Wednesday, November 09, 2016

The NCUA Budget Process: Part 2....

Looks like our review process of the NCUA and it's budget just became a bit more urgent. 

National election results seem to indicate a wide spread popular dissatisfaction with "politics as usual" in Washington and a call for change - smaller, less intrusive government, greater fiscal prudence, and "America First". With control of the White House, Senate, and House in the hands of a single party, an end to gridlock appears to be at hand - for better or worse. Not sure it could be any worse, so let's hope for better! 

NCUA has, for the last six years, been a prime example, a microcosm of our national dissatisfaction - a federal agency that repeatedly demonstrated an arrogant disregard for accountability, a clear lack of professional competency, and an antipathy for public transparency.  

A government agency which "knows it all",  feels no obligation to listen, and becomes answerable to no one - except its own, insular self-interest . 

Credit unions and the NCUA were hopefully venturing forth on a new path, a new era with the recent initiatives proposed by Chairman Metsger and Mr. McWatters. The election, of course, changes all that in that Mr. Metsger will now be Chair only for a short while and regrettably we may lose Mr. McWatters to "bigger and better" things.

But, a small window of opportunity remains for the NCUA Board and credit unions to identify and prioritize "the real issues" at NCUA, which underly and determine the Agency budget. Our first look in Part 1 was at two - seemingly contradictory - statements in Chairman Metsger's opening statement. With a new era at hand and a small window of opportunity still open let's try to focus on the positive...

Promise of the Future

"In summary, we are providing more information earlier in the process and giving people multiple ways to provide input. We are both setting and raising the bar for public transparency for a federal agency."

So, let's keep plowing forward. The "homework assignment" for Part 3 is to take a look at the "2017-18 Budget Justification - Staff Draft" document [here's the link]. You'll note that we are skipping for the time being several of the budget documents listed on the site [here's the link]. One way "to claim transparency" is to flood the reader with too much information - NCUA appears to be using a bit of that tactic! 

After all, most of us do have other things to do rather than monitor the NCUA - right? But, the consequences of no one monitoring the agency do have great costs, as we've seen over the last six years.

So, read the "Budget Justification" and here are a couple of quick, short cut tricks to conserve your time:
1. Read Appendix B first;  The process... pgs. 46-53.
2. Read Appendix A: Budget vs Strategic... just pg. 36.
3. Reflect on who wrote this "justification" piece.

Reset in progress
- worldwide?
Read the whole document if you have time, but these 8 pages are sufficient to frame an informed discussion... tomorrow.



Anonymous said...

Robust competition for vendor selection and ...
...Best value to NCUA.
believe that's makes up part of the vendor selection process as stated in the budget you link to.

How robust was the selection process for selecting the law firms that WE paid 23% to for the illegal contingency settlement agreements (against executive order).?

Best value to NCUA, shouldn't that say best value to members?

And where is the detailed information on the "Temporary" Corp CU Stabilization program?

Just to start the conversation.

Anonymous said...

Sorry Jim - don't have time to comment. To meet NCUA "best practices" and risk management expectations, I'm busy drafting a risk-assessment of the Trump presidency and need to allow enough time to implement proper due diligence.

I thought of involving a consultant, but then there's the issue of a vendor assessment on the consultant. Compounding the problem, the vendor management firm has not had a proper vendor management review.

I'll be lucky if this 12% NW CU survives long enough to see Trump's swearing in, which I've heard he is quite accomplished.

Anonymous said...

Interesting isn't it?
You've put forth similar questions around important discussion topics and the vast majority that comment the best they can do is whine, moan or try to be funny.
The level of seriousness around important regulatory topics leaves me looking, wanting more.

Sometime I don't know what is worse, NCUA and CUNA, or how seemingly willing credit unions are to be lemmings.

Guess we get what we deserve.

Anonymous said...

Someone must not understand satire. NCUA keeps us distracted with micromanagement assignments that add minimal value at best to the individual member/owner.

I'm willing bet the poster than calls others lemmings also supported the increase in federal deposit insurance from $100k to $250k. The increase serves less than 10% of your members, but unnecessarily gave FDIC & NCUA 250% more resources and bigger hammers.

Cut all federal deposit insurance to $60k, and force lazy depositors to do a modest amount of evaluation on where they put their money.

Anonymous said...

No one got a chance to "support" the increase in deposit insurance coverage, it was ordained.

The fact still remains, just read Jim's blog and look for responses.
Look for editorials in trade papers.
Read the trade papers.
Look at CUNA news now and the rag nafcu puts out.

Stone cold silence from credit unions on the illegal and aggregious 23% fee paid to lawyer friends of Fenner/NCUA.
Meanwhile members of congress even spoke to the breaking of executive order, see jim's post regarding Isaa.

What we are saying to members, boards and congress is, "yes, we are ok with being abused".
What we are saying to CUNA and nafcu and idiots like la pine is, "yes, keep wasting our member's money".

And what we are saying to mcwatters is, " yes, we know you're hot air, but we are ok with that."