Gregoire Signs Law Allowing Government Deposits in All Credit Unions

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

March 14, 2012

Contact:   David Bennett
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FEDERAL WAY, Washington—Senate Bill 5913 allowing public entities for the first time to deposit funds in any credit union in Washington up to the federal insurance maximum of $250,000 was signed into law by Gov. Christine Gregoire last Wednesday, March 7.

The new law goes into effect on June 8—60 days after the end of the regular 2011 legislative session.

“We are very pleased to finally be able to close this chapter on an effort that started three years ago,” Northwest Credit Union Association (NWCUA) Vice President of Legislative Affairs Mark Minickiello said. “With the signing of this legislation, all Washington credit unions are now eligible to hold public funds up to the level of insurance—if they choose. While some may not see this as having a large effect, it is one more step toward allowing not-for-profit credit unions to offer the products and services their members want.”

State law previously allowed only state-chartered credit unions to be depositaries up to a maximum of $100,000. The new law allows federally-chartered credit unions to act as depositaries and raises the maximum to $250,000 for all credit unions.

The bill passed the House of Representatives on Feb. 28 by a vote of 80-16 with two excused after having passed the Senate on Feb. 9 by a 43-2 margin, with four excused.

A number of other states have recently pursued similar legislation. New Jersey enacted a law in 2011 allowing 1,500 local government entities, including libraries and community colleges, to deposit funds in credit unions, while the Florida legislature rejected a credit union public funds bill this year after being met with heavy bank opposition.

Ohio and Alabama have been the latest states to make a push, and hearings on the subject in the Ohio House are anticipated after legislators return from a recess.

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The Northwest Credit Union Association is the not-for-profit trade association serving 168 credit unions in Oregon and Washington and their 4.1 million members. The NWCUA is the voice of the Northwest credit union movement, providing legislative, regulatory and public advocacy in addition to education, compliance, networking support and business solutions to its members. Learn more about credit unions at http://www.asmarterchoice.org.

Click here to download a copy of the press release.

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