Missouri CU Reps Meet With Members of Congress

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Representatives of Missouri's credit union's met with the state's entire 11-member congressional delegation during a visit here. The group pressed Congress on regulatory relief and bankruptcy reform.

The Missouri CU Association reported, however, that "lawmakers expressed frustration and regret that any legislation moving forward is highly unlikely due to the election year." "Bills are held up...the whole process is completely gummed up," Sen. Jim Talent (R) told the group.

House members expressed similar sentiments.

The MCUA said that for the most part, Missouri's delegation voiced support of bankruptcy reform, but could not give a specific timeline for a vote. The Credit Union Regulatory Improvements Act (HR 3579) including provisions that would ease several restrictions on member-business lending, including raising the cap from 12.25% to 20% of a credit union's assets, change the definition of an MBL from $50,000 to $100,000 and increase the 12-year loan maturity limit to 15 or more years.

"For example, my credit union can make a loan to a member for a luxury car for $75,000," Vantage Credit Union President Hubert Hoosman explained to several staffers. "But, if a farmer comes in and wants a $51,000 loan for a tractor, I may have to turn him away. Whereas I could make four car loans, I could only make one business loan at $51,000."

The nine Missouri Hike the Hill attendees also addressed credit union tax exemption status. The Missouri Bankers Association visited D.C. the week prior, and several staffers indicated that one of the bankers' topics was credit unions.

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