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La. league Bill would repeal CU exemptions
BATON ROUGE, La. (4/30/10)--The Louisiana Credit Union League was informed that proposed legislation targeting credit unions would be introduced in the state Senate. If Senate Bill 224 becomes law, it would repeal the credit union exemptions from the Louisiana Consumer Credit Law and the Louisiana Motor Vehicle Sales Finance Act. However, the league and credit unions met with State Sen. Ann Duplessis (D-2) in Baton Rouge to discuss S.B. 224 and succeeded in getting her to agree not to schedule the bill for a hearing without further discussion with the league. Anne Cochran, league president/CEO; Connie Major, league executive vice president; and Jeff Conrad, president/CEO, Pelican State CU, Baton Rouge, attended the meeting to discuss how S.B. 224 would affect Louisiana credit unions (eNews April 28). The group shared information about the credit union philosophy and the unique service and programs that credit unions have to help improve the financial well-being of Louisiana consumers. Also, they discussed ways and opportunities to advance financial literacy and small-business lending in the state. The league expects to maintain regular discussions with the senator to advance topics of mutual interest. The Louisiana Motor Vehicle Sales Finance Act provides for maximum interest rates, maximum fees for certain items--such as documentation, notary, tag/title convenience fees, transfer fees, and attorney’s fees--and regulates credit life and other insurance related to motor vehicle loans. The Louisiana Consumer Credit Law provides for maximum finance charges of consumer loans and credit cards, and maximum fees for certain items--such as origination, documentation, notary, delinquency charges and attorney’s fees. It also prohibits certain collections practices and limits creditor contacts after a consumer instructs the creditor to cease further contacts about indebtedness. The consumer credit law also regulates the release of consumer information by creditors and requires credit card issuers to register intent to solicit students prior to soliciting on a college campus. The two laws regulate matters that are specifically not preempted by National Credit Union Administration Regulation 701.21, said the league. Therefore, all Louisiana credit unions would have needed to perform a comprehensive review of their loan documentation to ensure compliance, and draft new documentation that complies with the new laws.

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