Consumer bureau chief reverses efforts to sideline advisory panels

Consumer bureau chief reverses efforts to sideline advisory panels
© Greg Nash

The director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) will reverse some of her predecessors’ efforts to reduce the size and stature of four advisory boards, the agency announced Thursday

CFPB Director Kathy Kraninger will instead lengthen the terms of members on four committees from industry and consumer advocates that advise the bureau and also have the panels meet more frequently.

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Members of the CFPB’s Consumer Advisory Board (CAB), Academic Research Council, Community Bank Advisory Council and Credit Union Advisory Council will meet three times a year instead of two, and members of each panel will serve two-year terms instead of one.

“I’ve seen first-hand how the Bureau benefits from the valuable input provided by committee members. I have also seen how the joint committee meeting is resulting in members sharpening their ideas by engaging in a thorough dialogue,” Kraninger said in a statement.

“These enhancements demonstrate my commitment to ensuring that the Bureau’s advisory committees are helping to improve our work on behalf of consumers.”

The decision undoes efforts by Kraninger’s predecessor, White House chief of staff Mick MulvaneyJohn (Mick) Michael MulvaneyState Dept. official told to 'lay low' after voicing concerns about Giuliani: Dem lawmaker Democrats see John Bolton as potential star witness The Hill's Morning Report - Trump grapples with Turkey controversy MORE, who led the CFPB as acting director from November 2017 to December 2018.

Mulvaney in June 2018 fired all 25 members of the CAB, a panel of consumer advocates who were deeply critical of his agenda, and reduced the size of the committee.

He also cut the number of yearly meetings from three to two. His cutbacks enraged members of the panel, who claimed he was acting in the interest of banks and lenders regulated by the bureau.