CoastHills CEO to have his say in Washington

CORRECTION: CoastHills Federal Credit Union CEO Jeff York is not chairman of the Credit Union National Association, as was previously reported, but sits on the board of both CUNA and the California Credit Union League.

CoastHills Federal Credit Union CEO Jeff York will be testifying on behalf of the Credit Union National Association in front of Congress today.

York — who sits on the board of both CUNA and the California Credit Union League — was chosen to represent more than 65,000 members of his Central Coast-based credit union and more than 90 million credit union members across the country.

He will be discussing the Small Business Lending Enhancement Act, legislation that would provide financing for small businesses without spending additional tax dollars.

In part of his 30-page address to Congress, York says of the bill, “This is bipartisan job creation legislation that can contribute to economic recovery. Failure to pass this legislation will mean these jobs will not be created — at a time when our nation is desperate for new jobs.”

Current law allows 12.25 percent of credit unions’ loan portfolio to be lending to small businesses. If passed, H.R. 1418 would gradually increase that lending cap to 27.5 percent.

Banking industry lobbyists have said that increasing the lending limit would give credit unions an unfair advantage because of their tax-exempt status.

Where banks are privately held or typically owned by publicly traded companies, credit unions are owned by their members.

York’s statement goes on to say that the increase on the lending cap is expected to make about $13 billion in additional capital available to small businesses by the end of its first year and is also expected to create 140,000 new jobs without more government spending.