Sunday, February 21, 2016

Getting A Legal Opinion From OGC On MBL ? A Risky Proposition....

NCUA - practicing
public self-emolation...
Guess we all read in passing (see here) of NCUA's disastrous performance before the House Financial Services Subcommittee on July 23rd. No surprise; so what? - right?  

It has become almost second nature of late to expect the worst when NCUA is publicly held to account for its actions.

Well, believe it or not, this performance was 
different, exceeding by far all of the Agency's prior blundering follies and pettiness.  This go-round, NCUA's contempt and disdain for credit unions was unequivocally clear, on parade for all to see - including Congress!.

But take a look for yourself at this little exchange between Congressman Mulvaney from South Carolina and the NCUA Chair on transparency and the overhead transfer rate (OTR).

Rep. Mick Mulvaney
Mr. Mulvaney indicates he gets a lot of questions on the OTR from folks in his district; so he went to the NCUA website to do a little research [as any well-trained, UNC-Chapel Hill lawyer would!].  And here's how the testimony transcript proceeds:

Mulvaney:  "So, I did something I think is very reasonable, which is I went to your website to get the OTR review, which is the one done for you by PriceWaterhouseCoopers (PWC) that you've mentioned in your opening testimony."

"And when I turned to the first section, which I think is a fairly reasonable section for somebody to go to try and get up to speed on it, the executive summary, I got to page five and it says the findings and conclusions of this study, which are based on available facts and circumstances, are presented below. And I get an entirely redacted section."

"In fact that happens a lot.  There's a bunch of different places that are redacted and I think 15 pages are redacted."

Mulvaney: [Noting that he has obtained an unredacted copy of the PWC review] "OK I'm going to read to you one of the redacted sections that you all cut out of the conclusions of the executive summary regarding transparency..."

An "OTR" House ?
"It says: 'Based on the PWC review, the OTR was considered lacking in terms of the extent to which the classification of NCUA's activities between insurance and regulatory represents a consensual view.' It goes on to say: ' It is recommended that NCUA should consider providing more visibility on how it characterizes its activities to the different industry groups and credit unions and possibly solicit their feedback with regard to the reasonableness and accuracy of the classification.'"

Mulvaney:  "But let me ask you this question, who made the decision to redact the 2011 report before it went up on the website? Was that you or was that somebody else?"
Not again?!!

Matz:  "Our general counsel's office."

Mulvaney:  "Did you approve that decision?"
You're sure?

Matz:  "I wasn't aware of it."

Mulvaney:  "Do you believe that information to be a trade secret?"

Matz:  "I don't."

Mulvaney:  "And the answer is you're going to go ahead and put it up?"

Matz:  "Yes."

Mulvaney:  "By the way, the irony of redacting something which says you should be more transparent..."

Matz:  "Yes, I got the irony."

NCUA "gets it"?
... wouldn't bet on it!


Anonymous said...

Like everything else she gets the irony of, do not expect that she will do anything about it. I find that ironic.

Greg said...

Business as usual. DC is the capital of situational ethics.