Congress: Expand CU Business Lending Now: Editor's Column
I discovered that Credit Union Times’ coverage of Telesis Credit Union’s conservatorship and the actions leading up to it were being used against credit unions’ efforts to expand the member business lending cap from 12.25% of assets to 27.5%. Specifically, the ICBA sent an email (obtained by CU Times) to Sen. Mark Udall highlighting articles we had written about the conservatorship of Telesis and the former CEO’s compensation.
As a journalist, my instinctual response to this discovery was, ‘The news is the news.’ Credit Union Times is respected for balanced coverage of the credit union community—good, bad and ugly. And even when it’s not easy, deep down the industry expects nothing less.
At the same time the American Bankers Association issued a release bragging that the nation’s 2,000 agricultural banks had created just over 6,000 jobs at those banks. That’s three jobs per bank—three very important jobs, but still just three and the banks are only talking about themselves. Credit unions are talking about maybe 3,000 credit unions creating 140,000 new jobs for businesses at no additional cost to the American taxpayers. When community banks were propped up in 2012 with $30 billion from Congress to get them to spend on small business business lending, their opposition can only be described as ludicrous.
The bill has also received support from Treasury and the NCUA, which could have been another political hurdle to credit union member business lending expansion.