CUs Should Prepare as Congress May Head Toward Shutdown

Image of capitol building in Washington D.C.

The partisan tensions in Washington, D.C. have only sharpened in the past week, which is not the news federal government employees want to hear.

Many credit unions have federal government workers in their fields of membership. The California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues’ advocacy team routinely monitors all progress on anything that could impact credit unions and is beginning to see the trend that a shutdown could be coming.

“It's not just the political tensions that are sending warning signs,” said Jeremy Empol, vice president of federal government affairs for the Leagues. “The current Continuing Resolution (CR) signed into law by the president expires on November 21st, and while the administration and Congress have a two-year budget agreement, they have yet to fund such agreement through the annual appropriations process. Adding to the daily climate issues between Congress, and the unwillingness to govern by CR, creates the potential for a shutdown situation.” 

The government was shut down for 35 days, between late December and the end of January of this year. During that time, many members of Congress, including two U.S. senators from California and Nevada, praised the efforts of credit unions for extending zero-percent interest loans, offering assistance programs, and ensuring federal government employees were covered throughout the duration.

“Credit unions should be aware of the possibility; however, it is still likely that Congress could amass something during this time," Empol said. "The Leagues will be collecting and compiling stories as we did last time. If your credit union has an existing program or is preparing one, please plan to inform us so we can ensure Congress sees the proactive stance credit unions are taking."

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