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Alabama State GAC kicks off with legislative and regulatory topics

The Alabama Credit Union Association State Governmental Affairs Conference kicked off in Montgomery by immersing attendees in many topics that will help credit unions on the legislative and regulatory front. It also helped attendees gain a greater understanding of the upcoming state and federal elections. 

The day was highlighted by Yellowhammer multimedia CEO Cliff Sims talking about the state and federal elections and how they could impact Alabama. Sims said that an average mid-term election of a second term president usually gives the minority party six seats. For Republicans, that would give them the majority in the Senate. If that happened, Alabama Sens. Richard Shelby (R) and Jeff Sessions (R) would become chairmen of very influential committees. That would give Alabama arguably two of the highest profile senators. He also said no Democrat will most likely unseat a Republican in the state elections.

More than 40 lawmakers attended the Legislative Reception which ended the evening. Over two hours, attendees spoke with their legislators. They rekindled old relationships and started new ones. The reception is the perfect opportunity for credit unions to get to know their local lawmakers and begin talking about the issues with them. Some lawmakers stayed for more than an hour.

State Sen. Slade Blackwell (R-Mountain Brook) was honored as the LSCU State Lawmaker of the Year. Sen. Blackwell is the chairman of the Senate Banking Committee and the sponsor of the Alabama Credit Union Act update bill. He praised the job credit unions do and said his first car loan came from a credit union. 

The Regulatory Roundtable featured Kim Paige from the NCUA and Lloyd Moore from the Alabama Credit Union Administration. Paige said that cybersecurity is overtaking interest rate risk as the agency's number one concern. Moore and Paige both said BSA will continue to be a hot topic and each agency will work with credit unions to correct any problems, but they will be tougher.

Alabama Association of Realtors CEO Barry Mask told attendees that information is a legislator's currency. As a former member of the state house, Mask said that personal relationships are paramount for legislators. He said to meet with them once a quarter if possible and call them and let them know you want to meet in Montgomery. He said time is limited so make it count and provide accurate information.

Seven credit unions received PAC fundraising awards, the Montgomery Chapter was also awarded while nine credit unions received Honor Roll recognition. Five Star Credit Union, based in Dothan, and Riverdale Credit Union, based in Montgomery, were awarded two awards apiece. Riverdale reached 3,700 percent of its ACULAC goal while Five Star reached 1,606 percent of its ACULAC goal.

On Wednesday, attendees will meet with their lawmakers at the capitol, hear more about the legislative agenda and get an update on the 113th Congress. You can see more pictures on the LSCU Action Center Facebook page.

Listerhill CU CEO Brad Green talks with one of his lawmakers.

Rep. Paul Beckman speak with Montgomery area credit unions.

Legacy Community CU CEO Joe McGee (left) speaks with Rep. Oliver Robinson.

Yellowhammer Multimedia CEO Cliff Sims gives an update on the state and federal elections.

LSCU & Affiliates President/CEO Patrick La Pine provided a welcome and quick League update.

Five Star CU CEO Bob Steensma (center) accepts two PAC Fundraising awards from Alabama GAC Chairman Linda Cencula and Patrick La Pine.