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Special Edition of Capitol Eyes 10.8.2020 - Virtual Hike the Hill Recap

Cap Eyes 4.30.20
Oct 08, 2020
By The Government Affairs team
  • Advocacy

2020 Virtual Hike the Hill Recap

On September 22-23 , over 70 Credit Union Activists from 40 different credit unions participated in The League's 2020 Virtual Hike the Hill event. Though participating throughout Wisconsin, Activists paid homage to the Credit Union House in Washington, D.C. where the event usually takes place with virtual backgrounds featuring the building.

Despite the inability to meet in person, Activists had productive meetings with both the Wisconsin Congressional Delegation and members of the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) board.

Activists highlighted how Wisconsin credit unions helped members and communities to the tune of $2.3 billion throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and related economic crisis, with an additional $2 million in cash contributions to community partners. 

Wisconsin Credit Unions COVID-19 Response infographic >>

Meeting with the Wisconsin Congressional Delegation

In meetings with the offices of all ten members of our delegation, Activists outlined their efforts to help members, whether through new loan products, fee waivers, deferrals, or through donations and community assistance.

Activists asked legislators to support H.R. 7777 / S. 4117, the Paycheck Protection Small Business Forgiveness Act. The bill provides forgiveness for loans under $150,000, simplifies forgiveness for the small main-street businesses that need it most, and allows credit unions to focus resources on assisting members. Wisconsin credit unions' average PPP loan was just $37,300.

Activists thanked Rep. Ron Kind (D-La Crosse) for signing on as a cosponsor of H.R. 7777!

Meeting with the National Credit Union Administration 

In meetings with National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) Chairman Rodney Hood and Board Member Todd Harper, Activists asked that the Board approve Wisconsin's Member Business Lending Rule, which has been under consideration at the agency since February. The group heard updates on the NCUA's efforts to advance diversity, equity, and inclusion, support credit unions' ability to meet member needs during the pandemic, and to streamline examinations.

During the conversation about DEI, Chairman Hood expressed that credit unions can be a part of the financial healing in areas affected by racial injustice and civil unrest. Financial inclusion is, he added, a civil right.

Regulatory and Election Briefing - Available for Activists

To further enrich the Hike experience, attendees viewed a 2020 elections & credit union involvement preview from Credit Union National Association (CUNA) Deputy Chief Advocacy Officer on Political Action Trey Hawkins and a regulatory update from CUNA's Deputy Chief Advocacy Officer & Senior Counsel Elizabeth Eurgubian.

These videos are now available for all Activists to view, using the links below.

The 2020 Elections & Credit Union Involvement video >>
Regulatory Update video >>

Want to See More?
View the Hike the Hill photo album >>


The League Supports Rep. Gallagher's Financial Literacy Bill

Rep. Mike Gallagher (R-Green Bay) introduced the Student Empowerment and Financial Literacy Act. This bill, supported by both The League and CUNA, would create a grant program within the Department of Education to fund financial literacy programs for K - 12 schools.

The press release introducing the bill mentions credit unions' in-school branches, which was a topic of conversation with the Congressman during the Virtual Hike the Hill as well.

Rep. Gallagher press release on Student Empowerment and Financial Literacy Act >>
Letter from The League's President/CEO to House leadership in support of the bill >>
Letter from CUNA President & CEO Jim Nussle to Rep. Gallagher in support of the bill >>


About The Author

Tom Harrington is the Political & Grassroots Specialist for The Wisconsin Credit Union League.