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CU System briefs (02/06/2009)
* OAKLAND, Calif. (2/9/09)--Spokane (Wash.) Teachers' CU is included as one of nine organizations with "best practices" for increasing the effectiveness of tuition assistance programs in a report by Bersin & Associates. The Oakland-based firm surveyed more than 400 companies across all industry segments. The study found that while 85% of companies have a tuition assistance program, most do not centrally manage their programs or align them with corporate talent needs (PR Newswire Feb. 5). The report also noted that dollars involved are significant, with the average expenditure for participating employees in such programs at $3,769 per employee, roughly three times what is spent on traditional corporate training … * ST. LOUIS (2/9/09)--Charlie Waalkes of St. Louis-based Anheuser Busch Employees CU served on the Missouri House Speaker's Task Force on the Housing Market, according to the Missouri Credit Union Association (The Missouri difference Jan. 30). The Speaker's office recently announced that as a result of the task force findings, the Missouri Housing Development Commission will offer a program to help homebuyers get a $7,500 federal first-time homebuyer tax credit. The credit will be available as an interest-free cash loan at closing … * LITTLETON, Colo. (2/9/09)--A Colorado man was sentenced to 19 years for a July 23, 2008, armed robbery of Bellco CU's Littleton branch in which two shots were fired. Tobias Archuleta, 23, also was ordered to pay restitution totaling $83,521 by the U.S. District Court, said the U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Colorado. Archuleta pleaded guilty in October to charges stemming from the robbery. According to court records, Archuleta allegedly fired his firearm to get people's attention and ordered everyone in the credit union to get down on the floor. He demanded money from a teller, who complied. He then fired a second shot and ordered a second teller to get money from the credit union's vault before fleeing in a stolen getaway care. Archuleta surrendered later that day (States News Service Jan. 15) … * ROCKFORD, Ill. (2/9/09)--A former staffer at Rock Valley FCU was sentenced to three years and seven months in prison and five years of supervised release for a $1 million spending spree with money embezzled from the Loves Park, Ill.-based credit union. The sentence for Lisa Farel, 40, was lighter than the advisory range of four to six years outlined in a plea deal because she had no prior criminal history, said the U.S. District Judge (Rockford Register Star Feb. 5) …


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