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CU System briefs (03/18/2014)

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  • ALBANY, N.Y. (3/18/14)-- U.S. Rep. Tim Bishop (D-Southampton) and Happauge, N.Y.-based Teachers FCU together presented a March 10 program to increase the awareness of the Earned Income Tax Credit and the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program (VITA). Bishop shared how the $4.8 billion-asset credit union's VITA program can benefit working families and those who need assistance filing their tax returns ( The Point March 17) ...
  • PENSACOLA, Fla. (3/18/14)-- A new scholarship and a money management education program are among the beneficiaries of a $100,000 donation from Pen Air FCU to the University of West Florida College of Business ( Pensacola News Journal March 17). Part of the Pensacola, Fla.-based credit union's gift will establish the Pen Air FCU Betty M. Petree Endowment for business students. Petree, who is a director for the $1.2 billion-asset credit union, is a 2014 inductee into the Credit Union House Hall of Leaders. Funds also will go toward implementing the Pen Air FCU Financial Literacy Boot Camp ...
  • MARLBOROUGH, Mass. (3/18/14)-- The We Share a Common Thread Foundation, the charitable arm of $1 billion-asset Jeanne D'Arc CU, raised more than $35,000 at a March 8 fundraiser ( Daily CU Scan March 17). The funds support the Lowell, Mass., foundation in assisting patients battling life-threatening diseases, stocking local food pantries, sheltering the homeless and helping youths in need ...

Mortgages lead the pack for Neb. CU loan growth

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OMAHA, Neb. (3/18/14)--Nebraska credit unions watched loan growth thrive--along with shares, memberships and net worth--in 2013, according to data released by the National Credit Union Administration and reported by the Nebraska Credit Union League last week.

Over the past year, almost all categories of loans stepped up, with first mortgages leading the charge at a 10.3% increase.

Total loans jumped 6.2% over 2012 levels to $2.46 billion outstanding. Auto loans, which make up 47% of all loans for credit unions in Nebraska, increased by 6.3%.

"Nearly 460,000 Nebraska consumers have chosen to obtain their financial services from locally owned cooperative credit unions," said league President/CEO J. Scott Sullivan. "These positive growth trends underscore the value that members receive from their credit union membership."

Additional results:
  • Asset quality improved statewide, as delinquency fell 3 basis points to 92 at the end of 2013.
     
  • Credit unions added 11,541 new members during 2013, which is a 40% improvement over the number of new members reported the previous year.
     
  • Total net worth increased 4.8% to $401.3 million, and, because reserves ramped up faster than assets, the net-worth-to-assets ratio rose by 18 basis points to 10.7%.
     
  • Deposits grew by 2.3% to $3.19 billion.
     
  • The loan-to-share ratio climbed to 77.4%, up from 74.6%.

'Caucus: New Jersey' highlights CU debt management expertise

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HIGHTSTOWN, N.J. (3/18/14)--The New Jersey Credit Union League (NJCUL) and its "Banking You Can Trust" consumer awareness campaign has sponsored a debt-management panel discussion on the public television show "Caucus: New Jersey."


Lou Vetere, former NJCUL chair and president/CEO of Garden Savings FCU, Parsippany, N.J., with $280 million in assets, was among those on the four-person panel.

The other financial experts were Tiffany Aliche, author of "The One Week Budget;" Wanda Hardy, CEO, Financial Wellness Institute; and Barbara O'Neill, Rutgers Cooperative Extension specialist.

Topics centered on the debt cycle, credit card debt, strategies on how and when to save money, and the importance of retirement plans.

The "Caucus: New Jersey" program will air March 29 and March 30.

Bridge CU ships financial help to trucking students

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COLUMBUS, Ohio (3/18/14)--An Ohio-based credit union has partnered with a driving trade school to offer loans to students looking for certification as truck drivers.  

Together, Bridge CU, Columbus, Ohio, with $45 million in assets, and Roadmaster Drivers School of Ohio Inc. are able to fill two needs: To help prospective drivers pay for training, and to inject more employees into an industry hurting for manpower.  

"Companies are always telling us about their needs; they have driver spots that need filled," Jeff Whittington, Roadmaster school director, told the Columbus Chamber of Commerce. "This program will help us to place more students in those roles by offering the extra financial support they need."

Out of 5 million jobs in Ohio, more than 366,000 fall into the category of material moving, according to an article by Columbus Business First . By far in the Buckeye State, heavy- or tractor-truck drivers were the most advertised job postings as of August 2013.  

About 10% of the students enrolled at the driving school, or about 50 to 60 individuals, will use the Bridge financing this year. More than 70 people have already financed their training through Bridge since October, when the program was rolled out ( Columbus Business First March 14).

The cost of training at the school runs around $6,495, which covers about 160 hours of on-road and classroom work. Rates have been as low as 11.65% for students who've received financing thus far.

Bridge, formerly State Transportation Employees CU, has about 7,800 members.

CMN Hospitals benefit in 2013 with $406K from Va. CUs

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LYNCHBURG, Va. (3/18/14)--Virginia credit unions donated a record-breaking $406,236 to the Children's Miracle Network Hospitals in 2013, bringing their cumulative total to $2,086,236 to the credit union movement's charity of choice.

"Every child deserves the hope and healing of children's hospitals, and each year credit unions all across Virginia are sponsoring fundraisers, big and small, to support that goal," said Viki Frankenburger, committee chairwoman, Credit Unions Care Foundation of Virginia.

The Credit Unions Care Foundation of Virginia was formed in 2009 by Virginia's credit union system to coordinate credit unions' charitable giving, community development efforts and education initiatives.

In 2012, the system raised $214,191 for Children's Miracle Network Hospitals.

Additionally, the state's credit unions helped raise $483,000 for Children's National Medical Center, Washington, D.C., through their participation in the Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run.

Mont. league launches blog for board members

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HELENA, Mont. (3/18/14)--Montana Credit Union League leaders have launched a weekly blog called "A Direct Line," a resource they hope will inform and engage Montana credit union board members on issues facing the industry.

"Your role as a director means you need to have a pulse on the industry and it is our job to help you find resources and discussions on hot topics without you spending a lot of unnecessary time," said Donya Parrish, MCUN vice president of dues supported services, in the blog's first post.

Board members can expect a "timely topic" written by Parrish or Tabitha Garvin, vice president of fee-based services, every Wednesday. The topic of the week also will be highlighted in the state association's President's Report .

Subjects the league plans to cover in the blog in the near future include enterprise risk management and the risk-based capital proposal. Parrish also says that guest columns or suggestions for blog topics are always welcome.

The first blog post covered credit union annual meetings, which are commonly held in the spring.

CUs shine in Council's Diamond, Excellence marketing awards

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MADISON, Wis. (3/18/14)--The CUNA Marketing and Business Development Council awarded seven Best of Show awards, including the Diamond Best of Show to Seattle-based BECU, during its annual conference last week in Orlando, Fla.
 
More than 1,130 entries were received for 29 categories. Seventy entries were named the best in their category, and 231 received Diamond Awards.
 
BECU, $11.9 billion in assets, won the Diamond Best in Show for its SHARE campaign, entered in the television (single and series) category. More than 50 members, both new and longtime, shared stories about their relationship and interactions with the Tukwila, Wash.-based credit union.
 
Other 2014 Best of Show honorees include:
  • "Color" for brilliant use of art: Widget Financial FCU, Erie, Pa., $252 million in assets, won for its new name, logo and brand campaign, "Launch."
  • "Cut" for most edgy: Financial Center CU, Stockton, Calif., $363 million in assets, was honored for  "Eye Candy"--targeted auto loan postcards with Internet meme-styling, holograms and a bike-riding Santa.
  • "Clarity" for most sentimental: Gesa CU, Richland, Wash., $1.2 billion in assets. The episodic nature of the wedding commercial series kept watchers waiting for the next installment of gesawedding.com .
  • "Carat" for greatest impact: Directions CU, Sylvania, Ohio, $565 million in assets. The credit union teamed up with two local TV stations to develop a "Don't Text and Drive" pledge contest aimed at local high schools.
Two credit unions garnered awards for best use of humor: Taleris CU, Cleveland, $70 million in assets, used funny dogs to explain the credit union difference, while ORNL FCU, Oak Ridge, Tenn., $1.4 billion in assets, gained social media traction with its holiday video.
 
"This year, categories and submission procedures were enhanced; combined with the matrix scoring system established in 2013, the caliber of entries showed impressive advancement," said Nancy Hutchinson, chair, CUNA Marketing and Business Development Council Diamond Awards Committee, and senior vice president of marketing/business development, MPECU, Duluth, Minn.
 
Excellence in Marketing and Business Development awards, which recognize outstanding new marketing and business development approaches, also were announced at the conference. Winners were selected based on strategy, process, application and results.
 
Awards went to:
  • FAA CU, Oklahoma City, $551 million in assets, for business development. Its credit score analysis program helped consumers evaluate their credit reports line by line in order to save money.
  • Service 1st FCU, Danville, Pa., $224 million in assets, for community outreach and/or political advocacy: It committed to raising $35,000 for three local charities--Janet Weis Children's Hospital, SUNCOM Industries Inc. and the Montour Area Recreation Commission.
     
  • American Airlines FCU, Fort Worth, Texas, $5.5 billion in assets, for its beta branded partner debit card, and Bellwether Community CU, Manchester, N.H., $387 million in assets, for its employee engagement with its new brand initiative.
For a complete list of CUNA Marketing and Business Development Council Awards, use the resource link.

Fair Lending, repossession topics of CUNA Lending Compliance School

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MADISON, Wis. (3/18/14)--The Credit Union National Association (CUNA) announced the topics for its Lending Compliance School, set for Aug. 10-14 in Las Vegas.
 
CUNA Lending Compliance School provides compliance officers, lenders and other interested professionals the in-depth regulatory knowledge and industry updates to keep their credit unions compliant in every lending discipline.
 
"It takes a wide range of resources, personnel and proficiencies to keep a credit union lending operation in line with compliance standards," said Tracy Blaske, CUNA director of compliance education. "Attendees of this year's CUNA Lending Compliance School will leave knowing where they fit into their credit union's compliance equation and how best to apply their newfound regulatory know-how."
 
During the school's in-depth sessions, attendees will:
  • Build their personal compliance aptitude;
  • Receive updates on the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau;
  • Dive into Fair Lending Compliance and all of its back-office implications; and
  • Gain access to valuable supplemental recorded sessions.
This year's comprehensive five-day curriculum will feature:
  • "Managing Hidden Fair Lending Risks," an intense eight-hour session on Fair Lending presented by David Reed;
  • "10 Cardinal Rules of Repossession," presented by Frank Drake;
  • "Advertising Your Loan Products," with PolicyWorks;
  • "Lending Fraud" with Barry Thompson; and
  • An ask-the-expert panel discussion.