CUs Shaded From Tax-ExemptSpotlight

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WASHINGTON - (04/21/05) -- Credit unions successfully dodgedthe spotlight during Wednesday's congressional hearings ontax-exempt organizations, while the focus shifted to not-for-profithospitals and health organizations. But Rep. Bill Thomas, chairmanof the tax-writing House Ways and Means Committee, assured TheCredit Union Journal that credit unions are within the broadsight-range of the committee, which is examining whether the 1.8million organizations under section 501 (c) of the Internal RevenueCode continue to deserve a tax exemption "We are reviewing all501(c)s…the entire area," Thomas told The Credit UnionJournal. CUNA President Dan Mica emphasized the threat of the taxcommitete's hearings. "This is the nuclear issue for credit unions.This is the heart and soul of our existence," said Mica, whose rareattendance at a congressional hearing illustrated the importanceCUNA makes of the Ways and Means review. Meantime, the bankinglobby tried to wet committee-members' appetite for taking a closerlook at credit unions. Both the Independent Community Bankers ofAmerica and America's Community Bankers tried to enlist a committeemember to shine the spotlight on the credit union exemption, butthere were no takers Wednesday and the credit union issue wasmentioned only in passing.

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