Madison Mayor Paul Soglin was recently honored by members of the Madison Area Chapter of the Wisconsin Credit Union League for his efforts to drum up mayoral support for credit union member business lending legislation.
Soglin convinced a bipartisan group of 187 mayors nationwide who are members of the U.S. Conference of Mayors to pass a resolution in support of the bill in June.
"Mayor Soglin understands that credit unions can fill today's huge void for business credit because they have billions available to lend, a 100-year history of making business loans safely, the support of federal regulators and the support of 84% of Wisconsin voters who, like Forbes magazine, see this as an absolute no-brainer," said Brett Thompson, president/CEO of the Wisconsin Credit Union League.
Senate Bill 2231 and its companion bill in the House, H.R. 1418, would increase the current cap on credit union business lending from 12.25% of assets to 27.5%. Supporters like CUNA say in the first year alone, the cap increase would make available $14 billion in new credit and 157,000 new jobs nationwide.
In Wisconsin, the league said Monday in a release it would provide $458 million in new credit and create almost 5,000 jobs.
Madison-based credit union leaders Kim Sponem, president/CEO of the $1.9 billion Summit Credit Union, and Paul Kundert, president/CEO of the $1.6 billion University of Wisconsin Credit Union, educated Soglin about the bill.
Sponem presented the mayor with a plaque during the chapter meeting and expressed appreciation for his efforts to pass the resolution.
The Conference of Mayors joins more than 30 organizations supporting the measure, including groups representing small businesses, the self-employed and the insurance, textile, realty, construction, automotive and technology industries.