Legislation Modernizing the Washington State Credit Union Act Passes House

House Bill 1165, modernizing Washington’s Credit Union Act, passed in the House of Representatives last week. The measure, sponsored by Rep. Cindy Ryu (D-Shoreline), passed with broad bipartisan support, and now heads to the Senate.

“The bill at every step of the way is a product of credit union advocates engaging in order to ensure they will have the tools to provide the services and products their members need, want, and deserve,” said Joe Adamack, Vice President, Legislative Affairs for Washington, Northwest Credit Union Association. “This stems from the work of the Washington State Issues Working Group that identified a number of challenges and opportunities, culminating in legislation that will significantly modernize the charter.”

The bill will help credit unions better serve underserved and unserved consumers. In a newsletter to voters in her district, Rep. Ryu told her constituents exactly how that provision of the bill will benefit people.

“It is now time to update this law again as we are seeing one of the most significant shifts in how people expect and demand to access their personal financial services,” Ryu said. Allowing credit unions to invest in and partner with financial technology companies “will help allow young people to and people currently underserved and underbanked to access financial services where they are.”

If the bill becomes law, it also will enhance credit unions’ digital transformation, empower the Department of Financial Institutions’ regulator to provide additional support to small credit unions, and will help credit unions to avoid the unintended consequences of moving to a remote workforce.

HB 1165 was the 20th bill to pass in the House this session, which is a rapid pace during a short session and considering that 577 bills were introduced. The next step will be a hearing in the Senate Financial Services Committee, probably in mid-February.

Help This Legislation Become Law

Credit union advocates can find out more about how to help push HB 1165 over the finish line by attending the Washington Virtual CU Day at the Capitol event on Feb. 10. Robust data detailing credit unions’ significant community impact will also be shared during the event, and some high-energy advocacy training is also planned. More information and registration details can be found online.

Posted in Advocacy News.