Converting CUs Retained High-Priced Lobbyist

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A little lobbying muscle helped pay off big for the former Community CU during last year's fight over its conversion to mutual savings bank. The Plano, Texas institution, now known as Viewpoint Bank, paid Washington super-lobbyist Jim Butera $60,000 for what amounted to six weeks' work last summer to help cultivate support in Congress for its confrontation with NCUA, according to documents filed by Butera. Butera, who has represented many of the biggest financial entities before Congress, including the FHLBs, thrift giant Charter One, and even failed hedge fund Long Term Capital Management, has also been hired recently to represent DFCU Financial, the Dearborn, Mich., CU seeking to convert. OmniAmerican CU, the other Texas CU giant that converted to a bank last year, reported a similar lobbying bill with Bracewell & Giuliani.

The Journal's Ed Roberts can be contacted at eroberts

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