December 16, 2011 ● Volume 34, Issue 24 Archived Issues
Dues invoices to be mailed today
MnCUN dues packets will be mailed to all Minnesota credit unions today. The packets include dues invoices, credit union information forms, CUNA and MnCUN's Power of Association brochures, and MnCUN's Network Directory.
In addition, this year's packet includes MnCUN's 2011 Compliance Reference Guide, which includes the following booklets:
- Deceased Members Guide;
- Checks & Endorsements Guide;
- Regulatory Summary 2011; and
- Credit Union Report Deadlines 2012.
Minnesota Credit Union Network dues should be remitted by Tuesday, Jan. 31. With questions, please contact the Network office at (651) 288-5170.
Goodbye to Output…Hello to The Pulse
Today's newsletter will be the final edition of Output. On Friday, Jan. 6, MnCUN will launch a new weekly e-newsletter called The Pulse. Featuring the information of Output and MnCUN's monthly newsletters Political Update and Summation, this publication will deliver timely and relevant news to credit unions once a week.
If you currently receive Output, Political Update or Summation, then you will automatically be added to The Pulse email list. Be sure to watch your inbox for the first edition of The Pulse in January.
Network welcomes Chris Loftus
The Minnesota Credit Union Network welcomed its newest staff member on Dec. 7. Chris Loftus is the Network's Associate General Counsel. He most recently worked as a compliance and litigation attorney at a Minneapolis law firm. He has experience representing credit unions and banks and specializes in financial law, rules and regulation. He is a graduate of the University of Iowa College of Law.
Loftus fills the position previously held by John Teske who left the Network in October.
Sign up today for Credit Union Day at the Capitol
Registration is now open for MnCUN's Credit Union Day at the Capitol. Set for Feb. 16 at the Saint Paul RiverCentre, this event brings professionals and volunteers together to spread the credit union message at the State Capitol.
This year's CU Day theme of "Minnesota Credit Unions: The Smarter Choice” will remind legislators of the benefits consumers receive by being credit union members. Attendees will hear pertinent legislative information and updates from elected officials about the 2012 Legislative Session. The event will culminate with participants visiting the State Capitol to meet with representatives and senators to discuss issues important to credit unions. Attendees will conclude the day with a late afternoon reception.
In addition, this year's CU Day will provide credit union professionals and volunteers two new opportunities. First, MnCUN is offering attendees a free bus ride to the event from six locations throughout the state to the Saint Paul RiverCentre. Additionally, MnCUN is hosting The Crew at the Capitol for mid-level credit union professionals under the age of 35. During CU Day, Crew members will shadow experienced professionals as they go on legislative visits and will be able to attend an exclusive networking event.
For more information about the new CU Day bus routes, The Crew event and general event information, visit the Credit Union Day at the Capitol page of the Network website. Be sure to register by Thursday, Jan. 19, to receive $40 off the registration price.
Contribute to MNAP in 2012
During this time of anti-bank sentiment, it is more important than ever for credit unions to tout what makes them unique. In an effort to increase the public's awareness of credit unions, the Minnesota Network Advertising Committee (MNAP) is seeking credit union support of its 2012 initiatives.
MNAP is a voluntarily-funded, cooperative advertising program for Minnesota credit unions that promotes the uniqueness of financial cooperatives. In 2012, the committee will coordinate two initiatives aimed at increasing credit unions' market share. The first initiative will fund a research and recommendations report focused on attracting Gen Y credit union members. The other initiative will be a consumer awareness campaign that will increase consumers' knowledge of Minnesota credit unions and encourage them to join a credit union.
Credit unions are encouraged to support MNAP's 2012 initiatives by adding a contribution to their dues invoice. With questions about MNAP, contact committee chair Marty Kelly or MnCUN Director of Communications Rachel Anderson.
Applications available for state lending programs
The Minnesota Department of Employment & Economic Development (DEED) announced this week the launch of several Minnesota State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI) programs. These programs aim to stimulate private-sector lending, and DEED is accepting applications from lenders that would like to take advantage of these funds.
These federally-funded programs will provide funding and guarantees to lenders that offer financing to eligible small businesses. The initiative allocates up to $15.4 million into four state programs:
- The Capital Access Program;
- Emerging Entrepreneurs Fund;
- Small Business Loan Guarantees; and
- Early Stage Fund (to be launched in early 2012).
In October, the Network hosted a webinar on these programs that outlined how credit unions can be involved. To view the session archive, visit the Small Business Lending page of the Network website. To download a program application, visit the DEED website. With questions, contact Bart Bevins by email or at (651) 259-7424.
Nominate a colleague for the Professional, Volunteer & Hellermann Awards
MnCUN is now accepting nominations for its three most prestigious awards, which will be presented at the Network's Annual Meeting in April. Now is your chance to nominate a colleague for:
- Outstanding Professional of the Year;
- Outstanding Volunteer of the Year; and
- The 2012 Simon Hellermann Award for Credit Union Philanthropy.
Presented on an annual basis, the Professional and Volunteer awards showcase dedicated service and professionalism of credit union staff and board members for their work over the previous calendar year.
The Simon Hellerman Award, created in 2000 and given on a three-year cycle, recognizes demonstrated excellence in credit union philanthropy and charitable contributions to the Minnesota credit union movement. Candidates for this award must continually display a willingness to go above and beyond the call of duty through volunteerism, demonstrated leadership and involvement in civic and local community affairs. Individuals, credit unions, chapters and affinity groups are eligible to win this award.
Nominations for all awards must be received by the Network by Friday, Feb. 10. Complete information and printable nomination forms can be found on the Recognition Awards page of the Network website.
Credit union volunteers have until Saturday, Dec. 31, to save $50 off the registration price for the Western States Volunteers' Conference. Set for Feb. 12-14 in Las Vegas, this conference will provide volunteers information, tips and tactics for being a leader at the credit union.
Volunteers' Conference early bird discount ends Dec. 31
Geared toward board members, supervisory committee members, credit committee members and all interested volunteers, this conference will feature updates on leadership tools, risk management and market trends. Attendees will learn about revenue and cost-cutting opportunities, along with what tactics are working for credit unions right now. The conference also provides a great opportunity to network and exchange ideas with volunteers from credit unions across the country.
To register for this event, go to the Western States Volunteers' Conference page of the Network website.
Paraguayan CU reps experience Minnesota CU culture
Last week the Network welcomed six Paraguayan credit union representatives to Minnesota for an international exchange. The visit was part of an ongoing international partnership between the Paraguayan credit union association Central de Cooperativas del Area Nacional Ltda. (CENCOPAN) and MnCUN that was established in 2004 through the World Council of Credit Unions (WOCCU).
The Paraguayans' Minnesota experience began with a meeting at the MnCUN office focused on the association's structure, activities and service to credit unions. While in St. Paul, the Paraguayans also met with Speaker of the House Kurt Zellers (R-Maple Grove), Minnesota Department of Commerce Deputy Commissioner of Administration Steve Carlson, and Credit Union Program Director Carl Schwartz. These meetings provided the visitors insight into credit union lobbying efforts and the coordination between the credit union regulatory and oversight organizations.
Throughout the week, the international credit union representatives also visited several Minnesota credit unions, including Hiway FCU and St. Paul FCU in St. Paul, SouthPoint FCU in New Ulm, and SPIRE FCU in Falcon Heights. These interactions highlighted each credit union's unique approach to meeting the needs of their members. Specifically, the host credit unions presented information about IT infrastructure and security, internet banking, branch management, collections processes and business continuity.
"This international exchange was an amazing week of global networking and international credit union development,” said Mark D. Cummins, MnCUN President and CEO. "This partnership is a great example of ‘people helping people' and the successes we can have when working together.”
Credit union notes…
- Bluestone Federal Credit Union merged with Associated Healthcare Credit Union on Dec. 1. The combined credit unions will have $76 million in assets and will serve 12,000 members through five Twin Cities locations.
CUNA Mutual offers free training resources
CUNA Mutual Group understands the power of education. They know that having well-trained staff is one of the quickest ways to increase revenue, achieve higher member satisfaction and improve staff morale. For that reason, they offer credit unions access to free, interactive webinars that teach staff about effective lending practices.
CUNA Mutual's webinars feature experienced facilitators who guide employees through exploring the features of various products and services. Attendees build their confidence, product knowledge and skills to effectively help and sell to members. Below are the some of the CUNA Mutual lending webinars set for January:
- Tuesday, Jan. 3 (9 a.m.) – LOANLINER Deposit: Account Opening Documents & Disclosures
- Wednesday, Jan. 4 (2 p.m.) – Guaranteed Asset Protection (GAP)
- Tuesday, Jan. 10 (9 a.m.) – LOANLINER Consumer Lending: Home Equity Line of Credit Concepts & Documents
- Wednesday, Jan. 11 (9 p.m.) – LOANLINER Consumer Lending: Home Equity Closed-End
- Wednesday, Jan. 11 (2 p.m.) – LOANLINER Deposit: Special Account Relationships
- Wednesday, Jan. 18 (9 a.m.) – Mechanical Repair Coverage (MRC)
To learn more about the products and services CUNA Mutual Group has to offer your credit union, contact MnCUN Director of Business Development Vickie Ganrude by email or at (651) 288-5515.
Enhance member service with MnIPC
Find the missing piece of your service puzzle with MnIPC. Through its diverse package of services, MnIPC helps credit unions simplify back-office check processing operations. Are you looking for remote deposit capture, image archives and home banking interface? MnIPC has you covered.
MnIPC is an independent check processor that provides share draft and deposit processing at competitive rates. It is able to offer flexible settlement arrangements based on where credit unions choose to hold their accounts. MnIPC's suite of check processing services includes: inclearings; return items and image archive; and branch, remote and home deposits. Plus they use advanced check processing technology to offer check document imaging for research and retrievals, automated return item processing, CD image output, and image statement printing.
Investigate MnIPC and discover the quality, cost-effective check processing services your credit union has been missing. For more information about MnIPC's products and services, contact MnIPC Vice President Michelle Carlson by email or at (651) 288-5551.
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 webcasts available. Professionals and volunteers are also invited to attend MnCUN's Credit Union Day at the Capitol. To register for this and other events, visit the online Event Calendar.