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L-R: Barbara Bean, CEO of Cal Poly FCU; Eric Bruen, CEO of Desert Valleys FCU; and Pete Meza, CEO of Corrections FCU

CALIFORNIA CUs RECEIVE 'LICU' GRANTS
updated 03/19/14 03:59 PM
Part of National Recipient Group
Three low income-designated credit unions in California—and 124 others nationwide—will be able to offer new products, train the next generation of credit union leadership, and gain access to more resources to help their communities with grants awarded last week from the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA).

In this round, credit unions received approximately $517,000 through the first Community Development Revolving Loan Fund grant round in 2014, with NCUA’s Office of Small Credit Union Initiatives (OSCUI) administering the funds.

Cal Poly FCU, Desert Valleys FCU, and Corrections FCU collectively received $10,500.

Cal Poly FCU
“There’s never a lack of projects we need help on,” said Cal Poly FCU CEO Barbara Bean, whose credit union received $4,000 to put toward a summer internship. The credit union will most likely hire at least one Cal Poly Pomona student. “We have a number of opportunities, whether it’s providing financial literacy to incoming students, helping us develop a home banking app, creating a new member rewards program, or assisting with our social media expansion,” she said.

Bean is grateful for the grant funds, which are “extremely limited,” she said. Cal Poly FCU continually applies for several grants but is oftentimes turned down. Demand is high among credit unions. “We get expertise that we could not otherwise afford, and interns receive money for working during the summer,” Bean said. “Our members will be served with new products and services they want—so it’s a win for everyone involved.”

Desert Valleys FCU
Desert Valleys FCU received a $2,500 technical assistance grant—money that’s going toward hiring a consultation company to assist the credit union in securing a Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) certification from the U.S. Treasury Department. “CDFI programs provide substantial grant opportunities to introduce small business lending programs and Individual Development Accounts (IDA), both of which we see as opportunities for our credit union,” said CEO Eric Bruen.

He said grants such as these are important. “They provide a way for small credit unions to explore new avenues and opportunities to serve their existing members, and potentially new members,” Bruen said. “The real key to all of these programs is strategic planning and understanding how they enhance your mission or help your credit union grow, either in membership or services.”

If the credit union received CDFI certification, it will be in a unique position. “We’ll be the only CDFI-certified institution within several hundred miles of the communities we serve,” Bruen said. “This gives us a chance to offer something different and that’s a powerful competitive edge in today’s market.”

Corrections FCU
Corrections FCU received $4,000 to hire a student accounting intern—an important position at this stage of the credit union’s operations. “We’re looking at implementing a new core data processor and a fixed-asset software program,” said CEO Pete Meza. “Whoever is hired for the internship will be completing due diligence for this.”

The credit union will be holding interviews with students from four local colleges. At $10 per hour, Corrections FCU will benefit from 400 hours of internship work. “The grant is going to help us out a lot,” Meza said. “We’re very grateful.”

Since 2001, NCUA has received more than $12.8 million in grant funding for credit unions serving low-income communities. The revolving grant and loan fund was established by Congress. In this current round, 320 credit unions submitted grant applications to NCUA, with more than $2.3 million in funding requests. Click here for more information.

 
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MOUNTAIN WEST JOINS 'PLEXCITY' updated 05/23/16 03:22 PM
CU Association is 6th Shared Owner
Mountain West Credit Union Association is purchasing a shared-ownership stake in Plexcity for information technology, accounting/finance, and human resource solutions, adding to the Ontario, CA-based company’s unique story of growing collaboration between credit union trade associations since January 2015.

CONNECTING WITH MEXICAN IMMIGRANTS updated 05/19/16 10:29 AM
Matrícula Consular Online Seminar June 9
Lack of identification is one of the biggest barriers for Hispanic immigrants to access affordable financial services. RSVP for a Juntos Avanzamos online seminar on using the Matrícula Consular to reach unbanked Mexican immigrants. Learn how to use the Matricula Consular as a safe, effective way to open savings and checking accounts.

SUMMER IMPACT OPPORTUNITY FOR CUs updated 05/19/16 03:30 PM
$21M Toward Jobs For Young People
Federal government leaders are working hand in hand with local stakeholders to craft solutions that harness resources across multiple agencies in response to local needs and priorities. Since 2009, more than fifteen Federal agencies have launched dozens of initiatives and partnerships with over 1,800 rural, tribal and urban communities. Federal leaders are working across agency lines and offering hands-on support to build local capacity, provide expertise, and unlock resources to help community leaders achieve their goals.

'IT WAS THE RIGHT THING TO DO' updated 05/17/16 10:16 AM
CFO Professional of the Year
Most new ideas aren’t necessarily new, according to Susan Gruber. They are old concepts with a new twist, and they can have great potential.

WHY ONE SMALL CU RANKS BIG IN TECH updated 05/09/16 08:48 PM
Behind United Catholics FCU
No one was perhaps more surprised to learn her credit union ranked No. 1 on MagnifyMoney’s most recently published list of “most digitally savvy” U.S. credit unions than Lucy Sloan.

FINANCIAL CAPABILITY COLLOQUIUM updated 05/03/16 11:38 AM
Measuring Credit Unions' Impact
Nearly 30 leaders and professionals came together last week at the first Financial Capability Colloquium to discuss how to collectively and effectively measure the individual financial literacy efforts that their credit unions and organizations routinely implement within their communities, and how to use these measurements to tell a powerful story that will resonate with the public.

METSGER APPOINTED NCUA BOARD CHAIR updated 05/02/16 05:17 PM
Plus, CFPB on Arbitration and TRID
President Barack Obama has appointed National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) Vice Chairman Rick Metsger to be the ninth chairman of the NCUA Board of Directors, succeeding outgoing Board Chairman Debbie Matz, whose service ended April 30.

TV INVESTIGATION SPOTLIGHTS 'PACE' updated 05/02/16 02:39 PM
Protecting Consumers Becomes Crucial
A TV news station in Los Angeles has captured a clear example of consumer protection issues stemming from the “PACE” lending program (Property Assessed Clean Energy) in just one instance of how it is proving financially harmful to homeowners and credit union members across California.

'PACE' PASSES FIRST STATE COMMITTEE updated 04/26/16 08:48 AM
Congressman Sherman Gives Support
In a rare instance of federal and state legislative involvement, Assembly Bill 2693, authored by Assemblyman Matt Dababneh (D-Encino), received two significant boosts yesterday.

INDUSTRY LEADER AND MENTOR PASSES updated 04/25/16 12:43 PM
O'Rourke 'Will be Missed'
Gene O’Rourke—who left a 40-year legacy of helping shape and place leaders in the credit union industry throughout California and the nation—died this past Friday. He was 70.

LEAGUES COMMENT ON OTR, FEE METHODS updated 04/25/16 04:12 PM
Plus, NCUA's 2 New Proposals
The California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues have told the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) that federally insured state-chartered credit unions (FISCUs) and federally chartered credit unions (FCUs) should be treated equitably in their comment letter on the Overhead Transfer Rate (OTR) and Operating Fee Schedule Methodologies.

REG COMMITTEE RESPONDS TO CORDRAY updated 04/19/16 09:31 AM
CU Leaders Express Opinions
In Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Director (CFPB) Richard Cordrary’s recent response to a congressional letter that calls on him to fully utilize the bureau’s exemption authority for community financial institutions, Cordray cites examples of how the bureau has already used this authority.

NCUA SELECTS NEW REGION V DIRECTOR updated 04/19/16 07:31 AM
Plus: Proposed Rules; Comments Needed
The National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) has selected Cherie Freed as regional director of the agency’s Region V office in Tempe, AZ. She will replace current Regional Director Elizabeth Whitehead, who will retire in May after 28 years of service.

AUTOS MAY PEAK AT 18 MILLION IN 2017 updated 04/19/16 05:40 PM
Decisive Moment for Credit Unions
Credit unions’ speedy, record breaking growth in auto lending might peel even more rubber in 2017. But how will they handle a plateau and subsequent drop in sales when the current business cycle runs its course?

RESPECTED ECONOMIST DIES AT 63 updated 04/14/16 04:38 PM
Esmael Adibi on SchoolsFirst Board
A beloved and well-respected forecaster on the California economy over the past 38 years—as well as credit union board member of SchoolsFirst FCU—died of complications from a stroke on April 8.

ADVOCACY IN FULL SWING AFTER 'GRR' updated 04/12/16 08:51 AM
Upcoming Committee Meeting on PACE
Credit union advocates may have left Sacramento last week after the 2016 California Government Relations Rally (GRR) came to a close, but state legislative efforts on a number of issues remain in full swing as the industry continues fighting for its members.

NV CUs SPECIFIED IN SENATE HEARING updated 04/11/16 01:50 PM
More Action is Forthcoming
In the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues’ continual push for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) to fully use its exemption authority for credit unions, Nevada credit unions were specifically discussed by Sen. Dean Heller (R-NV) during the first of two hearings last week regarding the CFPB’s impact.

MODERNIZATION BILL MOVES TO ASSEMBLY updated 04/05/16 09:24 AM
CA Gov. Relations Rally Kicks Off
Sacramento is front and center for credit union advocacy this week as two powerful events unfold that are integral to the cause of the industry and its members across California: the state-charter modernization bill and the 2016 California Government Relations Rally (GRR).

SACTOWN RAISES NEARLY $200K FOR CMN updated 04/05/16 09:03 AM
Benefits CA/NV Children's Hospitals
The sixth annual Credit Union SacTown Run—which took place Sunday, April 3 in downtown Sacramento, CA—raised nearly $200,000 for Children’s Miracle Network hospitals in California and Nevada. The event was sponsored by CU Miracle Day, Inc. along with 69 credit unions and credit union businesses including the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues.

CFO: INSIGHT ON FASB's 'TRG' MEETING updated 04/05/16 08:54 AM
Current Expected Credit Loss
On April 1, the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) met with its Transition Resource Group (TRG) on the proposed accounting standards update (ASU) for credit losses, which would implement a forward-looking Current Expected Credit Loss (CECL) model.

EVENT WILL LAUNCH DYNAMIC DISCUSSION updated 04/04/16 04:24 PM
'Your Economy, Your Credit Union'
Credit unions can join their peers from across California and Nevada to engage with three renowned experts on June 16 during "Your Economy—Your Credit Union: 2017 and Beyond," a first event of its kind!

CUs PREPARE TO UNITE IN SACRAMENTO updated 03/29/16 09:31 AM
Register for 'GRR' Today
All credit union advocates are needed in Sacramento as momentum builds toward the 2016 California Government Relations Rally (GRR) from April 4-5, where executives, managers, and board volunteers will discuss important topics with state lawmakers to help protect credit unions and allow their members to thrive.

GROUP TO PROVIDE FEEDBACK ON 'CECL' updated 03/29/16 08:11 AM
Two CUs Part of Discussion
Two credit union CFOs will be a part of a key meeting this week leading up to the Financial Accounting Standards Board’s (FASB) expected mid-2016 decision on its proposed accounting standards update (ASU) on credit-losses standard.

FOUNDATION RECEIVES DIAMOND AWARDS updated 03/25/16 10:49 AM
Efforts Leveraging Video & Financial
The National Credit Union Foundation (the Foundation) was honored with two Diamond Awards—awards that recognize outstanding marketing and business development achievements in the credit union industry.