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AACUL Takes the Stage at GAC, Highlights Impact of State Advocacy

The American Association of Credit Union Leagues (AACUL) took the stage today at the 2024 Governmental Affairs Conference (GAC) to highlight how state leagues strengthen advocacy efforts across the entire credit union system.

governmental affairs conference


Comprised of 33 state and regional leagues representing credit unions in all 50 states and the District of Columbia, AACUL emphasizes the importance of local advocacy as the foundation for success on Capitol Hill.

Patrick Conway, AACUL Chair and President/CEO of CrossState Credit Union Association, explains, “Our effectiveness on Capitol Hill is built upon the strong foundation of our work at the state level. State advocacy is an essential piece of robust federal advocacy.” He highlights the fact that nearly half of all members of Congress have prior experience as state legislators, making state-level advocacy crucial.

In 2023 alone, leagues diligently monitored nearly 4,000 bills introduced in state legislatures. Their efforts successfully prevented harmful legislation that would have imposed state-level Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) requirements, regulated interchange fees, created burdensome regulations, established a state-level equivalent of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), and removed lien holder protections for credit unions. Conversely, leagues championed and helped pass bills that support financial literacy, enhance credit union charters, allow them to accept public deposits, safeguard seniors from financial fraud, enable electronic lien titling, and improve remote notary services.

“Building and maintaining strong relationships with our local lawmakers is key to our success,” said John Bratsakis, President/CEO of the MD|DC Credit Union Association. “These relationships give credit unions a seat at the table when crucial decisions are made, allowing us to effectively protect and advance the interests of credit unions and members.”

Through their collective advocacy efforts, credit unions delivered a remarkable $28 billion in financial benefits to families nationwide in 2023. This impactful achievement underscores the significant role state and local advocacy plays in strengthening the credit union system as a whole.

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