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WASHINGTON – CUNA Vice President of Political Affairs Richard Gose revealed last week that the trade association has sent out a Call to Action to its members to get credit unions’ grassroots moving on the rumor of a potential hearing on tax exempt entities. According to Gose, the Call to Action asks credit unions to call their members of Congress to say a review of credit unions’ tax exemption is unnecessary. He urged CUNA members to “talk to them about the things credit unions are doing in the community and that this is just another of a national effort on the part of the banking community to attack credit unions.” CUNA Senior Vice President of Governmental Affairs John McKechnie emphasized, “Our message is a measured message. It’s not angry; it’s not over the top, but at the same time it is pretty firm in saying we don’t think hearings are necessary or appropriate at this time and some of out best friends on Capitol Hill, people who are trying to discourage hearings, they’ve been pretty clear with us in saying we should deliver a message urging no hearings.” McKechnie added that some may wonder what is wrong with holding a hearing, but given the tone House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Bill Thomas (R-Calif.) has set, a hearing would probably have “very negative tone to it.” It is no secret that Thomas’ relationship with credit unions has never been good. In talks on the Hill, McKechnie added, CUNA is hearing an “unmistakable signal that Chairman Thomas is very serious about scheduling a hearing.” CUNA’s lobbyists are not expecting it this week, but he said they like to err on the side of caution. “We’re not taking anything for granted,” he concluded. [email protected]

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