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CU Times: CU tax status about structure, CUNA's Cheney says to House Ways & Means Committee

CUNA CEO Bill Cheney

“It has never been about the power or mission of the credit union,” Cheney wrote to Chairman Charles Boustany (R-LA) and Ranking Member John Lewis (D-GA).

Cheney was responding to a letter submitted for the record by the American Bankers Association during a July 25 hearing by the subcommittee on taxes.

Although the hearing did not address credit union taxation, the ABA nonetheless asserted credit unions are “complex” and “indistinguishable from banks”, and therefore deserve to be taxed, especially when they offer products or services that don’t target those of “modest means.”

“’One member, one vote’ is a critical component not only to the membership structure but also to the credit union philosophy; a member of greater means has just as much right to the use of the credit union as a member of small means,” Cheney wrote.

And, despite all the evolution and development that has taken place at credit unions over the past century, one thing that has remained the same is credit unions’ cooperative ownership structure and democratic governance, he said. 

“The members of the credit union own the credit union; a bank is owned by its shareholders. This means what motivates credit union leaders and bank executives is different, and it boils down to this: credit unions use members’ money to help members; banks use customer’s money to make money for shareholders,” Cheney wrote.

Story courtesy of CU Times

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