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Mick VanStaveren of InSphere Insurance Solutions helps teens learn about child care costs during the Bite of Reality event held at San Rafael High School, hosted by Redwood CU and RMJ Foundation.
Transportation table volunteers try to convince students to spend their money on high-dollar sports cars.
Students work on managing their simulated household income and expenses during the event.

TEACHING YOUTH BASICS OF FINANCES
updated 04/30/13 10:25 AM
CUs Celebrate Financial Literacy Month
Celebrating National Financial Literacy Month and National Credit Union Youth Week, the Richard Myles Johnson Foundation and Redwood CU recently presented the "Bite of Reality" program to 85 seniors from San Rafael, Madrone, and Terra Linda high schools in Northern California.

The hands-on simulation program offered by the RMJ Foundation— together with the California and Nevada Youth Involvement Network—was held April 24 at San Rafael High School. The program is designed to teach young people the basics of finance in a fun, interactive way.

Participants were given a fictional occupation, salary, spouse and family, student loan debt, credit card debt, and medical insurance payments. They visited various table-top stations to “purchase” housing, transportation, food, clothing, household necessities, day care, and other needs. In addition, there was a credit union table-top to help with financial needs. They also faced some unexpected expenses and windfalls during the program. While some students made modest spending choices and stuck to a budget, others experienced the unpleasant consequences of spending beyond their means after purchasing luxury vacations and sports cars, leaving them without enough to pay for their necessary living expenses. Many luxury items were returned and more realistic budgets set after students sought financial advice from the credit union table.

At the end of the program, Gary Phillips, the mayor of the city of San Rafael, address the students and emphasize the importance of financial education.

“It is inspiring to watch these young adults make the same type of financial decisions during the Bite of Reality that they will have to make every day as adults, and then learn from those decisions,” said Redwood CU Assistant Vice President of Training & Financial Literacy Lee Alderman.

In addition to the Bite of Reality program, several credit unions in California and Nevada commemorated the month and Youth Week (April 22-27) with a variety of activities, including:

  • At Yuba City High School, 100 students participated in an interactive financial game called Mad City Money hosted by Sierra Central CU. Participants got a folder with hypothetical life factors and then had to shop for the things they needed. Former Sacramento Kings player Harold Pressley, who does special events for Sierra Central, walked around the gym delivering slips of paper to students for unexpected deposits or expenses. Some 17 Sierra Central employees (including CEO John Cassidy as a facilitator) and eight community people volunteered at the event. The credit union has done financial presentations for this school for the last four years but this was the first time it had presented this program.
  • The Golden 1 CU also held a Mad City Money event, for students at Lincoln High School. Some 100 Lincoln students got a taste of real-world budgeting.
  • Bay FCU provided a number of activities during National Credit Union Youth Week, including a kids fingerprinting and fire truck visit at its Watsonville branch, kids Fingerprinting at its Freedom branch, and K9 demonstrations at the Capitola and Aptos branches.

 
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HARRY REID TO RETIRE IN 2016 updated 03/27/15 01:11 PM
Served Senate Since 2005
Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) will not seek re-election in 2016, he said in an interview with the New York Times. He has led the Senate democrats since 2005 and has had a three-decade congressional career.

FIRST CU REG. RELIEF BILL PASSED updated 03/26/15 09:21 AM
H.R. 299 Approved by Committee
The House Committee on Financial Services passed H.R. 299—the Capital Access for Small Community Financial Institutions Act—granting privately-insured credit unions access to the Federal Home Loan Bank. The bill now moves to House floor for consideration hopefully before June.

FIs TRUSTED OVER RETAILERS updated 03/25/15 03:00 PM
Better Data Protection
According to a recent Gallup poll, 91 percent of consumers trust credit unions and banks to better safeguard their personal information and keep data secure, compared to less than 70 percent of consumers who trust merchants. More than 11,000 U.S. adults age 18 and older were surveyed for the poll.

OVERDRAFT PROPOSAL OPPOSED updated 03/24/15 08:56 AM
Treatment of Prepaid Cards
The California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues have submitted a comment letter to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) that strongly opposes the bureau’s proposed treatment of overdrafts on prepaid cards as credit and subject to Regulation Z requirements.

GRR IS LESS THAN THREE WEEKS AWAY updated 03/23/15 10:54 AM
Crucial Event for CA State Advocacy
The 2015 Government Relations Rally (GRR) is the most important state legislative event for credit unions in California— and it’s less than three weeks away. Will you be there to advocate for your credit union?

CEOs TALK RISK, OPPORTUNITY, FUTURE updated 03/19/15 05:04 PM
Cheney, Gunderson, and Hernandez
Threats to cybersecurity, defending against card fraud, and remaining relevant to consumers are top concerns for three credit union CEOs who recently participated on a special panel during a California Credit Union League Orange County Chapter meeting.

CA CEO TESTIFIES BEFORE CONGRESS updated 03/18/15 10:18 AM
Also, Rep. Royce Reintroduces Bill
Patrick Miller, CEO of CBC FCU testified before today’s House Committee on Financial Services hearing titled “Preserving Consumer Choice and Financial Independence.” Miller was the witness on behalf of the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues and the Credit Union National Association (CUNA). The bulk of his testimony centered on duplicative compliance burdens, as well as the modifications needed to strengthen the credit union charter.

NCUA WARNS ABOUT PHISHING SCAM updated 03/18/15 03:00 PM
‘National Credit Union’ Con
The National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) has issued a warning to consumers that the agency has received reports of an online phishing scam which uses a website with a logo and a design similar to the agency’s own site in an attempt to convince customers/members to provide information or send money. Click here to read the warning.

SMALL, LARGE CUs MEET AT 'GAC' updated 03/16/15 11:31 AM
Also, Pete Aguilar Fundraiser
Nearly 50 CEOs and professionals from small credit unions and their large-sponsor counterparts attended the Partners in Advocacy reception last week at the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues’ suite during the 2015 Credit Union National Association Governmental Affairs Conference (GAC).

MCWATTERS MEETS WITH CA, NV LEADERS updated 03/16/15 10:27 AM
CFPB Officials Address Rules
The room was packed last week when National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) Board Member Mark McWatters made time to address attendees from California and Nevada during the 2015 Credit Union National Association Governmental Affairs Conference (GAC) in Washington, D.C.

CU HILL VISITS: 'TREMENDOUS SUCCESS' updated 03/16/15 01:25 PM
Keeps Advocacy Top of Mind
More than 225 colleagues from California and Nevada credit unions joined thousands of their peers at the 2015 Credit Union National Association Governmental Affairs Conference (GAC) last week, making visits to lawmakers’ offices and meeting with regulatory officials.

ADVOCATES GATHER IN WASHINGTON, D.C. updated 03/10/15 10:51 AM
2015 Governmental Affairs Conference
California and Nevada credit union leaders attending the Credit Union National Association’s 2015 Governmental Affairs Conference (GAC) in Washington D.C. focused on pressing legislative and regulatory issues as they were briefed in the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues’ suite on Monday afternoon and met intermittently on Tuesday.

COMMITMENT TO SUPP. CAPITAL AND RBC updated 03/10/15 09:57 AM
Plus, Modernizing FOM Limits
Credit union leaders from California and Nevada were surprised and pleased with National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) Chairman Debbie Matz’s comments from this week regarding the use of supplemental capital for risk-based capital purposes.

PURCELL SCHOLARSHIP AWARDED AT 'GAC' updated 03/10/15 07:50 AM
Honor ‘Means a Great Deal to Me’
This year’s Kelly J. Purcell Credit Union Memorial Fund Scholarship was awarded to Rebecca Herrigel, a student at the George Washington University Graduate School of Political Management who will graduate this year with a master’s degree in political management.

REG. RELIEF HEARING ANNOUNCED updated 03/09/15 10:06 AM
Signals Many Discussions Ahead
With the opening of the Credit Union National Association (CUNA) 2015 Governmental Affairs Conference (GAC) on March 8, the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues had its first of many announcements.

CEOs JOIN CU HOUSE HALL OF LEADERS updated 03/09/15 09:30 AM
Eric Bruen and Joe Schroeder
Desert Valleys FCU CEO Eric Bruen and Ventura County CU President Joe Schroeder were inducted into the Credit Union House Hall of Leaders during the Credit Union House meeting, prior to the Credit Union National Association’s (CUNA) Governmental Affairs Conference (GAC), which began on March 8. Both received this honor for their significant impact on the credit union movement, and are the third and fourth inductees from California since the program’s inception in 2008.

NCUA, CFPB TO MEET CA AND NV LEADERS updated 03/03/15 09:12 AM
RBC, Overdraft, and Other Topics
On board for California and Nevada attendees of the Credit Union National Association’s 2015 Governmental Affairs Conference (GAC) is a special visit from officials with the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) and Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) at the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues' hospitality suite.

THREE TOPICS SHAPING ‘GAC’ THIS YEAR updated 03/02/15 05:08 PM
Data Security Will Top GRR
Next week the Credit Union National Association’s 2015 Governmental Affairs Conference (GAC) will kick off in Washington D.C.—a conference that, unlike others, is focused on bringing the credit union message to Congress and the administration.

EVANGELICAL CHRISTIAN CU CEO RETIRIN updated 03/02/15 04:20 PM
Holbrook Served For 36 Years
Evangelical Christian CU's Mark Holbrook will retire in May after 36 years as CEO. He is widely acknowledged for growing the 50-year-old institution to an alliance of more than 11,000 members and ministries in 130 countries.

ROYCE REINTRODUCES MBL CAP BILL updated 03/02/15 03:31 PM
Raises Limit to 27.5 Percent of Assets
Today, Congressman Ed Royce (R-CA) reintroduced legislation raising the member business lending (MBL) from 12.25 percent to 27.5 percent of assets.

CUs LEND UNIQUE VOICE TO NEWS MEDIA updated 03/02/15 02:55 PM
Stories Garner Spotlight in CA, NV
Only two months into 2015, local news media across California and Nevada are highlighting credit unions’ positive impact on their communities as the economy continues strengthening and the industry seeks how it can uniquely serve members.

VETERANS MBL BILL INTRODUCED updated 02/27/15 01:27 PM
Service Member Loans Exempt From Cap
This morning, Reps. Julia Brownley (D-CA) and Jeff Miller (R-FL) introduced H.R. 1133, legislation that will help the nation’s veterans establish themselves as small business entrepreneurs. With many service members already credit union members, this new bill would exempt small business loans issued to veterans from the member business lending (MBL) cap.

CUs TESTIFY ON FIN. LITERACY updated 02/25/15 10:50 AM
Nat'l. CU Foundation Speaks at FLEC
Gigi Hyland, executive director of the National Credit Union Foundation toured the movement's dedication to youth financial literacy today in a presentation to the U.S. Treasury's Financial Literacy Education Commission (FLEC).

WINE AUCTION RAISES RECORD AMOUNT updated 02/24/15 10:27 AM
More Than $1 Million for Children’s Hospitals
More than $1 million was raised for 11 Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals in California and Nevada during the annual Credit Unions for Kids Wine Auction last Friday night—a record amount in the event’s 10-year history.