This week credit unions around the globe celebrated International Credit Union Day in a variety of ways, with member-focused events, proclamations, and joining in festivities with other credit unions in the area … four of the Georgia chapters met on the official “day” on October 17th. And for the credit unions in the Columbus area, they celebrated through expanding advocacy! On the 17th the Chattahoochee Valley Credit Union Chapter held an advocacy-focused meeting with an overview of the top issues for credit unions and heard from their area federal and state legislators. Credit unions were treated to insight from:
- U.S. Congressman Sanford Bishop (D-2) district office leadership, who highlighted the bills of industry interest in Washington DC, and an overview of what makes ICUDay special.
- State Sen. Ed Harbison (D-Columbus), who serves on the Senate Banking Committee, which hears a large percentage of the issues that pertain to lending,
- State Rep. Debbie Buckner (D-Junction City), who serves on the House Ways and Means Committee, which tackles all tax bills in the state Legislature.
- State Rep. Carolyn Hugley (D-Columbus), who serves on the House Insurance Committee and powerful Rules Committee, which decides all bills that move forward in the House,
- State Rep. Richard Smith (R-Columbus), who serves as Chairman of the House Insurance Committee and is in leadership of the Rules Committee, a key spot to assist credit unions, and
- State Rep. Calvin Smyre (D-Columbus) , who serves on the House Rules Committee, is the “Dean” of the House, and has been a positive supporter of the issues that impact the industry.
All of these legislators have a positive connection with the industry and are assets in the lobbying efforts; our thanks to the Chattahoochee Valley Chapter for making it a tradition to host their legislators every year for ICUDay! Connecting with legislators is the fuel factor in credit union advocacy; growing their understanding of what makes the industry unique is vital in protecting and promoting credit unions at both the federal and state levels. Through this type of consistent engagement, strong relationships for the industry are built!