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Output (09-23-11)


Output (09-23-11)


September 23, 2011
   ●   Volume 34, Issue 19                                                               Archived Issues


NCUA Approves Alloya Chater Application

On Sept. 22, the NCUA Board voted unanimously to approve the charter application for Alloya Corporate Federal Credit Union, as well as its application for merger with Members United Bridge Corporate. The new corporate credit union will immediately begin the work of developing the organizational structure of the organization, and it is expected that Alloya’s first day of operation will be Oct. 24, 2011.

 

Additionally, Alloya has extended the time period of the initial capital offering until October 31, 2011. All credit unions (including current members) which capitalize by that date will receive the full benefits as described in the Private Placement Memorandum as if they had capitalized by August 31.

 

For more information about the new corporate credit union, visit the Alloya Corporate Federal Credit Union website.


MnCUN works to resolve CU tax exemption issue

As part of its ongoing efforts to resolve a tax exemption issue with the IRS, MnCUN sent credit union presidents a message on Wednesday, Sept. 21, asking for information about the tax revocation letter they may have received. Earlier this month, many state-chartered credit unions whose Form 990s were at one time filed as group returns by the Minnesota Department of Commerce received a notice from the IRS stating that their tax exempt status has been revoked due to failure to meet annual filing requirements. However, it is becoming apparent that this situation was caused by an error on the IRS’ part, not by credit unions.

 

In order to help resolve this issue, MnCUN is asking all credit unions to email MnCUN General Counsel John Wendland information related to this situation. If credit unions did not receive a tax exempt revocation letter from the IRS, they should send Wendland an email with the word "no” in the subject line. If they did receive a letter, credit unions should email Wendland the answers to the questions below. The reply should include the question number as well as the additional information requested.

  1. Did your credit union receive a letter from the IRS saying its tax exemption was revoked because the group of which it was a part of had failed to make filings?
           a.  If you answered "yes" to the above, please provide your credit union's name and employer ID
                number.
  2. Did your credit union receive a letter from the IRS saying that its tax exemption was revoked because the credit union itself had failed to file Form 990 for some period of time?
             b.  If you answered "yes" to the above, please provide your credit union's name and employer ID
               number.

Credit unions should email the Network with this information by the end of the day Monday, Sept. 26

For more information about this issue, visit the Credit Union Tax Exempt Notice page of the Network website. With questions, contact MnCUN General Counsel John Wendland by email or at (651) 288-5519.


MnCUN urges NCUA to modify CUSO proposal

Last week the Minnesota Credit Union Network responded to NCUA’s request for comments on a proposed rule regulating credit union service organizations (CUSOs). Specifically, the proposed rule would require CUSOs to directly file certain reports, including financial statements, with NCUA.
 
While MnCUN supports the reasonable supervision of credit unions and CUSOs, it is opposed to NCUA’s proposal because it feels that this is not prudent or appropriate rulemaking. Therefore, the Network’s comment letter urged the agency to withdraw the proposed rule or revise it substantially.
 
Within the letter, the Network stressed the importance of CUSOs and expressed concern that the proposed rule would stifle the creation, development and operation of CUSOs. MnCUN also questioned whether NCUA has the authority to implement the proposed rule since Congress removed the agency’s examination authority over CUSOs several years ago. Additionally, the Network stressed the likely negative impact this rule would have on NCUA’s budget.
 
To view MnCUN’s complete comment letter, visit the MnCUN Comment Letters page of the Network website. It is also important that credit unions submit their own comment letter on this issue. To assist credit unions with this, an Operation Comment action alert has been set up on the GrassRoots Education & Action Team website. With questions about the proposed rule, contact MnCUN General Counsel John Wendland by email or at (651) 288-5519.


Fall Conference presentations available

Credit union professionals and volunteers can now download PowerPoint presentations from MnCUN’s Fall Conference, which was held Sept. 9-11. Attendees of the conference and those who were unable to attend can access these materials that provide valuable information about credit union boards, reinventing credit unions, economic principles and more. To download these presentations, visit the Fall Conference page of the Network website.


MnCUN offers refreshed website, available in October

Get ready for the Minnesota Credit Union Network’s new online look. MnCUN is launching a refreshed look for its website that will be live in October.
 
The new site includes a refreshed design and updated menu items. Some of the new features include a new products and services section, as well as a redesigned employment opportunities page that lists credit union job openings and resumes of those seeking a career in credit unions. The refreshed site also provides a community section for members where they can connect with other credit union professionals and volunteers.
 
While MnCUN is updating its online look, all the information and features of the current website will be transferred to the refreshed website. Look for information in the coming weeks on how users can take advantage of the new features of the Network’s website.


Register today for the MnCU4Kids Bowl-O-Rama

It’s time to lace up your bowling shoes and join the Minnesota Credit Unions for Kids (MnCU4Kids) committee for its 4th Annual Bowl-O-Rama on Wednesday, Oct. 26. This event will provide credit union professionals and volunteers the opportunity to raise money for Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare and have fun doing it.
 
To be held at Stars & Strikes Bowling Alley in Wyoming, this midday event includes lunch, three games of bowling and prize drawings. The proceeds from this fundraiser go toward assisting children at Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare, which helps kids with disabilities and chronic conditions. 
 
Registrations for the Bowl-O-Rama must be received by Wednesday, Oct. 12. More information and a printable registration form are available in the Event Calendar section of the Network website.


Family Involvement Council offering $12,000 in scholarships

The Minnesota Family Involvement Council is kicking off this year’s scholarship program. In 2012, the FIC will award $12,000 in scholarships to credit union members continuing their education.
 
Two $1,000 scholarships and twenty $500 scholarships will be awarded to 22 credit union members throughout Minnesota. Anyone pursuing post-secondary education in fall 2012 and spring 2013 is eligible. To apply, credit union members must complete a one-page application form and submit an essay that answers the question: "What impact has social media had on your financial decisions and how could credit unions use these tools to help you with your financial goals?”
 
This year’s scholarship information and applications are now available on the FIC website. The FIC is also providing online materials to help credit unions promote the scholarship program to members. Visit the Scholarships section of the FIC website to download a web banner, website article and examples of best practices on how to promote the scholarship program.


Foundation, U of M Extension team up to offer financial literacy webinars

The Minnesota Credit Union Foundation (MnCUF), along with the University of Minnesota Extension, will be hosting a series of free webinars this fall to help make financial education efforts more effective.
 
This webinar series, titled "Connecting the Dots: Financial Education … Financial Capability,” is available to anyone who works to improve students’ financial literacy. The two-hour webinars are offered in a live format and are available on four consecutive Wednesdays, beginning Wednesday, Oct. 12. The sessions will discuss the influences of poverty and culture on financial capability, budgeting, investing and how to keep your money safe. All webinars will be archived for future use by registered participants.
 
For more information and to register for these webinars, visit the Foundation website.


October educational opportunities

In October, credit union professionals and volunteers will have the opportunity to participate in educational conferences focused on current credit union topics. Check out the learning opportunities available next month.
  • Supervisory Committee Workshops – Oct. 4, 6, and 11
    Credit union volunteers are invited to attend MnCUN’s Supervisory Committee Workshops. Held at three locations around the state – Proctor, Bloomington and Owatonna – this training will discuss the duties, responsibilities and liabilities of the supervisory committee. Attendees will review the goals of the committee, explore steps for ensuring that the credit union is following proper procedures and discuss warning signs of misconduct.
  • Lending School – Oct. 26-27
    This popular school offers two days of content-packed sessions covering the lending process from start to finish and addressing hot topics. Day One of the school will review basic loan underwriting skills and facilitate discussions about unique lending opportunities. Day Two will provide credit union professionals the tools to bring their lending practices to a new level.
Detailed information and online registration for both conferences is available in the Event Calendar section of the Network website.


Three reasons why CU staff and members should be GREAT

Next month your credit union is invited to help your staff and members be GREAT. The Minnesota Credit Union Network has designated October as GREAT month, a time to encourage  credit union staff and members to join the GrassRoots Education & Action Team
 
GREAT provides staff and members the opportunity to do their part to preserve, protect and promote the Minnesota credit union movement. There are three main reasons why credit union staff and members should join GREAT. 
 
  1. It’s free: Participating in GREAT doesn’t cost staff or members a dime and only takes a few minutes of their time.
  2. It’s easy: With each GREAT email, staff and members receive a sample message to use when communicating with elected officials.
  3. It makes a difference: By participating in this program, credit union staff and members join other supporters in sharing the credit union story with elected officials.
To assist credit unions in publicizing GREAT to staff and members, the Network has created a variety of free promotional materials for you to use. A sample newsletter article and three web graphics are available for download. Credit unions can also order free lobby posters and GREAT sign-up forms. For more information about this initiative and to download promotional materials, visit the GREAT Membership Drive page of the Network website. 


Credit union recognition…

  • SouthPoint Federal Credit Union was recently selected by the Raddon Financial Group as one of the top 20 highest performing credit unions in 2010. This award recognizes credit unions that achieve top ranking on a balanced scorecard measuring growth, income, efficiency and margin management. More than 500 credit unions were evaluated in this year's ranking.


Credit Union Notes

  • Minnesota Valley Credit Union in New Prague announced on Wednesday, Sept. 21, that it will merge with Heartland Credit Union on Oct. 1. The merged credit unions will have more than $82 million in assets and will serve more than 8,300 members in the Twin Cities and in Scott, Rice and Le Sueur counties.
 


CUNA Mutual’s free online Discovery Conference set for Oct. 4

On Tuesday, Oct. 4, CUNA Mutual Group will host its 2nd annual Online Discovery Conference. Credit unions will have the opportunity to participate in educational sessions, network with hundreds of peers and visit the virtual Discovery Expo Center – and it’s all free.
 
Online Discovery is the web-based equivalent of a face-to-face conference without the associated expenses or time away from the office. Attendees participate from the convenience of their own computers, saving time and travel expenses.
 
Throughout the day, credit union professionals will participate in webcasts focused on growth strategies for credit unions. Between sessions conference "attendees” can participate in online chats focused on pertinent topics. The online event is designed for CEOs and senior leadership teams of credit unions, but all employees will benefit from its future-focused content.
 
In addition, three credit unions whose attendees fully participate in the conference’s many amenities, including chat rooms, sessions, and booth visits, will win a $1,000 prize. For additional information about the Online Discovery Conference, visit the Event Calendar section of the Network website. 


MnIPC hosts Lunch & Learn webinar on mobile deposits

Join MnIPC and its mobile deposit partner Catchet Financial Solutions for a Lunch & Learn webinar focused on making deposits by smartphone.
 
MnIPC is hosting this 30-minute webinar at noon on Tuesday, Sept. 27, to teach credit unions more about its mobile banking service. During the session, guest speaker Kevin Harrigan, of Catchet Financial Solutions, will answer questions such as:
  • What is mobile deposit?
  • How safe is it?
  • How will mobile deposit benefit credit union members?
  • What are the financial considerations?

MnIPC’s mobile deposit service aims to make life simpler for members. To use the service, members use their smartphone to type in a deposit amount, snap a photo of the check and submit it to their credit union. Special software converts the checks into a usable format and all transactions are conducted securely.

To register for the Lunch & Learn webinar, visit the MnIPC website. For more information about MnIPC’s products and services, contact Vice President Michelle Carlson by email or at (651) 288-5551


CO-OP Financial Services and FSCC to merge Shared Branching

CO-OP Financial Services and Financial Service Centers Cooperative Inc. (FSCC) have announced their intent to merge, unifying the two primary credit union shared branching networks. Through the two companies, more than 1,700 credit unions nationwide participate in shared branching, making more than 4,300 physical branch locations available to their members, plus 2,200 Vcom kiosk locations at 7-Eleven stores.
 
The shared branching arrangement allows credit union members to conduct financial transactions as if they were visiting a branch of their own credit union. Through the merger, the combined shared branching services will not only provide a significant expansion of outlets for credit union members, but also greater efficiencies in branding, technology and administrative costs that can be redirected to more competitive pricing and enhanced patron dividends for network participants.
 
"The combination of CO-OP and FSCC will blend the strengths and value of both companies, creating a more tightly integrated and efficient shared branching network for our movement,” said Stan Hollen, President/CEO, CO-OP Financial Services. "With more than 4,300 branch locations, credit unions have at their disposal the fourth largest network in the country, behind the three largest national banks.”
 

Through this merger, Minnesota credit unions are able to offer members even more branch locations through shared branching. To learn more about how your credit union can become part of this network, contact MnCUN Vice President – Network Service Corporation John Ferstl by email or at (651) 288-5505.


Calendar of Events
 

The Minnesota Credit Union Network offers a variety of educational opportunities for credit union professionals and volunteers. Check out the roundtables, telecourses and webinars available. In addition, professionals and volunteers are invited to attend the Network’s fall educational events which include Supervisory Committee Workshops and Lending School.
  • Sept. 26 (8:30 a.m.): MnCUN Financial Management School: Parts III & IV
  • Sept. 27 (2 p.m.): Webinar – Managing Data Leaks & Hacking Threats
  • Sept. 28 (10 a.m.): TeleCourse – Hiring & Interviewing Techniques
  • Sept. 28 (2 p.m.): Webinar – Fair Lending Issues
  • Oct. 4 (9 a.m.): CUNA Mutual Webinar -- Online Discovery Conference
  • Oct. 4 (10 a.m.): TeleCourse – Creative Loan Modifications
  • Oct. 4 (2 p.m.): Webinar – Official Demands for Member Funds
  • Oct. 4 (5:30 p.m.): Supervisory Committee Workshop – Proctor
  • Oct. 5 (10:30 a.m.): Roundtable – Marketing & Business Development
  • Oct. 5 (2 p.m.): CUNA Mutual Webinar – Employment Practices Liability
  • Oct. 5 (2 p.m.): Webinar – BSA Audit Issues
  • Oct. 6 (5:30 p.m.): Supervisory Committee Workshop – Bloomington
  • Oct. 11 (5:30 p.m.): Supervisory Committee Workshop – Owatonna
  • Oct. 12 (2 p.m.): Webinar – Employee Leave Issues
  • Oct. 12 (3:30 p.m.): U of M Webinar Series #1 – Connecting the Dots: Financial Education
  • Oct. 13 (10 a.m.): TeleCourse – Robbery Survival Training
  • Oct. 13 (2 p.m.): Webinar – BSA Training for Lenders