Senate Passes NDAA with CUNA-Opposed Language

The Senate passed its version of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for fiscal year 2020 Thursday with CUNA-opposed language expanding certain waivers for rent and other facilities costs for financial institutions on military installations currently granted to credit unions.

The House version of the NDAA, which passed committee earlier this month, does not contain such language.

The Department of Defense has discretionary authority to waive the cost for land leases and other fees for credit unions who meet specific field of membership standards and secure an agreement with individual base commanders on a case by case basis.

CUNA will continue to work with members of Congress as the bill moves forward into conference committee, where legislators from both chambers will work on the two bills to create a compromise bill for President Donald Trump to sign.

While CUNA opposed the inclusion of the language, expressing its objection earlier this week in a letter to Senate leadership, the Senate NDAA language is not as severe as the language in last year’s House NDAA, which CUNA, the state leagues and the Defense Credit Union Council successfully fought to exclude.

The language in the current Senate-passed NDAA would broaden the exemption for banks, but only if they meet the same standards as credit unions eligible for the exemption, most notably that 95% of the membership of the institution is active duty or retired servicemembers and their families.