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Mich. lawmaker CUs have best grassroots advocacy
LANSING, Mich. (10/19/09)--The Michigan Credit Union League's (MCUL) Capitol Day grassroots lobbying luncheon Wednesday saw a strong turnout, proving Michigan credit unions are making their relationships with lawmakers a high priority. And, judging from the kudos received from lawmakers, the legislature is taking their credit union constituents' concerns seriously, said MCUL.
With Michigan's House Resolution for Credit Union Week are (from left) E&A CU Executive Vice President Michelle Myrick, State Rep. Andy Coulouris, State Rep. Dan Scipps, and Michigan Credit Union League President/CEO David Adams.
Michigan State Rep. Vincent Gregory (left), D-Southfield, mingles with credit union attendees at the Michigan Credit Union League's Capitol Day Wednesday. (Photos provided by the Michigan Credit Union League).
More than 80 legislators and staffers attended the event in Lansing with about 86 credit union people, who discussed issues affecting the industry against the backdrop of International Credit Union Week. After lunch, Credit Union Week resolutions and a proclamation were presented by State Sen. Alan Sanborn (R-Richmond Township), State Reps. Andy Coulouris (D-Saginaw) and Dan Scipps (D-Leland), and Jerome Marks from the office of Gov. Jennifer Granholm. All three lawmakers expressed a positive message about credit unions, said the league, but Coulouris, also chairman of the House Banking and Financial Services Committee, "heaped praise on the industry's advocacy efforts and the role of the state economy," said MCUL. "You're probably going to think what I'm about to say to you I say to all the girls, but I don't," Coulouris told the group. "You have, bar none, the best grassroots advocacy team in the state. Nobody does a better job advocating in Lansing, and nobody does a better job advocating in our districts. You make our jobs as proponents of credit unions easy," Coulouris said. "It's a lot easier for me to get my colleagues to support your interests and our state's interests when you do such a good job on my behalf speaking to them in your districts. We live in a time where trust is hard to come by, and you stand alone in your ability to instill that trust again. The role that credit unions play in their communities as beacons of trust, of bedrocks that the people we represent know they can count on--that role is so important and has never been more critical." Before the luncheon, credit union attendees convened for a Government and Political Affairs Forum and a briefing on important legislation that could impact credit unions. These included account inactivity fees (Senate Bill 772), account error notification (Senate Bill 779) and financial elder abuse (House Bill 5187). Bills addressing financial privacy and an annual political action committee signature requirement also were covered. "The large attendance by lawmakers shows that the Michigan legislature views credit unions as an important part of our state economy and vital for consumers as trustworthy financial service providers," said MCUL President/CEO David Adams. "It's encouraging to see this high level of credit union participation, also." Coulouris also thanked Adams and MCUL's government affairs team for their role in the creation this year of a new law that temporarily freezes the foreclosure process while lenders and borrowers work out a plan, among other measures. He cited this law as "one of the most important things [the state has] done this year in response to the foreclosure crisis."
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