CULAC FAQ

These are the credit unions that have contributed to CULAC to-date—with more to come!

  • Advantis CU

  • BECU

  • Central Willamette Community CU

  • Fibre FCU

  • First Tech FCU

  • Gesa CU

  • Global CU

  • Harborstone CU

  • Inspirus CU

  • Maps CU

  • Mid Oregon FCU

  • North Coast CU

  • NW Priority CU

  • Old West FCU

  • OnPoint Community CU

  • Oregon Community CU

  • Oregon State CU

  • Pacific NW FCU

  • Peninsula Community FCU

  • Point West CU

  • Progressions CU

  • Red Canoe CU

  • Rivermark Community CU

  • Rogue CU

  • Solarity CU

  • Spokane Media FCU

  • St. Helen’s Community FCU

  • STCU

  • TwinStar CU

  • Unitus Community CU

  • USAgencies CU

  • Valley CU

  • Verity CU

  • Wauna CU

  • Woodstone CU

  • WSECU

Get involved today by visiting www.cuna.org/culac.

The month of July will bring some certainty to the presidential elections, as both major party nominees will be named at their respective conventions. However, the Credit Union Movement requires 360 degree advocacy—from the White House through Congress and down-ballot to state houses, as well.

Credit unions can find a way to engage in federal advocacy through CUNA’s CULAC program, or Credit Union Legislative Action Council. But one need not be a “beltway insider” to get started, either. CUNA has provided a simple set of frequently asked questions about CULAC, which we can share, with additional support from our Advocacy team.

What is CULAC?

Put briefly, the Credit Union Legislative Action Council (CULAC) is the best way for credit union advocates to ensure that their political support has the biggest impact.

Put less simply, CULAC is CUNA’s political action committee (PAC)—a vehicle through which credit union advocates can actively participate in advancing the future of the credit union industry. CULAC’s purpose is to do the research and groundwork to provide you with the opportunity to contribute to the support of worthy candidates for federal office who believe, and have demonstrated their belief, in the principles of the credit union movement.

Who can participate?

Members and employees of CUNA-affiliated credit unions that have a current signed permission agreement with their state league and CUNA are eligible to contribute.

Note: if you are able to access this page, it means your credit union has already signed a permission agreement for this year.

And more than who, is when. Even though July is recognized as CULAC Month, many credit unions merge CULAC engagement into their planning year-round, as we’ve profiled in recent issues of Anthem, such as Global Credit Union’s annual advocacy efforts, or how some Credit Unions do a dollar-for-dollar match like the program pioneered by Oregon State Credit Union which has helped raise over $40,000 for the Children’s Miracle Network.

“It’s one of the most important aspects of our credit union advocacy at the federal level,” said Samantha Beeler, NWCUA Director of Grassroots Advocacy. “I am always so impressed by the creative and unique way credit unions find to support CULAC, and I love going out and helping credit unions brainstorm new ideas and introduce CULAC to credit union leadership and staff.”

Why should I contribute?

CULAC’s mission is your success.

Every day in Washington, legislative and regulatory decisions are being made that affect the ability of your credit union to serve its members. CULAC works to remove these barriers by funding political candidates that support the values and vision of credit unions, but CULAC’s work is only possible through support from around the movement.

By helping CULAC achieve its mission, you are joining with thousands of credit union members and employees nationwide to ensure that our movement has a voice on Capitol Hill when the big decisions are made.

Where will my money go?

As one of the most bipartisan PACs in Washington, CULAC supports pro-credit union candidates (as selected via input from CUNA and state leagues), regardless of their party affiliations, in two ways:

  • Direct donation to the candidates’ federal campaign committees
  • Independent expenditures (advertisements in support of the candidate)

Which candidates did CULAC support in the most recent congressional elections?

In the 2014 mid-term elections, CULAC supported 396 pro-credit union candidates for the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate:

  • Direct campaign financial support: $3+ million in total and
  • Independent expenditures: $1.2 million dispersed over five campaigns
  • Our candidate support was among the most bipartisan in the country, with nearly an even 50/50 split among Democrats and Republicans.
  • Our total giving ranked CULAC the 8th largest trade association PAC in the United States.

More importantly, ninety-five percent (95%) of CULAC-backed candidates won election to the 114th Congress, including 26 of 29 Senate candidates.

I’m in. Where do I start?

There are a myriad of ways, whether you are a credit union employee, volunteer or member. We offer a number of flexible contribution options, from one-time payments to ongoing support—whatever you’re most comfortable with.

Questions about this story? Contact Eric Horvath: 503.350.2222, ehorvath@nwcua.org.

Posted in Advocacy News, CUNA, Federal, NWCUA.