Two Calls to Action in Two Weeks is a New Record for Me!
in Political & Legislative
By: Chris Abeel, Vice President, Corporate & Governmental Affairs

The Financial CHOICE Act (H.R. 10) and other potential regulatory relief measures have been center stage for most of us in the credit union movement since the new administration took office. But two congressional appropriations issues related to community development funding surfaced requiring our attention, hence the back-to-back alerts.

The NJCUL and credit unions in New Jersey have a special responsibility on behalf of the industry when it comes to budget issues because the chairman of the House Appropriations Committee hails from New Jersey, Congressman Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-11).

Both Treasury’s Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) Fund and NCUA’s Community Development Revolving Loan Fund (CDRLF) were eliminated in the budget proposal the White House sent to Congress. These two funds help credit unions serve those of modest means, particularly in otherwise underserved areas.

Last week the League asked member credit union CEOs to contact Congressman Frelinghuysen to express support for continued funding of the CDRLF. Thank you to everyone that responded and sent us copies of letters, emails, and faxes.

This week is the second time around for the CDFI Fund, which was originally zeroed out for the remainder of FY17. But through the joint advocacy efforts of CUNA, the leagues, and credit unions, funding was restored in the continuing budget resolution passed in May.

Now we’re asking those same CEOs to again write to Mr. Frelinghuysen, this time in support of fully funding Treasury’s CDFI Fund in the FY18 budget.

Our success this past spring is a testament to the power of grassroots advocacy. Two Calls to Action in as many weeks may seem like a lot but right now we need to keep the pressure up. Please contact me at cabeel@njcul.org if you have any questions or need additional information.