WASHINGTON — NCUA Board Member Gigi Hyland said Monday that credit unions have a great story to tell lawmakers when pushing their legislative agenda but that they need to be redouble their efforts.
“Credit unions are multi-faceted and multi-relevant to this debate on the Hill. Credit unions are first and foremost financial service providers, serving consumers of different economic strata,” Hyland said in a speech at NAFCU’s Congressional Caucus in the Mayflower Hotel.
She said given the high unemployment and the record number of Americans living in poverty, credit unions must focus on how they can create more jobs and urge lawmakers to raise the cap on member business lending.
“Credit unions, in my opinion, need to be part of the debate on how to create jobs and stir our nation’s economic recovery,” Hyland added.
She noted that given the discussions about tax reform likely to take place among members of the House-Senate committee on deficit reduction, credit unions need to be “extraordinarily vigilant” in telling why they should keep their tax-exempt status.
Hyland recommended that credit union leaders emphasize things they do for their members that make them unique, including offering low-interest or no-interest loans to government employees if a government shutdown causes a disruption in their salaries.