LENEXA, Kan. (6/20/14)--Citing an encroaching regulatory burden and a desire to serve more consumers, Mainstreet CU will change from a state to a federal charter. The Lenexa, Kan.-based credit union's request for the charter change was granted by the National Credit Union Administration Thursday.
The $353 million-asset credit union will now operate as Mainstreet FCU.
"Being chartered in Kansas and with branch locations here and in Missouri, we must monitor and follow both states' laws and regulations, while also following federal regulations for a federally insured credit union," said Mainstreet FCU President/CEO John Beverlin. "Switching to a federal charter means we only have to concentrate on one set of laws, not three. And it simplifies any future expansion plans we may want to pursue, especially on the Missouri side of the state line."
Mainstreet FCU was chartered in Kansas in 1953 as the Northeast Johnson County Teachers' Union CU. It became a community charter in 1979, open to anyone living or working in Johnson County. It expanded its field of membership in 2005 to include residents of the Kansas City metropolitan area, and then again in 2008 to residents of Douglas County. It became Mainstreet CU in 2011.
About 10% of Mainstreet FCU's current members live in Missouri, but 60% of its potential members live in that state. Mainstreet FCU plans to build three new branches in Missouri over the next four years, and increase its marketing budget by 20% in each of the next two years.
"Once Mainstreet is able to move into Missouri, they plan to target marketing efforts toward that untapped market," said NCUA Chair Deborah Matz Thursday, who called the credit union's plan "a strong commitment."
Mainstreet also has five branches in underserved areas, and commissioned a study of the demographics around 12 of its branches, and used that data to create different products and services tailored to demographics of each branch.
Mainstreet FCU also offers many low-income services, including prepaid Visa debit cards and small unsecured loans. It offered free financial education, which includes setting up a branch twice a week at a local county corrections work release facility, aimed at providing ex-cons with the training needed to create and stick to a budget.