Legislative Update for July 30, 2012

It’s Campaign Season—Again!

You may be enjoying the “dogs days of summer” but for candidates gearing up for the November election, it is a critical time to get their campaign off the ground. Staff at the Northwest Credit Union Association (NWCUA) along with credit union advocates around the region are busy meeting with candidates running for the legislature and statewide offices. You, as an advocate for credit unions, play an important role in helping in this process. Your knowledge and expertise of the operations of credit unions are important as candidates formulate their own positions. There are many ways to get involved as a credit union or as an individual. Here are some ideas!

Supporting Candidates

Remember, the individual you like personally may not always be the best candidate for credit unions. Make sure you know where the person stands on credit union issues. Please check with your credit union CEO or NWCUA before committing yourself and credit unions to a candidate.

  1. Feature the candidate in your newsletter.
  2. Organize meet–and–greets at your credit union.
  3. Write a favorable letter to the editor.
  4. Host a fundraiser*—then put photos of the event in your newsletter.

Volunteering!

All campaigns need volunteers—it’s as easy as calling and offering to help! What can you do to help?

  1. General office work.
  2. Work a phone bank.
  3. Putup yard signs.
  4. Door-to-door canvassing.
  5. Literature drops and leafleting.
  6. Host meet-and-greets.
  7. Call registered voters.
  8. Workthe polls.

Register Voters at Your CU

  1. Use your lobby to register voters.
  2. Stagger drives amongst branches.
  3. Ask a CU “friendly” candidate to be present for drive.
  4. Contact NWCUA for help with getting materials.

New Oregon Attorney General Announces Mortgage Rules

Considered a victory for credit unions because there are no new regulatory burdens, Oregon’s newly sworn in Attorney General, Ellen Rosenblum adopted new rules to clarify conduct that violates the state’s Unlawful Trade Practices Act. Our Anthem report has complete details.

Washington Primary Election Report

The Washington Primary Election is scheduled for August 7th. We have a slate of candidates we are supporting as well as information about the offices up for grabs in this full report.

CULAC Update

How could we elect champions without contributions?  We appreciate all of the credit union employees and volunteers who participated in CULAC Month in July.

CULAF Update

With the 2012 elections right around the corner we’re busy distributing checks to worthy candidates. If your credit union is interested in hosting a check presentation please contact Pamela Leavitt in Oregon or Mark Minickiello in Washington.

Meet a Mayoral Candidate who Championed Public Funds:

When credit unions successfully lobby to change or enact favorable legislation, the next step is to implement those laws.

Jefferson Smith was an early supporter of public funds deposits in credit unions. After he urged the City of Portland to deposit public funds in local credit unions, the city took action and accounts are now open.

Smith is running for Mayor of Portland. He’s also being honored at a reception at Unitus Plaza on August 9th.

According to an invitation issued by Unitus Community Credit Union, “Jefferson’s a nationally relevant progressive leader. He’s been called ‘a progressive hero’ by 50 Simple Things author Jon Javna, ‘a rock star in the making’ by Daily Kos, helped move Oregon and Portland toward keeping public deposits in credit unions, and was named the 2011 Small Business Champion by the Oregon Microenterprise Network. Since 2008 he’s served in the Oregon House, where he was elected and re-elected to leadership by his colleagues.”

An invitation to meet Smith has been issued to the credit union community. The event is scheduled for August 9th at 3:00 p.m. at Unitus Plaza, 1300 SW 6th Ave, Portland in the 5th floor Board Room. Valet parking is available.
Please RSVP to Aimee Berg and Unitus Community Credit Union (aberg@unitusccu.com).

Credit Union Advocates on the Move

When credit union professionals are able to meet in person with elected officials or their top aides, the impact is powerful.

We are appreciative of all of our CU Advocates on the Move.

Sue Greenshields of NW Priority Credit Union and Char Shinn of Oregonians Credit Union participated in the Association’s first official Credit Union Congressional Action Team (CU CAT) meeting this month, meeting with Ree Armitage, District Aide for Congressman Earl Blumenauer (OR-3).

“As part of the Credit Union Advocates program, the goal of the CU CAT teams is to further develop our relationships with congressional district offices by meeting with staff quarterly,” said Jennifer Wagner, Vice President, Legislative Advocacy for the Northwest Credit Union Association (NWCUA). “We update the political teams on credit union legislative priorities as well as on the outstanding community involvement of credit unions,” Wagner continued. Another critical goal, Wagner reports, is getting credit unions up to speed on the congressional district office priorities as well.

Greenshields and Shinn, both members of the NWCUA Grassroots Advocacy Committee, agreed to help kick this program off. Wagner will be rolling it out in other congressional districts this summer and fall.

Fundraiser for Congressional Representative

Fibre Federal Credit Union CEO Larry Hoff hosted a successful fundraiser for Rep. Jaime Herrerra-Beutler this month, bringing in more than $13,500. Herrera worked closely with credit unions as a state legislator in Washington before winning office in 2008. Read our Anthem article about the event.

ATM Disclosure Legislation

The federal ATM disclosure legislation overwhelmingly passed the House and has been introduced in the Senate packaged with additional language. It is not expected to slow down the progress. Read the latest in Anthem.

Posted in Advocacy News.