WASHINGTON – CUNA President CEO/Bill Cheney along with outgoing CUNA board chairman Harriet May, CEO of GECU, El Paso, Texas, reflected on what they called a "pivotal” year for credit unions, telling 2012 CUNA Governmental Affairs Conference (GAC) attendees they had an opportunity to be a "big voice" in Washington this week.
GAC runs through Wednesday, with additional Hill visits to federal lawmakers scheduled for Thursday.
Cheney noted how credit unions added significant numbers of new members this year, reasserted themselves through grassroots power, and won unprecedented press coverage, in part through the momentum surrounding Bank Transfer Day, held on November 5.
Cheney also hailed credit unions for efforts to attack the regulatory burden they face. One in three comment letters delivered to the NCUA urged the agency to dial down regulations, Cheney said. CUNA developed the Credit Union Exam Bill of Rights and the Examination Reporting Form—tools for credit unions to use to illustrate the impact of burdensome regulation.
In her comments, exiting CUNA Board Chairman May said CUNA's top regulatory issue is to relieve the regulatory burden of its members.
"It's a burden we need a relief from," May said.
CUNA helped credit unions generate more than half of the 11,000 comments the Federal Reserve Board ultimately received on its proposed debit card interchange rule, imposed under the Dodd-Frank financial reforms, pointing out key issues and needed changes for credit unions in the proposal, Cheney said.
For more up-to-the-minute coverage of CUNA’s GAC, visit www.cuna.org/newsnow/gac12_newswire.php.