CUNA serves up rebuttal to tax-status attack in op-ed

June 3, 2015

DES MOINES, Iowa (6/3/15)--CUNA President/CEO Jim Nussle continues to dismantle claims that cooperatively owned credit unions should be stripped of their non-for-profit tax status.

His latest rebuttal, published in Tuesday’s The Des Moines Register, took on the comparison of member-owned credit unions with the NFL--the topic of a May 5 editorial piece in the Iowa paper. Iowa Credit Union League President/CEO Pat Jury also responded to the editorial’s claims (News Now May 11).

Credit unions’ not-for-profit tax status “benefits all consumers--credit union members and nonmembers alike--to the tune of $10 billion a year nationally,” Nussle wrote. One would have to be grossly misinformed to question the public benefits of credit unions, the piece noted.

He posited that “comparing the NFL tax status to that of credit unions is essentially comparing a lobster roll to a Maid-Rite,” the latter being the signature sandwich of a regional restaurant chain.

Nussle emphasized that credit unions and banks both serve a purpose in the financial services market. “What makes credit unions different is that they aren't turning a profit to fatten the pockets of Wall Street like the banks do--they're returning earnings to their members through better rates and lower fees,” he wrote.

“Bottom line: the more competition in the market, the better for consumers.”