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|L-R: Diana Kot, Vice President of Membership Development and Advocacy for SchoolsFirst FCU; Rep. Xavier Becerra, D-CA; and Josh Smith, Advocacy Officer for SchoolsFirst FCU|
Three California credit union leaders recently attended a town hall meeting in Los Angeles hosted by Rep. Xavier Becerra, D-CA, where the credit union movement's tax exemption was briefly discussed in front of an audience of nearly 200 people.
"While Congressman Becerra did not say he would keep the credit union tax exemption off of the table in the upcoming October-November mark-up of tax reform legislation, he did say he believed in the credit union model," said Robert York, chief marketing officer for CalCom FCU, as he described Becerra's response to York’s question.
York added: "He said there are some very big credit unions across the country that could set the stage for a divide-and-conquer strategy, where credit unions above a certain asset size would be taxed while smaller credit unions would not be taxed."
The latter is a move that's already supported by the Independent Community Bankers of America (ICBA) "to create a war among credit unions," York said.
Becerra is on the House Ways and Means Committee, which is drafting a tax reform package. It may or may not include the credit union tax exemption. Becerra is also chairman of the Democratic Caucus, which makes him a key player in the credit union movement's fight to save its tax exemption.
Also attending the town hall were Diana Kot, vice president of membership development and advocacy for SchoolsFirst FCU, and Josh Smith, advocacy officer for SchoolsFirst FCU.