NORTH HIGHLANDS, Calif. (5/28/09)--SAFE CU, North Highlands, Calif., will acquire Rancho Cordoba. Calif.-based American River HealthPro CU under a merger agreement announced Tuesday. With the merger, three California branches of American River HealthPro--Carmichael, Roseville and midtown Sacramento--will be shuttered. The credit union’s Rancho Cordoba branch will become a SAFE branch (The Sacramento Bee May 27). Also, American River HealthPro’s 24 ATMs will become SAFE CU ATMs. Nearly half of American River HealthPro’s 70 employees will be laid off, Dave Roughton, SAFE chief operating officer, told the newspaper. The 375-employee SAFE will give some preference to those who lost their jobs when filling new positions, he added. American River HealthPro began considering a merger last year after experiencing loan losses, SAFE CEO Bob Steponovich told the paper. SAFE CU has $1.362 billion in assets. American River HealthPro CU has $222.6 million in assets.