Citing election year politics and budgetary constraints, a handful state credit union leagues appear to be dropping remaining Hike the Hills for this year.
Instead, the legislative advocacy activities by league leaders in coordination with CUNA will stay at home deemed by some officials as equally effective. Major CU issues, except for business lending are not up for serious Congressional action before November, the leaders said.
For one, the North Carolina League said it is calling off its September trip since there are "very few working days left in the current session and Congress is reluctant to tackle contentious issues before the election," Thus, said the league, "it is unlikely that issues of major importance to credit unions will be considered" but the trade group will continue to monitor events in Washington "and keep you posted if any legislation impacting credit unions is considered in the meantime."
A league spokesman pointed out a North Carolina contingent had already made two trips to D.C. one in May and the other in June for the special "fly-in" session on interchange in connection with the Durbin amendment to the Dodd/Frank reform law.
In neighboring South Carolina and Georgia, league officials said they, too are considering canceling the September visits.
A spokesman for the South Carolina league also citing budget considerations noted that Georgia Credit Union Affiliates "actually prompted us to consider their September plans for 'Hike at Home' as a model for us." The South Carolina League's September trips coincide with Georgia and that of the Massachusetts League which is planning a "Credit Union House visit as planned," said a spokesman
CUNA said it understands and appreciates the state league position on D.C. travel. "Each state makes its own, best determination on what makes sense for its needs and its credit unions," said Pat Keefe, vice president of communications. "We respect and support their judgments and work with them closely whichever way they choose to go."