One of the benefits of your credit union’s League membership is access to Advocacy in Action, which offers information about how we are advocating for credit union interests. You’ll receive this enewsletter regularly when the Indiana General Assembly is in session along with timely updates at other times during the year. Since it is a benefit for League affiliates, some links may be password-protected. If you have questions or comments about content, contact us at (800) 285-5300, or email SVP Governmental Affairs Chris Beaumont or League President John McKenzie .
September 19 Highlights: Study Committees, Do Not Call List, ICUPAC Activities
Statehouse Preparations for 2020 are in Full Swing
League Participation on Interim Study Committees

Each summer and fall, the Indiana General Assembly holds a wide range of interim study committee hearings that are designed to deliberate and consider dozens of issues that came up during the legislative session but needed more time and in-depth study. The League always monitors these study committee agendas and actively engages with them when there are issues of interest to credit unions. So far this year, the League is participating in the deliberations of three interim study committees.

  • The most important hearing so far took place in mid-August as the Interim Study Committee on Financial Institutions and Insurance held a hearing on the Uniform Consumer Credit Code (UCCC). The League has long supported a study committee hearing on ways to improve the UCCC and was pleased to have the chance to testify at the hearing. We expressed credit unions’ appreciation for improvements made to the UCCC this year related to the current installment rule and permissible delinquency charges. The League also had the chance to suggest additional changes to the UCCC including recommendations to separate depository institutions from other types of state-licensed, non-depository lenders governed by the UCCC and to make improvements to the requirements for refunding finance charges when a loan pays off early. The next hearing for this study committee takes place on Sept. 25. It is not yet clear whether the committee will recommend changes to the UCCC for the 2020 legislative session, but the League remains engaged in the conversations and will consider pursuing changes even if the study committee does not reach a conclusion.

  • The League also is closely following the deliberations of the Probate Code Study Commission whose task is to review Indiana’s probate and trust laws. We monitor these hearings for legislative changes that could impact how credit union members’ accounts are impacted by probate and trust laws as well as for any potential impacts on credit union lien rights on property. This year, we are working to oppose recommendations supported by the Indiana Bar Association that could force a lender to foreclose on property caught up in probate proceedings.

  • Finally, the Interim Study Committee on Corrections and Criminal Code is considering substantial revisions to Indiana’s criminal statutes related to fraud and deception. Current law lists dozens of different types of fraud and deception that mostly include similar criminal penalties. The committee is considering simplifying the statutes by removing nearly all of the individual types of fraud and deception and replacing them with one broadly defined crime simply called fraud. The League has been asked to review the recommended changes because several of the current individual fraud and deception crimes are related to financial institutions (check deception, credit card fraud, possession of card skimming devices, etc.). We are working to ensure that no existing fraud or deception crimes are lost in the new definition. One positive in the proposal is that fraud against a financial institution would be eligible to be a higher-level crime that it often is now. 
Update on Do Not Call List Legislation
In addition to following interim study committee hearings, the League also has been working in a coalition to resolve a potential problem stemming from the Do Not Call list legislation passed earlier this year.

While the legislation included a new exemption from the Do Not Call statute for financial institutions following the federal Telephone Consumer Protection Act, it also contained language that inadvertently created a new, cumbersome registration process for anyone in Indiana making telephone solicitations of any kind. This registration process has existed since the late 1980s for a narrow group of questionable telemarketing companies but has never applied to most Indiana businesses. Unfortunately, language added into the Do Not Call bill part of the way through the process this year accidentally took away the limited definition of who was required to register instead making it apply to everyone. This change was not the intention of the General Assembly or of the Attorney General’s office (which enforces the statute) and plans are already underway to make appropriate changes to the statute when the legislature reconvenes in January. In the meantime, we are expecting the Attorney General to provide a written opinion soon clarifying that, despite the statutory change, the registration requirement will not broadly apply. We will provide more details on this issue as soon as the written opinion is available .

As we prepare for the 2020 session of the Indiana General Assembly, the League will be considering different legislative proposals to continue to provide a strong operating environment for credit unions. This could include changes to the Indiana Credit Union Act or to other statutes impacting credit unions. Please contact the League if you have any suggestions for changes that you would like the League to consider pursuing.
ICUPAC Opportunities
There are two opportunities coming up during the League Convention to have some fun and help out ICUPAC*.
  • We will be holding our fifth CUs on Tap event of the year on Oct. 23 at 7:00 p.m. at TwoDEEP Brewing Company in Indianapolis. For a $30 contribution to ICUPAC you can come to hear about and support our advocacy efforts while sampling local brews. Enjoy networking with credit union friends, a guided tour of the brewery and heavy appetizers. You can learn more and register for the event here. You do not need to be registered for Convention to attend.

*Individual contributions only. We cannot accept corporate contributions from the credit union for these events. Contributions to ICUPAC are not tax deductible for federal tax purposes. Contributions to ICUPAC are strictly voluntary and will be used for political purposes. You have the right to refuse to contribute without reprisal.
If you want specifics on any of these issues, please contact SVP Governmental Affairs Chris Beaumont. or Director of Advocacy Madison West.
Ongoing League Advocacy Efforts
When legislators are not in session, the League spends time building relationships and supporting campaigns. Thanks to the strong support of credit unions for ICUPAC, League staff has been able to represent credit unions at 60 state legislators’ campaign fundraising events so far this year .