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Dupaco adds four sites to shared-branch network

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DUBUQUE, Iowa (12/31/07)--Dupaco Community CU in Dubuque expanded its relationship with Credit Union Service Network (CUSN) by opening four locations as Credit Union Service Centers. Two offices in Dubuque; one in Cedar Rapids, Iowa; and one in Platteville, Wis.; are now part of the network. Dupaco partnered with CUSN in 2004. The credit union is one of 10 in Iowa to partner in the network, and one of eight to open offices as Credit Union Service Centers. There are 3,000 centers nationwide. Credit Union Service Centers offer participating credit union’s members the ability to cash checks and make deposits; make cash and check withdrawals; make loan payments; make transfers; purchase money orders, traveler’s checks and official checks; obtain cash advances; and inquire about balances. CUSN’s affiliation with shared branching nationwide is through CU Service Corp in Duluth, Ga. Dupaco Community CU has $465 million in assets.

TurboTax accepting e-filed returns early

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SAN DIEGO (12/31/07)--Taxpayers whose refunds will be delayed due to the Alternative Minimum Tax legislation passed last week can file their taxes in January with TurboTax. TurboTax will allow taxpayers to complete and submit their tax returns electronically, starting Jan. 4. Because of the Alternative Minimum Tax legislation, the Internal Revenue Service will not accept some returns until Feb. 11. “Electronic filing with direct deposit is the quickest way to get your tax refund,” said Bob Meighan, certified public accountant and TurboTax vice president. TurboTax is a product of Intuit Inc., a provider of business and financial management solutions for financial institutions, including credit unions.

Minnesota CUs put member advocacy to work on front lines

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ST. PAUL, Minn. (12/31/07)--Ten employees from six Minnesota credit unions graduated Dec. 11 from the Member Advocacy Pathways (MAP) program, which teaches staff how to help members through significant life events. MAP is offered through a partnership with Strategic Solutions and the Minnesota Credit Union Network (MnCUN). The program consists of nine modules. Upon completion, graduates receive the “Member Advocate” designation. “Staff’s lack of personal experience with many life events causes lost opportunities to recognize and provide appropriate solutions that really make a difference,” said Jeanne Murphy, Strategic Solutions president. “An enormous amount of potential business is lost, affecting the credit union’s bottom line, its competitive brand and member retention.” Through MAP training, employees learn how to identify with members’ situations. “By the end of the program, participants were able to ask the right questions to discover members’ unique needs and recommend customized financial solutions,” said Neil Christy, MnCUN vice president of education and credit union development.