CUNA Brings 'Real Life' Interchange Stories to Fed, Call-to-Action Shifts into Overdrive with Possible Vote this Week

Posted by Marissa Anema Monday, June 06, 2011 11:01:00 AM

WASHINGTON - Recommendations to improve the Fed debit interchange regulation was the subject of a CUNA meeting Friday with Fed General Counsel Scott Alvarez. This is the second session that CUNA has had with Alvarez on interchange issues.

Two credit union CEOs relayed to Alvarez how the resulting loss of interchange income would impact their credit unions, their members and their communities.

CUNA Deputy General Counsel Mary Dunn outlined changes CUNA is urging the Fed to make in its proposal. Among the recommendations were the need for specific provisions to ensure the statutory exemption, or "carve-out" for small issuers, is effective, and raising the interchange ceiling for large issuers by including all associated costs.

With a tight Senate calendar and less than two months to go before the July 21 debit card interchange rule deadline, the nationwide interchange Call-to-Action continues with an updated message posted on the credit union Online Grassroots Action Center and a newly posted YouTube video.

Credit union professionals, volunteers, and members are urged to contact their lawmakers even if they have done so already.

The issue has reached a critical juncture with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) having reportedly said the delay legislation could come up for a vote in mid-June and the National Retailer Association's launching an all out grassroots campaign to defeat the delay.

Friday the National Journal, one of Washington's most respected publications, reported that the bill could come up for a Senate vote this week. Sixty votes are needed to approve the delay.

All are urged to visit NJCUL's Online Grassroots Action Center where they can easily send pre-drafted emails or letters to their Washington lawmakers. This issue will impact every consumer in the nation and New Jersey's active participation is extremely important because Senator Robert Menendez (D) and Congressman Scott Garrett (R-5) serve on committees that will prove key weigh-stations for the legislation.

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