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WASHINGTON-An election year often slows up legislation and it is typically the more controversial items, like appropriations. NCUA’s Community Development Revolving Loan Fund and the Central Liquidity Facility borrowing authority have been caught up in the slow movement inside the beltway. According to NCUA Director of Congressional and Governmental Affairs Cliff Northup, it did look like the appropriations bill for the Veterans Affairs, Department of Housing and Urban Development, and Independent Agencies could get a hearing this week, but now there is talk of just moving one large omnibus appropriations bill again this year. NCUA initially requested $2 million for the CDRLF, evenly divided between grants and loans, and a $1.5 billion cap on the CLF borrowing authority, though the agency would prefer it be removed altogether. The President’s budget request set the appropriation at $1 million, but Northup said Congress is toying with putting it somewhere between that and the FY 2004 appropriation of $1.2 million. The CLF borrowing authority remains unchanged at $1.5 billion. In related news, H.R. 4754, the appropriations legislation for the Departments of Commerce, State, and Justice, was on the House floor at deadline. The legislation includes the annual appropriations for the Federal Trade Commission’s enforcement of the disclosures for privately insured credit unions. However, Northup said, under the proposed FY 2005 language, the FTC would not have to enforce audit requirements for private insurance companies or review their business plans. It also would keep FTC from having to enforce a prohibition of non-federally insured credit unions using the U.S. mail under certain circumstances. The bill also includes appropriations for the Small Business Administration.

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