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 www.ncua.gov 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|
Read the whole document if you have time, but these 8 pages are sufficient to frame an informed discussion... tomorrow.
ACCOUNTABILITY - COMPETENCE - TRANSPARENCY !