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June 17, 2011 ● Volume 34, Issue 12 Archived Issues
On May 23, the National Credit Union Administration welcomed Justin Burleson as its new Supervisory Examiner for Minnesota. In this position, Burleson will supervise the state’s 11 NCUA examiners as they oversee the financial stability of Minnesota credit unions.
Burleson has worked with the NCUA for the past six years, serving in a variety of different capacities. He began his NCUA career as an examiner in Texas and then worked in the agency’s Asset Management and Assistance Center where he managed failed institutions' assets. His most recent position was as a Region IV Problem Case Officer for the Division of Special Action. Burleson told MnCUN that he is excited about his new position as Supervisory Examiner and looks forward to working with Minnesota credit unions.
Burleson also indicated that credit union presidents are welcome to contact him by email with any concerns and/or positive feedback related to their NCUA exams/examiners.
Last week, credit unions experienced a disappointing end to their lobbying efforts to delay the interchange amendment when a legislative fix stalled in the U.S. Senate. In a 54-45 vote, senators rejected an amendment proposed by Sens. Jon Tester (D-Mont.) and Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) that would have required the Federal Reserve and other agencies to review a cap on interchange fees before putting the rule into practice.
The legislation fell six votes short of the 60 votes needed to pass – with Minnesota Sens. Al Franken and Amy Klobuchar voting against the amendment. However, both senators indicated their support for making a two-tiered system work, which would exempt from the provision financial institutions with less than $10 billion in assets.
Though the interchange amendment did not pass the Senate, the advocacy campaign had a number of significant achievements. Due to credit unions’ grassroots efforts, the majority of the Senate supported the amendment and 12 senators switched their vote from backing the interchange language proposed last year by Sen. Richard Durbin (D-Ill.) to supporting a delay on the measure.
While the legislative battle was a loss, the fight against the interchange amendment is not over. The focus is now on advocating the Federal Reserve to pass a final interchange rule that will ensure the small issuer exemption. The Minnesota Credit Union Network, along with CUNA, has been urging the Federal Reserve to:
In addition, MnCUN has asked Sens. Franken and Klobuchar to contact the Federal Reserve and stress the importance of establishing an effective two-tiered system. CUNA is also supporting efforts to challenge the legality of the interchange legislation.
The Minnesota Credit Union Network and CUNA will continue to advocate on behalf of credit unions to protect them from the effects of the interchange legislation, which was the intent of the original bill. With questions about interchange, contact MnCUN Vice President – Governmental Affairs Mara Humphrey by email or at (651) 288-5523.
Responding to NCUA’s call for comments and suggestions on its prepaid corporate assessment plan, the Minnesota Credit Union Network submitted a letter this week urging the agency to increase the incentives for credit unions to participate in the program. The correspondence included feedback from the Network's Regulatory Review Committee, which meets regularly to provide input and recommendations on proposed rules out for comment.
The letter commended NCUA’s efforts to develop an option that would fulfill credit unions’ desire to prepay their assessments to the Temporary Corporate Credit Union Stabilization Fund. However, the Network suggested some changes to help make the plan a more viable option. While the overall good of the credit union movement must be considered, the Network stated that credit unions must also examine what is in the best interest of their institution when evaluating the prepayment proposal.
In order to provide greater incentive for credit unions participating in the plan, MnCUN suggested that NCUA pay interest on the prepayment amount. This would incentivize credit unions to contribute to the fund and help eliminate some concerns regarding "free riders.” In addition, the Network recommended that the agency allow participating credit unions to withdraw their advance payments prior to the assessment in 2013 if they so choose.
Lastly, the Network encouraged the NCUA to increase the maximum amount a credit union can prepay to a percentage higher than 36 basis points. The agency must allow credit unions to make informed decisions regarding the prepayment amount their institution would be able to handle, MnCUN opined. Increasing the maximum would likely increase the potential of the program.
As the NCUA considers its proposed prepayment plan, it is important that credit unions submit their feedback. Comments, suggestions and intents to participate in the program can be emailed to the agency at email@example.com.
Credit unions looking to engage members while helping them overcome financial obstacles are invited to attend MnCUN’s Business Development & Marketing Seminar focused on innovative solutions. This collaborative meeting will facilitate a discussion and examination of four industry case studies that highlight unique savings, lending and debt repayment programs.
The seminar will have a structure similar to MnCUN’s roundtable format, but the discussion will focus on research studies conducted by the Filene Research Institute. Specifically, participants will examine innovative ideas for increasing lending activity, helping members out of debt, encouraging retirement investing, and helping members be more effective savers. Prior to the session, each participant will receive one of four research articles to review for the group discussion. During the seminar, individuals will share their articles’ key findings, and then as a group examine the opportunities and hurdles of each presented idea.
Geared toward business development professionals, marketers, branch managers and CEOs, this seminar will provide credit unions innovative ideas for increasing member loyalty while helping members overcome financial obstacles. For additional information and to register, visit the Event Calendar section of the Network website.
Has your credit union done something great in the past year? The deadline to participate in the 2011 social responsibility awards is fast approaching. Submit your entries for the Dora Maxwell, Louise Herring and Desjardins Awards and be recognized for the programs that make your credit union unique.
Award entries must be submitted to the Network office by Friday, July 15. For in-depth award and application information, visit the National Credit Union Awards Programs section of the Network website.
Did you know that your credit union has access to on-demand training on business continuity, asset liability management, social media policies, robbery suppression, human resources record keeping, and more? With MnCUN’s webinar archives, your credit union can create its own educational library. These CD-ROM archives feature recordings of live webinars held in 2011 that focus on a variety of topics pertinent to professionals and volunteers of all levels.
Each recording includes the session’s original audio/visual presentation, the question and answer portion, and the webinar handouts. Credit unions can show these "off-the-shelf” training programs at staff and board meetings and can use them for future training.
CD-ROM archives are only $200 and can be purchased up to six months after the original session date. To peruse the session recordings available, visit the Webinar Archives page of the Network website. With questions, contact MnCUN Director of Education Sue Groskreutz by email or at (651) 288-5521.
Credit unions eager to improve their youth-based services and financial education offerings are invited to attend the National Youth Involvement Board’s (NYIB’s) annual conference on July 25-28 in Pennsylvania. With a theme of "Up Your Youth,” this year’s conference will support credit unions’ youth outreach efforts and help lower the average age of credit union members.
Each year the NYIB conference brings together credit union marketers, financial educators, and like-minded leaders to brainstorm ways to reach younger members. At the conference, attendees will receive tools, techniques, and insight for reaching and teaching young consumers and members. This year’s speakers will include industry and youth involvement experts who will present a variety of general and breakout sessions, including:
To learn more about the NYIB conference and to register, visit the Event Calendar section of the Network website. Be sure to register by Friday, July 1, to take advantage of the $100 early bird discount.
The 2012 Credit Union Day at the Capitol is schedule for Thursday, Feb. 16. CU Day provides credit unions the opportunity to meet and build relationships with the state’s elected officials. Mark your calendar and be sure to attend this important event that helps educate legislators about the credit union difference. For more information about this annual event, visit the Credit Union Day at the Capitol page of the Network website.
Is your credit union considering an alternative check processor? If so, take a look at MnIPC. With 15 years of experience, they are able to meet your check processing needs.
MnIPC is an independent check processor that provides share draft and deposit processing at competitive rates. They offer full image-based processing, which includes the following services:
MnIPC offers flexible settlement arrangements that allow for credit unions' preference on where they hold their accounts. With strong dedication to credit unions, MnIPC staff provides unsurpassed customer service to clients. For more information about MnIPC’s products and services, contact Vice President Michelle Carlson by email or at (651) 288-5551.
Through the Minnesota Credit Union Network’s partnership with OfficeMax, your credit union can save money on everyday office purchases like paper, pens, printer ink and more. Discounts on these regular purchases quickly add up to significant savings for your credit union.
OfficeMax offers credit unions a complete line of office products from national brands and comparable quality, lower-cost options. On top of this quality, credit unions also receive several discounts, some of which include:
Check out OfficeMax today and discover how much your credit union can save on office supplies each year. For more information about OfficeMax, contact MnCUN Director of Business Development Vickie Ganrude by email or at (651) 288-5515.
Calendar of Events
The Minnesota Credit Union Network offers a wide variety of educational opportunities for credit union professionals and volunteers. Check out the roundtables, telecourses, and webinars available. To register for these events, visit the online Event Calendar.