CUNA supports fight against senior scams, goes on record for hearings

May 7, 2019

CUNA brought credit union issues and concerns before several Congressional committees and subcommittees Tuesday, including on affordable housing, flood insurance and international credit union programs.

CUNA also wrote in support of the Stop Senior Scams Act (S. 149), a bill introduced by Sens. Bob Casey (D-Pa.) and Jerry Moran (R-Kansas). S. 149 would create a federal advisory council dedicated to combating senior scams.

“Financial exploitation is one of the most common forms of elder abuse. CUNA strongly supports the goal of this legislation to help seniors avoid financial exploitation and to encourage responsible decisions regarding financial management,” the letter reads. “This legislation represents an important step toward improving protection for seniors by creating a federal advisory council bringing together relevant government officials, industry representatives, advocates and consumer representatives to collect and develop educational materials for financial institutions and retailers to use in stopping scams on seniors. We are pleased to support this legislation and look forward to working with you to enact it.”

Highlights of the hearing letters include:

  • “Credit unions play an increasingly important role in the housing finance market and, as a result, have a vested interest in the ongoing stability of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP)…. CUNA has consistently encouraged Congress to work on a long-term solution to enhance the affordability and ultimate sustainability of the NFIP in order to restore certainty to the market. Absent any such long-term solution, CUNA supports the Lowey amendment to extend the NFIP’s authority [through Sept. 30, 2019 and prevent its lapse on May 31, 2019,” to the House Rules Committee in support of an amendment to appropriations legislation;
  • “A main source of funding for [the World Council of Credit Unions] has been the Cooperative Development Program (CDP) of the Development Assistance account in the State-Foreign Operations and Related Programs Appropriations bill. Congress has recently provided annual appropriations of $12,000,000…This year, we seek to increase the funding for these programs to $17 million,” reads a letter sent to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee for its hearing on the budget for the U.S. Agency for International Development; and
  • “CUNA and our credit union members are committed to ensuring that the housing finance market remains both accessible and affordable to minority borrowers. To that end, we continue to support policy proposals that recognize that barriers to mortgage credit affordability…directly and disproportionately have a negative impact on access to mortgage credit for many minority borrowers. A robust, smoothly functioning national housing market with an efficient, affordable and fair finance system that provides equal access to borrowers of all races, genders, and ethnicities is a core priority for credit unions and the members they serve,” to the House Financial Services subcommittee on housing, community development and insurance hearing on barriers to minority home ownership.