CU Leaders Discuss Key Issues with Legislators at CA 'GRR'

CA GRR
Credit union leaders met with a number of state legislators during the 2019 CA GRR, including state Senator Ling Ling Chang, R-Diamond Bar.

Some 110 credit union leaders, board members, and other advocates converged in Sacramento last week for the 2019 California Government Relations Rally (GRR).

For more photos of this year's GRR, click here.

On the second day of the rally, April 9, they met with state legislators on issues such as a crucial cleanup measure to the California Consumer Privacy Act that will allow credit unions to continue to use personal information to protect against and prevent illegal activity; a bill to allow local governments to create a public bank; and a bill to help increase financial literacy among high school students.

The big "asks" from credit unions during this year's event: 

Support for Assembly Bill 1416: The California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) inadvertently weakens the defenses against identity theft by allowing consumers to opt-out of fraud prevention tools and services. When bad actors are allowed to opt-out under the CCPA, credit unions will face difficulties in detecting and preventing fraud. AB 1416 (Ken Cooley) would ensure credit unions can continue protecting consumers against identity theft while still carrying out the intent of the CCPA. The bill adds clarifying language that specifies CCPA does not prevent a business from using collected personal information to prevent and protect against illegal activity. Credit unions rely on fraud prevention tools to ensure that member accounts are only opened and accessed by the correct person. They also must also be able to receive data from third-party risk assessment entities to assist with complex Anti Money Laundering and Know Your Customer laws. In drafting the CCPA, stakeholders recognized that criminals could use the CCPA to their advantage, so the authors included a clarification within the “right to delete” section of the bill. AB 1416 is a similar clarification for the right-to-opt-out provision of the bill.

Oppose Assembly Bill 857: AB 857 (David Chiu and Miguel Santiago) would allow a local government to apply for a charter to establish a public bank. The main goal is to allow cities to finance their own large infrastructure projects rather than finance them through a bank. Supporters believe this type of city bank would be able to offer lower interest rates and keep investments local rather than sending profits to Wall Street. The League, however, is concerned a public bank will be driven to offer sub-market rates, which could place millions of taxpayer dollars at risk. It feels there is no need for a city-operated bank as credit unions and banks offer similar services at affordable rates throughout the state.

Support Assembly Bill 1087: AB 1087 (Jordan Cunningham) specifies that the required course for economics in high school would incorporate topics on financial literacy. The topics would include fundamentals of banking for personal use; principles of budgeting and personal finance; employment and factors that affect net income; and uses and effects of credit. The California Credit Union League has supported legislation over the years to help improve the financial literacy of Californians. 

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