Credit Union Advocacy Efforts Lead to Big Moves by Congress

If there’s one universal truth in the credit union industry, it’s that steadfast advocacy works.

Thanks to credit unions’ collaborative efforts over the past few weeks, including in-person conversations with legislators at CUNA GAC earlier this month, Congress recently made two significant moves to advance credit union priorities.

The Credit Union Governance Modernization Act, which provides federal credit unions the option to expel members who pose a safety risk without moving through a full membership vote, was included in the Omnibus Appropriations Bill passed by the Senate last Thursday with a 68-31 vote. The legislation is now on its way to President Biden’s desk and is expected to be signed into law.

Rep. Tom Emmer (R-Minn), who introduced the bill in 2021, said in a statement, “We can all agree that Americans should have access to safe and reliable financial services. Federal credit unions must have a streamlined process for removing dangerous members from the credit union. Up until now, we have failed in providing this because the current law is outdated and ineffective. My bill, the Credit Union Governance Modernization Act, will keep credit union members and employees safe by creating a framework for federal credit unions to swiftly remove a member for cause. We must prioritize a financial system that keeps Americans safe.”

The appropriations bill also includes a 9.3% increase in Community Development Financial Institutions funding, which will help CDFIs continue to be innovative in providing value to consumers.

Additionally, House Financial Services Committee Chair Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., introduced the Expanding Financial Access for Underserved Communities Act, which would make several significant updates to field of membership and member business lending requirements to serve underserved communities.

Credit union leaders prioritized both issues in conversations with their legislators during CUNA GAC, highlighting the importance of continually developing and nurturing relationships with elected officials, and proving the power of credit unions’ collective, united voice.

At CUNA GAC, NWCUA President and CEO Troy Stang spoke to CU Broadcast’s Mike Lawson on the importance of advocacy. Watch the interview below.

Thank you to our Northwest advocates for making your voices heard. Your contributions are vital to strengthening the Credit Union Movement for years to come.

Posted in Advocacy News.