LOS ANGELES (6/22/10)--Continuing the push against an interchange amendment in the Senate version of the financial regulatory reform bill, a number of credit unions’ letters to the editor were published in media nationwide. Among the most prominent is a letter to the editor from Melia Keller, president, Mid-Cities Financial CU in Compton, Calif., that was published in The Los Angeles Times
Sunday. Credit unions and the Credit Union National Association (CUNA) have opposed the interchange amendment because it would make it more difficult for credit unions to offer card products and services. Credit union supporters continue to contact their representatives, with the number of phone calls and emails to D.C.-based legislators totaling over 600,000 as of last Friday (News Now
June 21). CUNA also hosted a “fly-in” where credit union representatives met with their constituents about the interchange amendment. In the letter, “An unlevel playing field for little banks,” Keller wrote, “The amendment opens the door to preferential pricing for certain customers. There will no longer be a level playing field of flat pricing for customers of all sizes.” Other letters to the editor published recently include:
* “Amendment to reform bill will harm consumers,” published in The Dayton Daily News Friday by Douglas Fecher, president/CEO of Wright-Patt CU, Fairborn, Ohio; * “On regulatory relief, base argument on fees on actual merits,” by Michael J. Kurish, president/CEO, Associated School Employees CU, Youngstown, Ohio, in The Warren Tribune; * “Consumers, credit unions losers in bill,” by Michael J. Kaczenski, president/CEO, Sun East FCU, Aston, Pa., in The Delaware County Times; and * “Costly amendment,” by Greg Olmsted, president of North Alabama Educators CU, Huntsville, Ala., in The Huntsville Times.
Kaczenski noted that “the irony of all this is the very consumer friendly institutions with the fairest pricing structures will be forced out of the debit card business, thus eliminating choices for consumers.” The House on Monday offered alternative language on interchange for the final regulatory reform package. (SEE RELATED STORIES: New interchange language, same concerns, says CUNA; CUNA reviews House interchange alternative; urges CU opposition.) To read the articles, use the links.