Several more credit union leagues called off their annual Hike the Hill trips to Washington in September citing budget factors, D.C. travel fatigue and-with the exception of member business lending-Congressional inattention to industry issues.
Joining their peers in curtailing the traditional Washington visit were the Credit Union League of Connecticut, the League of Southeastern Credit Unions, though all said they would be ready to return to D.C. if conditions suddenly change.
The cancellation bandwagon began last month when the North Carolina League said it was calling off the traditional trip pointing to previous 2010 travel for the interchange "fly in" in June and CUNA's GAC in February.
Several others said that in the current legislative climate so-called in-district visits with face-to-face meetings between CEOs and lawmakers would likely prove more productive considering many of the Congressmen are already spending more time at home for the November election races.
An exception to the trend is the Ohio Credit Union League which said it has no intention of calling off its Washington trip scheduled for Sept. 28-29.
"We actually have more-maybe 30-going this year as compared to the 25 last year and that says something," said Paul Florian, vice president of government relations.
Moreover, the Ohio group finds the repeat value of the Washington meeting extremely critical in developing a strong legislative program and good rapport with lawmakers, said Florian.
But a League of Southeastern Credit Unions spokesman said that because "our highest priority, MBL, will probably be wrapped up in Congress by Sept. 15 we are using the recess to set up meetings in the district."