Policy Issues

The Assets & Opportunity Network Lead Organizations work on a diverse set of asset-building policy issues in order to help build the financial security of low- and moderate-income households. Below you will find the A&O Network 2013-14 federal policy agenda and the top issues on Lead State and Local Organization agendas.

A&O Network Federal Policy Agenda

In late 2014, the A&O Network Federal Policy Working Group came together to develop a Network's Federal Policy Agenda for the 114th Congress. The seven-point Federal Policy Agenda reflects the issues that matter most to Network members and are, at the same time, moveable in the current political context.

1. Tax Reform
  • Urge Congress to Turn the Upside-Down Tax Code Right-Side Up
  • Protect and Expand Tax Incentives for Low- and Moderate-Income Individuals and Families
2. Children Savings
  • Urge Congress to Enact National Children’s Savings Accounts Legislation.
3. Consumer Protections
  • Urge the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to Promulgate Strong Regulations to Protect Consumers from High Cost,Small-Dollar Loans.
  • Educate the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau on New and Affordable Small-Dollar Loan Alternatives.
  • Support the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau by Identifying Best Practices for Financial Capability, Prepaid Products and Services, Debt Collection Practices and Emergency Savings.
4. Asset Limits
  • Urge Congress to Lift Asset Limits within Public Benefit Programs.
5. Volunteer Income Tax Assistance
  • Urge Congress and the IRS to Strengthen the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Program.
6. Assets for Independence
  • Urge Congress to Reform the Assets for Independence Act.
7. Administrative Advocacy
  • Advocate for Administrative Changes that would Support State-Based Asset-Building Efforts.

For more detailed information about any of the points listed above, please see the the Assets & Opportunity Network Federal Policy Agenda for the 114th Congress.

Top Advocacy Issues for State, Local and Native Network Leaders

As part of their 2013 Impact Reports, State, Local and Network Leaders shared the top asset issues, programs and policies they were working on in 2014.1 The top issues on Network Leader agendas were:

1 In March 2014, there were a total of 40 Local Leaders, 37 of which filled out the 2013 Lead Organization Reporting survey and a total of 33 State Leaders, 32 of which filled out the 2013 Lead Organization Reporting survey. Network Leaders were asked to name the top five issues on their 2014 policy agendas. Network staff summarized answers into 18 categories, listed above.

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