September 25, 2012
On Monday, Sept. 24, several credit union advocates in Oregon’s Lane County stepped up to help the Northwest Credit Union Association’s (NWCUA’s) grassroots and political advocacy efforts.
The group began by meeting and interviewing two candidates vying to replace retiring Rep. Terry Beyer in House District 12.
Joe Pishioneri, the current president of the Springfield City Council and a Lane county Deputy Sheriff with 26 years of service, is a longtime member of LaneCo Federal Credit Union and credits the credit union for helping him during difficult times.
John Lively, meanwhile, is a longtime community volunteer through Lane Workforce Partnership and United Way and is the former Mayor of Springfield. His professional career gave him experience in several aspects of economic development. He is also a longtime member of SELCO Community Credit Union.
The group felt that both candidates were strong credit union supporters and that the credit union community would be served well by either in the Oregon Legislature.
The group next met with Nick Batz, district director for Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.). Credit unions in attendance focused on the issue of member business lending (MBL) and the growing need in Lane County for access to small-business loans. Each credit union shared powerful stories about how their members are benefiting from credit union services and the demands they have for more small-business lending capacity.
Finally, the advocates shared lunch with four state legislators: Sen. Lee Beyer (D-Springfield) and with Reps. Phil Barnhart (D-Central Lane and Linn Counties), Val Hoyle (D-West Eugene, Junction City, Cheshire and Alvadore), and Paul Holvey (D-Eugene).
“We had a very frank discussion on the credit union tax exemption, legislative priorities, and credit unions’ work in their communities,” said Pam Leavitt, contract lobbyist and policy advisor for the NWCUA. “The day was very successful, and the elected officials appreciated the opportunity to meet and discuss our issues.”
Time and support for these legislative issues came from:
Mandy Jones and Rosie Pryor, Oregon Community Credit Union
Loreen Ervin, LaneCo Federal Credit Union
Chad Olney, Bi-Mart Credit Union
John Iglesias, Matt Purvis and Steve Wymer, Northwest Community Credit Union
Blake Ramstead and Kent Hancock, SELCO Community Credit Union
Ann Yerkes, OnPoint Community Credit Union
Questions? Contact a member of the Association’s Legislative Affairs team: