LSCU eSignal Weekly
LSCU eNews Weekly March 21, 2011
home button press room button contact us button
LSCU eNews Weekly
In This Issue
LSCU Headlines
President's Point
Sen. Udall goes on the offensive for MBLs; WSJ attacks the Durbin amendment
Action Alerts have been issued for MBL, interchange, and public deposits
NCUA board approves a comment period for NCUSIF equity ratio and credit union net worth
LSCU AC&E registration is now open
Still time to register for LSCU Councils meeting in Birmingham with keynote speaker Dennis Dollar
Credit unions encouraged to join a CUNA committee
LSCU now accepting entries/nominations for 2011 LSCU Awards, Dora Maxwell, Louise Herring, and Desjardins Awards
LEVERAGE bolsters staff in Pensacola/Mobile area
Online auction solution drives vehicle sales for credit unions
Governmental Affairs News
LSCU State GACs feature CUNA's Ryan Donovan and NCUA Region III Director Herb Yolles
2011 LSCU Donor Recognition Pins
Florida roundup: Florida politics week in review, Public Deposits legislative update
Alabama roundup: Senate and House off this week, legislation awaits next week
Washington update: Credit union legislation update, LSCU issues Action Alert on interchange
Alabama amusement park consignment tickets on sale
Compliance Corner
League InfoSight highlight: Keeping track of monetary instruments
Compliance calendar and training
Cooperative Initiatives News
It's not too late! Register for the SAS Workshops in Florida and Alabama
NCUF expand community investment fund options, partners with MEMBERS Trust Company
Tampa Chapter credit unions aim to help children's charities
Education News
MSNBC's Joe Scarborough to headline LSCU AC&E
IRA Essentials and Advanced Training workshops prove helpful to credit unions
2011 BSA Training Opportunities
Education Calendar
LEVERAGE News
Free 3M gift box with qualifying purchase
CUNA Mutual 2010 financial results exceed targets
News from You
Dr. Dorothy W. Huston steps in as Redstone FCU Board of Directors chair
EMPLOYMENT
View available credit union jobs
In This Issue
spacer
eNews Links
Forward to a Friend
Print Version
Unsubscribe from
LSCU eSignal Weekly
Be sure to follow LSCU:
Social Networking Links
Patrick La Pine on Twitter
eNews Links
spacer
LSCU Headlines

President's Point

Last week I attended the CUNA Mutual Group (CMG) League Presidents Dialogue Meeting in Las Vegas. CMG President/CEO Jeff Post and his senior management team provided updates to the league presidents that were on hand about the performance of CMG and the continued value of the CMG/league partnership. As I listened to Post, it reminded me just how much CMG is committed to the credit union movement.

CUNA Mutual maintains a strong partnership with state leagues while also offering state incentive plans. Last year CMG provided a record number, $34 million, of reimbursements and bonus dollars to state leagues. For credit unions in Alabama and Florida, this reimbursement money helps the LSCU/LEVERAGE provide more products and services. For the LSCU, our portion of the league marketing reimbursement contract was more than $2 million, putting us third in the nation only behind Texas and California.

What also struck me is all that CMG does indirectly for credit unions; much of which doesn’t get publicized. CUNA Mutual has taken leadership roles in lobbying efforts and campaigns to preserve the tax-exempt status of credit unions, RESPA mortgage lending reform, the IRS' Unrelated Business Income Tax (UBIT) issue, and bankruptcy legislation. For UBIT alone, CUNA Mutual contributed about $2 million, more than any other credit union organization. CMG is currently working with other industry leaders to respond to proposed Fed changes to Regulation Z, which could have a significant impact on credit unions’ lending business.

Just as we ask all of you to call and write letters to our lawmakers on our major issues, CUNA Mutual employees are also taking part in letter-writing to state and national legislators on issues. Post pointed out that most recently CMG joined the call for federal legislation on member business lending. He and his Governmental Affairs staff spend time on Capitol Hill advocating against proposed financial service reform provisions under the Consumer Financial Protection Agency which could impose additional regulatory burdens on credit unions that sell insurance products. We are working to better coordinate our advocacy efforts with CMG at the national and state level.

As we navigate through this year, we have a number of pieces of legislation on the state and national fronts. Each piece of legislation would help the operating environment for credit unions. It’s good to know that our cooperative spirit is alive and well, just not collectively at the state level, but also at the national level with a partner like CUNA Mutual Group.

For those of you reading this that don’t know much about CUNA Mutual Group and the products they offer, I encourage you to get in touch with a LEVERAGE Business Consultant and inquire about employee group plans, insurance and protection services or risk management and due diligence. Our partnership with CUNA Mutual allows us to offer you first-class products and services and in turn when you purchase it through LEVERAGE, it comes back to you by helping to increase the services provided by the League. It’s a win-win for both of us.

Please send along any feedback you might have on this column. [ Return to Top ]

Sen. Udall goes on the offensive for MBLs; WSJ attacks the Durbin amendment

Sen. Mark Udall (D-CO) is on the offensive for his member business lending (MBL) legislation. Last week Sen. Udall wrote a guest column on The Hill blog talking about the small businesses that would benefit from raising the MBL cap for credit unions. Sen. Udall writes, "...unfortunately, we created a $30 billion lending fund for banks without simultaneously allowing credit unions to increase the amount of money they lend to small businesses. Since that time, banks have been reducing credit availability."

Sen. Udall concludes by asking his fellow senators to join him in passing the Small Business Lending Enhancement Act, "I urge my colleagues to do the right thing and let’s finally fix this unnecessary federal limit on small business loans, and support this bipartisan amendment to increase job growth and support for our local small businesses."

The Wall Street Journal's editorial board wrote an opinion piece on the Durbin amendment that basically blasted the amendment, "This is another glorious result of the 2,000-plus page Dodd-Frank financial reform, which ordered the Fed to fix prices on what banks may charge merchants each time they swipe a transaction. The provision is the special handiwork of Illinois Democrat Dick Durbin, who pushed it through the Senate as a sop to Wal-Mart, Home Depot, and other giant retailers. He also got to whack the banks one more time."

The WSJ goes on to write about some senators that voted for the amendment are now against it and how former House Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank thinks consumers will lose in the end. The piece leaves the reader with this final shot, "This looks like one of those classic Beltway compromises that gives senators cover but doesn't solve the problem." 

Read each story in its entirety by visiting the LSCU Press Room.  [ Return to Top ]

Action Alerts have been issued for MBL, interchange, and public deposits

The League has sent out a number of Action Alerts in the past week. Momentum for many of the issues that credit unions have been fighting for is building. On the state level public deposits in Florida is gaining traction during this session, while on the national front, member business lending, and interchange fees are heating up. Credit unions are asked to stand united and let their lawmakers know how these issues affect credit unions and their members.

The League and CUNA have issued an Action Alert asking all credit unions to write their U.S. Senators and members of Congress to ask them to co-sponsor their respective bills (H.R. 1081 and S.575) on delaying the Fed proposed rule on interchange. Also, let them know that delaying this legislation is the right thing to do until a thorough study has been done. The Action Alert has a number of talking points to help craft a letter.

A second Action Alert was issued for MBL legislation introduced by Sen. Mark Udall (D-CO). Credit unions need to urge their senators to cosponsor S.509. Florida credit unions are also asked to thank Sen. Bill Nelson for his support. CUNA has resources available at its Grassroots Action Center which make sending a letter to your lawmaker very easy.

Florida credit unions are asked to contact their state lawmakers as public deposits' legislation has been introduced in the House (HB 999) and the Senate (SB 1976). Each has been referred to committee which is a good sign. Credit unions should contact their state lawmaker and let them know that this legislation is important to them.

All of the LSCU's Action Alerts are housed in the LSCU Political Action Alerts webpage. If you have questions about the Action Alerts, contact LSCU SVP, Governmental Affairs Will McCarty at 866.231.0545 ext. 2137. [ Return to Top ]

NCUA board approves a comment period for NCUSIF equity ratio and credit union net worth

The NCUA board held its third open meeting in 2011 and unanimously approved all of the agenda items presented, including: a proposed rule on interest rate risk policy; a proposed rule updating definitions of “net worth” and “equity ratio” of the NCUSIF; a final rule broadening the definition of “low-risk assets”; and final rules on corporate credit union delegations of authority and technical corrections.

Most significantly, the NCUA board issued a proposed regulation that would require federally-insured credit unions to adopt a written interest rate risk policy and interest rate risk management program to guard against possible future losses stemming from rising interest rates on share deposits and other sources of funds. The agency is proposing this new requirement because of concerns regarding credit unions holding significant positions in long-term, fixed-rate mortgages, and other long-term investments. The proposed rule would apply to all federally-insured credit unions with more than $50 million in assets and, also, to federally-insured credit unions with between $10 million and $50 million in assets that have holdings of first mortgages and investments with a duration greater than five years that are more than 100 percent of the credit union’s net worth.

The NCUA board approved for a 60-day comment period, a proposal to implement recent statutory changes made by Public Law No. 111-382, provisions that amend the Federal Credit Union Act (FCUA). The statute and rule amend the definitions of the NCUSIF’s “equity ratio” and credit union “net worth” found in the FCUA. 

Regarding the equity ratio, the law clarifies that the NCUSIF’s equity ratio must be based solely on the financial statements of the NCUSIF alone without consolidation with other statements, such as those of conserved credit unions. For credit union net worth, the changes allow the use of special assistance provided by the NCUSIF to credit unions under FCUA section 208 (“Section 208 assistance”) to be included in a credit union’s net worth ratio.

CUNA issued a brief summary of the meeting; read it here.   [ Return to Top ]

LSCU AC&E registration is now open

Registration is now open for the 2nd LSCU Annual Convention and Exposition (AC&E) Jun. 16-19 at the JW Marriott in Orlando. The AC&E is the League's premiere event. Last year more than 1,100 credit union officials, guests, and vendors attended. This year the theme of the AC&E is "Defining our Future."   

The AC&E will feature a number of dynamic speakers including MSNBC's Morning Joe co-host Joe Scarborough, NCUA Chairman Debbie Matz, CUNA Mutual Group COO Bob Trunzo, and National Credit Union Foundation Executive Director Wendall "Bucky" Sebastian.

The LSCU AC&E also features a large expo hall. Credit unions from Alabama and Florida will have six hours of expo time to meet with vendors. Plus, there is a golf tournament to benefit the Children's Miracle Network and plenty of networking time.

Visit the LSCU Convention and Exposition website to register. Click on the Credit Union Registration tab and follow the steps. Registration will include separate ticketed excursions for guests like the Dolphin and Manatee Pontoon Boat ride, the Leu Gardens Tour, and an interactive cooking class. Register today and help define the future of credit unions.   [ Return to Top ]

Still time to register for LSCU Councils meeting in Birmingham with keynote speaker Dennis Dollar

Dennis Dollar along with experts in the CFO, lending, marketing and business development, and operations, sales, and service disciplines will provide invaluable information to bring back to your credit union.

Keynote:

Dennis Dollar, a credit union icon, will give 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. This provocative presentation will get the juices flowing for credit union leaders to look at the future through the eyes of today’s economic and marketplace challenges. His presentation, "The Right Moves for Credit Unions in Today's Economy" will examine 10 key strategic issues. Click here to listen to Dollar talk about some of the issues.

Individual Council Sessions:

CFO: The New Corporate Business Model: What You Need to Know About Future Services and how to Evaluate what’s Best for Your Credit Union, Brad Miller, CEO, Southeast Corporate and former executive director at Association of Corporate Credit Unions (ACCU)

Marketing & Business Development: Membership Growth Recipe: Business Development & Community Relations, Mark Arnold, CCUE, Senior VP, Neighborhood Credit Union

Lending: Maximizing Relationships, Julie R. Ferguson, Owner JRF Consulting Services, LLC

Operations, Sales & Service: Achieving Operational Efficiencies through Collaborative Efforts, Jason Boles, CEO of Fans Created

For a detailed overview of topics and registration information, click here.

Questions? Contact Lisa Hammock at 866.231.0545 x1146. 

Don't forget to “Like” LSCU Councils on Facebook for updated information and topic details.

 

Special thanks to LSCU Council sponsors:

[ Return to Top ]

Credit unions encouraged to join a CUNA committee

CUNA is seeking nominations for appointments to one of its 22 committees. This is a great opportunity for credit union officials to utilize their expertise in areas such as accounting, governance, ethics, and government affairs, to name a few. For committee members appointed in 2010, they will continue to serve until new committees are announced.  

Interested credit unions are asked to fill out a bio-data form which will help to gather the information needed to process appointments and to assist in determining areas of interest, expertise and availability. This should also assist in completing the appointments in a timely manner. Potential committee members should be knowledgeable, dedicated, and familiar with the important issues that must be addressed. However, committee positions are limited so we request that your focus be directed to two or three quality recommendations and not restricted to particular positions or responsibilities within your district, league, or class. 

Completed information forms should be sent to CUNA by Tuesday, Mar. 22. This form can also be completed  online. Once all recommendations have been recorded, copies will be provided to the executive committee. To view CUNA’s current committees, their members, purpose statement, etc., click here. [ Return to Top ]

LSCU now accepting entries/nominations for 2011 LSCU Awards, Dora Maxwell, Louise Herring, and Desjardins Awards

The League of Southeastern Credit Unions is proud to recognize those professionals, volunteers, and credit unions that have made outstanding contributions to the development and growth of the credit union movement in Alabama and Florida.

Entries/nominations for the following prestigious awards are now being accepted:

  • CEO of the Year

The Credit Union CEO of the Year Award recognizes a credit union professional that deserves recognition for their contributions to advance the credit union movement in their state and the nation.

  • Volunteer of the Year

The Credit Union Volunteer of the Year Award recognizes the credit union volunteer who has selflessly contributed time, effort, and talent to the development of the credit union movement in their state.

  • Distinguished Service Award

The Distinguished Service Award recognizes lifelong service to the credit union movement reaching beyond the natural person credit union.

  • CU of the Year Award

The award recognizes an individual credit union for its outstanding achievements in the various areas of day-to-day operations, financial prowess, and community outreach. This award will be judged based on credit union asset size categories.

  • Brother’s Keeper Award

The Brother's Keeper Award recognizes exceptional efforts by credit unions to provide ongoing assistance to developing credit unions through various means.

Click here to download the LSCU Awards brochure.

In addition, the LSCU and the CUNA sponsor three recognition programs for credit unions:

  • Dora Maxwell Social Responsibility Community Service Award

The Dora Maxwell Social Responsibility Community Service Award is designed to recognize and promote credit unions’ social responsibility efforts within their communities. Credit unions enter the program in eight separate asset categories, which allows them to compete fairly against credit unions of equal size and resources, as well as a chapter/credit union group category  

  • Louise Herring Philosophy-in-Action Member Service Award

Recognizes credit unions for putting the “people helping people” philosophy of credit unions into action. The program looks at the entrant’s practical application of this philosophy within the organization’s daily operations. The focus is on internal credit union programs and services.

  • Desjardins Youth and Adult Financial Education Awards

Recognize leadership within the credit union movement on behalf of financial literacy. It considers all activities supporting the personal financial education of members and nonmembers. NOTE: The adult financial award option is new for 2011.

Visit the LSCU CU Awards Program website for more Information and entry/nomination forms on all listed awards. Questions? Contact LSCU Director, Information Services Amy Jowers at 866.231.0545 ext. 1020. [ Return to Top ]

LEVERAGE bolsters staff in Pensacola/Mobile area

LEVERAGE's audit solution, CU-ACE, recently announced a new staff auditor to its team. Michael Bryson graduated from the University of West Florida (Pensacola, FL) in December 2010, with a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration, with a major in professional accountancy. He has more than 11 years of retail management experience. He lives in Pensacola and will primarily service the Mobile and Florida Panhandle credit unions.

LEVERAGE Business Development Consultant Anita Fumaria

Bryson joins Business Development Consultant Anita Fumaria as LEVERAGE expands its presence in that area of Alabama and Florida. Fumaria is managing credit union relationships in southern and western Alabama and northwestern Florida. 

Fumaria has more than 20 years of experience in financial services management, with an emphasis on organizational development, project management, and business development. Since coming to the League in 2000, Fumaria has focused on developing products, services, and educational programs that credit unions need to compete in today’s financial services market. Her extensive knowledge of the credit union industry will be indispensable in helping credit unions achieve their long term goals.

Credit unions can contact Fumaria at 866.231.0545 ext. ext. 1140 or Bryson at ext. 2124. [ Return to Top ]

Online auction solution drives vehicle sales for credit unions

Tapping into the Internet’s potential to shorten the remarketing cycle for repossessed vehicles is a great way to support existing remarketing efforts.

LEVERAGE Remarketing's Internet-based auction service, powered by TitleAuctions, provides a comprehensive set of web-based software tools that enables credit unions to conduct efficient, profitable, competitive-bid auctions directly linked to their credit union website. Credit unions will benefit from this program with:

  • Faster Sales Cycles
  • Higher Sale Prices
  • Loan Retention
  • Additional Members
  • Increased Staff Productivity

This program has four easy steps to start liquidating in the fast lane: Set up your auction page, post your repossessed collateral for bidding, members place bids using your auction page, and track your success! With a 30-day, risk-free trial, you can experience a faster sales cycle, higher sales prices, and increased loan retention.

For more information, visit www.titleauctions.com or email us at repossessit@myleverage.com.  [ Return to Top ]

Governmental Affairs News
LSCU State GACs feature CUNA's Ryan Donovan and NCUA Region III Director Herb Yolles

The LSCU State Governmental Affairs Conferences (GAC) coming up Mar. 30-31 in Montgomery and Apr. 13-14 in Tallahassee are a must for all credit unions. The state GACs are built to inform credit unions of the hot legislative and regulatory issues, including a regulator roundtable with state and NCUA regulators. One afternoon is also dedicated to putting credit unions in front of their lawmakers for short lobby sessions.

The state GACs feature a powerful lineup of speakers that include:

  • NCUA Region III Director Herb Yolles
  • ACUA Administrator Larry Morgan (AL)
  • OFR Bureau Chief Bruce Ricca (FL)
  • OFR Director Linda Charity (FL)
  • CUNA VP, Legislative Affairs Ryan Donovan

These events are great opportunities for credit unions to become involved with the grassroots nature of the credit union movement. A PAC fundraising roundtable with PAC Best Practices will be featured along with a state legislative outlook and a legislator reception. 

  • To learn more about the Alabama State GAC and to register, visit the LSCU Alabama GAC page.
  • To learn more about the Florida State GAC and to register, visit the LSCU Florida GAC page.

Each state GAC will also feature a pre-conference financial literacy training for credit union directors. This will help credit unions come into compliance with the new NCUA rule.

Scholarships through the Southeastern Credit Union Foundation are also available for attending either state GAC. For those who are interested, contact Amber Tynan, executive director, Southeastern Credit Union Foundation, 866.231.0545 ext. 1154. 

For more information on the LSCU State GACs, contact LSCU SVP, Governmental Affairs Will McCarty at 866.231.0545 ext. 2137.

Governmental Affairs Conference Reception sponsored by:


 

[ Return to Top ]

2011 LSCU Donor Recognition Pins

As credit unions begin working towards meeting their 2011 LSCU PAC goals, the Donor Recognition Pin program can be an effective way to raise individual contributions to reach their Federal goal and support the LSCU FEDPAC. The LSCU Donor Recognition Pin program let’s credit union staff, board members, and volunteers proudly show their support for credit union advocacy and the PAC.  

Chapter events, the State Governmental Affairs Conference, and the LSCU Annual Convention & Exposition are all great opportunities to show support for the PAC by wearing a Donor Recognition Pin. Each year’s pins are distinctively different from the previous year, so make sure you get this year’s pin before the next big credit union function.

The program can easily be implemented in conjunction with other fundraising activities, such as payroll deduction. Contact your state’s political action coordinator today to learn how to increase your fundraising for 2011.

For more information about Donor Recognition Pins, contact LSCU Grassroots and PAC Coordinators Robbie Gordon (AL) at 205.437.2164 or Justin Thames (FL) at 850.576.8171 ext. 1010.

  [ Return to Top ]

Florida roundup: Florida politics week in review, Public Deposits legislative update

Florida Politics Week in Review:

Both the Senate and the House passed SB 736, the teacher merit pay bill which was vetoed by Gov. Crist last year, and it now heads to Gov. Scott for his expected signature.

Florida Gains Two Congressional Seats

Florida will gain two congressional seats and become an even more coveted prize in the upcoming 2012 presidential election. Florida, which currently has 25 congressional seats, will pick up two more bringing its total to 27 starting with the 2012 election. With the gain in congressional seats, the Sunshine State will now have 29 electoral votes and will become one of, if not the, biggest swing state in 2012. President Obama won Florida with 51 percent of the vote in 2008, but former President George W. Bush carried the state in the previous two elections. Florida remains the fourth most populous state in the United States behind California, Texas, and New York.

LSCU LEGISLATION UPDATE

Public Deposits Legislative Update:

Last week we updated you on the filing of SB 1976 by Sen. Oscar Braynon (D-Miami Gardens), a bill that would allow credit unions to become qualified public depositories in the state of Florida. Sen. Braynon’s bill has now been referred to two committees, the Senate Banking and Insurance committee, chaired by Sen. Garrett Richter (R-Naples) and the overall Budget chaired by Sen. JD Alexander (R-Lake Wales). The LSCU Governmental Affairs team continues to work the halls of the Capitol in an effort to get both SB 1976 and its House companion measure, HB 999 by Rep. Clay Ingram (R-Pensacola), heard in committee. The League has met with almost the entire House Insurance and Banking subcommittee and is now beginning to meet with members of the Senate Banking and Insurance committee. While the LSCU has found broad support in the House, challenges still await in the Senate. The League needs your help in contacting members of the House subcommittee and Senate committee. Please continue to monitor your emails for LSCU Action Alerts, which will contain important updates on the progress of this legislation, as well as information on how to contact members of the committees of reference.

OFR Bill Update:

SB 1332 by Sen. Richter was heard in its first committee last week, the Senate Banking and Insurance committee. The bill passed unanimously out of the Banking and Insurance committee and will now move on to the Senate Budget committee. While the bill was amended prior to passage, the amendments were technical in nature and did not change the substantive nature of the bill. It is expected that these same amendments will be added to HB 1121, by Rep. Ingram, when it is heard in the House Insurance and Banking subcommittee. A hearing date for this bill has yet to be set. Should there be any substantive changes to this bill that affect credit unions, LSCU’s Governmental Affairs team will be sure to notify you.

Title Loan Bill Update:

SB 990 by Sen. Mike Bennett (R-Bradenton) and HB 877 by Rep. Joseph Gibbons (D-Pembroke Park), if passed, would allow title lenders will be allowed to charge up to 264 percent interest on title loans, more than eight times higher than permitted under current law. Title lenders are notorious for preying on members of society who can least afford their services, such as retired military, and the League wants to make sure we can do whatever we can to help protect our membership. The League was part of the effort 10 years ago to lower these predatory lending habits, and they have once again signed on to defeat this practice. HB 877 has been placed on the agenda for a hearing tomorrow, Mar. 22, at 8:30 a.m. Iif you would like to voice your opposition, please contact members of the House Business & Consumers Affairs Subcommittee and let them know why you oppose this bill. LSCU will let you know when SB 990 is placed on the Senate Banking and Insurance committee agenda.

If you have any questions on the Florida Legislature, contact LSCU Director, Legislative Affairs Jared Ross at 866.231.0545 ext. 1012. [ Return to Top ]

Alabama roundup: Senate and House off this week, legislation awaits next week

Last week the Alabama Legislature was on Spring Break so there were no meeting days or legislative activity. However, the LSCU Governmental Affairs team wants to keep you up-to-date on what they are expecting to happen over the coming weeks.

The one constant rumor regarding the 2011 Legislative Session is that it will be an abbreviated affair.  It continues to be the goal of the Republican majority to pass the Education and General Fund Budget bills associated with the “Handshake with Alabama,” and get out of Montgomery. A recent and tentative calendar for the projected meeting days did not go over 22 and it is very possible that Alabama legislators could be halfway through with their work by the end of next week. 

This week, the Senate will begin with what is expected to be a very quick agreement with The House of Representatives on changes and final passage of the repeal of the DROP legislation. On the fast track since legislative day one, this should come as no surprise to anyone. The true fireworks will begin on Wednesday when committee meetings take place. From 2:30 to 5:00 p.m., there will be a joint meeting of both the Senate and House General Fund Budget Committees. As reported by most media outlets and repeatedly here in eSignal, the General Fund is in the most dire of situations as it pertains to budget cuts. The tough work on deciding what and who gets cut officially starts Wednesday, although it is certainly probable that many of these decisions will be made before legislators walk into the committee meeting.

Finally, the League wants to remind everyone that the Alabama State GAC will be held Mar. 30 – 31.  For those of you that have not registered, click here to register.  Ryan Donovan, vice president of legislative affairs with CUNA, will discuss new developments in Washington D.C. LSCU will also have legislative, PAC fundraising, and regulatory roundtables. The GAC will also include financial literacy training, and hill visits, so register today.

If you have any questions on the Alabama Legislature, contact LSCU Director, Legislative Affairs Jason Cochran at 866.231.0545 ext. 2159.

  [ Return to Top ]

Washington update: Credit union legislation update, LSCU issues Action Alert on interchange

The House and Senate were out this week, and will be back Mar. 28. However, last week's legislation continued to move forward. 

Interchange Rules Legislation Update

On Mar. 15, legislation was introduced that would delay interchange rules for card issuers. Rep. Shelley Capito (R-WV) sponsored, along with Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL), H.R. 1081, a House bill that would delay the interchange rule effective date for one year and would also direct federal agencies to study the impact that interchange changes would have on credit unions and other card issuers, consumers, and merchants. The bill would require the Fed to write new interchange regulations within four months if the study were to find that the proposed exemption for financial institutions with under $10 billion in assets would not be effective. The regulations would also need to be rewritten if the study found that the Fed's proposal did not encompass all debit card-related costs or would harm consumers. H.R. 1081 has 27 bi-partisan co-sponsors.

The Senate legislation (S. 575) was introduced by Sen. Jon Tester (D-MT.) and is co-sponsored by Sens. Bob Corker (R-TN.), Jon Kyl (R-AZ), Ben Nelson (D-NV), Tom Carper (D-DE), Pat Roberts (R-KN), Chris Coons (D-DE), Mike Lee (R-UT) and Pat Toomey (R-PA), with Sens. Thomas Coburn (R-OK) and John Thune (R-SD) coming on late in the evening of Mar. 15.

The Senate's version of the legislation would void the Federal Reserve's proposed debit interchange rule and extend the rule-making timeline and effective date by two years. The legislation would also require the Federal Reserve, the NCUA, the FDIC and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency to submit a study on the impact of any proposed interchange rule changes to the Senate Banking Committee and the House Financial Services Committee. The study would address the impact of the rules on credit unions and other debit card issuers, merchants, and consumers.

The interchange provisions, which under Dodd-Frank are scheduled to be made final in April and effective in late July, could lower the amount of transaction fees charged to seven cents per card swipe. CUNA has repeatedly suggested that the Fed should work with Congress to delay interchange regulation implementation to allow more time for consideration of how the interchange regulations would impact credit unions, as well as consumers.

Action Alert for Interchange Legislation

As credit unions, the proposed rule, as it is currently written, will have a major impact on the debit card programs offered to members. On Mar. 16, the League and CUNA issued an Action Alert asking all credit unions to write their U.S. Senators and members of Congress to ask them to co-sponsor their respective bill. Also, let them know that delaying this legislation is the right thing to do until a thorough study has been done. The Action Alert has a number of talking points to help craft a letter.

CUNA has an easy way to write your senator or member of Congress. Utilze the CUNA Grassroots Center and take advantage of electronic pre-written letters to ask that your lawmaker co-sponsor the bills or to thank them for co-sponsoring. On the House side, Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL) and Rep. Jo Bonner (R-AL 1) are co-sponsors of H.R. 1081. Be sure to send them a "Thank You" letter.

If you prefer to mail a letter, you can use these prewritten letters: house, senate. If you do mail the letter, please let LSCU SVP, Governmental Affairs Will McCarty know.

All of our great work at the CUNA GAC has gotten the ball rolling on member business lending and interchange fees. Now is not the time to lay back and see what happens. We need to push forward. We have a lot of work ahead of us, but our senators and representatives are listening to our concerns and beginning to act. Let's put our cooperative spirit together and speak in one, loud voice.

All of the League's Action Alerts are housed in the LSCU Political Action Alert section of the website.

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

  [ Return to Top ]

Alabama amusement park consignment tickets on sale

Alabama Adventure and Six Flags consignment tickets are on sale now! This is a great way for credit unions to meet their state PAC goals and gives their members a way to have family fun over the summer. The tickets are significantly lower than gate prices when purchased through the credit unions. Order forms for tickets will be due to the League by Mar. 31. For questions on consignment ticket sales, contact LSCU Grassroots and Political Action Coordinator Robbie Gordon at 866.231.0545 ext. 2164.

[ Return to Top ]

Compliance Corner
League InfoSight highlight: Keeping track of monetary instruments

The League InfoSight newsletter looks at monetary instruments (e.g., checks or share drafts, money orders, cashier's checks, traveler’s checks, etc.) that credit unions sell in exchange for currency. Purchasing these instruments in amounts of less than $10,000 is a common method used by money launderers to evade large currency transaction reporting requirements. Therefore, the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) requires credit unions to keep records of certain information on each issuance or sale of these instruments for $3,000 to $10,000 in currency.  

If the person buying the product has a credit union account, staff must verify that the individual is an account holder, or verify the individual’s identity. What other information does a credit union need to capture? What must credit union staff do if the purchaser does not have an account with the credit union? What are the credit union’s recordkeeping requirements?

For the answers, visit the Monetary Instruments topic on the Bank Secrecy Act channel of your League InfoSight.

The newsletter also highlights a possible scam involving people who are pretending to be NACHA representatives. The full news release is in the newsletter.  

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.

 

  [ Return to Top ]

Compliance calendar and training

Compliance Calendar

April 1
Preferred Lender Arrangement Report Due - Higher Education Opportunity Act (HEOA)

For the complete list of calendar dates and compliance trainings, visit the LSCU Compliance Calendar

*Note - Compliance Calendar requires your League InfoSight login.

 
[ Return to Top ]

Cooperative Initiatives News
It's not too late! Register for the SAS Workshops in Florida and Alabama

It's not too late to register for the SAS Workshop taking place this week in both Orlando and Birmingham. These workshops are designed to give your credit union the opportunity to network with your peers, share best practices, and gain insight on issues affecting smaller asset sized credit unions.

To register for this event, click the locations below:

March 22, Orlando, FL - 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. EST @ CFE FCU

March 23, Birmingham, AL - 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. CST @ Legacy Community FCU

Remember, as a credit union $35 Million in assets and below, you can apply your $400 Initiative Account Voucher to register for this event. To learn more about this initiative, click here. [ Return to Top ]

NCUF expand community investment fund options, partners with MEMBERS Trust Company

The National Credit Union Foundation (NCUF) and MEMBERS Trust Company, FSB, have entered into a strategic alliance to expand options for credit unions to make charitable contributions to the Foundation through the Community Investment Fund (CIF). CIF is a way for credit unions to participate in and support the programs and services that NCUF and the state credit union foundations (SCUFs) provide.

With the goal of creating comprehensive giving options correlated to investment goals and risk, the alliance will give credit unions new alternatives which include an insured CD Custodian Account and a Part 703 Compliant Investment Trust.

NCUF and MEMBERS Trust Company are also finalizing details for another CIF option in the form of a charitable lead trust. With this type of trust, NCUF will receive income payments for a fixed period of time after which the assets and any excess earnings over the annual income payments would  be returned to the credit union unless a the term is renewed. The investments, as with the standard charitable lead trust created for U.S. foundations, would be allocated with bonds and equity securities. 

How Does CIF Work?

Celebrating its 12th year, the CIF gives credit unions the ability to leverage their investments to support innovative credit union programs. Credit unions invest in a CIF account (through a corporate credit union, MEMBERS Trust Company, or National Cooperative Bank). What happens then? Each quarter, half of the CIF dividends are returned to investing credit unions. Half of the CIF dividends are donated to NCUF. NCUF grants half of its NCUF dividend to each investing credit union’s state foundation or league. NCUF uses the remaining portion of the CIF dividend to support its national programs including:

  1.  REAL Solutions®
  2.  Credit Union Development Education 
  3. Financial Education Grants
  4. CUAid - Disaster Relief

To learn more about CIF, credit unions may contact their state credit union foundation, league, or NCUF’s Resource Development & Donor Relations Director Josie Collins at jcollins@ncuf.coop or at 800.356.9655, ext. 4397. [ Return to Top ]

Tampa Chapter credit unions aim to help children's charities

For the past six years, credit unions from around Tampa Bay have partnered together to host the annual Poker Run to raise money for local children’s charities. The event has raised a total of $295,000 for donation to organizations which nurture children such as The Children’s Home, Clothes to Kids, the Boys and Girls Club, The Ronald McDonald House, as well as All Children’s Hospital and the Pediatric Cancer Center.

This year’s event promises to be even better with a chance drawing for a $10,000 Visa Gift Card (sponsored by Attorney Fran Haasch and Credit Union Remarketing Solutions) and a 2010 Kawasaki Ninja 250 donated by St. Pete Powersports. The Lube’s Customer Appreciation Day with free barbeque sandwiches and chips (while supplies last) kicks off at 1 p.m. Live music by the Bobby Friss band, prizes, giveaways, and a Radical Randy bike show will all be part of the festivities.

For more information click here. [ Return to Top ]

Education News
MSNBC's Joe Scarborough to headline LSCU AC&E

MSNBC Morning Joe co-host Joe Scarborough

MSNBC's Morning Joe co-host Joe Scarborough will highlight the list of speakers for the 2nd LSCU Annual Convention and Exposition (AC&E) this June in Orlando. Every morning Joe Scarborough, a former Florida Congressman, shares his trusted insights on today's political and policy headlines as host of MSNBC's Morning Joe. Scarborough will be the keynote speaker at the convention's general session on Saturday Jun. 18.

The NCUA Chairman Debbie Matz will speak at the League's Annual Business meeting on Friday Jun. 17. Matz's appearance will give credit unions an opportunity to hear directly from her as she speaks on a number of regulatory topics including the latest on the corporate stabilization plan. Also slated to present at the AC&E will be National Credit Union Foundation Director Bucky Sebastian and CUNA Mutual Group Vice President Bob Trunzo.

Credit unions will have a number of breakout sessions to choose from including a regulator roundtable with state regulators, an economic outlook from CUNA Economist Mike Schenk, the Power of Social Media on Any Budget, PR Opportunities for Credit Unions, and Fiduciary Responsibilities for Credit Union Directors, to name a few. Credit unions may also take part in the LSCU Councils, which will meet on Jun. 16. Credit union directors have the opportunity to become compliant by taking part in an NCUA Financial Literacy breakout session on Saturday Jun. 18.

To learn more about the LSCU's AC&E and to register, which takes place Jun. 16-19 at the JW Marriott in Orlando, visit the LSCU Convention and Exposition page. [ Return to Top ]

IRA Essentials and Advanced Training workshops prove helpful to credit unions

The League of Southeastern Credit Union’s hosted it’s annual IRA Essentials & Advanced Training Workshops on Mar. 15-16. We had 42 participants in the Essentials workshop and 44 participants in the Advanced workshop.

IRA Essentials Training attendees were able to benefit from discussions on topics such as IRA Fundamentals, IRA Distributions, IRA Transfer and Rollover Contributions, and IRA Tax Reporting Overview.

Advanced Training attendees learned about IRA Benefits, IRA Tax Reporting, IRA Transactions, Required Minimum Distributions, and Processing an IRA Death Claim.

“The material is very helpful, Paul always makes it interesting every year," said one former attendee. "LSCU has not disappointed me yet! Keep up the good work."

  [ Return to Top ]

2011 BSA Training Opportunities

LSCU has three remaining BSA Training opportunities to date for 2011. At each location, the League will offer two sessions, one in the morning and one in the afternoon.

This BSA Training class is appropriate for frontline staff, lenders, officials, managers and compliance officers. The two-and-a-half hour class incorporates a Currency Transaction Report workshop and a Suspicious Activity Report workshop (focusing on narrative preparation) in which attendees study completed forms based on several common scenarios. A few of the topics discussed will include: Bank Secrecy Act program oversight, creation and maintenance, risk assessment, review of Currency Transaction Reports, Currency Transaction Report exemptions, filing requirements, technology and the Bank Secrecy Act plus many more areas.

Locations:

Apr. 6      Mobile, AL / Blue Flame CU Auditorium

(Click session for: morning or afternoon).

May 18    Birmingham, AL / LSCU Ground Floor Conference Room

(Click session for: morning or afternoon)

Oct. 18    Muscle Shoals, AL / Listerhill CU

Participants in the BSA Training workshop will receive a certification letter upon completion of the session.

The cost for each course is $75 per person. For more information, visit the LSCU Education Calendar.

  [ Return to Top ]

Education Calendar

Upcoming Events:

Tuesday, Mar. 22
LSCU Small Credit Union Workshop
Lake Mary, FL   
9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. EST

Wednesday, Mar. 23
LSCU Small Credit Union Workshop
Birmingham, AL  
10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. EST

Wednesday, Apr. 6
BSA Training Workshop 
Mobile, AL  
Morning - 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. EST & Afternoon - 1:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Click here to view complete calendar of events.

  [ Return to Top ]

LEVERAGE News
Free 3M gift box with qualifying purchase

Get a free 3M Gift box when you spend $50 or more on qualifying 3M label products.To redeem, log in to business.officedepot.com and enter coupon code 689181329 at checkout. Offer is valid through Mar. 31. Click here to view the complete offer.

For questions or more information about the program, contact LEVERAGE Product Support Manager Deirdre Rhodes at 866.231.0545 ext. 1104. [ Return to Top ]

CUNA Mutual 2010 financial results exceed targets

Last year, financial results were extremely positive according to CUNA Mutual. Many factors contributed to this success, including the rebounding of the financial markets, continued expense discipline, and favorable crop results. CUNA expressed appreciation for the opportunity to continue to serve credit unions and will continue to work hard to earn credit unions' business in 2011.

Operating revenue on continuing operations grew 4.1 percent compared to the company's target of 3.1 percent. Almost half of the experienced growth was from Crop Insurance, primarily due to the increase in CUNA's ownership in ProAg. Asset accumulation products also contributed to revenue growth driven by improved financial markets. These products more than offset many credit union products, which experienced challenges in revenue growth due to poor economic conditions such as lower lending volumes. Crop insurance revenue contributed significantly to overall results, which helped CUNA Mutual increase its support to credit unions by $6 million in 2010.

Operating gain of $124 million was $21 million better than planned and $43 million better than 2009. Improvement in the financial markets not only drove revenue growth in CUNA's asset accumulation products, but it also resulted in stronger profits. Strong operating performance and lower investment impairments resulted in net income of $87 million. This is significantly better than the plan of $6 million and 2009’s net income of $51 million, which was bolstered by nonrecurring transaction gains. Two key capital measures, Statutory Total Adjusted Capital (TAC) and Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP) Surplus, showed improvement over 2009 of 15 percent and 17 percent respectively. [ Return to Top ]

News from You
Dr. Dorothy W. Huston steps in as Redstone FCU Board of Directors chair

Dr. Dorothy W. Huston has been elected to chair the Redstone Federal Credit Union Board of Directors. As chairperson, she will succeed Mr. Charles L. Ray, Jr. who is retiring after 28 years leading the Redstone Board. The transition occurred on Mar. 1.

Joining the Redstone family in 1995, Dr. Huston was appointed to the Policy and Planning Committee in 2000, and later that year, was appointed to the Supervisory Committee. Her contributions to the Supervisory Committee have helped to ensure the continued safety and soundness of the credit union.

Mr. Ray has been a credit union volunteer since the 1970s and has played an instrumental role in the growth and phenomenal success of Redstone Federal Credit Union. His involvement in the credit union industry spans more than 40 years.

In 1983, when Mr. Ray was elected as chair of the board of directors, Redstone had assets of $148.2 million and 102,000 members. Today, the credit union has surpassed $2.8 billion in assets.

  [ 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 ]

footer
 
Twitter Facebook YouTube