Northwest Credit Union Association Releases Economic, Community Impact Report
Landmark study documents $11 billion impact, volunteerism and charitable contributions and extraordinary services by credit unions throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
March 23, 2021 — Credit union advocates in Idaho, Oregon and Washington have new, data-rich tools to support their advocacy and public awareness work this year. The Northwest Credit Union Association (NWCUA) is providing its member credit unions with a suite of resources documenting credit unions’ economic and community impact. The community data was collected in NWCUA’s Community Impact Reporting Tool (CIRT), which was created by the association to document credit unions’ focus on financial well-being, volunteerism and charitable contributions, and special lending to rural communities, first-time homebuyers and other populations that not-for-profit cooperative credit unions are uniquely positioned to serve. The impressive economic impact report was prepared by ECONorthwest, one of the region’s most respected economic firms.
In addition to data, the NWCUA is providing its members with communications collateral such as infographics, social media posts and a library of member stories, so they can customize and share the impact in their own communities.
“The economic and community impact reports document how credit unions collectively generate and deliver real, tangible value to members and communities,” said Troy Stang, NWCUA President and CEO. “Our strategic priority, in creating the Community Impact Reporting Tool, and in commissioning the economic study, is to position credit unions to help the public and policymakers understand exactly how credit unions’ not-for-profit, cooperative structure enables them to drive such impact.”
ECONorthwest has provided independent and relevant analysis to a diverse range of public agencies and private sector industries since 1974. In 2013, ECONorthwest’s groundbreaking study, The Myth of the Uneven Playing Field, analyzed bank and credit union data from 1948 to 2012, debunking bank claims that state and federal tax policies offered credit unions unfair competitive advantages over for-profit financial institutions. The firm’s new economic impact analysis continues to support the positive impact that credit unions’ state and federal income tax exemptions have on consumers, communities and on each state’s economy.
ECONorthwest’s most recent study measured the jobs, economic output and income supported by Northwest credit unions, as well as the impact of the direct benefits credit unions are able to deliver to their members because of their unique structure. The analysis also documented Northwest credit unions’ services to members and communities from the onset of the pandemic through June 2020.
Idaho Lawmakers Consider Credit Union Legislation
February 27, 2020 — An update to the Idaho Credit Union Act, HB 473, is progressing the in the State House. The legislation would permit the Director of Credit Unions to issue enforcement actions directly to a credit union, provide for confidentiality of examination reports and other confidential information, and authorize credit unions to act as a custodian or fiduciary for tax-advantaged savings plans.
Earlier this week, the legislation was reported out of the Business Committee and retained on General Orders to be heard by the entire House.