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Diana Dykstra, President and CEO of the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues

DYKSTRA: A 'POSITIVE' GAC VISIT
updated 03/01/13 10:38 AM
CUs Leave 'Strong Impression,' She Says
Like many of you, I was among the 4,200 credit union advocates in Washington, D.C. this week for the Credit Union National Association (CUNA) Governmental Affairs Conference. If you've been keeping up with the news, you have heard how Washington is filled with partisan disputes over the issue of sequestration. While that is true, I'm glad to also report that legislators on both sides of the political aisle were willing to hear our message.

Sequestration is definitely on many legislators' minds, as well as ours since it could seriously impact many credit union members either directly or indirectly. However, we were able to address other important issues—most urgently, preserving credit unions tax status and member business lending (MBL).

Any attempt to tax credit unions affects our very viability, and while we don't foresee an attack on our tax exemption, we want to shore up support in case of any eleventh-hour moves. Our efforts to raise the MBL cap received a boost last month when bipartisan MBL legislation was reintroduced in the House. There are also signals that some type of Senate action on MBL may take place soon, though it is not a certainty.

We also discussed supplemental capital, privacy notifications, and housing finance reform in many GAC visits. We voiced support for The Capital Access for Small Businesses and Jobs Act, which Rep. Brad Sherman, D-CA, recently reintroduced in the House. The bill would permit the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) to allow credit unions to accept additional forms of capital, and is identical to legislation introduced last session. Rep. Sherman also recently reintroduced The Eliminate Privacy Notice Confusion Act, which would make significant improvements in privacy notices for consumers. CUNA and the League support this legislation. The political debate over housing finance reform is still taking shape, but we are working to ensure that credit unions get their rightful place in the discussion.

It’s exciting to note that we had four California legislative champions speaking on the main stage, which was very encouraging; Kevin McCarthy, Ed Royce, Brad Sherman, and Maxine Waters. Some of our members had brief but positive interactions with Rep. Maxine Waters, D-CA, the ranking Democrat on the House Financial Services Committee and a co-sponsor of the House MBL bill. Also, our League held a successful fundraiser for another of the House co-sponsors, Rep. John Campbell (R-CA), who was very gracious.

Overall, the tone from the lawmakers we visited was more positive than in the last two years. Once again, I saw that with a focused message and a strong turnout, credit unions can cut through the political clamor and leave a strong impression. Participating in events like GAC and the Government Relations Rally (GRR) turns lukewarm credit union supporters into good ones, and good supporters into great ones. Thank you for your support, and let's continue reaching out whenever we can.

 
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LEAGUES TO MEET WITH WHITEHEAD updated 03/31/15 10:29 AM
Exam Survey in Focus
National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) Region V Director Liz Whitehead and her senior staff will meet with representatives from the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues and other state leagues in Arizona this coming Friday to discuss credit union issues, including the examination process.

ANTICIPATING THE CFPB’S FIRST VISIT updated 03/30/15 10:38 AM
SchoolsFirst FCU Discusses Preparation
The fact that examiners from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) are expected to walk through the doors of SchoolsFirst Federal Credit Union’s headquarters in Santa Ana sometime this year is not only “a first” for California’s largest cooperative financial institution, it’s a landmark event for the state’s entire credit union industry.

CA MEDIA JUMP ON LEAGUE DATA updated 03/27/15 01:58 PM
Impressive Story Coverage
The California credit union system has gained substantial momentum in local media outlets in recent months. Among the top topics covered by publications is the California Credit Union League's strong fourth quarter lending data.

HARRY REID TO RETIRE IN 2016 updated 03/27/15 01:11 PM
Served Senate Since 2005
Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) will not seek re-election in 2016, he said in an interview with the New York Times. He has led the Senate democrats since 2005 and has had a three-decade congressional career.

FIRST CU REG. RELIEF BILL PASSED updated 03/26/15 09:21 AM
H.R. 299 Approved by Committee
The House Committee on Financial Services passed H.R. 299—the Capital Access for Small Community Financial Institutions Act—granting privately-insured credit unions access to the Federal Home Loan Bank. The bill now moves to House floor for consideration hopefully before June.

FIs TRUSTED OVER RETAILERS updated 03/25/15 03:00 PM
Better Data Protection
According to a recent Gallup poll, 91 percent of consumers trust credit unions and banks to better safeguard their personal information and keep data secure, compared to less than 70 percent of consumers who trust merchants. More than 11,000 U.S. adults age 18 and older were surveyed for the poll.

OVERDRAFT PROPOSAL OPPOSED updated 03/24/15 08:56 AM
Treatment of Prepaid Cards
The California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues have submitted a comment letter to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) that strongly opposes the bureau’s proposed treatment of overdrafts on prepaid cards as credit and subject to Regulation Z requirements.

GRR IS LESS THAN THREE WEEKS AWAY updated 03/23/15 10:54 AM
Crucial Event for CA State Advocacy
The 2015 Government Relations Rally (GRR) is the most important state legislative event for credit unions in California— and it’s less than three weeks away. Will you be there to advocate for your credit union?

CEOs TALK RISK, OPPORTUNITY, FUTURE updated 03/19/15 05:04 PM
Cheney, Gunderson, and Hernandez
Threats to cybersecurity, defending against card fraud, and remaining relevant to consumers are top concerns for three credit union CEOs who recently participated on a special panel during a California Credit Union League Orange County Chapter meeting.

CA CEO TESTIFIES BEFORE CONGRESS updated 03/18/15 10:18 AM
Also, Rep. Royce Reintroduces Bill
Patrick Miller, CEO of CBC FCU testified before today’s House Committee on Financial Services hearing titled “Preserving Consumer Choice and Financial Independence.” Miller was the witness on behalf of the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues and the Credit Union National Association (CUNA). The bulk of his testimony centered on duplicative compliance burdens, as well as the modifications needed to strengthen the credit union charter.

NCUA WARNS ABOUT PHISHING SCAM updated 03/18/15 03:00 PM
‘National Credit Union’ Con
The National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) has issued a warning to consumers that the agency has received reports of an online phishing scam which uses a website with a logo and a design similar to the agency’s own site in an attempt to convince customers/members to provide information or send money. Click here to read the warning.

SMALL, LARGE CUs MEET AT 'GAC' updated 03/16/15 11:31 AM
Also, Pete Aguilar Fundraiser
Nearly 50 CEOs and professionals from small credit unions and their large-sponsor counterparts attended the Partners in Advocacy reception last week at the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues’ suite during the 2015 Credit Union National Association Governmental Affairs Conference (GAC).

MCWATTERS MEETS WITH CA, NV LEADERS updated 03/16/15 10:27 AM
CFPB Officials Address Rules
The room was packed last week when National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) Board Member Mark McWatters made time to address attendees from California and Nevada during the 2015 Credit Union National Association Governmental Affairs Conference (GAC) in Washington, D.C.

CU HILL VISITS: 'TREMENDOUS SUCCESS' updated 03/16/15 01:25 PM
Keeps Advocacy Top of Mind
More than 225 colleagues from California and Nevada credit unions joined thousands of their peers at the 2015 Credit Union National Association Governmental Affairs Conference (GAC) last week, making visits to lawmakers’ offices and meeting with regulatory officials.

ADVOCATES GATHER IN WASHINGTON, D.C. updated 03/10/15 10:51 AM
2015 Governmental Affairs Conference
California and Nevada credit union leaders attending the Credit Union National Association’s 2015 Governmental Affairs Conference (GAC) in Washington D.C. focused on pressing legislative and regulatory issues as they were briefed in the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues’ suite on Monday afternoon and met intermittently on Tuesday.

COMMITMENT TO SUPP. CAPITAL AND RBC updated 03/10/15 09:57 AM
Plus, Modernizing FOM Limits
Credit union leaders from California and Nevada were surprised and pleased with National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) Chairman Debbie Matz’s comments from this week regarding the use of supplemental capital for risk-based capital purposes.

PURCELL SCHOLARSHIP AWARDED AT 'GAC' updated 03/10/15 07:50 AM
Honor ‘Means a Great Deal to Me’
This year’s Kelly J. Purcell Credit Union Memorial Fund Scholarship was awarded to Rebecca Herrigel, a student at the George Washington University Graduate School of Political Management who will graduate this year with a master’s degree in political management.

REG. RELIEF HEARING ANNOUNCED updated 03/09/15 10:06 AM
Signals Many Discussions Ahead
With the opening of the Credit Union National Association (CUNA) 2015 Governmental Affairs Conference (GAC) on March 8, the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues had its first of many announcements.

CEOs JOIN CU HOUSE HALL OF LEADERS updated 03/09/15 09:30 AM
Eric Bruen and Joe Schroeder
Desert Valleys FCU CEO Eric Bruen and Ventura County CU President Joe Schroeder were inducted into the Credit Union House Hall of Leaders during the Credit Union House meeting, prior to the Credit Union National Association’s (CUNA) Governmental Affairs Conference (GAC), which began on March 8. Both received this honor for their significant impact on the credit union movement, and are the third and fourth inductees from California since the program’s inception in 2008.

NCUA, CFPB TO MEET CA AND NV LEADERS updated 03/03/15 09:12 AM
RBC, Overdraft, and Other Topics
On board for California and Nevada attendees of the Credit Union National Association’s 2015 Governmental Affairs Conference (GAC) is a special visit from officials with the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) and Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) at the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues' hospitality suite.

THREE TOPICS SHAPING ‘GAC’ THIS YEAR updated 03/02/15 05:08 PM
Data Security Will Top GRR
Next week the Credit Union National Association’s 2015 Governmental Affairs Conference (GAC) will kick off in Washington D.C.—a conference that, unlike others, is focused on bringing the credit union message to Congress and the administration.

EVANGELICAL CHRISTIAN CU CEO RETIRIN updated 03/02/15 04:20 PM
Holbrook Served For 36 Years
Evangelical Christian CU's Mark Holbrook will retire in May after 36 years as CEO. He is widely acknowledged for growing the 50-year-old institution to an alliance of more than 11,000 members and ministries in 130 countries.

ROYCE REINTRODUCES MBL CAP BILL updated 03/02/15 03:31 PM
Raises Limit to 27.5 Percent of Assets
Today, Congressman Ed Royce (R-CA) reintroduced legislation raising the member business lending (MBL) from 12.25 percent to 27.5 percent of assets.

CUs LEND UNIQUE VOICE TO NEWS MEDIA updated 03/02/15 02:55 PM
Stories Garner Spotlight in CA, NV
Only two months into 2015, local news media across California and Nevada are highlighting credit unions’ positive impact on their communities as the economy continues strengthening and the industry seeks how it can uniquely serve members.