HELENA, Mont. (4/13/15)--Gov. Steve Bullock has signed three pieces of legislation backed by the Montana Credit Union Network over the past few weeks, and another sits on his desk waiting for his signature.
First, Montana's governor signed SB 53, a bill by the state's Division of Banking that updates the roles and responsibilities of a credit union board by including competency in basic financial literacy principles.
The following week, Bullock signed a patent troll bill, SB 39, and a minor identity theft bill, HB 232, both of which were supported by the league.
"We keep in regular contact with our credit unions on fraud issues," said Donya Parrish, league vice president/dues supported services, in a statement to News Now. "We started hearing from them a few years ago that some had a problem with young members being victims of identity theft, and we advocated for and passed a bill in the 2011 session to allow parents to place a security freeze on a child's credit.
"When we saw HB 232, it seemed like a natural fit to support it and continue to work against fraud, especially for those that are least able to defend themselves."
The patent troll legislation will help curb abuse by "patent trolls" that inundate organizations such as credit unions with sham patent infringement demand letters.
CUNA continues to advocate at the national level for patent law reform that would ban abusive patent demand letters and lawsuits that can harm the financial services industry.
Finally, the Montana Legislature has approved HB 550, a bill that would modernize the credit union act in the state. The bill, which was passed unanimously in the Senate, awaits Bullock's signature.