Bill To Impose CRA On CUs Looms In Congress

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The chances of Congress considering a Community Reinvestment Act-like requirement for credit unions has increased as the leading Democrat on the House Financial Services Committee almost ensured a debate on the issue. "We will be looking into the CRA issue for credit unions," said Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA) in a speech to the Massachusetts Bankers Association, after noting that state-chartered credit unions already comply with the Bay State's own CRA.

Frank's comments came the day after several other members of the Financial Services Subcommittee on Financial Institutions raised the issue of CRA for credit unions during last week's hearing on regulatory relief. Rep. Al Green (D-TX) wondered whether a recent study by the National Community Reinvestment Coalition finding that credit unions lag behind banks in serving the underserved should not be seen as a need for CRA for credit unions. Several other members of the panel asked the same question.

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