WASHINGTON (10/21/11)— Sen. Diane Feinstein (D-Calif.) Wednesday inserted a statement into the Congressional Record to mark “the importance and many achievements of credit unions worldwide in celebration of the 63rd annual International Credit Union Credit Day (ICU Day).” Feinstein said to her Senate colleagues, “I rise today to recognize the importance and many achievements of credit unions worldwide in celebration of the 63rd annual International Credit Union Credit Day.” The Feinstein statement marked the beneficial impact credit unions make both in the United States and on an international scale. She said in this country, that credit unions provide “affordable and safe financial services to many Americans of moderate means has been significant and widely recognized. “The difference credit unions make in the United States by providing affordable and safe financial services to many Americans of moderate means has been significant and widely recognized,” the senator noted in her Senate statement, adding, “However, the contributions credit unions have made on an international scale are equally notable.” She went on to note: Since the mid-1800s, credit unions have established themselves in communities around the world struggling with social dislocation, political unrest and economic depression as a means to promote economic growth and democratic practices at the local level. Today, more than 54,000 credit unions provide financial services to more than 186 million members in 97 nations. Nationally, credit unions provide financial services to more 93 million Americans. Feinstein’s statement also called attention to credit unions are working with the World Council of Credit Unions to “introduce a variety of innovative technology solutions to bank the unbanked in rural areas.” Bob Arnould, senior vice president of government affairs for the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues, took the occasion to thank Feinstein for her support of credit unions and for entering her “comprehensive statement” into the congressional record. Jeremy Empol, director of the leagues’ federal government affairs, added, “As chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, Sen. Feinstein is well aware of the role cooperative financial institutions play in countries around the world. Credit unions are grateful for her acknowledgements.” The senator is one of 21 backers of S. 509, the Small Business Lending Enhancement Act introduced in March by Sen. Mark Udall (D-Colo.) to increase the credit union members business lending cap to 27.5% of assets, up from 12.25%. For more on ICU Day celebrations, see related story: A whole lotta CU celebrations going on. Also, use the resource link to read Feinstein's complete statement.