If you missed the chance to listen in on the "Don’t Tax My Credit Union” update from MnCUN’s Governmental Affairs team last week, a free archive of the "Next Steps: Don't Tax My Credit Union Update" is available. You’ll hear an update on the campaign, as well as some top tactics for getting involved. The archive can be viewed on the Tax Status Advocacy page of the Network website.
To augment the information contained in the webinar, below is a briefing on the tax reform status in Congress and the progress of "Don’t Tax My Credit Union.”
Tax Reform Update
Tax reform bills are now being drafted on both sides of Capitol Hill. On the House side, House Ways & Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp (R-Mich.) has told his colleagues that he is going to write a bill that places the maximum rate on individual and corporate taxes at 25 percent. This means a significant number of loopholes and tax expenditures would have to be eliminated.
On the Senate side, Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) and Ranking Member Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) are proceeding with the "blank sheet” approach. Drafts of the tax reform bills are not expected to be made public until October.
Even though the House and the Senate remain far apart in terms of the goals of tax reform, there is bipartisan consensus to move forward with the tax reform process. This means that the most important time for retaining the credit union tax status is right now, as bills are being drafted.
"Don’t Tax My Credit Union” Update
It is critical that credit unions continue to increase grassroots engagement in the "Don’t Tax My Credit Union” campaign. A national total of 715,000 contacts have been made to Capitol Hill since May 22, with more than 10,000 of those contacts sent from Minnesota credit union supporters. This is tremendous work that should not be scaled back!
Success in this campaign relies on engaging credit union members. The Network asks that all credit unions please take the following actions:
- Email your members: A barrage of emails from credit union members to their representatives and senators through the Dont Tax My Credit Union website remains the most effective advocacy tool. The best way to generate response from your credit union members is direct email. If you have not already done so, please use the sample email on the Network’s Tax Status Advocacy webpage to reach out to your members.
- Activate them at the branches: Sample postcards and petitions are available to help credit unions reach out to members at the branches. These are two easy ways to engage consumers. You can download them by clicking here, or email Ryan Smith to order them.
- Social media: Continue to use the credit union’s website and/or social media channels to engage members and direct them to the www.donttaxmycreditunion.org webpage. On the Tax Status Advocacy webpage there are sample web banners and sample social media posts. The Governmental Affairs team is also filming Vine videos as another way to generate campaign buzz. Please contact Governmental Affairs Intern Paul Moore by email to schedule a time to shoot Vine videos at your office.
With questions about this campaign or what you can do to participate, contact MnCUN Political Advocacy Director Ryan Smith by email, or call (651) 288-5533, or MnCUN Vice President – Governmental Affairs Mara Humphrey by email or at (651) 288-5523.
Prepare to "Unite for Good" for this year's ICU Day
Mark your calendars to join credit unions around the world on Thursday, Oct. 17 for International Credit Union (ICU) Day. This year’s theme, "Credit Unions Unite for Good," speaks to the powerful credit union values, shared networks and advantages that result from the unique collaborative spirit embodied by credit unions to better serve members. Sharing and celebrating these differences raises awareness for and reinforces the message that credit unions are the best financial partners.
"This year's ICU Day initiative, 'Unite for Good,' is the perfect way to bring credit unions together around a common cause that will make a huge difference with both national and local impact," said Paul Gentile, CUNA executive vice president, strategic communications and engagement. "Now is the time to take that message and drive it across the nation.”
The "Unite for Good” message speaks to the powerful global network of credit unions and the advantages that result from sharing challenges, experiences and solutions to better serve members. It strikes at the heart of what ICU Day stands for. Established in 1927, ICU Day celebrates the common roots of 196 million credit union members in 100 countries and their community service achievements.
For more information on this year's ICU Day event and what you can do to promote it at your credit union, visit the International Credit Union Day page of the Network website. On this page, you'll find a several promotional items, including a sample newsletter article, letter to the editor, a poster, logo and numerous celebration ideas.
Remember, even when promotions for ICU Day are over, the "Unite for Good” message is evergreen! Credit unions are encouraged to continue spreading this ongoing initiative that aims to build support and unites credit unions worldwide around the shared vision of credit unions as the best choice for consumers. The objective of "Unite for Good” is to remove barriers, create awareness and foster service excellence. The main goals of this campaign are to reach 55 million members who have designated credit unions as their PFI, and a total financial value of $20 billion by 2023. To learn more, go to the Unite for Good page of the Network website.