Former CUNA Chairman Weighs In On TaxHearing

Register now

MIAMI BEACH, Fla. - (11/09/05) -- While the credit union community hasbreathed a sign of relief following last week's House Ways &Means Committee hearing on the CU tax exemption, CUNA's formerchairman believes some of the questions posed to credit unions areindicative of a glaring weakness. Dick Ensweiler, the Texas leagueCEO whose term as CUNA chair has just ended, believes too manycredit unions came away from those hearings with the message "weare not of a mind to tax credit unions right now." Too few, hesaid, also heard, "We certainly could, and unless you stick to yoursocial purpose we're going to keep you under our scrutiny." Creditunions' primary liability, said Ensweiler, was exposed under hardquestioning from House Ways & Means Chairman Bill Thomas (R-CA)to NCUA Chairman JoAnn Johnson seeking data that supports CU claimsof service to underserved and low-income markets. "What we are notdoing is measuring the real statistics on who we serve and in whatway," he said. "We have resisted CRA; but we do have to come upwith some data that shows what we do and how we are serving thecommunity consistently with our original purpose." Ensweiler spokewith The Credit Union Journal during the CUNA Lending Council'sannual meeting here.

For reprint and licensing requests for this article, click here.