Tuesday, April 18, 2017

CU Member Perplexed by Secrecy over CEO's Pay

Recently, I was contacted by a credit union member who was being stonewalled by the member's federal credit union regarding the pay of the credit union's chief executive officer (CEO).

The credit union member wrote:
"I just received a letter from my Credit union that wasn’t even signed by a person ... telling me that they aren’t going to tell me how much we are paying the CEO."

The member further wrote:
"I am confused doesn’t the CU belong to me as a member? And why would I not be entitled to know what the CEO is being paid? I can find that for any corporation that I own shares in. Don’t I in effect own the CU? This is very strange that this seems to be too much secrecy."

This credit union member asked some important questions.

I agree that this secrecy on executive pay at federal credit unions needs to end.

The only way to improve transparency is for the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) Board to take action to amend the agency's regulations requiring federal credit unions to annually disclose the total compensation of each senior executive officer.

Acting Chairman McWatters the time has come for you to lead on this issue.

Update: The credit union is a federal credit union and does not file a Form 990.


  1. You can request a Form 990 from the Credit Union.
    To maintain their tax-exempt status, federal law requires state-chartered credit unions to submit an IRS Form 990 annually to report financial and operational information, including compensation of directors and executives.

    I have pending litigation against a Texas Credit Union on a wrongful discharge suite in Texas, Which is an employment at will state, so that fact its been challenged and still advancing to trial is interesting. The 990 revealed pay of all executives except CEO's son in law who has made a meteoric rise within the credit union. Regulators just seemed to have let this pass. We will see as it goes to trial.

    1. Unfortunately, the credit union is a federal credit union. Federal credit unions do not file Form 990s.

  2. Just one question in response to the good Doctor's request. Do ALL bank executives release their pay and benefit packages? I know publicly traded banks do. But I was not sure about privately held or Sub S banks.

    1. I don't believe privately held banks are subject to such disclosures.

      However, almost all tax exempt organizations disclose this compensation information on their Form 990s. Federal credit unions are a notable exception, as they don't file Form 990s.

    2. Always fun to observe the typical credit union response to anything.
      The Cuna trained dog show.
      "It's raining today on the golf course".
      "Yes that's the banker's fault".
      "I spilled my coffee this morning".
      "You must have been exposed to a banker".



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