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House tax reform draft is another big win for credit unions


Just after the State Legislature handed Wisconsin credit unions a significant win by passing a regulatory reform package, Congress handed credit unions a huge symbolic victory as the House tax reform proposal maintained credit unions' federal tax status.


Significantly these developments also represent setbacks for the bankers who attempted to take away Wisconsin's independent credit union regulator and tax them at the federal level. On top of rejection of bank attacks, the House tax reform draft includes a proposal for a new 3.5 basis-point tax per quarter on banks over $500 billion.

Radio ads spread awareness of credit union service

Wisconsin consumers are learning more about the tremendous value of member-owned credit unions through radio ads in various areas of the state.

The :30-second spots tout credit unions’ commitment to financial education, their member-owners and the communities they serve. Listen to ads 12 and 3.


"The intent is to enhance support and goodwill for credit unions simply by sharing the great service they provide with a broader audience," said League President & CEO Brett Thompson.


He cited research showing that the more people understand the unique value of credit unions in the financial marketplace, the less inclined they are to tax them like banks.

The ads have aired or will air in Madison, Wausau/Stevens Point, Oshkosh/Fond du Lac, Green Bay, Eau Claire and Milwaukee.


While tax reform is unlikely to occur this session, maintaining the corporate income tax exemption in this draft was essential because this may become the starting point for future tax reform efforts.

"None of this would have been possible without the credit union advocates that made their voices heard," said League President & CEO Brett Thompson, noting that "Wisconsin credit union members showered members of Congress with tens of thousands of  Don’t Tax My Credit Union messages over the past year—and they heard our message."


"With the current tax reform measure such as it is, our advocacy strategy will need to change to reflect the situation on the ground," said Tom Liebe, Vice President of Government Affairs for The League.

"Credit unions won this round not just because of the massive expression of grassroots strength, but because of the strength of our message," he added. "Wins like these that credit unions have experienced in recent weeks typify how the credit union movement has united to remove barriers that inhibit credit unions' success. Our unity empowers us, and that's why our joint effort to remove barriers is so central to credit unions' Unite for Good strategy for growth." 


Therefore, credit unions should continue to advocate by strengthening relationships with decision makers through compelling stories of service and huge financial savings for consumers, which proved to be key to recent successes in the State Legislature as well.


You can thank your members for their role in our taxation advocacy thus far using The League's sample newsletter article.


If you have any questions, please contact Tom Liebe, VP of Government Affairs, at (608) 514-0082.




The Unite for Good effort is an internal growth strategy developed by CUNA in conjunction with its Board, state leagues, credit unions and system partners. The plan's action steps – to remove barriers, increase awareness and foster service excellence–are aimed at helping more credit unions become their members' primary financial institution by compelling members to see credit unions as their best financial partner. Read more articles in our Unite for Good series.

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