Representatives from Maine credit unions, the League, and members of the state legislature convened in Washington, DC, this week as part of CUNA’s annual Governmental Affairs Conference (GAC). Credit unions from across the country came together to collaborate on important policy issues and meet with lawmakers on Capitol Hill.
Maine’s credit unions spent time with Senators Collins and King and Representatives Pingree and Golden. With over 100 representatives from local credit unions in attendance, the credit union message of “people helping people” was loud and clear as our delegation learned more about the 2018 Campaign for Ending Hunger and the efforts of credit unions to improve Maine communities.
Credit unions also heard from Vice President Mike Pence and former Secretary of State John Kerry. Vice President Pence acknowledged the importance of credit unions across the country in aiding families every day. “I’m here on behalf of the entire administration to really just say thank you to all of you for the vital role you play, the work you do to help millions of Americans build stronger families, build stronger businesses and build stronger communities,” Pence said.
Former Secretary of State John Kerry, a longtime credit union member, urged flexibility in regulation to better fit the mission of credit unions. “One of the things that sets credit unions apart is the accessibility of the diversity. You walk into a branch and you see the whole neighborhood. Teachers, policemen, nurses, city workers. Every walk of life working together to invest in the community and improve the quality of life for every single person,” he said.
“It was a remarkable week in Washington,” said Robert Caverly, League Vice President of Governmental Affairs. “GAC provided a great opportunity for our credit unions to network with their peers and discuss policy challenges and opportunities. We also spent valuable time with our Congressional delegation. We accomplished a great deal in just a few short days and I think I speak for all of our attendees when I say it was definitely worth the trip.”