LSCU eSignal Weekly
LSCU eNews Weekly July 9, 2012
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LSCU eNews Weekly
In This Issue
President's Point
Members Survey valuable tool for LSCU & Affiliates
LSCU Top Headlines
This week's top League headlines
Governmental Affairs News
This week in Alabama politics: ETF will not be prorated, Medicaid unsure after Supreme Court ruling
This week in Florida politics: Justices cleared, Florida Chamber president sends letter on survey
News from the Hill: Start of busy month for both houses, floor, committee schedule
Communications News
Cooperative Image Campaign gets good coverage during holiday week
Compliance Corner
CUNA Regulatory Advocacy Report - Week of July 9, 2012
League InfoSight highlight: New Topic - Arrest and Conviction Reports for Employment
Compliance calendar and training
Cooperative Initiatives News
CUNA orientation for new affiliates set for July 19
Education News
Still time to register for BSA Training Workshop in Tuscaloosa on July 25
Education Calendar
LEVERAGE News
Peers talk about powerful LEVERAGE products
News from You
Alabama credit union executive receives CUNA accreditation
First Commerce's Homison on CUNA charter review task force
EMPLOYMENT
View available credit union jobs
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President's Point

Members Survey valuable tool for LSCU & Affiliates

This past Thursday the League sent affiliated credit union CEOs its 2012 LSCU Members Survey. This is a very important tool for the League as we look to the future. The results are analyzed and used by the LSCU & Affiliates management team and the board at its yearly planning retreats.  

It’s not a great revelation that most of our member credit unions look to us for advocacy, but when more than 90 percent of our credit unions told us that in the 2010 survey, we reconfigured our Governmental Affairs team to add directors of legislative affairs positions in Alabama and Florida, as well as a director of regulatory compliance and a grassroots and political action coordinator in the Birmingham office. This helped us ramp up our advocacy efforts on the state level as well as provide more help on the federal side. Our PAC fundraising and grassroots activities greatly improved in both states by adding the Birmingham position. Also, our regulatory affairs department is better able to respond to credit union needs, as well as decipher the new regulations and solicit comments.

In last year’s survey, we provided open-ended questions so our credit unions could pass along ideas they had. Many provided great ideas for our Education team. As we planned for 2012, we made sure to incorporate as many of the topic ideas as we could. A couple of the ideas that were added to this year’s schedule included managing risk, collections/bankruptcies and more sessions on lending. Credit unions saw these as educational breakout sessions at our Annual Convention and Exposition (AC&E) last month in Orlando, as stand alone workshops or will be part of our upcoming Leadership Development Conference.

In 2010, the League was beginning to put a Cooperative Image Campaign together. In our Members Survey, we asked if credit unions should support it financially. Sixty-three percent indicated they should. We put the campaign together and it ran last year for the first time in September. In the 2011 survey, the percentage of credit unions who indicated that a campaign should be supported rose to 80 percent. The second flight of the campaign is currently running across both states. The Cooperative Image Campaign is something the League believes in, but we will not push it on credit unions. We will continue to manage the campaign as long as credit unions see the value and the benefit.

These are just a few examples of how the League uses the results of the Members Survey. I hope you will take a few minutes to fill it out. It’s online and completely confidential. As you can see, the results are extremely valuable to the LSCU & Affiliates management team and the League board. If you need the survey link emailed to you again, contact LSCU VP, Marketing and Communications Mike Bridges at 866.231.0545 ext. 1022. Feel free to contact me with any questions you might have, as well.

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LSCU Top Headlines
This week's top League headlines

ATM Disclosure bill discussed on House floor
The House will hold a yea or nay vote on H.R. 4367 Monday evening after 6:30 p.m. House Financial Services Committee Chairman Spencer Bachus (R-AL) supported the bill on the floor and said the Senate is waiting for this bill to pass so they can move it along. The bill would amend Reg. E no longer requiring credit unions and other financial institutions to have signs on ATMs disclosing fees. Many of the current signs are being taken down and then lawsuits for non-compliance are being brought upon financial institutions. Check the LSCU website and LSCU Action Center Facebook page for updates.  

Two Alabama credit unions named to Top 50 list
SNL Financial, based in New Jersey, recently announced its Top 50 list of the best performing credit unions in the country. Alabama placed two credit unions on the list. Alabama CU, based in Tuscaloosa, was chosen number 14, while Listerhill, based in Muscle Shoals, secured the number 42 slot. SNL based its ratings on six core financial performance metrics. You can see all 50 credit unions by clicking here.  

2011 NCUA Annual Report now online
The NCUA has released its 2011 Annual Report. The report, Foundation for the Future, highlights the NCUA's accomplishments and activities over the past year. To read the Annual Report, click here

CFPB to offer new mortgage disclosure forms
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has begun letting credit unions, financial institutions and consumers know that a new combined mortgage disclosure form will soon be introduced. This will take the place of two forms currently being used in the mortgage process. You can read more on CUNA's website

LSCU Economic reports emailed to credit unions
The LSCU emailed its quarterly economic updates to credit unions on Monday. The report looks at how credit unions are doing relative to the economy in Alabama and Florida. The reports are a value of membership. You can find an archive of past reports on the LSCU Research and Economic Data page.  [ Return to Top ]

Governmental Affairs News
This week in Alabama politics: ETF will not be prorated, Medicaid unsure after Supreme Court ruling

Education Trust Fund Won’t See Proration
It was announced last week that the Education Trust Fund (ETF) will receive enough revenue from state income taxes and other sources in order to avoid proration of the 2012 fiscal year. The ETF raked in $4.25 billion from October 2011 to June 2012, an increase of 6.8 percent compared to the same period a year earlier.  State officials needed an increase of 5.6 percent, and the figures reported exceed that.

The state’s General Fund is also expected to collect enough revenue to meet its budget of $1.73 billion for the fiscal year. Due to lower than expected revenues, Gov. Bentley placed the General Fund in proration earlier this year and reduced spending by non-education state agencies by just over 10 percent.

Medicaid Unsure after Supreme Court Ruling
With the Supreme Court upholding the Affordable Care Act in late June, Alabama’s Medicaid Agency is still unclear on what measures, if any, it needs to take on whether or not to expand programs to those that qualify. If Alabama wanted to expand programs, the federal government will pick up all or a large majority of the costs through 2020, but state leaders are concerned that Alabama does not have the money.

During the last legislative session, Medicaid was one agency that could not be fully funded and is still relying on a constitutional amendment to receive the dollars it needs to operate. If expanded, Medicaid could add 455,000 Alabamians to its roles by 2019. At this point, state officials are still studying the program and waiting on answers to questions they have regarding expansion.

Shelby and Bachus Share the Wealth
Alabama Sen. Richard Shelby (R) and Rep. Spencer Bachus (R) rank as two of the highest spenders when it comes to helping colleagues get elected or re-elected. The Center for Responsive Politics released a study showing that Rep. Bachus has donated $271,500 so far this cycle, and Sen. Shelby has spent $205,000.

Follow the GA team legislative updates on Twitter and Facebook.

For questions regarding legislative affairs issues in Alabama, contact LSCU Director, Governmental Affairs - Alabama Jason Cochran at 866.231.0545, ext. 2159. [ Return to Top ]

This week in Florida politics: Justices cleared, Florida Chamber president sends letter on survey

Florida Supreme Court Justices Cleared of Wrongdoing
Florida investigators have cleared three state Supreme Court judges of violating any state law when they used court employees to help prepare election documents for their merit retention votes this fall, a decision that’s not sitting well with Gov. Rick Scott. “I would like to take this opportunity to thank Commissioner Gerald Bailey and the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) for diligently reviewing the possible violations by Florida Supreme Court judges,” Scott told the Orlando Sentinel.“According to FDLE findings, it appears using state employees to complete and file campaign forms and other documents, is ‘common practice.’ Now this case is before the courts where a determination will be made as to whether this ‘common practice’ is legal. Whatever the ruling, we will accept it and act accordingly.”

The three justices, Barbara Pariente, Fred Lewis, and Peggy Quinece, have not spoken publicly since the bizarre April incident that sparked the investigation when Chief Justice Charles Canady called the Court to recess for more than an hour after it was realized the Justices had not yet filed their financial disclosure forms. The investigation into the incident was sparked by a request from Rep. Scott Plakon (R-Longwood). Last Thursday, State Attorney Willie Meggs sent a letter to FDLE that no charges would be filed.

CFO’s Office Partners with Florida Chamber on Survey
Last week, the League mentioned the survey sent by the Florida Chamber Foundation in conjunction with the CFO’s office asking for your feedback on critical economic issues. The League recently received an email from the CFO’s office requesting that it once again ask credit unions to take the time to fill out the survey. Dale Brill, Florida Chamber Foundation president, has personally asked the League to reach out to its credit unions to bring them this message:

Dear Community Partner,

In collaboration with Florida’s Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater, the Florida Chamber Foundation is seeking your feedback on critical economic issues which must be addressed to create conditions necessary to secure Florida’s future. We begin by acknowledging that credit unions are an important component of economic growth for small businesses.

While credit union lending has increased in recent years, challenges remain. We want to hear your thoughts, insights and recommendations to help guide our public policy agenda through this 10-minute survey by following this link: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s.aspx . As the research arm of the Florida Chamber of Commerce, we know that access to capital is a critical piece of success for the engine of our economy—small businesses—and we are hopeful that, moving forward, your feedback can help inform our public policy agenda.

Please complete the survey by Friday, July 13. If you have any questions, please contact. Dr. Carrie Blanchard at 850-521-1283 or cblanchard@flfoundation.org. On behalf of the Florida Chamber Foundation, we thank you in advance for your time and response.

Sincerely,
Dale A. Brill, Ph.D.
President, Florida Chamber Foundation

To read the complete Florida Politics Week in Review including important information on the League's election activity, the LSCU Action Center, Project Zip Code, LSCU PLAN to Win, and PAC fundraising, click here.

Don't forget to follow developing news and legislation updates from GA on Twitter and Facebook.

For questions regarding this update or credit union legislation in Florida, contact LSCU VP, Governmental Affairs Jared Ross at 866.231.0545, ext. 1012. [ Return to Top ]

News from the Hill: Start of busy month for both houses, floor, committee schedule

Floor Schedule
The Senate convened Monday at 2 p.m. with the first roll call votes expected Tuesday at noon. On Tuesday, the Senate will consider the nomination of John Thomas Fowlkes to be United States District Judge for the Western District of Tennessee.  In addition, cloture was filed on the motion to proceed to S. 2237, the Small Business Jobs and Tax Relief Act on Thursday, June 29. As a result, there will be a cloture vote on the motion to proceed to S. 2237 at 2:25 p.m. Tuesday.

The House returned Monday and will consider bills under suspension of the rules, including H.R. 4367, a bill to amend the Electronic Fund Transfer Act to limit the fee disclosure requirement for an automatic teller machine to the screen of that machine. The LSCU and CUNA strongly support this legislation, and CUNA will be sending a letter of support for the bill to the members of the House of Representatives today. The League has already sent letters to members of both the Alabama and Florida delegations on this legislation voicing its support. The bill will be debated after 2:30 p.m. The League expects a recorded vote to occur on the bill, and that vote will not take place before 6:30 p.m. Monitor the League's Twitter and Facebook pages for the latest information as it becomes available.

On Tuesday, the House will meet to begin consideration of legislation to repeal of the Affordable Health Care for America Act. The House is expected to pass that piece of legislation on Thursday and move to H.R. 4402, the National Strategic and Critical Minerals Production Act of 2012. On Friday, the House is not in session.

Committee Meetings
The League and CUNA are also following several committee hearings and mark-ups on both sides of the Capitol:

On Tuesday, the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee will hold a hearing titled, “Framework for Safe and Efficient Mobile Payments.” The Senate Finance Committee will hold a hearing titled, “Boosting Job Opportunities Through Tax Overhaul.” In the House, the House Financial Services Subcommittee on Capital Markets and Government Sponsored Enterprises will hold the first in a series of hearings that the Financial Services Committee will hold this month on the Dodd-Frank Act as it nears its second anniversary. The hearing will examine the effect that the Act has had on U.S. capital markets, businesses, investors, and consumers, with a particular focus on derivatives regulation; the Volcker Rule; risk retention; and single counter-party credit limits. The House Judiciary Subcommittee on Intellectual Property, Competition and the Internet will hold a hearing titled, “Impact of Dodd-Frank Act: Financial Services Competition.”

On Wednesday, the House Financial Services Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit will hold a hearing titled, “Impact of Dodd-Frank Act: Mortgage Banking.” 

If you have any questions regarding the News from the Hill Update, contact LSCU VP, Governmental Affairs Jared Ross at 866.231.0545, ext. 1012 or LSCU Director, Legislative Affairs Jason Cochran at ext. 2159. [ Return to Top ]

Communications News
Cooperative Image Campaign gets good coverage during holiday week

The LSCU Cooperative Image Campaign received great press during the July 4 holiday week. The Birmingham News posted a story about the campaign and how credit unions are trying to lure customers away from the big banks.

The article features LSCU President/CEO Patrick La Pine commenting on the direction of the campaign from Scout Branding Company of Birmingham. "In an entertaining way, Scout's creative ideas are showing consumers that credit unions are modern, have everything they want in a financial institution and save them money through lower rates and fees."

A Samford University professor is quoted as saying he thinks credit unions are smart to capitalize on the bad taste that big banks left in the mouths of consumers after the financial crisis and again after trying to charge fees on debit card fees. You can read the full story by visiting the LSCU Press Room

The Birmingham News story was picked up by Florida Trend magazine and included as part of its daily email to subscribers. The story was also on the Florida Trend website for a day. The banking industry picked up the story and it was included in the Banking Strategies Daily email on Friday.

The LSCU Cooperative Image Campaign will run throughout the rest of July and into August in a few markets. If your credit union would like to contribute, contact LSCU VP, Marketing and Communications Mike Bridges at 866.231.0545 ext. 1022.  

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Compliance Corner
CUNA Regulatory Advocacy Report - Week of July 9, 2012

This week's edition of the CUNA Regulatory Advocacy Report covers issues such as: NCUA 2011 Annual Report, upcoming rulemakings from the CFPB, soliciting more input on CFPB’s request for data regarding Ability to Repay Proposal, and more.

Click here to read the complete edition of the CUNA Regulatory Advocacy Report. [ Return to Top ]

League InfoSight highlight: New Topic - Arrest and Conviction Reports for Employment

A “crime of dishonesty” is “a crime to cheat, defraud or wrongfully take another’s property” and includes but is not limited to convictions for the following:

  • Receiving or claiming gifts for procuring loans
  • Theft, embezzlement or misappropriation of money, funds or securities
  • Falsifying statements on loan/credit applications to overvalue land or property to federal agencies

May a credit union rely upon a conviction of a crime of dishonesty to exclude an employee or applicant from employment?

This question is answered in the new topic—Arrest and Conviction Reports for Employment—that was recently added to the Employment channel.

To find out more about arrests and conviction reports on the Employment Channel, visit League InfoSight.

The current issues of the InfoSight eNewsletter for Alabama and Florida are now available. Members must login to the League website (www.lscu.coop) with username and password. If you do not have access to the League website, click here to sign up. After you are logged in to www.lscu.coop, click on the InfoSight tab.
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Compliance calendar and training

July 2012

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

    *Note: To view InfoSight content, it is required to log in to www.lscu.coop for access.

    [ Return to Top ]

    Cooperative Initiatives News
    CUNA orientation for new affiliates set for July 19

    New affiliates to the LSCU and CUNA are invited to a webinar explaining the CUNA - League System. The one-hour program will cover a comprehensive suite of high quality CUNA products and services positioned to provide your credit union with:

    • Representation to legislators, regulators and consumers
    • Education and training resources for all staff levels and volunteers
    • Professional development networks – CUNA Councils and CUNA Volunteer Network
    • Member Financial Literacy/Education tools
    • Strategic research and information resources
    • Strategic Business solutions addressing compliance, operations, security and membership growth

    The webinar is scheduled for 11 a.m. (EDT) on Thursday, July 19. The League and CUNA encourages new credit unions to register for the webinar and invite key staff to listen in.  

    You can register for the webinar on CUNA's website. The website requires a login and password. If you do not have a CUNA password, register for one and you will be granted access. Contact LSCU VP, Cooperative Initiatives Laura Vann at 866.231.0545 ext. 2181 if you have questions. [ Return to Top ]

    Education News
    Still time to register for BSA Training Workshop in Tuscaloosa on July 25

    The Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) requires financial institutions to assist federal and state agencies to detect and prevent money laundering. Specifically, the act requires financial institutions to report suspicious activity that might signify money laundering or other criminal activities.

    The LSCU is offering BSA Training in Tuscaloosa on July 25.

    Wednesday, July 25 (repeat sessions):
    Morning: 9 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. CST
    Afternoon: 1 p.m. - 3:30 p.m. CST

    Registration Fee: $65/person/session

    Location:
    Tuscaloosa VA CU
    VA Medical Center
    3701 Loop Road East
    Tuscaloosa,AL 35404

    Click the links above or visit www.lscu.coop and click on the specific event on the Events Calendar to register online.

     

    [ Return to Top ]

    Education Calendar

    Upcoming Events:

    Tuesday, July 10
    Wire Transfer Compliance
    3 to 4:30 p.m. - Webinar

    Wednesday, July 11
    Understanding & Navigating the ACH Rules for the ODFI
    3 to 4:30 p.m. - Webinar

    Sunday-Wednesday, July 15-18
    Southeast Regional Credit Union Directors Conference (SRCUS)
    9 a.m. to 4 p.m. EST
    Norfolk, VA

    To view the complete LSCU Events Calendar, click here.

    [ Return to Top ]

    LEVERAGE News
    Peers talk about powerful LEVERAGE products

    When it comes to powerful products, LEVERAGE has a host of solutions to help credit unions operate more efficiently. Sometimes it helps to hear from peer credit unions on the products. The LEVERAGE website has two testimonial videos from credit unions talking about Ventelligence and ePurchasing. 

    Family Security Credit Union Vice President Zac Howell talks about the ease of implementing Ventelligence and how the Decatur credit union was utilizing the software the same day it was installed. Five Star Credit Union Vice President Kevin Hill talks about how the Dothan credit union saved money through ePurchasing. Hill believed the savings would be minimal but he was surprised how significant the savings were. 

    Visit the LEVERAGE website to view the testimonial videos. Contact a LEVERAGE Business Development Consultant if you would like more information about Ventelligence and ePurchasing.

    [ Return to Top ]

    News from You
    Alabama credit union executive receives CUNA accreditation

    An Alabama executive was among the graduates of a the 2012 Southeast Regional Credit Union Schools’ (SRCUS) CUNA Management School in Athens, Georgia. In mid-June, 35 credit union leaders completed the three-year course. Students came from the Southeast as well as the Midwest, Pacific Northwest, and West Africa.

    Among the graduates was Jefferson Credit Union, based in Birmingham, Vice President Nicole Shelton. The SRCS graduates are equipped with skills and knowledge to meet leadership challenges that arise in the credit union industry.

    The 2012 class was much larger than the 2011 graduating class which had 21 complete the course. The growth is indicative of the integrity and value of the Southeast CUNA Management School, which hosts students in residence each summer for eight days of course work.

    “This school stands the test of time in helping credit union professionals to become leaders,” SRCUS Chairman Barbara Lehew-Bickley notes of SRCUS in contributing to movement development. "Proof can be found in credit union management teams throughout the region and nation, in which former alumni are successful industry professionals. The new class looks forward not only to applying its new expertise but also to seeing others follow suit." [ Return to Top ]

    First Commerce's Homison on CUNA charter review task force

    A CUNA task force that will be looking at the credit union charter has a Florida connection. Cecilia Homison, CEO of First Commerce Credit Union of Tallahassee, is among the 13 members of the CUNA Charter Review and Enhancement Task Force. Ohio Credit Union League CEO Paul Mercer is the chairman of the task force. 

    The task force will develop a white paper that reviews the state of the credit union charter, identifying provisions of the Federal Credit Union Act that are obsolete, in need of improvement, or should be modified to align with the evolution of credit unions. The task force will also assess whether significant changes to the charter are necessary to accommodate future development of the credit union system, and, if necessary, make recommendations.

    The white paper is expected by the fall of 2012. . [ 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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