LSCU eSignal Weekly
LSCU eNews Weekly February 4, 2013
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LSCU eNews Weekly
In This Issue
President's Point
Affiliation with LSCU & Affiliates more than a line item
LSCU Top Headlines
This week's top League headlines
Governmental Affairs News
This week in Alabama politics: Session begins Tuesday; expect credit union legislation
This week in Florida politics: Gov. Scott releases budget recommendations
Florida State GAC room cut-off date is Feb. 15
Credit unions meet with Rep. Terri Sewell
Washington Update: CUNA pushes back at banks, CUNA GAC webinar on Feb. 20
Compliance Corner
League InfoSight highlight: strategic planning topic added
CUNA Regulatory Advocacy Report - Week of Feb. 4, 2013
Compliance calendar and training
Communications News
NEW! Three ways to submit LSCU Awards entries makes submitting entry a cinch
AC&E News
LSCU announces high-performance keynote speaker for 2013 AC&E
Education News
LSCU webinars: cheaper by the dozen!
Mark your calendars: Southeast CUNA Management School, LSCU Supervisory Committee Conference dates announced
Education Calendar
Cooperative Initiatives News
Apply for new NCUF Biz Kid$ Financial Education Grants
LSCU's SAS Workshops designed specifically for CUs under $50 million in assets
LEVERAGE News
Form 990s are easy with LEVERAGE
News from You
Flag CU gathers blankets for homeless shelter
EMPLOYMENT
View available credit union jobs
In This Issue
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President's Point

Affiliation with LSCU & Affiliates more than a line item

Here at the LSCU & Affiliates, the “new normal” seems to be that we are always busy and the first quarter is no exception. We are beginning to implement our updated strategic plan while continuing to focus on providing our member credit unions with the best service we can. The first quarter of each new year is also heavily focused on affiliation. We send out our dues packet in November, but January through March are the months where we do follow up visits with the non-affiliated credit unions in Alabama and Florida.

Being affiliated with the LSCU and CUNA is much more than just a line item in your budget. It’s an investment in the credit union movement. The League approaches affiliation as a partnership. We are partnering with credit unions to further our industry as well as promote unity and cooperation. It starts with our mission statement: “To ensure an operating environment through advocacy, leadership, and services that will enable credit unions to maximize their potential as unique financial institutions.” Every move we make is geared toward strengthening the credit union movement, especially for Alabama and Florida credit unions. Sometimes that means speaking up against conventional wisdom and pushing CUNA and the NCUA on issues. There is no status quo at the LSCU & Affiliates.

Our 2013 affiliation brochure is titled, “Promises Made. Promises Kept.” We felt it was an appropriate title to show that the LSCU is keeping the promises made in 2008-09 during the consolidation discussions. We have saved more than $1 million through consolidation and that money is being reinvested back into credit unions through enhanced service offerings. We are averaging more than 600 face-to-face meetings with credit unions. These meetings are designed for us to listen to you and to work on the issues that matter most to you – building that partnership.

A good way to illustrate that partnership is something that happened this past December. Rep. Dennis Ross filed a bill that inadvertently put the credit union tax exemption on a list to be studied. The League is close to Rep. Ross, however two Florida credit union CEOs, Art and Mary Wood, have a strong relationship with him. Because of these relationships, we could speak directly to his office right away and get the bill pulled and a new one drafted. Working together with our credit unions yields results.

I ask that you look through the “Promises Made. Promises Kept” brochure to see all that we’re working on for you. The Cooperative Image Campaign has raised awareness by 27 percent. The Southeastern Credit Union Foundation raised $300,000 for a therapeutic playground at All Children’s Hospital in St. Petersburg. A recent medical publication touted the playground as an example of a much needed resource. Our proactive media relations put you in front of more than seven million consumers. All of these examples raise awareness of what credit unions are all about. This leads directly to new members – 250,000 in both states the past five quarters.

Finally, our affiliated credit unions will get a dues rebate this year. The first time that has happened in either state. When the LSCU & Affiliates are successful, we want to share that success with our member credit unions.  By partnering together, we can keep our financial model solid and thriving.   

Send me any feedback to this column. [ Return to Top ]

LSCU Top Headlines
This week's top League headlines

CFPB to look at campus financial products
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau will begin looking at the impact of financial institution products marketed to college students. The CFPB wants to ensure that college students are getting a good deal. The CFPB is looking for input from financial institutions, parents and students. Read more on the CFPB's website.

Iranian cyber criminals hack credit union
It appears that a Texas credit union was hit by Iranian cyber criminals. University FCU, based in Austin, said it's website was offline for a couple of hours. The attackers method were similar to attacks on Bank of America, PNC and Capital One. The Credit Union Times goes more in-depth on the attack.  

NCUA webinar to feature CFPB's Cordray
NCUA Chairman Debbie Matz will hold a free webinar on Tuesday Feb. 5 at 3pm EST. CFPB Director Richard Cordray will be her guest. The webinar will cover consumer protection issues and the changing environment for financial institutions. Register for this free webinar by visiting the NCUA website

CUNA 4Q Membership@Work
This past week CUNA sent credit unions its Membership@Work brochure. The document looks at the accomplishments of CUNA in the last 90 days of 2012. Credit unions can read about the defeat of the bankers' TAG legislation, proactive media relations, and the number of credit unions attending CUNA webinars. This document is a good way to see how CUNA is performing for member credit unions. Read more by visiting the LSCU Top Stories

National Pancake Day to help CMN
Tuesday Feb. 5 is National Pancake Day at IHOP restaurants. Patrons will be offered a free short stack of pancakes. In return, they are asked to make a donation to Children's Miracle Network. The goal is to raise $3 million nationwide. Last year, more than $3 million was raised. To learn more or find an IHOP location near you, visit IHOP's website.  [ Return to Top ]

Governmental Affairs News
This week in Alabama politics: Session begins Tuesday; expect credit union legislation

Session Begins Tuesday
The 2013 Regular Session of the Alabama Legislature begins Tuesday Feb. 5 with many of the common themes that have dominated headlines in the past once again doing the same this year. Budgets are tight, political leaders do not know how they are going to fund Medicaid, Jefferson County is still a mess, and the federal government is taking away the rights of Alabamians. These issues have consistently been the focus of the past two legislative sessions in Montgomery and they will be in 2013.

The House Republican Caucus announced its “Dare Defend Our Rights” agenda and the Senate Republican Caucus will follow the same plan. Government restructuring, gun rights, flexibility for school systems and several other items dominate the agenda. House and Senate Democrats are introducing legislation along some of the same lines, especially with gun rights, but expect the Republican versions to move through the process over the next four months.

The first week of the session will be a three-day work week - Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday. Committee agendas are being set, neither the House Financial Services Committee or Senate Banking & Insurance Committee are scheduled to meet at this time.  

Public Deposits and State Act Update
The LSCU Governmental Affairs team is continuing to work on behalf of Alabama credit unions on legislation that will allow credit unions to accept public deposits and legislation that modernizes the State Credit Union Act.  Both pieces of legislation are expected to be introduced in the next few weeks. The League will be working diligently to see them moved through the legislative process.

At this time neither pieces of legislation have bill numbers or committee assignments. It is important that credit unions contact their legislators on pro-credit union legislation throughout the 2013 Legislative Session.

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: Gov. Scott releases budget recommendations

Gov. Scott Releases Budget Recommendations
Gov. Rick Scott proposed a $74.2 billion state budget Thursday that would be the largest in Florida history, a major change of course for the governor who campaigned to slash spending and shrink government. Gov. Scott’s proposal includes pay raises for teachers and state workers, an increase in primary and secondary educational funding, as well as spending directed at several environmental and social programs which have suffered in his previous two budgets Scott has signed. Find the details on the governor’s website.  

Foreclosure Process Hammers Housing Market
NPR recently ran a story looking at foreclosures. Florida now has the highest foreclosure rate in the country; beating out Nevada for the first time in five years. Experts say the legal process in Florida is the key reason for the sluggish pace of foreclosures. The state is getting it from both ends: foreclosures continue to come in at a high rate, and they're very slow going out. It's taking nearly two-and-a-half years to get through the judicial process. Why does it take so long to get these foreclosed houses back on the market? Analysts say the cumbersome legal process in Florida sets the state apart from other hard-hit states. Service 1st CU CEO Sharmon Lenth was featured in the story. Read the full story on NPR's website

Legislature Puts Salary and Contract Information Online
Floridians have the opportunity to see the salary of the Florida legislature. This past week two Republican leaders of the House and Senate added links on legislative websites showing legislative employee salaries. The two chambers are also posting copies of contracts. The move comes nearly two years after Gov. Scott posted salaries of most state workers. Florida also has information regarding state contracts posted online. Find out more about the salaries on the House website and the Senate website.

Should you have any questions on any of the legislative issues mentioned above contact LSCU Director, Legislative Affairs, Jennifer Martin, 866.231.0545 ext. 1150.

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

Florida State GAC room cut-off date is Feb. 15

The 2013 LSCU Florida State Governmental Affairs Conference (GAC), in Tallahassee on March 19-20, is quickly approaching. For those that are planning to attend and need a room, the cut-off date to secure a room at the State GAC price is Feb. 15. The rate is $199 at the DoubleTree Hotel. Call today and ask for the League of Southeastern Credit Unions' rate.  

The State GAC features speakers such as CFO Jeff Awater and the governor's Director of Legislative Affairs Darrick McGhee. These two speakers will provide credit unions with a  closer look at the state from inside the governor's office.

Among the other sessions included in the GAC will be a look at regulatory and legislative priorities, the state legislative outlook, and PAC fundraising. There will be a legislative reception on March 19. This is a great opportunity to build relationships with your lawmakers in a relaxed atmosphere before heading to the state capitol the next day for lawmaker office visits.

The State GAC will be at the Governor's Club in downtown Tallahassee. Visit the LSCU Events Calendar for more information and to register for the State GAC.

If you have any questions, contact LSCU VP, Governmental Affairs Jared Ross at 866.231.0545 ext. 1012.

Legislative reception sponsored by Print Resources. [ Return to Top ]

Credit unions meet with Rep. Terri Sewell


Pictured l to r: America's First CEO Bill Connor, Rep. Terri Sewell, NRS Community Development FCU CEO Eunice Rogers, and Alabama CU CEO Steve Swofford.

This past week, the LSCU and three credit unions met with Rep. Terri Sewell (D-AL) at her in-district office. Rep. Sewell is now a member of the House Financial Services Committee. Some of the topics discussed were member business lending, the need for the credit union tax exemption, and oversight for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Rep. Sewell was receptive to all of the information that was presented. The League looks  forward to working with her in the future.   [ Return to Top ]

Washington Update: CUNA pushes back at banks, CUNA GAC webinar on Feb. 20

CUNA pushes back at bank attacks
CUNA continues its one-two punch against bank attacks targeting the credit union tax status. As reported, CUNA President/CEO Bill Cheney has had at least 20 recent meetings with federal lawmakers underscoring the public policy reasons for the credit union tax-exemption mandated by the Federal Credit Union Act of 1934. Last week, CUNA EVP of Legislative Affairs John Magill refuted bank attempts to tie together the issue of increased member business lending for credit unions with the separate issue of tax status. In a recent Politico article, "The never-ending feud: Banks vs. credit unions," which focused primarily on bank rhetoric against increased MBLs, Magill said, "When they start talking about our tax exemption, they're changing the subject. They've run out of arguments opposed to the member business lending. They know they can't defeat us on the policy argument so they talk about tax exemption, trying to put us in a position to defend that." As Cheney noted in last week's "Cheney Report," CUNA will be emphasizing repeatedly on Capitol Hill in the months to come, including the CUNA GAC Hill visits this month, how it is the credit union member who would be harmed most by the banks' push to increase taxes on credit unions.

CUNA GAC Webinar Feb. 20
The CUNA GAC is less than three weeks away in Washington, D.C. The League wants to make sure that you have all the necessary information needed to have a successful and enjoyable trip. The GAC is an opportunity to bring the credit union message to federal lawmakers. It's also a great venue for credit unions to hear from industry experts, great political figures, and to interact and network with other advocates from our two states and around the country.

Before you head to Washington, the League will host a short webinar with some helpful information. The webinar will be held on Wednesday, Feb. 20 at 2:30PM EST/1:30PM CST. A brief update on legislative issues and a schedule of events will be given, as well as a question and answer period. To join the webinar on Feb. 20, please use this link. Call-in information will be shown when you join the webinar.

Credit unions attending the CUNA GAC are also encouraged to bring a Community Engagement Report with them. Templates are available on the LSCU Credit Union GA Resources page. The template has an area for your credit union information. 

Contact LSCU VP, Governmental Affairs Jared Ross at 866.231.0545 ext. 1012 with any questions. [ Return to Top ]

Compliance Corner
League InfoSight highlight: strategic planning topic added

Strategic planning is one of the most important responsibilities for any board of directors. It's a much-needed process of planning where the credit union is headed and the steps that need to be taken to get there.

Among the benefits of strategic planning:

  • Clearly defining the vision and purpose of the credit union
  • Establishing goals and objectives consistent with the vision
  • Making effective use of the credit union’s resources by focusing on key priorities
  • Providing a means of measuring how well the credit union is meeting the goals
  • Giving board members and staff a personal stake in the future of the credit union by engaging them in determining how to best serve members

Check out the Board Responsibilities Channel for more on the strategic planning topic.

The current issues of the InfoSight eNewsletter for Alabama and Florida are now available on the InfoSight homepage in the left-hand column. Members must login to the League website with username and password in order to access InfoSight. After you are logged in to www.lscu.coop, click on the InfoSight tab. If you do not have access to the League website, click here to sign up. [ Return to Top ]

CUNA Regulatory Advocacy Report - Week of Feb. 4, 2013

Each week CUNA provides credit unions a wealth of information through its Regulatory Advocacy Report. The report for the week of Feb. 4 looks at how CUNA is pushing the NCUA on its exam priorities and practices. Plus, new credit card interchange rules took affect at the end of January. It allows retailers to asses a "check out" fee that could be up to four percent. 

To read the most recent CUNA Regulatory Advocacy Report, click here. [ Return to Top ]

Compliance calendar and training

February 2013

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

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

Communications News
NEW! Three ways to submit LSCU Awards entries makes submitting entry a cinch

Three ways to enter a submission!

Don't forget! Young Professional of the Year Award added this year!

In addition to the current award categories (CEO of the Year, Volunteer of the Year, CU of the Year, Distinguished Service, and Brother's Keeper, the LSCU has added the Young Professional of the Year Award. Young professionals are the future of the credit union industry so LSCU will be recognizing a professional, age 40 or younger, that has shown proven dedication and enthusiasm for the credit union movement.

Visit the LSCU CU Awards Program web page 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 ]

AC&E News
LSCU announces high-performance keynote speaker for 2013 AC&E

Mark your calendars for the 2013 AC&E, June 12-14, in Orlando! With speakers and education sessions designed to "accelerate your performance," the LSCU is excited to have a keynote speaker who knows first-hand what it means to take high performance and excellence to an extreme level. John Foley, former lead solo pilot for the Blue Angels, will demonstrate the parallels between an elite team like the Blue Angels and what we do every day. Best of all, John will provide some powerful ideas that participants can immediately begin to use to raise their performance as individuals and as a company to an entirely new level.

Stay tuned for more information about the AC&E in upcoming issues of eSignal and on the AC&E website. [ Return to Top ]

Education News
LSCU webinars: cheaper by the dozen!

When your credit union registers for an LSCU webinar (provided by the Credit Union Webinar Network), a “virtual punch card” will be maintained for you. Each time your credit union registers, you get one punch. After attending 12 webinars in a calendar year (including archived programs), your credit union will automatically receive a complimentary certificate for a free webinar!

This loyalty reward will stretch your credit union’s training budget and provide quality webinars for every member of your staff.

Get started on your 2013 dozen today! To see available webinars, click here. [ Return to Top ]

Mark your calendars: Southeast CUNA Management School, LSCU Supervisory Committee Conference dates announced

The Southeast CUNA Management School (SRCUS) is June 7-14 in Athens, GA. The school helps participants to develop their operational, managerial, and leadership abilities.

More information will be available soon. Questions? Contact LSCU Director, Conferences Julianne Talley.


The 2013 LSCU Supervisory Committee Conference is scheduled for August 4-7, 2013 in Destin, FL. Registration is now open online.

Hotel reservations may be made NOW at the Hilton Sandestin Beach Golf Resort & Spa with a group rate of $209 using the group reservation code LSC.

Stay tuned for more information or visit the LSCU Events Calendar on www.lscu.coop. [ Return to Top ]

Education Calendar

Upcoming Events:

Tuesday, Feb. 5
NASCUS: Florida Directors College  

ACH Death Notification
3 to 4:30 p.m. EST - Webinar

Wednesday, Feb. 6
Frontline Excellence - Dissecting Reg CC
3 to 4:30 p.m. EST - Webinar

To view the complete LSCU Events Calendar, click here. To view LSCU's 2013 Education Calendar at-a-glance, click here. [ Return to Top ]

Cooperative Initiatives News
Apply for new NCUF Biz Kid$ Financial Education Grants

Biz Kid$ Financial Education Grants may be used by credit unions to fund innovative programs that improve the financial education of youth through the use of the Biz Kid$ program. Projects may engage teachers, students, education leaders, local PBS stations, or community stakeholders through events, activities, and/or curriculum distribution.

For more information and grant applications, click here.

  [ Return to Top ]

LSCU's SAS Workshops designed specifically for CUs under $50 million in assets

Register today for the 2013 Small Credit Union Workshops on Feb. 12 in Orlando and March 26 in Birmingham. There will be an exciting line-up of speakers and topics that deal with most pressing issues our member credit unions face every day. For more information on the workshop agenda and to register online click below.

Birmingham Small Asset Size Workshop – March 26

Registration is only $89 and SAS credit unions can use their SAS Initiatives Account to cover the registration fee.

Contact LSCU Director, Member Relations Adena Whitman at 866.231.0545 ext. 2134. [ Return to Top ]

LEVERAGE News
Form 990s are easy with LEVERAGE

Form 990 is an annual financial information tax return required to be filed with the IRS by most tax-exempt organizations from income tax under section 501(c). The form helps to prevent abuse and enforce financial accountability. Federal credit unions are not required to file this form.

For those credit unions that are required to file a Form 990, they must be complete and filed by May 15, annually. Instead of looking at it as a necessary evil, have LEVERAGE’s Audit & Consulting staff take this off your to-do list. To sign up for a Form 990 preparation assistance or any audit service, visit LEVERAGE's website.

  [ Return to Top ]

News from You
Flag CU gathers blankets for homeless shelter

Flag CU, based in Tallahassee, collected blankets in the month of January. At the end of the month, 50 blankets were donated and then given to the Tallahassee-Leon County Homeless Shelter. The blankets were given at the right time as temperatures dipped into the low 30s.

[ Return to Top ]

EMPLOYMENT
View available credit union jobs

To view available jobs posted by credit unions on the LSCU website, visit the LSCU CU Jobs Center. Click the link at the top of the CU Jobs Center page to view jobs at the LSCU. [ Return to Top ]

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