January 19, 2018

In this Issue:

  • House Special Election Results
  • ICUL Advocacy Training
  • Grassroots Assistance Needed
  • Legislative Activity of Interest
  • Register for the ICUL Legislative & Regulatory Issues Conference
  • Register for Capital Hill Days
  • Federal Update

House Special Election Results

On Tuesday, January 16, Republican Jacob Bossman defeated Democrat Rita De Jong by a 2,152 to 1,712 margin.  Jacob, currently a Regional Director for Senator Grassley, will serve in House District 6, which covers parts of Sioux City and other areas of Woodbury County.  The House seat came open when Rep. Jim Carlin won the special Senate election in December to replace retiring Senator Bill Anderson.

ICUL Advocacy Training

On Friday, January 12, about 40 credit union advocates from 15 different credit unions gathered at the ICUL offices to participate in our second annual Advocacy Training program. At the training, the importance of grassroots engagement to our legislative success was discussed.  Attendees discussed various types of grassroots activity, such as engaging legislators in their home districts at legislative forums, and how to engage credit union members in advocacy. Rep. Kevin Koester was a guest speaker, talking with the group about his experience as to what is effective advocacy and how best to communicate with lawmakers.  We appreciate the attendees taking the time to help with our efforts to continually improve ICUL’s grassroots advocacy, which is so important to maintaining a supportive legislative environment.

Grassroots Assistance Needed -- Bankers Advocating to Raise Credit Union Taxes

Governor Reynolds and legislative leaders continue to have in-depth discussions on the topic of tax reform. Although the session is in its infancy, the bankers are using this topic as an opportunity to advocate for increasing credit union taxes. The bankers turned on their own grassroots outreach this week, sending emails to lawmakers in support of having credit unions “pay their fair share.”  We need your help reaching out to your State Senator and State Representative, asking them to oppose any tax increase on credit unions — which is ultimately a tax increase on Iowa’s 1.1 million credit union members.  Please click HERE to send an email to your legislators, it will only take a couple minutes of your time.

Legislative Activity of Interest to Credit Unions

Here is a list of bills introduced that are of interest to credit unions:

House Study Bill 526:  The bill makes various changes to Iowa law dealing with consumer security breach protection and notification.  Current law requires a person who owns/licenses personal information that is subject to a breach of security to give notice to affected consumers in the most expeditious manner possible. The bill provides that such notice to affected consumers must occur no later than 45 days after the discovery of the breach of security.  It would also prohibit a credit bureau from charging a fee for placing or removing a security freeze.

House Study Bill 532:  The bill would allow a customer to contact his/her bank or credit union to stop payment on a check by sending an email.  Current law requires a customer to give notice to the financial institution verbally or in writing—the bill is intended to clarify that email suffices for “in writing.”

House Study Bill 531:  This bill shortens the periods of time associated with redemption of real property from foreclosure. It changes the period of time that a debtor may redeem real property from within one year of sale to within six months of sale. It also changes the period in which the debtor has the exclusive right of redemption from six months after sale to three months after sale. The period of redemption by creditors is reduced from nine months after sale to four months after sale.

Senate File 2054: This bill prohibits consumer reporting agencies from charging a fee for placing, removing, temporarily suspending, or reinstating a security freeze.  The bill expands the methods currently permitted to request a security freeze from a consumer reporting agency (certified mail) to also include first-class mail, telephone, facsimile, secure internet connection, or secure electronic mail.

Senate File 2053:  The bill makes additional requirements to the real estate disclosure statement upon transfer of property—requiring the seller to indicate whether topsoil has been removed from any part of the property during the last twenty year (there is an exception for the transfer of agricultural land).  The disclosure statement shall also include information relating to whether the real property has been used for the manufacture of methamphetamine.

Register for the ICUL Legislative Conference

The annual ICUL Legislative and Regulatory Issues Conference is February 6-7 at the downtown Marriott in Des Moines (note: we had to change venue location due to lagging renovations at the Savery).  On the Legislative Day of the conference, February 6, Governor Reynolds will kick things off as the first speaker.  The keynote speaker before lunch is Jim Messina, President Obama’s 2012 Campaign Manager.  Jim will speak to the campaign’s use of data and other technologies to reach voters during that election cycle—and how that can translate to today’s advocacy with lawmakers.  He will also offer his insight on the 2020 presidential race.

After morning speakers, we will bus to the Capitol and visit with our lawmakers, with a focus on protecting our tax status.  It's important that we get as many people to the Capitol as possible to make our voice heard, so one-time special pricing is being offered to encourage participation.  Two-day registration is $249 (regularly $349) and one-day registration is $125 (regularly $199).  Please click HERE to register:

Register for Capitol Hill Days

Our tradition of two hill visits during the legislative session continues again this year.  The importance of these visits to our advocacy efforts can’t be overstated, as lawmakers want to hear directly from constituents. This year, the dates are:

  • Wednesday, March 7
  • Wednesday, April 4

The start time is 11:30 a.m.  A lunch and a legislative briefing will take place at the State Historical Society of Iowa, 600 East Locust, Des Moines, followed by our walk to the statehouse. Free parking is available in a ramp across from the Historical Society.  Generally, the hill visits are wrapped up around 3-3:30 pm.  To sign-up for a Capitol Hill Day, please click HERE.

Federal Update from CUNA

Both the House and Senate were in session this week and resumed negotiations on the omnibus appropriations bill in order to continue funding the government. The clock is ticking... current government funding expires today.

CUNA and the state credit union leagues, representing all 50 states and the District of Columbia, wrote to Majority Leader McConnell and Minority Leader Schumer to encourage debate on the bipartisan S. 2155 – the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act.  The letter reiterated America's credit unions' strong support for S. 2155. This important regulatory relief legislation contains several provisions that would significantly reduce regulatory burden for community financial institutions like credit unions. These changes would allow credit unions across the country to more fully serve their members' needs, from mortgages to small business loans.

The House Financial Services Committee held a hearing entitled, "Legislative Proposals for a More Efficient Federal Financial Regulatory Regime: Part III." Prior to the hearing, CUNA sent a letter in support of two of the regulatory relief bills discussed.

  • H.R. 1264, The Community Financial Institution Exemption Act – would exempt financial institutions with under $50 billion in assets from rules and regulations issued by the CFPB unless the bureau is able to demonstrate that these institutions are engaged in a pattern of abuse.
  • H.R. 4648, The Home Mortgage Reporting Relief Act would delay expanded HMDA data reporting requirements until Jan. 1, 2019, in turn postponing the first mandatory reporting date under the new regulatory scheme until March 2020

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