Three amendments on the interchange issue would "impose heavy new restrictions on interchange fees," and hurt credit unions and other institutions that "assume the risk in the transaction," NAFCU Executive Vice President B. Dan Berger wrote Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell today.
Berger wrote that the current payment system is "integral in allowing credit unions to compete with the largest financial institutions. Credit and debit products are important tools in developing and fostering relationships with our members."
He said because the Senate hasn't held any hearings on the subject during this Congress and there is pending litigation, the regulatory overhaul bill shouldn't be amended to deal with the issue.
Senate Majority Whip Richard Durbin on Monday in response to a question from Credit Union Times said he would introduce three amendments, which would:
Mandate a lower interchange fee on debit card transactions; Guarantee that the interchange fee for the government is the lowest possible rate because the government is such a heavy user of credit cards; and give retailers additional flexibility by letting them set a maximum or minimum limit for purchases with a credit card or other payment device and let merchants not accept certain cards, if they deem the processing fees to be too high.