LSCU eSignal Weekly
LSCU eNews Weekly January 24, 2011
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LSCU eNews Weekly
In This Issue
LSCU Headlines
Florida Rep. Posey named to House Finanical Services subcommittees
LSCU sends two names to Gov. Bentley for ACUA administrator
Upcoming CUNA GAC important for credit unions to speak with lawmakers
Affiliation with the LSCU and CUNA is vital for unity and cooperation
NCUA virtual Town Hall meeting on the corporates coming in February
LSCU to offer compliance call in February
CUNA's Cheney's Huffington Post column points out Interchange rules a loss
Corporate America looking to merge with Louisiana Corporate
Ten days remain to sign up for two Ventelligence ePurchasing events
Florida's Garcia named vice chair of NCUF board
LSCU Councils to meet in March in Birmingham
Governmental Affairs News
League talks to House Financial Services Committee staff on Interchange
Florida roundup: Lawmakers busy talking about a variety of topics
Washington update: State of the Union will dominate the week
Compliance Corner
League InfoSight highlight: Truth-in-Savings changes rinalized by NCUA
Compliance calendar and training
Cooperative Initiatives News
Scholarships available for NYIB annual conference in Pittsburgh
Consider youth savings challenge during national credit union youth week in April
Education News
The 2nd LSCU AC&E coming up in June in Orlando
The LSCU has resources to help credit unions comply with financial literacy
Education Calendar
LEVERAGE News
LEVERAGE saves credit unions money through first-class products and services
Last week for Office Depot $25 discount
Comparing an insured conventional mortgage with an FHA loan
News from You
Florida Commerce opens new branch in Tallahassee
Alabama Telco helping members get financially fit
Southeast Corporate holding town hall meetings
Pen Air Federal Credit Union celebrates 75 years
EMPLOYMENT
View available credit union jobs
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LSCU Headlines

Florida Rep. Posey named to House Finanical Services subcommittees

House Financial Services Committee Chairman Spencer Bachus (R-AL) began laying out assignments for Republican House members last week. Among his subcommittee appointments was Rep. Bill Posey (R-FL) who will serve on the Subcommittee on Capital Markets and Government Sponsored Entities and the Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations.

Rep. Posey is the only Congressman from Alabama or Florida to receive an appointment by Chairman Bachus. The Financial Services Committee will  hold its first hearing of the 112th Congress on Wednesday Jan. 26  to explore ways to promote economic activity and foster job creation.

“Our small businesses need certainty from Washington in order to expand and hire workers. If we are to enjoy a full economic recovery, new job creation must come from the private sector. Sustainable economic growth is our main objective, and this hearing is just the beginning of our work to ensure government is encouraging, not inhibiting job creation and economic recovery,” said Chairman Bachus.

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LSCU sends two names to Gov. Bentley for ACUA administrator

One of Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley's first credit union related tasks will be to appoint a new Alabama Credit Union Administration (ACUA) Administrator. Current ACUA Administrator Glenn Latham has indicated he will not seek re-appointment to the position.

The LSCU sent a letter this morning to Gov. Bentley asking him to consider Bill Hallmark and Larry Morgan for the job. Gov. Bentley has asked the League to submit some names to be considered for the position. Below is a snapshot of Bill and Larry's background:

Bill Hallmark served as CEO of COMALA credit union in Montgomery until his retirement in 2007. Prior to that, he has served as CEO or General Manager of credit unions since 1970. In addition, he served on the board of directors of the Alabama Credit Union League (the predecessor organization to the LSCU) for 14 years as well as serving for 10 years as a Director of the Credit Union National Association (CUNA). He also served as president of the Credit Union Manager’s Association. In addition, he was a member of the Federal Reserve Bank’s Financial Institutions’ Advisory Committee.

Larry Morgan served as CEO of APCO Employees Credit Union in Birmingham until his retirement at the end of 2010. APCO is the state’s largest state chartered credit union. Larry currently serves as the Chairman of Corporate America Credit Union. He has served on the Advisory Board of the Alabama Credit Union Administration, having been appointed by Gov. Riley in 2005 and reappointed again by Gov. Riley in 2008. Larry is also a former employee of the Alabama Credit Union League.

It is not known when Gov. Bentley will offer his appointment. It may come as early as February. Latham will stay on as administrator until a new person is appointed. Click here to read the full letter sent to Gov. Bentley. 

 

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Upcoming CUNA GAC important for credit unions to speak with lawmakers

The 2011 CUNA GAC will have a Southeastern flair as Reps. Spencer Bachus (R-AL) and Debbie Wasserman-Schultz (D-FL) will speak at the General Session on Wednesday. The CUNA GAC runs Feb. 27-Mar. 3 at the Washington D.C. Convention Center.

The LSCU will host the Alabama and Florida delegation at the Grand Hyatt hotel right near the convention center. The LSCU will hold a Welcome Reception on Sunday Feb. 27 and then hospitality events Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. The hospitality events provide a good opportunity for credit unions to network about their day and to talk about the upcoming Hill visits. The latest information and any schedule changes will also be provided at the hospitality events. The LSCU delegation will make most of the Hill visits Wednesday and Thursday of CUNA GAC week. This is a great opportunity for credit unions to speak directly with lawmakers. Many times the lawmakers ask pointed questions about legislation and how it affects credit union members. A strong showing by credit unions in Alabama and Florida show lawmakers how important credit unions are in the financial landscape.

The lineup of speakers at the CUNA GAC is always impressive, but in 2011 it will be a who's who of speakers and lawmakers in the news. The latest names added to the speakers list includes Sen. Roy Blunt (R-MO), a public supporter of the federal credit union tax status and other credit union-friendly issues, Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA), former chair of the House Financial Services Committee and Consumer Financial Protection Bureau architect Elizabeth Warren. Sen. Blunt will address GAC attendees on Wednesday morning, Mar. 2. The lineup for this year's GAC also features Sen. Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), and Rep. Steve Stivers (R-Ohio). The GAC also recently added, as a keynote speaker, actor and Children's Miracle Network Hospitals co-founder John Schneider. He was originally slated to speak in 2010 before having to bow out just before the GAC.

There is still time for credit unions to register to join the LSCU at the CUNA GAC Feb. 27 - Mar. 3. Contact LSCU Executive Assistant to the President Teresa Gray at 866.231.0545 ext. 2110 to get your name on the list and to secure a hotel room. For more information, visit the LSCU CUNA GAC Resources area of the website.


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Affiliation with the LSCU and CUNA is vital for unity and cooperation

As credit unions face an increasing number of challenges, it has never been more important that the movement speak with one voice through cooperation and unity. A credit union's active participation as a member of the LSCU and CUNA is vital to the long-term success of the credit union movement.

“Although I find most credit unions to be very cooperative, I feel that the LSCU is the glue that keeps our bond strong,” said Rose Gunter, CEO of Healthcare’s Cooperative Credit Union in Jacksonville, FL.  “As a smaller credit union, the LSCU gives us a voice that’s loud enough to be heard. We benefit greatly from the educational opportunities, both at the chapter and the state level, and political advocacy. To me it’s the complete package, and not one or two tangible items, that continues to enforce our commitment to the LSCU; especially keeping the cooperative spirit alive. That’s something we will never be able to restore once its lost."

To remain an affiliate of the LSCU, credit unions are encouraged to submit 2011 dues payment by Mar. 1.  A reminder dues invoice will be mailed this week. If your credit union needs more information about the value of League affiliation, please contact Laura Vann at 866.231.0545 ext. 2181. Credit unions can visit the Member Relations area of the LSCU website for more information on the importance of unity and cooperation. 


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NCUA virtual Town Hall meeting on the corporates coming in February

While speaking to the Virginia Credit Union League's Northern Virginia Chapter, NCUA Chairman Debbie Matz announced that the NCUA will hold a Virtual Town Hall meeting Thursday Feb. 17 from 2 - 3:30 pm EST. Chairman Matz will host the webinar that will focus on the NCUA’s initiatives to reform the corporate credit union system, minimize costs to consumer credit unions, and promote financial literacy for volunteers.

“NCUA is moving forward on several initiatives this year to strengthen the safety and soundness of credit unions, which will keep assessments and premiums as low as possible,” said Chairman Matz. “This free webinar will be an efficient way to clearly communicate our initiatives and open a new dialog with stakeholders.”

Participants will be able to submit questions during the live webinar. The webinar will be open to everyone, with an archived version on the NCUA’s website for those who could not participate.

A webinar registration link will be posted at www.ncua.gov in early February. [ Return to Top ]

LSCU to offer compliance call in February

The LSCU will hold its first Compliance Call of 2011 on Thursday Feb. 10 at 3 pm EST/2 pm CST. The call will be hosted by LSCU VP of Regulatory Affairs Bill Berg and will feature CUNA Director of Compliance of Regulatory Affairs Valerie Moss as a guest speaker.

The call will feature timely topics such as the S.A.F.E. Act and the ATM ADA Compliance. The League is hoping the SAFE Act registration procedures will be finalized by the time of the call. 

The format of the audio calls will be slightly different than in the past:
  • They will remain free and run for one hour
  • To sign up, send an email to LSCU Association Services Support Specialist Tracy Shimansky. The email can include the names and email address for everyone from your credit union that will participate. An email with instructions and handouts will be sent a few days before the call
  • Email registration will ensure a quicker roll call
  • Each Compliance call will be recorded and archived for future use for you or your staff

The Compliance call is open to all Presidents, CEOs and Managers, as well as compliance contacts. If you have any questions, contact Berg at 866.231.0545 ext. 1028.


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CUNA's Cheney's Huffington Post column points out Interchange rules a loss

CUNA President/CEO Bill Cheney posted a column on the Huffington Post in response to recent columns on the website that characterizes the Interchange proposals as a loss for big banks and a win for credit unions and  community banks.

Cheney points out that "the coming changes to the debit card interchange rules, esoteric though they may be, are going to have real and negative consequences that will unfortunately hit consumers directly in the pocketbook.

"Consumers can expect higher fees or diminished debit card services as financial institutions deal with the new reality that is expected to ensue if a regulatory proposal now being circulated by the Federal Reserve is allowed to go into effect."

While the Huffington Post has been generally positive toward credit unions, its views on Interchange has been opposite of the credit union stance. To read the entire post, visit the Huffington Post website

 

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Corporate America looking to merge with Louisiana Corporate

Corporate America Credit Union, headquartered in Irondale, AL, announced plans to pursue a merger with Louisiana Corporate CU. The boards of directors of both corporates have signed a letter of intent to pursue the merger. The deal will not be final until due diligence and regulatory approval have been done.

If approved, the result will be a $3.9 billion Corporate America CU with a combined membership of 514 credit unions in 26 states. Initial plans call for Louisiana member services and potentially credit union service organization (CUSO) operations to be housed in LaCorp's Metairie, La., facility.

Corporate America President/CEO Thomas Bonds will serve as president/CEO of the combined organization. LaCorp's staff will remain in place and continue to serve credit unions in Louisiana.

CUNA News Now reports that Bonds says the merger "will benefit both Louisiana and Corporate America members."

"This business combination is a natural fit as our memberships are similar, and our product and service offerings will benefit our combined membership going forward," added Bonds.

CUNA News Now also reports that LaCorp President/CEO David Savoie says that credit unions that currently are members of LaCorp would be asked to convert their existing membership capital shares (MCA) and paid-in-capital (PIC) to perpetual contributed capital (PCC), which will be required by the revised NCUA corporate regulation, Part 704. No additional capital investment would be required from these members.

The two corporates' mutual desire to provide high-quality member service, proximity of their organizations and shared knowledge of the regional market make merging a logical next step--one that carries significant benefits to credit unions, Savoie said.

"I believe there is a tremendous advantage in combining our corporates because we would be able to handle both the correspondent and credit needs of any-sized credit union at the same institution," Savoie added. "Unlike some of the CUSO/bank partnership ideas now being floated, our members would not need to rely on banks for their credit or payment processing needs."

Both CEOs agree that they will proceed with the merger only if there is a sound business case for it. They have discussed the possible merger with their regulators and are staying in close contact with both federal and state agencies.


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Ten days remain to sign up for two Ventelligence ePurchasing events

If credit unions are not using LEVERAGE's Ventelligence ePurchasing program, then they are missing out on an opportunity to have a vendor work for their business instead of the other way around.  A December event for Armored Car Services created a collective 58 percent of savings from prior year costs for JetStream FCU (both U.S. and Puerto Rico), Florida Transportation CU, Darden Employees FCU, Buckeye Community FCU, and Railroad & Industrial CU. A second event was held for Achieva for Enterprise Risk Management Software and produced a total savings of 12.1 percent.

There is still time to sign up for two tentatively scheduled ePurchasing events in the next two months. Contract specifications and/or quotes are needed by the following deadlines:

Event

Deadline

AC Maintenance

Friday January 28

Computer Equipment

Friday January 28

Telecom Systems

Friday February 4 


If your credit union is interested in participating, contact LEVERAGE Director, ePurchasing Lori Vary. [ Return to Top ]

Florida's Garcia named vice chair of NCUF board

floridacentral CU CEO Laida Garcia

The National Credit Union Foundation (NCUF) announced the new makeup of its board of directors which included floridacentral Credit Union CEO Laida Garcia being named vice chairman. Garcia joins Seattle, Washington based BECU CEO Gary Oakland who was named chairman of the NCUF board. 

Garcia has been very active in the credit union movement. She's currently a director on CUNA's board and a former board member of the Florida Credit Union League.

Oakland succeeds Allan McMorris as the chairman of the NCUF board. McMorris will remain as one of the 13 members of the board. NCUF Executive Director Bucky Sebastian says he's excited to get to work with the new board.

"We have much we want to achieve, especially around our new focus on financial education. Now more than ever, the Foundation’s grants and programs are vital to helping credit unions make financial freedom a reality for consumers across the country,” said Sebastian. [ Return to Top ]

LSCU Councils to meet in March in Birmingham

Former NCUA board Chairman Dennis Dollar will be the keynote speaker at the spring meeting of the LSCU Councils (formerly LSCU Leadership Councils), Mar. 23-24 in Birmingham, AL.

Dollar, principal partner in Dollar Associates, LLC, will speak about "The Right Moves for Credit Unions in Today's Economy" during the Council meeting's afternoon session. Dollar takes on the big issues credit unions are facing today and provides his unique perspective on the strategic moves that America’s credit unions must make in today’s challenging economic times if the movement is to keep moving.

Credit union professionals won't want to miss this meeting as the councils offer the best regional opportunity to stay abreast of trends in specific disciplines, hear the timeliest topics from top speakers, and to network with industry peers in Alabama and Florida.

The LSCU Councils are perfect for CFO’s, Lending Professionals, Marketing and Business Development, and Operations, Sales & Service Professionals.

Agenda:

Wednesday, March 23
4:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. (CST) Informal Welcome Reception                       

Thursday, March 24
8:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. (CST) Council Educational Sessions & Networking Meetings

Location: Birmingham Marriott, Birmingham, AL

Price: $195.00

Visit www.lscu.coop for registration details and more information. Contact LEVERAGE Business Development Consultant Lisa Hammock 866.231.0545, ext. 1146 with any questions.

Follow the LSCU Councils on Facebook.

 

The LSCU Councils are sponsored by:


 

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Governmental Affairs News
League talks to House Financial Services Committee staff on Interchange

Last week, the League and representatives from credit unions in Alabama and Florida met by phone with top staffers on the House Financial Services Committee to discuss the Federal Reserve’s proposed rule to implement the interchange provisions of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform Act. This call was building on the conversations the League has been having with Congressional staff explaining concerns about the proposed rule and asking that Congress at least hold hearings and delay the effective date of the rule. During the call, credit unions and the LSCU staff pointed out several specific concerns with the way the proposed rule has been drafted including:

  • The lack of enforcement of the required exemption from the price controls, which is in the law to exempt issuers of under $10 billion in assets from the price-controlled interchange rates
  • The lack of enforcement to prohibit merchants from discriminating between card issuers. Without a strong prohibition, the League is concerned that merchants might refuse debit cards issued by exempt issuers that are not part of the price-controlled system
  • Without these enforcement mechanisms, the two-tiered system might put credit unions and other smaller issuers at a competitive disadvantage
  • If the two-tier system is not structured correctly, the proposed rule’s 12 cent per transaction ceiling would cost credit unions significant amounts of money which would have to be made up elsewhere

The committee staffers asked good questions, and appreciated the chance to find out firsthand how the Federal Reserve’s rule will impact credit unions and their members. The League will continue to build on the conversation as it looks to Congress as an additional way to adequately address the interchange issue for credit unions.

Also last week, the League sent every credit union a brief summary of the proposed interchange rule, and a link to CUNA’s “Operation Comment” so that credit union staff can comment directly to the Federal Reserve regarding this proposed rule. The League asks all credit unions to take a few minutes to provide input during the comment period. If you have any questions, contact LSCU SVP of Governmental Affairs Will McCarty at 866.231.0545 ext. 2137 or VP of Regulatory Affairs Bill Berg at ext. 1028 or Director of Compliance Scott Morris at ext. 2165. 

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Florida roundup: Lawmakers busy talking about a variety of topics

Florida lawmakers have a busy schedule this week in Tallahassee. They are expected to discuss everything from immigration, property taxes, Medicaid, the state’s court system, prisons, casino gambling, property insurance, the state budget, teacher merit pay and the state pension plan. All of these topics will undoubtedly be hot button issues for Floridians and legislators this legislative session as there is a growing concern for the state’s budget problems.

Gov. Scott has made it clear that the current budget is “bloated” and that the state is “not cautious enough” in the way money is spent. Several of Gov. Scott's comments and proposals to fix the state’s $3.6 billion budget shortfall have already caused some push back from the legislature’s leaders. House Speaker Dean Cannon (R) and Senate President Mike Haridopolos (R) have both voiced some skepticism about the governors plans, but agree that cuts will have to be made.

In the midst of talking about making cuts, the state’s unemployment rate remains at 12 percent. With 1.1 million Floridians out of work, part of the governors budget plan will include tax cuts and the reduction of what he calls “job killing regulations.” Many law makers have claimed that tax cuts will be impossible given the condition that state is in, Gov. Scott claims that his plan will “show them how to do it.”

The LSCU will continue to advocate on behalf of credit unions at the state level and ensure that the industry is not adversely affected by any new changes in regulation. It will be increasingly important for the LSCU members to stay informed on state legislative issues as the may arise. The continued involvement of LSCU affiliates in the advocacy efforts at the state and federal level is vital to the success of the credit union agenda. Florida credit unions are urged to attend the LSCU State GAC Apr. 13-14 in Tallahassee.

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Washington update: State of the Union will dominate the week

Both chambers of Congress are back in Washington D.C. this week. While the highlight of the week will be the President’s State of the Union Address on Tuesday evening, other legislative business is on the agenda. 

The House returns Monday and will begin consideration of a budget resolution (H.R. 38) to reduce federal spending to fiscal year 2008 levels. Tuesday the House will debate two bills under suspension of the rules and complete consideration of the budget resolution. The legislation that the House will consider suspension of the rules includes a bill that would extend funding authorization for SBA lending programs until May 31, 2011.  These programs are set to expire on Jan. 31. Wednesday the House will consider legislation (H.R. 359) to terminate the public financing of presidential campaigns. When the House adjourns on Wednesday, it is next expected to meet on Feb. 8.

The Senate returns Tuesday and will resume debate on amendments to the Standing Rules of the Senate.  Several changes to the Senate rules related to the filibuster, secret holds and nominations have been proposed. The Senate is expected to be in session next week.

There are a couple of committee meetings to note:

Tomorrow, the House Financial Services Committee will meet to organize for the 112th Congress.  The Committee is expected to consider resolutions establishing its rules and electing members to subcommittees. 

On Wednesday, the House Financial Services Committee will hold a hearing on "Promoting Economic Recovery and Job Creation: The Road Forward."  Hal Scott, professor of international financial systems at Harvard Law School; William Poole, distinguished scholar in residence in the University of Delaware's Alfred Lerner College of Business and Economics; John Taylor, professor of economics at Stanford University; Donald Kohn, senior fellow at the Brookings Institute; Eric Hoffman, executive vice president and COO of Hoffman Media, LLC; H. Charles Maddy III, president and CEO of Summit Financial Group; Andrew Bursky, managing partner at Atlas Holdings, LLC; and Ken Brody, partner at Taconic Capital, are expected to testify.

If you have any questions regarding these or any legislative issues, contact LSCU SVP of Governmental Affairs Will McCarty at 866.231.0545 ext. 2137.

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Compliance Corner
League InfoSight highlight: Truth-in-Savings changes rinalized by NCUA

The League InfoSight newsletter for Jan. 21 features on article on the new disclosures for credit unions through the Truth-in-Savings Act. On Jan. 13, 2011, the NCUA finalized a rule that requires credit unions to disclose overdraft and returned item (NSF) fees on their members' periodic statements.

Under the rule, fees for both the statement period and for the year-to-date must be included on the disclosures. These and other changes to Regulation DD, the Truth in Savings Act, took effect on Jan. 1, 2011.

The final rule was unchanged from the NCUA's earlier proposal. NCUA staff cited a desire to remain consistent with the Federal Reserve's standards.

The interim final rule also addressed disclosures for balance information and sweep accounts that are established to facilitate compliance with monthly limitations on savings accounts under Regulation D.

The agency also approved interpretive ruling and policy statement (IRPS) 11-1, an interim policy statement that would add denials of technical assistance grant reimbursements to the set of issues that may be appealed during a credit union's challenge of material supervisory determinations that are made by NCUA staff.

These material supervisory determinations are currently limited to CAMEL ratings of 3, 4 or 5, adequacy of loan loss reserve provisions, loan classifications, and revocations of RegFlex authority for federal credit unions.

For more helpful reminders and tips, view the League InfoSight newsletter by clicking here. It is a password-protected area. Member credit unions that do not have a password, may click here to sign up for one. An active email account and a password are required. To log in to InfoSight, enter your email and password in the InfoSight login block (see graphic below) located in the upper right of any of the LSCU web pages.

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Compliance calendar and training

Compliance Calendar

January 28
SAFE Act - Estimated Federal Registration Start Date

January 30
Truth in Lending, Mortgage Loan Rules - Closed End Disclosures Interim Rule

Regulation Z (TILA) MDIA Interim Final Rule for Mortgage Loans with Variable Rates or Payments - Effective Date

January 31
IRA Minimum Distribution Notice

Regulation E - Gift Card Rule Change - Effective Date (Updated 10/20/2010)

IRS Forms Due (See the online calendar for a complete list.)

Regulation E (EFTA) Extension of compliance deadline for printed gift card disclosures - Effective Date

Compliance Training

February 16
Pressing Credit Union Compliance Issues – Audio Conference
1:00–2:30 p.m. CT

March 16–30
CUNA Compliance Fundamentals eSchool

May 10 & 17
Consumer Lending Regulations: Parts 1 & 2 - Webinar
2:00–4:00 p.m. CT

May 10–July 19
CUNA Regulatory Compliance eSchool: Introduction

 

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Cooperative Initiatives News
Scholarships available for NYIB annual conference in Pittsburgh

The National Youth Involvement Board (NYIB) Executive Committee has been busy planning its Annual Conference at Pittsburgh’s Marriott City Center Hotel (July 25-28).

The NYIB Annual Conference offers a wide array of topics that concern youth financial literacy and marketing, and it’s a great opportunity to network with your peers. This year’s agenda is packed with opportunities to have meaningful conversations about ways to “Up Your Youth!” The board understands that credit union budgets are tight, but it is hoping credit unions will make plans to attend this year.

If a credit union is having trouble securing funds for conference registration, they can apply for a scholarship. Descriptions and applications for scholarship can be found on the NYIB website. The application deadline is Jan. 31, so credit unions are asked to send in their applications as quickly as possible.

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Consider youth savings challenge during national credit union youth week in April

To teach a child about savings, you might consider using this example, which is to paraphrase Confucius: A journey to $1,000 dollars begins with the first deposit in a credit union youth savings account.  

National Credit Union Youth Week  is a great way to encourage that first step. By sponsoring the National Youth Saving Challenge,™ credit unions can generate excitement about setting money aside for personal goals.  

The National Youth Saving Challenge takes place during the month of April. It is held in conjunction with National Credit Union Youth Week, sponsored by CUNA. Sign up now to join hundreds of other credit unions across the country who teach youth the benefits of saving. Last year nearly 170,000 young members deposited $24.8 million into their saving accounts during this national event—with 10,385 of these new accounts.

Participation in the free Saving Challenge is an opportunity to build a strong relationship with young members in your community—and their families—by reinforcing the benefits of credit union membership. Help youth start a savings habit while creating member loyalty. You'll also get the chance to win $100 for one of your young members. Only affiliated credit unions are eligible to participate in the Saving Challenge.

Visit the CUNA Youth Savings website for more information and to register.
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Education News
The 2nd LSCU AC&E coming up in June in Orlando

It's never too early to begin planning out your year. The LSCU is asking all credit unions to keep the 2nd LSCU Annual Convention and Exposition (AC&E) on their calendars. The dates are Jun. 16-19 in Orlando at the JW Marriott. The AC&E kicks off Thursday Jun.16 and wraps up Saturday Jun. 18 which is a slight difference from the AC&E last year. 

The agenda is just coming together and a list of speakers will be communicated soon to credit unions. One thing is certain, credit unions can count on the same great educational offerings, exhibit hall time and fun offsite guest tours as in past years. For more information on the AC&E, visit the Convention and Exposition website.  


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The LSCU has resources to help credit unions comply with financial literacy

As federal credit unions work to understand the new NCUA rules that require directors to have training in financial literacy, the LSCU has a number of financial literacy webinars, and training sessions ready for credit unions.  

The LSCU is offering two webinars in the next three months that will help credit unions become compliant:

  • February 15 - Required Financial Literacy Training for Directors Under NCUA Guidelines:  What Regulators Want and What Directors Should Know
  • March 3 - Required Financial Literacy Training for Directors Under NCUA Guidelines:  Ratios, Concentration, Investment Evaluations, and More

The LSCU will also offer training sessions at the State GACs in March, April and the Annual Convention and Exposition (AC&E) in June. The LSCU VP, Regulatory Affairs Bill Berg and VP, Cooperative Initiatives Laura Vann will facilitate those sessions, plus one in South Florida. Visit the LSCU Educational Calendar to sign up for one of the webinars. More information will be available soon on the training sessions.

For more information on the training, contact LSCU Association Services Support Specialist Becki Payne at 866.231.0545 ext. 2129. [ Return to Top ]

Education Calendar

Tuesday, January 25
Asset Liability Management

3:00
p.m. - 4:30 p.m. EST - webinar 

Wednesday, January 26
Mandatory Compliance Training Series

3:00 p.m. - 4:30 p.m. EST - webinar

Wednesday, February 2
Denied Loan Requirements
3:00 p.m. - 4:30 p.m. EST - webinar

Thursday, February 3
Replacing Lost Fee Income
3:00 p.m. - 4:30 p.m. EST - webinar

Tuesday, February 8
ACH Rules Update
3:00 PM - 4:30 PM EST - webinar

Thursday, February 10
Interpreting Tax Forms
3:00 PM - 4:30 PM EST - webinar

Tuesday, February 15
Financial Literacy Training: Directors
3:00 PM - 4:30 PM EST - webinar

Wednesday, February 16

BSA Training Workshop
9:00 AM - 11:30 AM EST - workshop

Wednesday, February 16
BSA Training Workshop
1:00 PM - 3:30 PM EST - workshop
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LEVERAGE News
LEVERAGE saves credit unions money through first-class products and services

Since the launch of LEVERAGE in April 2010, more than 80 percent of Alabama and Florida credit unions recognize and utilize its services. Through products, services, and best-in-class partnerships with national companies, the feedback from credit unions show that they are generating more revenue and increased added value to their members, all while keeping overhead costs to a minimum.

In 2010, the LEVERAGE chargeback services managed more than 350,000 outstanding cards and handled disputes and fraud cases against 14,360 transactions. In the last six months, $218,509 in fraud losses for credit unions were recovered.

The gift card program reached an all-time high and earned credit unions more than $25,000 in additional fee-based income. The program offers a simple web-based application to load cards, a variety of card designs, and low implementation costs.

Fifteen new credit unions signed up in 2010 to offer their members access to more than 28,000 surcharge-free ATMs in all 50 states and 10 countries, including over 3,200 ATMs in the Alabama and Florida market.

Credit unions generated over $442,000 in non-interest income through their participation in the Sprint Member Discount Program. As checks were delivered in early December 2010, many found their unexpected revenue surprised considering the no cost, easy-to-implement steps required to get their credit union on the program. Credit unions who sign up by Mar. 1 are eligible for up to 50 percent of their marketing incentive potential for 2011.

As more credit unions utilize LEVERAGE’s strategic purchasing program, they are seeing significant savings. The December event for Armored Car Services created a collective 56.3 percent of savings on an almost $1 million purchase from prior year costs. A second event was held for Enterprise Risk Management Software and produced a total savings of 12.1 percent. Several events are scheduled for Q1 2011, including: AC Maintenance (Deadline: Jan. 25) and Telecom Systems (Deadline: Feb. 4).

The LEVERAGE team would like to thank everyone for their continued support as its brand and services continue to grow. What was presented is only a snapshot of the success credit unions experienced in 2010. There are plans to increase the recognition in 2011 on a national level to increase the spend volume of  Alabama and Florida credit unions to maximize potential savings. For more information on any of our products and services, contact a LEVERAGE Business Consultant.

 

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Last week for Office Depot $25 discount

LEVERAGE is a credit union's resource for access to deep discounts on more than office supplies through the Office Depot Business Solutions Division (BSD) program. A tremendous January promotion is going on right now.

Get $25 off your purchase of $125 or more. The deadline to purchase by is Jan. 31. Click here to view the flyer.

For questions or more information about the Office Depot Business Solutions Division program for credit unions, contact LEVERAGE Product Support Manager Deirdre Rhodes at 866.231.0545 x1104. [ Return to Top ]

Comparing an insured conventional mortgage with an FHA loan

It’s important to understand that the FHA employs a “one size fits all” premium structure. Aside from a slight difference in renewal premiums for borrowers putting 5 percent or more down, FHA will charge the same basic premium rate, regardless of down payment or strength of the borrower’s credit profile. By using private mortgage insurance and conventional mortgage financing, members who can make larger down payments (generally 5 percent or more) and have stronger credit scores (generally 680+) can secure monthly payments that are lower than with an FHA loan.

For example, the table below shows the monthly payments for a $290,000 home purchase price with a 30-year fully amortizing mortgage at a fixed 5 percent interest rate, for a borrower with a credit score of 700.

Keep in mind that in order to secure the FHA-insured loan, the buyer must either pay or finance in their loan an up-front premium of one percent of the loan amount. In this case, that would be $2,755 with a 5 percent down payment or $2,610 with a 10 percent down payment. The example below assumes for the FHA insured loan, that the initial FHA premium is financed into the loan amount (increasing the loan amount and monthly payments), but it can also be paid at closing .

Monthly payments for FHA vs. insured conventional loan assuming a 700 Credit Score.

Type of loan

10% down payment

5% down payment

FHA loan w/ financed initial premium

$1,601.84*

$1,690.83**

Conventional loan: monthly MI premium           

$1,490.28†

$1,623.58‡

Source of monthly payment amounts: CMG Mortgage Insurance Company rates, all premiums calculated assuming a 30-year, fixed rate, fully amortizing loan, 700 FICO.

* Assumes base loan amount of $261,000 and total amount financed of $263,610, including financed 1% FHA upfront premium of $2,610 and a monthly renewal premium $186.72.

** Assumes base loan amount of $275,500 and total amount financed of $278,255, including financed 1% FHA upfront premium of $2,755 and a monthly renewal premium of $197.10.

† Assumes base loan amount and total amount financed of $261,000 and monthly MI premium of $89.18 with 25% coverage.

‡ Assumes base loan amount and total amount financed of $275,500 and monthly MI premium of $144.64 with 30% coverage. [ Return to Top ]

News from You
Florida Commerce opens new branch in Tallahassee

Florida Commerce's Joy Sanders cuts the ribbon celebrating the opening of its newest branch at 107 E. College in Tallahassee. From left to right, Kristin Richardson, Carla De Baldo, and Stevie Davis look on

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Alabama Telco helping members get financially fit
January is Financial Wellness month and with many consumers dealing with post-holiday money woes, it’s the ideal time for consumers to take stock of current debts, investments and future financial goals.

Alabama Telco CU is helping members to look at their financial wellness. This means letting them know how to have an understanding of their financial situation and taking care of it in such a way that they are prepared for financial changes. Maintaining financial balance consists of being comfortable with where their money comes from and where it is going.

When determining their financial fitness, consumers should look first at their debt and investments. If they can immediately answer how much debt they owe and how much money they have saved, then they are on top of your finances. If not, it’s time to get serious.

Retirement is another consideration. Are they prepared for retirement, even if that is years from now? Do they have a retirement account? Do they know how much is in that account and where the money is invested?

“Whether you feel you are in good shape with your finances or not, it’s always smart to get some objective advice, which is why we offer free Account Reviews,” says Stanton Davis of Alabama Telco Credit Union.

With an account review, consumers can meet with a financial expert to set short and long-term financial goals, develop a plan to achieve those goals, find ways to save money, reduce debt and determine if they are getting the best rates and products.

Alabama Telco is driving people to get financially fit by checking out their website.


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Southeast Corporate holding town hall meetings

Brad Miller, President/CEO of Southeast Corporate FCU

Southeast Corporate Federal Credit Union has scheduled a series of regional meetings to discuss details of its proposed new Business and Capital Restoration Plan. The plan, which was outlined to member/owner credit unions in December 2010, includes key elements of the corporate’s business strategy and methodology for ensuring adequate capital to meet NCUA’s Regulation Part 704 requirements. 

Although the final plan will need NCUA approval, Southeast Corporate President/CEO Brad Miller noted that the town hall meetings will provide an opportunity to go over the business model and capital plans, answer questions and receive input from members at an early stage of the process. “Credit unions created and own Southeast, and their participation is essential to our mutual success,” Miller said.

Meeting dates are as follows:

  • Tuesday, January 25: Pensacola, FL
    Pensacola Civic Center; 201 E. Gregory, St.

  • Wednesday, February 2: Tallahassee, FL
    Southeast Corporate; 3692 Coolidge Court

  • Thursday, February 3:  Jacksonville, FL
    Southeast Corporate; 8400 Baymeadows Way, Suite 18

  • Wednesday, February 9: Lakeland, FL
    Publix Employees FCU; 3005 New Tampa Highway

  • Thursday, February 10: Miami Lakes, FL
    Don Shula's Hotel; 6842 Main Street

To attend one of the following meetings, members and other interested credit unions may register at www.secorp.org. All of the meetings will take place from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. (local time).


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Pen Air Federal Credit Union celebrates 75 years

Pen Air was established in April 1936 as the U.S. Naval Pensacola Air Station Federal Credit Union for Civil Service Employees and began with a cigar box of “pooled” funds from our founding members, which equated to only $4,500 in assets at year-end. It wasn’t until March 1953, that the credit union’s name was changed to simply Pen Air Federal Credit Union.


Pen Air FCU’s first corporate headquarters was provided by the U.S. Navy in the form of an old chapel aboard Naval Air Station Pensacola (pictured here in the mid-1960’s).

In August 1960, the local bases requested that Pen Air serve the military, and it was then that the military was added to Pen Air’s field of membership. A year later Pen Air was given a room behind the Chapel aboard Naval Air Station Pensacola in which to operate so the credit union could better serve the military and civil service employees.

Since those humble days, the credit union has grown with increased services, locations, and assets.  In 1993, Pen Air began expanding its field of membership to include other work forces. Pen Air’s tag line is “We Get It Done,” and, indeed, it has: Today, Pen Air serves nearly 1,000 different work forces, has nearly 100,000 members and has 16 locations throughout Northwest Florida and Baldwin County, Ala., including its newest branch just opened this month in Eastern Shore, Ala. Pen Air has even reached out to educate its younger member-owners with three additional high school student-run credit union offices. Pen Air is now over $1 billion in assets, and a BauerFinancial, Inc., 5-Star Superior Rated financial institution for the past 80 consecutive quarters.

“We are incredibly proud to have served our member-owners so well in the past 75 years,” said Pen Air President/CEO Ron Fields. “We look forward to serving their financial needs – whether that’s saving, investing or loans – for the next 75 years.” [ Return to Top ]

EMPLOYMENT
View available credit union jobs

To view the available jobs on the LSCU homepage, visit the LSCU CU Jobs Center. [ Return to Top ]

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