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Low income credit unions get more opportunities

State-chartered credit unions have an easy way to determine if they are eligible for designation as low-income credit unions (LICU). A cooperative effort by the NCUA and the National Association of State Credit Union Supervisors (NASCUS) will provide resources for credit unions.
 
State regulators can now provide limited geographic and income data to NCUA’s AIRES system when they upload their examinations. NCUA will use that data to determine if there are state-chartered credit unions eligible for the low-income designation and provide a list to state regulators on a quarterly basis. State regulators have the sole authority to make the LICU designation for state-chartered credit unions.
 
“Consistency and cooperation are fundamental to effective regulation, and so is creating opportunities,” NCUA Board Chairman Debbie Matz said. “This is a great example of how state and federal regulators can work together to help state-chartered credit unions that qualify obtain a low-income designation. NCUA will provide state regulators with lists of credit unions that could qualify, and the states take it from there.”
 
“Streamlining the process for federally insured, state-chartered credit unions that might seek the low-income credit union designation is a tangible benefit to the state system,” NASCUS President and CEO Mary Martha Fortney said.
 
To qualify as a LICU, a majority of a credit union’s membership must meet low-income thresholds based on 2010 Census data.
 
A LICU designation can provide certain regulatory benefits to qualifying state-chartered credit unions under certain circumstances and when state law permits, including:
•    Eligibility for Community Development Revolving Loan Fund grants and low-interest loans
•    Ability to obtain supplemental capital
•    Exemption from the 12.25 percent statutory cap on member business loans
•    Ability to accept non-member deposits from any source

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