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Tax, Housing Reform On Minds As Congress Returns
WASHINGTON (9/10/13)--The U.S. Congress has officially returned to Washington for the fall session, and the Credit Union National Association expects progress to be made this month on tax and housing issues that could be taken up later in the year.

As tax discussions return to Washington this week, credit unions, state leagues and CUNA are preparing to welcome back Congress today by holding another #DontTaxTuesday. (See News Now story: New Tools Fuel Today's 'Don't Tax Tuesday' Two.)

The campaign will include a large social media push, in which credit union members and advocates nationwide will Tweet their lawmakers or post on their Facebook page a "Don't Tax My Credit Union" message.

CUNA has also been hard at work on the housing front, holding several meetings with legislators and their staff from both sides of the aisle. The Protecting American Taxpayers and Homeowner (PATH) Act of 2013 (H.R. 2767) was one of the topics covered in those meetings, and that bill could be discussed by the full U.S. House as early as October. (See resource link.)

"We expect changes to be made to the PATH Act between now and when it goes to the floor and we have identified several areas where the bill could be improved for small volume lenders like credit unions," CUNA Senior Vice President of Legislative Affairs Ryan Donovan said.

New housing reform measures are also being developed in the Senate.

Donovan said Banking Committee Chairman Tim Johnson (D-S.D.) and Ranking Committee Member Mike Crapo (R-Calif.) appear to be working together on a new housing finance bill that may closely resemble legislation introduced in the Senate by Sens. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) and Mark Warner (D-Va.) last June. CUNA earlier this summer called that bill (S. 1217) a positive step towards creating a sustainable and affordable housing market. (See resource link.)

Johnson and Crapo will likely hold weekly hearings on housing issues throughout this month, Donovan said. The first of these hearings is scheduled for this Thursday. House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-Texas) set the schedule for his committee. (See Sept. 4 News Now: House Financial Services Sets Early Sept. Agenda.)

Other Capitol Hill hearings scheduled for this week include:
  • A Tuesday Senate Banking Committee hearing on Export-Import Bank and U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development nominations; and
  • A Wednesday Joint Economic Committee hearing entitled "The Economic Outlook."
The House will be in session this week and next week before recessing during the week of Sept. 23. The Senate is expected to remain in session that week.
Other Resources

S. 1217
H.R. 2767

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