WASHINGTON (3/16/09)—Elimination of the Federal Family Education Loan Program (FFELP), as proposed by the Obama administration, would jeopardize student lending at more than 1,000 credit unions throughout the country, warned the Credit Union National Association (CUNA) last week. In a letter to the top two members of the Senate Budget Committee, Chairman Kent Conrad (D-N.D.) and ranking member Judd Gregg (R-N.H.), CUNA noted that a small number of FFELP-participating credit unions, primarily those with university-based fields of membership, even have significant concentrations in student lending. “Credit unions that specialize in student lending provide a high quality service for their student members, and can provide much needed and individualized assistance if difficulties arise with regard to loan repayments. The elimination of FFELP will remove this valuable option for students,” CUNA President/CEO Dan Mica told the lawmakers. Mica said credit union student lending has already taken a hit because of last year’s amendments to the amendments to the Higher Education Act. While the final bill included changes CUNA sought, its additional layers of requirements posed a burden to some credit unions that forced them out of student lending. For the credit unions that offer student loans, it is an important service that their members value. The elimination of FFELP likely will lead to the end of credit union student lending. The complete CUNA letter can be accessed by the resource link below.