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Unfortunately for credit unions they can’t seem to get away from the same old arguments.

Take House Financial Services Chairman Barney Frank who said recently that credit unions will likely again be looked at for inclusion in the Community Reinvestment Act. I didn’t find that nearly as disturbing as Frank making size part of the argument. He essentially said that credit unions with well-focused fields of membership are probably already doing enough to comply with CRA, but it’s the larger credit unions with bigger FOMs that have to prove it. Frank bringing size into it plays right along with the bankers’ strategy of letting small credit unions remain tax-exempt, but taxing large, expansive credit unions. Apparently credit unions aren’t allowed to grow and flourish and be large, but other institutions can. What is large anyway? A billion-dollar credit union is large, but not in the banking industry. It’s also disappointing that Frank continually brings up the fact that state chartered credit unions in Massachusetts have CRA and are having no trouble complying. Credit unions are a low-cost alternative to the banking sector that have more regulatory restrictions than banks. There is no need to burden them further with CRA.

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