NEW YORK (7/2/13)--The time has come for credit unions and their members nationwide to take action to protect credit unions, reduce regulatory burdens and prepare for the future, Bill Cheney, president/CEO of the Credit Union National Association, told attendees in his opening remarks Monday morning at the 2013 America's Credit Union Conference (ACUC).
| Bill Cheney, president/CEO of the Credit Union National Association, outlined three key initiatives during his opening remarks on Monday at the America's Credit Union Conference: Unite for Good, Don't Tax My Credit Union, and Plan to Win. (CUNA Photo)
The ACUC started Sunday and runs through Wednesday in New York City.
"Credit unions have done a tremendous job responding to and recovering from the financial crisis," Cheney said. More than 700,000 net new members have joined U.S. credit unions in the first three months of this year, he noted.
Three key initiatives are underway to help credit unions thrive in the future: Unite for Good, Don't Tax My Credit Union, and Plan To Win, Cheney said.
The "Don't Tax My Credit Union" national campaign has taken credit unions from defending the tax exemption to advocating for it, Cheney noted. The threat level has increased because Congress is taking a "blank sheet of paper approach" to tax exemptions. "We need to get back on that blank sheet of paper," he added.
Unite for Good seeks to have the whole credit union industry speak with one unified voice to remove barriers, increase awareness and foster service excellence for credit unions in reaching the strategic vision in which "Americans choose credit unions as their best financial partner." "This is a long-term project," Cheney explained.
Plan to Win is "a 535-seat strategy" to reach every member of Congress by developing a communication strategy, Cheney said. The plan focuses on local and national media relations, shaping the views of opinion leaders, and using social media to its full capacity in support of advocacy efforts.
Plan to Win also continues to work on increasing credit union political activity in terms of political action committee contributions, as well as individual contributions, he said.
The three CUNA initiatives are "synergistic," working together to create enhanced effects, Cheney said.
"With your help, we can convince millions and millions of Americans to support credit unions, and millions and millions of Americans to flock to credit unions and make them successful in the future," Cheney concluded.
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