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Leagues Getting CU Act Modernization to Governors’ Desks
Monday, March 14, 2016 6:50 AM

Legislation to update state credit union charters is successfully making its way through a number of states, including three where the bills await governor signatures. The Credit Union National Association supports modernizing state charters to provide the maximum flexibility for credit unions to serve their members.

  • Three bills are awaiting the signature of Florida Gov. Rick Scott. The League of Southeastern Credit Unions reported last week’s victories:

    • SB 912 requires owners and operators of fuel pumps to ensure that their card readers have not been compromised through the placement of a card skimmer. The legislation also updates laws regarding the possession of fraudulent credit cards. Once signed, this law will become effective Oct. 1;

    • SB 1104 will prevent confusion and process service delays by allowing credit unions to register a central location and person to be served with any lawsuits. Currently under Florida law, financial institutions do not have a central location registered for the process service of lawsuits; and

    • HB 1233 will require the Florida Office of Financial Regulation to enter into an information-sharing agreement with the Federal Home Loan Bank (FHLBank) Atlanta that will finally allow state-chartered credit unions in Florida access to the FHLBank Atlanta's secondary market mortgage program.

  • In Virginia, a bill would authorize the state regulator to give credit unions greater field-of-membership flexibility and the ability to merge is awaiting Gov. Terry McAuliffe’s signature.

  • Indiana’s legislative session just ended, and the Indiana Credit Union League successfully drove a bill that improves restrictions on loans made to individual officers of state-chartered credit unions as well as a bill that makes it a criminal offense to damage or destroy property that is involved in a foreclosure process.

  • In Michigan, the six-bill package to update the Michigan Credit Union Act was unanimously voted out of the Senate Banking Committee. After nearly unanimous support from the House, the bills now head to the full Senate for consideration. The bills amend Michigan law in more than 40 ways, including curbing regulator use of "best practice" suggestions, protecting regulatory fees, allowing trust powers via a credit union service organization, permitting lending promotion authority, and exempting well-capitalized credit unions from fixed-asset limits.  The Michigan Credit Union League reported last week it expects to have legislation ready for Gov. Rick Snyder’s signature by spring.

  • The Ohio Senate is the next stop for an Ohio Credit Union League-supported bill that would give Ohio credit unions the ability to offer low-interest loans to small businesses through a partnership with the state treasurer. “In the face of strong banker opposition, the votes by the committee and full House are proof of the respected and influential standing of the league and Ohio credit unions,” the league reported (eLumination March. 9). Strong bipartisan gives the bill “great momentum” as it heads into the Senate for consideration.

Proactive work by the Georgia Credit Union Affiliates is keeping a lending and operations procedures bill moving through the process, as the bill has passed a Senate Banking and Finance Committee hearing and is on its way to Senate Rules. The bill improves and clarifies an existing law to ensure credit unions are included by definition in the unauthorized practice of law exemption for financial institution operations.