CHICAGO (10/20/08)--Illinois State Treasurer Alexi Giannoulias announced that he will make up to $1 billion in interest-earning deposits available to Illinois credit unions and banks to thaw the credit freeze and improve the state’s investment portfolio. “We applaud the treasurer’s on-going efforts to work with Illinois financial institutions, including credit unions,” said Dan Plauda, Illinios Credit Union League president/CEO. “Many credit unions already hold state deposits.” Giannoulias will implement the plan by expanding the existing Access to Capital program, which allows approved credit unions and banks to request state deposits at market rates. The money to fund the program will come from a reallocation of the state’s diversified investment portfolio. The expansion will be implemented incrementally with $500 million immediately available, and the additional $500 million gradually becoming available at the start of each month between December 2008 and March 2009. “By investing in healthy Illinois credit unions and banks, Giannoulias is helping to untangle the credit mess and ensure the state’s commitment to Illinois families and businesses,” said John Pawlowski, vice president of finance and investments at Consumers CU in Round Lake Beach, Ill. “Illinois credit unions did not create the current financial crisis, but they will be part of the solution. They will continue to be strong and healthy and will assist the treasurer in any feasible way to help the Illinois economy rebound,” Plauda added.