Thank you to all of our members who attended CUNA's Governmental Affairs Conference last week, as well as those who joined us for our Advocacy Luncheon with NCUA Chairman J. Mark McWatters and Hike the Hill. Altogether 70 members from 27 credit unions represented Maryland and D.C. and helped advocate for key priorities.
Credit Union leaders and our Advocacy Team met with 9 legislators including Senator Cardin, Senator Van Hollen, Rep. Hoyer, Rep. Brown, Rep. Raskin, Rep. Harris, Rep. Holmes Norton and legislative aides for Rep. Ruppersberger and Rep. Cummings. Key priorities discussed included preserving the credit union tax status, supporting regulatory relief (Senate bill 2155) and protecting consumers against data breaches.
Lawmakers in Maryland and the District are considering consumer protection bills. On Monday, the Association's Advocacy Team, along with SECU CEO Rod Staatz, participated in a Senate Committee work group considering modifications to the proposed Maryland Consumer Protection Act (SB1068). The Association is advocating for adding language to the bill to address liability when data breaches occur.
The D.C. Council is considering a bill to update the District's data breach and privacy laws. The legislation would require all businesses to take reasonable steps to protect consumers' data and ensure violations would be subject to the penalty provisions of D.C.'s Consumer Protection Procedures Act.
Here's the political roundup:
- Presidential candidates hoping to have their names on the ballot in Maryland would have to release five years of federal tax returns if a measure approved Monday by the state Senate becomes law. The bill now heads to the House for a vote.
- A new Mason-Dixon poll finds nearly one-third, 32 percent of Democrats are undecided in the Governor's Race. 26 percent support Prince George's County Executive Rushern Baker, Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenentz gets 15 percent, former NAACP President Ben Jealous gets 14 percent. Five other candidates get anywhere from 1 to 4 percent.
- Also from the Mason-Dixon poll, more than three out of five Maryland voters approve of Republican Governor Larry Hogan's performance. Despite his popularity, Hogan's voter support in re-election match-ups against the three leading Democratic challengers still holds near the 50% line.
With about a month left to go in the 2018 General Assembly session, the pace is picking up. March 19 marks the last day for each chamber to send bills to the other. This means House bills intended to be passed must be sent to the Senate and vice versa. Expect increased activity in the coming weeks.