WASHINGTON (7/27/09)--The Credit Union National Association (CUNA) in a letter sent Friday to House Financial Services Committee Chairman Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) and ranking member Rep. Spencer Bachus (R-Ala.) argued that the not-for-profit, cooperative operational motive of credit unions should exclude them from recently proposed executive compensation legislation that seeks to curb abuses. In the letter, CUNA President/CEO Dan Mica said that including credit unions under the purview of H.R. 3269, the Corporate and Financial Institution Compensation Fairness Act of 2009, is “unwarranted.” While CUNA understands public and congressional concerns regarding the role that some “compensation structures that encourage excessive risk-taking” can play in “the safety of financial institutions and the economy,” the structure of credit unions as well as the “strong compensation regulations” that are already in effect have helped credit unions avoid the financial and the public relations damage that “excessive and unsafe risk-taking” has wrought on some for-profit financial services providers, the letter said. According to Mica, CUNA could not support the legislation as it is currently written, but would be open to working with the committee to amend the legislation to exclude credit unions. “Credit unions are unique, member-owned, not-for-profit, financial cooperatives, and they simply do not have the same operational motives as for-profit depository institutions,” the CUNA leader pointed out. “As a result, credit unions are risk-averse institutions operating in the best interest of their members.” He added that National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) already has compensation regulations in place that are designed “to prevent the types of dangerous compensation structures that exist in other sectors.” For a copy of CUNA’s letter, use the resource link.