Missouri Outreach Needed in Advance of GAC
The countdown to CUNA's Governmental Affairs Conference (GAC) has begun! GAC 2014 takes place February 23-27 in Washington D.C. There is plenty for credit union leaders in Missouri to do in the days ahead, even those who are not traveling to Washington, D.C.
Help spread the news about credit union concerns with members of the Missouri Congressional Delegation. Data breach is just one of the topics expected to be discussed on Capitol Hill. Another is the credit union tax status. All Missouri credit unions are encouraged to weigh in and provide the information from the home district that will have the most impact with Missouri's federal lawmakers. The Missouri Credit Union Association (MCUA) urges advocates to take these action steps in advance of GAC.
- Make sure your credit union participates in the CUNA Target survey.
- Make sure your credit union participates in the Missouri Schnucks survey (see list below for those credit unions that have already responded). A reminder email with survey access information was sent to all MCUA member credit unions on February 6. If you need assistance, please contact Amy McLard, MCUA SVP of Advocacy, via email or phone, 314.542.1370
- Share examples of how your credit union and credit union members have been affected by data breaches with McLard by February 18.
- Contact your members of Congress and remind them "Don't Tax My Credit Union" by using this website. Mention that credit union leaders from Missouri will be in Washington, D.C. February 23-27. If you are coming, mention that. If you are not, say you look forward to hearing about the discussions with legislators about credit union issues.
- Utilize social media during the GAC. Direct messages to Missouri's members of Congress encouraging them to address credit union concerns, including #DontTaxMyCU. Click here for a social media cheat sheet prepared by MCUA. Please be respectful and professional when posting to Facebook or tweeting to a member of Congress.
For those attending GAC, MCUA has compiled a list of tips to help navigate schedules and leave a lasting (and positive) impression on legislators.
- Wear the appropriate attire. Attendees should wear professional clothing, such as suits or business dress outfits, for legislative meetings. Be sure to wear comfortable dress shoes —there will be a lot of walking in the Capitol's office buildings. Bring and plan to wear your credit union nametag if available, and MCUA will have Don’t Tax My Credit Union buttons available.
- Arrive to meetings least five minutes early. Attendees should give themselves ample time to travel to legislative visits. In most cases, MCUA staffers will be on hand to help travel from one location to the other.
- Have some cash on hand. Taxis in Washington, D.C. do not accept credit or debit cards.
- Plan for the meeting. MCUA Advocacy staff is scheduling meetings with lawmakers and will provide a packet in advance of your departure. Be prepared with examples that reflect how your credit union - and most importantly, the members you serve - would be affected by proposed legislation. MCUA will go over legislative issues in advance of the meeting during a conference call on January 20, and a legislative briefing on January 24.
- Stay focused on talking points and key issues. Lawmakers want to hear from people in their home districts and how bills/issues affect their constituents. You know your credit unions better than anyone else and how you are helping the communities you serve. Don't get distracted with non-credit union issues and work together with other attendees to help keep the conversation going.
- Follow up with legislators. Upon returning home, attendees are highly encouraged to thank their legislators for their time and follow up on any questions or outstanding issues that came up during the meeting.
If you have any questions about GAC, please contact McLard via email or phone, 314.542.1370. Click here for more information about CUNA's GAC. All Missouri attendees should also be registered for Missouri-specific events.
List of credit unions that have responded to the Schnucks survey:
- Anheuser-Busch Employees’ CU
- Bayer CU
- Bothwell Hospital Employees CU
- Century CU
- Electro Savings CU
- First Missouri CU
- Four Four CU
- Joplin Metro CU
- Kilowatt Community CU
- Leadco Community CU
- Mazuma CU
- Missouri CU
- Procter & Gamble St. Louis Employees’ CU
- Southpointe CU
- St. Louis Community CU
- St. Louis Policemen’s CU
- TelComm CU
- UNITE Burlington CU
- Vantage CU
- West Community CU