmakers to change the definitions of points and fees under the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s “qualified mortgage” rule.

The Mortgage Choice Act of 2013 is a priority for the credit union industry, which says it would ensure low-income people keep getting mortgages from credit unions at reasonable rates.

The letter also calls for eliminating differences in coverage under the National Credit Union Share Insurance Fund and Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation as well as legislation to help customers understand that their coverage is the same regardless of whether an account is backed by the government or a financial institution.

“Each of these measures enjoys bipartisan support in the Senate and passed with overwhelming bipartisan support in the House,” NAFCU Senior Vice President of Government Affairs and General Counsel Carrie Hunt wrote.

“We hope that the Senate will not adjourn this session of Congress without acting on these issues as well.”

In addition to addressing what the group sees as outdated and unnecessary regulatory burdens, Hunt also raised cybersecurity concerns.

She called on Congress to provide federal standards for handling consumer financial information in hopes of decreasing the number of data breaches at retail stores.