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Washington
NCBA to testify on co-op model this week
WASHINGTON (1/12/11)—National Cooperative Business Association (NCBA) CEO Paul Hazen will on Thursday give testimony on the cooperative business model during a U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)-led hearing. HHS is working to implement health care legislation signed into law in 2010. The NCBA is expected to testify regarding its concern that the new law’s language blurs the definition of co-ops. Specifically, the health care bill provides funding for so-called “Consumer Owned and Oriented Plans”—or “CO-OPs.” The provision allows but does not mandate the creation of cooperatives, despite the name of the plan. An NCBA release said the group “welcomes this opportunity to protect the cooperative brand and ensure that entities organized under CO-OP operate as cooperatives.” The NCBA has frequently worked with the Credit Union National Administration (CUNA) to educate cooperative businesspeople. That association has also advocated on behalf of credit unions by producing an informational video on how credit unions work and why they are different from banks. The video, which was released in 2009, was one of several videos that touted the benefits of cooperatives to consumers. The NCBA has frequently worked with CUNA to educate cooperative businesspeople. That association has also advocated on behalf of credit unions on such issues as member business lending, the CU tax exemption, and the Credit Union Membership Access Act. The NCBA also has produced an informational video on how credit unions work and why they are different from banks. The video, which was released in 2009, was one of several videos that touted the benefits of cooperatives to consumers. CUNA is a member of the NCBA board.


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