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Michigan Credit Union League Home » Information Services » Publications » News Articles  

Cheney: Jobs Plan Offers Right Time to Increase MBL Cap   (Misc News: September 8, 2011)

CUNA President/CEO Bill Cheney said President Barack Obama’s plan to jumpstart the economy offers the perfect time to increase credit union member business lending.

In addition, Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., a power player in the U.S. Senate, offered his support to credit union efforts to raise the MBL cap, even calling the current limit a “job killer.”

Schumer made his announcement before Obama gave a rare speech before a joint session of Congress to push his economic stimulus and job creation plan.

On Wednesday, three of the key supporters of MBL legislation sent letters to Obama asking him to back their bills that would raise the cap.

Obama didn’t mention MBL in his speech, but CUNA President/CEO Bill Cheney told CUNA News Now the president’s jobs plan presents a "tailor-made opportunity to push a member business lending cap lift for credit unions as one of the many ways job creation can be kick-started."

Schumer said lifting the MBL cap would be a good thing for small businesses.

"In these difficult economic times, we must ensure that they have access to the credit they need to grow and create jobs," he said, according to News Now.

In the House, Reps. Ed Royce, R-Calif., and Carolyn McCarthy, D-N.Y., sent a joint letter, which stated, "During this difficult time in our economy, many small businesses require capital to stay afloat, remain competitive, and ramp up hiring. By increasing the credit union cap, we can help fill this void and create job creation without spending additional tax dollars."

Sen. Mark Udall, D-Colo., told the president that the Senate's bipartisan bill to ease government restrictions on credit unions and help small businesses is a “no-brainer” and should be part of the president's proposal. Udall is co-sponsoring the bill with Sen. Olympia Snowe, R-Maine.

“This is a responsible, simple, no-cost way to create hundreds of thousands of jobs on Main Streets in Colorado and across the country. At a time when we're struggling to get people back to work and support small businesses, we should be racing to pass this bill as soon as possible,” Udall wrote on his blog.

The Small Business Lending Enhancement Act would raise the current cap on member business loans by credit unions from 12.25 percent to 27.5 percent. CUNA economists have estimated that the measure could pump $13 billion into the economy and create 140,000 jobs in the first year, at no cost to taxpayers.

To be eligible to increase MBL to the higher threshold, a credit union would need to be well-capitalized, have a history of MBL experience, be operating near the lower cap for at least one year and receive approval by the NCUA.
Click here to read the letter from Royce and McCarthy. Click here to read Udall’s blog post on MBL.

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