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WASHINGTON — Credit unions could exempt themselves from negotiations over interchange fees if they feel it would benefit them, according to an amendment introduced today during the House Judiciary Committee markup on the subject.

The panel is discussing H.R. 5546, the Credit Card Fair Fee Act, which would require the negotiation of an agreement on interchange fees between retailers and credit card companies. The amendment, which also applies to small banks, would also eliminate a controversial provision that said if both sides could not reach an agreement, they would have to submit to binding arbitration by a panel of judges appointed by the Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission.

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