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As debt bill moves CUNA vigilant on tax status
WASHINGTON (8/2/11)--The compromise debt ceiling bill expected to clear Congress before Tuesday’s default deadline would lift the debt ceiling by $2.4 trillion and would a create Congressional Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction to identify future debt-reduction measures. To date, the credit union tax exemption has not been a focus of the formal debt ceiling talks. President Barack Obama and congressional leaders worked out the debt deal over the weekend. According to the Congressional Budget Office, the plan would cut $2.1 trillion in spending between 2012 and 2021. The plan would cut discretionary spending until 2021. A House vote Monday night of 269-161 sends the package on to the Senate for a vote. Credit Union National Association (CUNA) Vice President of Legislative Affairs Ryan Donovan said that CUNA will closely follow events surrounding the deficit reduction committee and continue to emphasize the positive impact that the credit unions have on the members and communities that they serve. Donovan predicted that debate will ensue over whether the Joint Committee has the ability to look at tax expenditures as part of its role. He also reminded that Speaker of the House John Boehner, of Ohio, has said there is “no appetite” among House lawmakers to look at increasing tax revenues. “We’ll keep a close eye on this and will engage with the Joint Committee as appropriate,” Donovan said, and added that “preserving the credit union tax status is absolutely the most critical issue CUNA works on.” While the debt ceiling debate continues to keep Washington’s attention, several hearings are also scheduled to take place this week. Hearings schedules always can be subject to change. However, after the drawn out debate on the debt ceiling, it should be noted that hearings may be postponed if Congress leaves town, as expected, after the vote. The Senate Banking Committee on Tuesday is scheduled to address national mortgage servicing standards during a 10:00 a.m. (ET) hearing. That panel also has a slated hearing for 2 p.m. (ET) Thursday to consider the nomination of Richard Cordray for the position of director for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. The House Financial Services subcommittee on insurance, housing and community opportunity has set a hearing to look at the future roles of the Federal Housing Administration, the Rural Housing Service and the Government National Mortgage Association in single- and multi-family mortgage markets. That hearing is scheduled for 10:00 a.m. (ET) Wednesday. Congress will leave Washington until Sept. 6 once its work for the week is complete.

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