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Congressman Lamar Smith Meets with CU Leaders in San Antonio
Tuesday, January 5, 2016 7:00 AM

San Antonio credit unions met with Congressman Lamar Smith (R-Texas) recently at Firstmark Credit Union.

The group thanked Congressman Smith for co-sponsoring HR 3048 by Congressman Roger Williams (R-Texas), which would exempt credit unions under $10 billion in assets from new regulations from the CFPB going forward. This important bill would go a long way to reducing the amount of time and money credit unions spend dealing with increased government paperwork. The time and money spent on government bureaucracy could be repurposed to better serving credit union members and reducing costs if Congress passed HR 3048. 

Congressman Lamar Smith Meets with CU Leaders in San Antonio
Pictured from left to right: Gregg Thorne, Firstmark CU; Kim Heinze-River City FCU; Mark Leita, Firstmark CU; Jesse Martinez, Firstmark CU; Chris O'Connor-Randolph Brooks FCU; Congressman Lamar Smith; John Kirk, Alamo FCU; and Kelley Farwell, Michelle Akers, Andy Apple, and Don Jones, all from Firstmark CU.

In addition, Congressman Smith has co-sponsored HR 1233, the CLEARR Act that would amend the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act regarding privacy notices.

There was extensive discussion about data security problems and many of the recent hacks of card data stored by retailers on unprotected computer systems. It was noted there is not only a large financial cost to credit unions and banks when these breaches occur, but also inconvenience to the credit union member, as well as the credit union’s inability to fully communicate to members the reasons the card was compromised and why they have to go through the inconvenience of getting a new credit or debit card.

Congressman Smith told the group that the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology, which he chairs, was able to pass legislation earlier this year on cybersecurity and that he and his committee are very focused on addressing this issue.

The congressman said he wants to continue working with credit unions on doing more to protect Americans—and the financial institutions that serve them—from the ongoing data breaches and resulting fraud and identity theft. The group discussed numerous other issues with the congressman, including NCUA, risk-based capital, field of membership, the economy, and the challenges facing small financial institutions from the never-ending government bureaucracy and regulations.

Contact Texas Credit Union Association President Jeff Huffman at 469-385-6488 or jhuffman@txcua.coop for more information.