October 8, 2010 ● Volume 33, Issue 20 Archived Issues
Network offers corporate stabilization resources
In light of the recent corporate stabilization activities, the Network has compiled a variety of resources to help Minnesota credit unions. The Minnesota Credit Unions: Safe, Sound & Secure page of the Network web site contains MnCUN’s summary of the final rule featured in last week’s Summation, along with overviews from NCUA and CUNA on the corporate actions. In addition, credit unions can download corporate credit union talking points, a question and answer tip sheet for working with the media, and key points for discussing the corporate situation with board members.
As credit unions receive questions about the corporate situation from consumers and the media, it is important to emphasize that Minnesota credit unions remain healthy and strong. Please highlight that the money deposited in credit unions is backed by the full faith and credit of the federal government and that no taxpayer money is being used to support the credit union system.
Credit unions that are contacted by the press about this issue should inform MnCUN Director of Communications Rachel Kuenzel. With questions about the corporate actions, please contact the Network office.
Friday, Oct. 1, was MnCUN Executive Vice President Peter Skaalen's last day with the Network. Skaalen managed the for-profit side of the Network’s operations, including the Network Service Corporation, Minnesota Item Processing Corporation (MnIPC), and the Minnesota Credit Union Service Corporation (MnCUSC). The Network wishes Peter the best in his future endeavors. Questions regarding these organizations should now be directed to the Network office.
Minnesota credit union reps visit officials during annual Hike the Hill
Minnesota credit unions are safe and sound and continue to help members, consumers and small businesses through the economic recovery. This was the main message nine Minnesota credit union professionals and volunteers shared with lawmakers and industry officials during Minnesota’s annual Hike the Hill on Sept. 21-23 in Washington, D.C. During this three-day trip, attendees discussed a variety of credit union issues with federal officials, including individuals from the NCUA and members of Minnesota’s Congressional Delegation.
The main focus of the group’s trip was to discuss how lawmakers and NCUA representatives can address the regulatory and legislative concerns of Minnesota credit unions. During a visit to the NCUA, the group attended meetings with Chairman Deborah Matz and Board Member Michael Fryzel, discussing examination issues and the future direction of corporate credit unions. The professionals and volunteers also shared their concerns regarding the implementation and enforcement of the Wall Street Reform & Consumer Protection Act (H.R. 4173). Signed into law in mid-July, this law, among other things, directed the Federal Reserve to establish debit card interchange rates.
The interchange provision was also a key topic in Hike the Hill attendees’ conversations with the Minnesota Congressional Delegation. Outlining the provision’s potential negative impact on credit unions, Minnesota professionals and volunteers emphasized to elected officials the importance of having a two-tiered fee system for interchange rates.
Conversations on Capitol Hill also centered on the need to raise credit unions’ member business lending (MBL) cap. The group reiterated that an increase in the MBL cap would have a positive impact on the economy and shared stories of Minnesota’s small businesses’ need for capital. While in Washington, D.C., credit union representatives visited the offices of all of Minnesota’s federal representatives.
"Hike the Hill provided us with the opportunity to meet with regulators and legislators and discuss solutions to the issues affecting Minnesota credit unions and their members,” said Mara Humphrey, MnCUN Vice President-Governmental Affairs. "This annual trip to the Nation’s Capital enables us to continue building and strengthening our relationships with lawmakers and federal officials.”
Following the Hill visits, the group hosted a reception for staff members of Minnesota’s senators and representatives. Hike the Hill participants included five credit unions professionals, two volunteers, and two MnCUN staff members. MnCUN’s annual Hike the Hill event helps Minnesota to maintain a steady credit union presence in Washington, D.C.
Online housing block open for 2011 GAC
Credit union professionals and volunteers planning to attend CUNA’s 2011 Governmental Affairs Conference (GAC) – scheduled for Feb. 27-March 3 in Washington, D.C. – can now make lodging reservations for this event. Minnesota’s GAC attendees have the option of reserving a room in MnCUN’s housing sub-block at the Grand Hyatt or making lodging accommodations through CUNA’s Housing Bureau.
The Grand Hyatt is located three blocks from the conference venue. As one of the co-headquartered hotels, it is one of the closest hotels accepting reservations. Reservations within the sub-block are limited and are available on a first-come basis. Once the sub-block is sold out, credit unions will have to go through the CUNA Housing Bureau. MnCUN recommends reserving a room in the Minnesota block as soon as possible.
CUNA’s annual GAC provides credit union professionals and volunteers from around the country the opportunity to network with peers, hear from key legislative and political leaders, and experience a variety of breakout sessions on credit unions' hot issues. For more information about the GAC, along with details about housing, visit the Governmental Affairs Conference page of the Network web site.
Oct. 12 election volunteer opportunity
Credit union professionals and volunteers are invited to participate in a door-knocking event on Tuesday, Oct. 12, for State Rep. Tim Sanders (R-Blaine). This campaign activity will enable credit unions to show support for a candidate who has served as a credit union political ally.
Prior to the campaign activity, volunteers will meet at the Tavern Grill at 10950 Club West Parkway in Blaine for lunch at 1 p.m. The door-knock will take place from 2 p.m.-4 p.m. in neighborhoods throughout the north metro. Individuals interested in the event should R.S.V.P. to MnCUN Political Advocacy Director Monica Weber by e-mail or at (651) 288-5533.
Please note: Any political activities must be done on a credit union professional’s own time as a volunteer. A credit union may not compensate an employee for his or her volunteer activities. A salaried executive may take time off during working hours for political activities so long as they complete their work in a reasonable period. Both events will be conducted in compliance with all applicable laws and limitations/restrictions related to political events and fundraising.
Affinity Plus professional named to "Top Women in Finance” list
Elizabeth Hayes, Affinity Plus Federal Credit Union Executive Vice President & Chief Administrative Officer, was selected as a recipient of the 2010 "Top Women in Finance” award. The list, compiled by the independent daily newspaper Finance & Commerce, recognizes 50 women who have made significant contributions to the financial services industry by positively influencing their businesses and communities.
During her 12-year tenure at Affinity Plus, Hayes has implemented a variety of programs and services. She introduced the credit union’s Solutions Model, which focuses on providing delinquent members permanent solutions to their financial difficulties. On the national credit union scene, she was an inaugural member of the Filene Research Institute’s i3 Innovation Group in 2004. Currently, Hayes is involved in Member Gateway, a national credit union service organization dedicated to developing innovative products and services for credit unions and the broader financial services industry. She is also the Chair of the Affinity Plus Foundation, which promotes financial literacy throughout the state of Minnesota.
"I am honored to have been named a recipient of this award, which highlights the credit union industry in a time when people are looking for alternatives to banks,” said Hayes. "It helps increase the reputation of the industry and distinguish credit unions as viable competitors in the financial services industry.”
Other women selected in this 10th annual awards program include partners, executive vice presidents, CFOs, CEOs and managing directors at financial institutions and businesses throughout Minnesota. The 50 honorees were chosen by Finance & Commerce’s editorial staff based on personal and professional accomplishment, leadership, and community service criteria.
"This recognition is well-deserved, and we are pleased to have the credit union movement represented in this distinguished group of professionals,” said Mark D. Cummins, Minnesota Credit Union Network President & CEO. "I am thrilled to congratulate Liz on her success and accomplishments.”
Award recipients will be honored during a Nov. 10 dinner at the Hyatt Regency’s Nicollet Ballroom in Minneapolis, and their accomplishments will be highlighted in a November special section of Finance & Commerce.
International CU Day celebration opportunities
Credit unions around the state are invited to join their chapters on Oct. 21 for International Credit Union (ICU) Day celebrations. ICU Day is a day set aside to reflect upon the cooperative history of credit unions and their achievements and to promote the credit union difference in countries across the globe. The following chapters will be hosting events on Oct. 21.
- Archer Doig & River Cities Chapters – 5 p.m., Bloomington
Join the Archer Doig & River Cities chapters as they learn about niche networking. Registrations are due by Tuesday, Oct. 12.
- Central Minnesota Chapter – 5:30 p.m., Sauk Rapids
The Central Minnesota Chapter will be hosting an event featuring comic ventriloquist James Wedgwood. Registrations are due by Thursday, Oct. 14.
- Lakes & Pines Chapter – 5:30 p.m., Cook
Join the Lakes & Pines Chapter as they explore The Credit Union Difference. Registrations are due by noon on Tuesday, Oct. 12.
- Southwestern Chapter – 6 p.m., Mankato
The Southwestern Chapter will put the credit union philosophy into action on ICU Day by packaging food for Kids Against Hunger. Registrations are due by Monday, Oct. 11.
Get involved this ICU Day and attend one of these chapter meetings. Detailed information for each event is available in the Event Calendar section of the Network web site.
Local association offers free Financial Planning Day
The Financial Planning Association of Minnesota encourages credit unions to invite their members to the Twin Cities Financial Planning Day on Saturday, Oct. 16. The event is free and provides attendees the opportunity to meet one-on-one with dozens of professional financial planners to discuss their personal finance questions, concerns and interests.
This event will be held at the Burnsville Performing Arts Center and provides information and advice on a wide range of topics, including financial planning, investment, retirement, income tax planning, insurance, estate planning and employee benefits. Participants can attend workshops and meet with experts throughout the day.
The objective of the Financial Planning Day is to help people experience first-hand how financial planning can improve their lives. While the event is free, registration is required. For more information and online registration, visit the Event Calendar section of the Network web site.
CUNA Mutual to host free Online Discovery Conference
This year CUNA Mutual will host its first-ever Online Discovery Conference on Nov. 3 – and it’s free. A blend of sessions, networking opportunities and even an exposition hall, this virtual event is a web-based equivalent to a face-to-face conference, without the expense or travel.
Throughout the day credit union professionals will participate in four webcasts focused on growth strategies for credit unions. Between sessions conference "attendees” can participate in online chats centered on leveraging social media, implementing effective board practices, and demonstrating excellent member service. The online event is designed for CEOs and senior leadership teams of credit unions, but all employees will benefit from its future-focused content.
A $5,000 Discovery Grant will be awarded to one credit union whose attendee fully participates in the conference’s many amenities, including chat rooms, web casts, and exhibit hall booth visits. Estimated to be a $250 value, Online Discovery Conference is being offered to credit union professionals for free in honor of CUNA Mutual’s 75th anniversary. For additional information about the Online Discovery Conference, visit the Event Calendar section of the Network web site.
Holiday gift cards: One size fits all
Assist your members with their holiday needs by offering prepaid Visa gift cards. These cards enable your credit union to serve its members while providing you the competitive advantage over other financial institutions.
Visa gift cards are accepted anywhere the Visa logo is displayed, including in-store, online and by the phone. They are more functional than a gift certificate and safer than cash. If the card is lost or stolen, the unused amount can be placed on a new card for the member. Plus cards are good for seven years after their activation date.
Through its partnership with the ICUL Service Corporation, MnCUN is offering credit unions a turn-key gift card program that has minimal expenses. There are no start-up fees or implementation costs, and credit unions don’t have to pay any monthly fees.
Explore the member service opportunities available through prepaid Visa gift cards. For more information about the products and services offered by ICUL, contact MnCUN Director of Business Development Vickie Ganrude by e-mail or at (651) 288-5515.
Secure the future of your credit union with CU Succeed
Many credit unions around the country are seeking innovative ways to attract young members. With CU Succeed your credit union can access the expertise, tools and resources to appeal to teen members.
CU Succeed is a cooperative venture brought to you by MnCUN and other participating credit union leagues across the nation. Their primary goal is to assist credit unions in the United States and Canada in attracting teen members. They also strive to provide valuable financial education to teens while raising their awareness of the credit union difference. Ultimately, the company assists credit unions in convincing teens that the best place for their money – now and in the future – is with their credit union.
CU Succeed assists credit unions in building strong relationships with members through financial education. The program provides brochures, posters, statement stuffers, and online resources to use for communicating with and reaching younger members. CU Succeed provides teens the information they want and gives credit unions an opportunity to reach them when they are the most receptive to what the movement has to offer. Not only that, but the program is designed to help develop life-long members by building long-term relationships between teens and credit unions.
CU Succeed currently serves credit unions ranging in asset size from $500,000 to $5 billion. The program is available to all credit unions in the United States and Canada. For more information about CU Succeed, contact MnCUN Director of Business Development Vickie Ganrude by e-mail 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 webcasts available throughout the fall. MnCUN's upcoming conferences include Small Credit Union Conference and the Marketing Conference. To register for these and other events, visit the online Event Calendar.
- Oct. 12 (5:30 p.m.): Hiawatha Chapter Meeting
- Oct. 13 (2 p.m.): WebCast - ACH Audit
- Oct. 14 (10 a.m.): Minnesota Credit Union Foundation Board Meeting
- Oct. 14 (10 a.m.): TeleCourse - Telephone Collection Tips
- Oct. 14 (2 p.m.): WebCast - What Do CEOs Need From Their Boards?
- Oct. 15: MnCUN Small Credit Union Conference
- Oct. 16 (9 a.m.): Twin Cities Financial Planning Day
- Oct. 19 (10 a.m.): TeleCourse - Coaching & Performance Management
- Oct. 19 (10:30 a.m.): Card Services Roundtable
- Oct. 20 (10 a.m.): CUNA Mutual Group WebCast - Emerging Technologies = Emerging Risk
- Oct. 20 (2 p.m.): WebCast - High-Risk Accounts
- Oct. 21 (10 a.m.): TeleCourse - Social Media & Your CU
- Oct. 21 (5 p.m.): Archer Doig & River Cities Chapter Meevirtualting
- Oct. 21 (5:30 p.m.): Central Minnesota Chapter Meeting
- Oct. 21 (5:30 p.m.): Lakes & Pines Chapter Meeting
- Oct. 21 (6 p.m.): Southwestern Chapter Meeting
- Oct. 22 (8:30 a.m.): MnCUN Board Meeting
- Oct. 26 (12:30 p.m.): FEMA Flood Insurance Compliance Training
- Oct. 27 (10 a.m.): TeleCourse - Trends & Risks of Serving Members Remotely
- Oct. 27 (11 a.m.): MnCU4Kids Bowl-O-Rama
- Oct. 27 (2 p.m.): WebCast - Member Credit Report Disputes
- Oct. 28 (2 p.m.): WebCast - Real Estate Lending Compliance Violations