February 24, 2011
One of a handfull proposals that seem to be on a fasttrack through the Washington Legislature, the Northwest Credit Union Association's (NWCUA) Prize Linked Saving bill (SB 5232) on Wednesday passed a Senate floor vote 46-2.
The legislation will now move to the House State Government & Tribal Affairs Committee, a body that has already heard and passed a companion measure to SB 5232, House Bill 1326. House Bill 1326 is currently in the House Rules Committee awaiting floor action.
The NWCUA expects that the House State Government & Tribal Affairs Committee will schedule a hearing for SB 5232 in the next few weeks.
With its affirmation of the PLS legislation, the Washington State Senate has voted to "encourage financial institutions to develop innovative products that create incentives to encourage consumer savings, particularly savings by low-income consumers," according to the bill.
"The household savings rates in American have been in a decade-long decline," says NWCUA CEO John Annaloro. "Credit unions are seemingly the only group offering such innovative solutions to a complex societal trend, and always in keeping with the credit union historical mission of building the personal wealth of the average working woman or man."
The bipartisan support of the legislation that encourages savings by linking a special savings account to a series of monthly prizes and a larger, yearly prize, was summerized by its prime sponsor, Sen. Derek Kilmer (D-26) and Ranking Minority member Sen. Janéa Holquist Newbry (R-13).
“This (legislation) rewards thriftiness and that is a good thing," stated Sen. Kilmer. "This program doesn’t just encourage people to save, it’s actually shown to actually improve their saving habits. This isn’t a new government program. Rather the bill just enables the private sector to offer this product and I’d urge the body’s support."
Rising in support of the legislation, Sen. Holquist added, "I think this is an innovative, creative way to encourage savings and I would ask for your support”
SSB 5232 Vote Details
Prize-linked savings deposit
Senate vote on 3rd Reading & Final Passage
Yeas: 46, Nays: 2, Absent: 0, Excused: 1
Voting Yea: Senators Baumgartner, Baxter, Becker, Benton, Brown, Carrell, Chase, Conway, Delvin, Eide, Ericksen, Fain, Fraser, Hargrove, Harper, Hatfield, Haugen, Hewitt, Hill, Hobbs, Holmquist Newbry, Honeyford, Kastama, Keiser, Kilmer, King, Kline, Kohl-Welles, Litzow, McAuliffe, Morton, Murray, Nelson, Parlette, Pridemore, Ranker, Regala, Roach, Rockefeller, Schoesler, Shin, Stevens, Swecker, Tom, White, and Zarelli
Voting Nay: Senators Pflug and Prentice
Excused: Senator Sheldon