October 04, 2021

Berger defends CU tax exempt status in new op-ed

bergerNAFCU President and CEO Dan Berger today published an op-ed in CU Times defending the credit union tax exemption status against bank lobbyists calling for its elimination. Berger’s piece breaks down the findings of a recent study on the benefits of the credit union tax exempt status and the consequences of what would happen if the status was removed. 

“Credit unions are vital to spurring economic growth, especially for American households and mom-and-pop businesses, and operate purely to serve the needs of their communities,” wrote Berger. “Due to their non-profit cooperative structure, credit unions’ tax exempt status has been consistently reaffirmed by the IRS, Treasury Department, and even Congress. This allows credit unions to focus on providing consumers with better rates, lower fees, and going above and beyond to serve the communities in which they operate.”

The credit union study conducted by Dr. Robert M. Feinberg of American University and Dr. Douglas Meade of the Interindustry Economic Research Fund, found that removing the credit union industry’s tax exempt status would reduce economic activity by a massive $120 billion over ten years. Berger also points out that this removal would cost the federal government $56 billion in tax revenue across the span of a decade, according to the study. 

“Even more alarming, removing the tax-exempt status would eliminate nearly 80,000 jobs per year over a decade, undercutting the nascent economic recovery and plunging scores of already struggling working Americans into financial distress,” stated Berger. 

Berger along with the association’s award-winning advocacy team continues to be vocal on bankers’ attacks. Berger recently responded to the American Banker’s Association (ABA) testimony for misrepresenting the benefits of the credit union tax exempt status. NAFCU Vice President of Legislative Affairs Brad Thaler also sent a letter to the House Financial Services Subcommittee on Consumer Protection and Financial Institutions reaffirming the inaccuracies bank lobbyist inflict on credit unions and their tax exempt status. 

NAFCU remains at the forefront of this issue, bringing to light the repercussions the economy and American consumers, both credit union and non-credit union members, would face if the credit union tax exemption status was eliminated. Read Berger’s full piece in CU Times here.