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Inside Washington (08/27/2008)

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* WASHINGTON (8/28/08)--Minutes of the July 24 Federal Open Market Committee meeting with the Federal Reserve Board of Governors have been released. The committee and board met to consider proposals to extend or enhance Federal Reserve System liquidity facilities. The proposals passed. Participants expressed general support for them, but there was sentiment for altering the Term Auction Facility proposal to allow both 28- and 48-day credits. The committee extended until Jan. 30, 2009, its authorizations for the Federal Reserve Bank of New York to transact with primary dealers through the Term Securities Lending Facility (TSLF). Charles Plosser, president of the Reserve Bank of Philadelphia, dissented, saying that he viewed the net benefit of the TSLF options as insufficient to justify adding them to the support already provided to market liquidity ... * WASHINGTON (8/28/08)--The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC) will host eight identical phone seminars for bankers between Sept. 17 and Nov. 4 on rules for deposit insurance coverage. Each seminar will run two to three hours ... * WASHINGTON (8/28/08)--The Office of Thrift Supervision (OTS) released home equity line of credit account management guidance. OTS expects thrifts to actively manage their home equity portfolios by maintaining effective risk management systems and complying with OTS real estate lending standards ... * WASHINGTON (8/28/08)--The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC) Tuesday issued guidance on brokered deposits. The agency suggested that banks perform pro forma cash flow analyses, create contingency plans for events and follow other guidance the FDIC has released on restrictions regarding brokered deposits (American Banker Aug. 27). A strong reliance on brokered deposits has been tied to several bank failures this year, including Columbian Bank and Trust Co., IndyMac Bank and ANB Financial ...

CUNA nominates Wis. CU exec for Fed advisory panel

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WASHINGTON (8/28/08)—The Credit Union National Association (CUNA) has nominated Michael Long, a Wisconsin credit union executive, for consideration to serve on the Consumer Advisory Council (CAC) of the Federal Reserve Board. Long is vice president of lending at UW Credit Union in Madison. He is an executive committee member of the CUNA Lending Council, where he chairs the Regulatory and Legislative Subcommittee. Also, he is an active member of the CUNA Consumer Protection Subcommittee and is a 2004 graduate of CUNA Management School. Each year, the Fed’s CAC appoints 10 new members to its 30-member panel. The council was established in 1976 and advises the Fed on its responsibilities under the Consumer Credit Protection Act and on other matters in the area of consumer financial services, according to the Fed's website. Members serve staggered three-year terms. Over the past year, CUNA noted in its nominating information, Long has traveled to Washington several times advocating nationally on credit union student lending and consumer lending issues. He has spoken to lawmakers and their aides on both the House and Senate Education Committees on the role credit unions serve in student lending and the many benefits credit unions provide to their members. In 2007, CUNA successfully nominated Alan Cameron, president/CEO, Idaho Credit Union League, Boise, to the CAC and his term continues to 2010. Also named to the council at that time was Michael Calhoun, president of the Center for Responsible Lending in Durham, N.C. The CRL is a nonprofit, non-partisan research and policy organization focusing on consumer lending issues.

CUs help hand home deed to wounded vet

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GOLDEN, Colo.(8/28/08)—Culminating six months of planning and hard work, America’s Credit Unions and its partners placed the keys and deed to a new specially outfitted home into the hands of wounded Iraq war veteran Staff Sergeant Travis Strong Wednesday.
Click for slide showAfter thanking all the individuals and organizations for helping provide his family’s new home, Sgt. Travis Strong gives a special nod to credit unions. CLICK TO VIEW SLIDESHOW (Photo provided by CUNA)
The new home was the result of the efforts of hundreds of volunteers who donated their time and resources to finishing Strong’s new home in time for this week’s Democratic National Convention. A similar project is being executed in Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minn., in conjunction with next week’s Republican National Convention. That home will be presented to Sgt. Marcus Kuboy, also an injured Iraq war veteran. Both homes are joint endeavors by Homes for Our Troops, which builds specially adapted homes for severely wounded war veterans, and its partners, America’s Credit Unions, and the National Journal Group. The Democratic National Convention Committee was involved in the Denver-area project, as the Republican National Committee is in the Minnesota effort. America’s Credit Unions and the state credit union leagues have played an integral part in the projects, both through volunteer labor and fundraising to defray costs of the house. The credit union effort in Denver was coordinated by the Credit Union National Association (CUNA) and by the Credit Union Associations of Colorado and Wyoming. A nationwide fundraising effort among state credit union leagues, individual credit unions and credit union system partners including Co-Op Financial Services and the Corporate Credit Union Network raised over $350,000 for the Strong and Kuboy homes. At the Wednesday Key Presentation Ceremony, CUNA President/CEO Dan Mica said, “Credit unions operate every day with a ‘People Helping People’ philosophy. That’s why our credit unions and their members have jumped at the opportunity to assist this very deserving soldier and his family, either through fundraising efforts across the country or by volunteering their time in person today and throughout the project.” John Dill, President/CEO of the state league, added, “Credit unions here in Colorado and Wyoming are proud to be a part of this project. When the last balloons have dropped and the Democratic Convention has left town, we will have left behind something very real for a real American hero.” U.S. Representative Ed Perlmutter, (D-Colo.), in whose congressional district Strong, his wife Misty, and their two children will live, said, “It is truly an honor to welcome Travis, Misty and their two beautiful children into our neighborhood. "It is equally heartwarming to see the outpouring of community involvement and support in building them a new home, from credit unions to organized labor to the many volunteers who have given so generously of their time and resources.” As a final touch to Wednesday's ceremony, attendess learned Strong had accepted an information technology specialist position with Lockheed Martin.

Twitter with Klavitterinstant online convention coverage

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WASHINGTON (8/28/08)--Credit unions are encouraged to check in on Twitter, a microblogging service, to get the latest credit union take on happenings at the Democratic National Convention this week in Denver and at the Republican National Convention next week in Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minn. Staff and volunteers from the Credit Union National Association (CUNA), state leagues and corporates are at the conventions and aim to raise the profile of credit unions during the national conventions. CUNA Editorial Communication Vice President David Klavitter will provide frequent convention updates using Twitter. The service allows instant, extremely short online postings--limited to no more than 140 characters each. Use the resource link below to stay up-to-date: Follow Klavitter on Twitter.

Interchange bill still CU focus at DNC

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DENVER (8/27/08)--Interchange was a hot topic for credit unions at this week’s Democratic National Convention (DNC) in Denver.
Click for slide show CUNA staffers prepare for Tuesday morning call with credit union trade press. Clockwise from left: Senior Legislative Representative Chris Gaginis, Political Director Trey Hawkins, Legislative Affairs Vice President Ryan Donovan, Federal Legislative Affairs Director Michele Johnson and Political Program Specialist Anne Foley. (Photo provided by CUNA)
In discussions with lawmakers, Credit Union National Association (CUNA) lobbyists continue to build opposition to a bill that would give merchants an antitrust exemption to negotiate interchange fees. During a DNC event yesterday, MasterCard International General Counsel Noah Hanft pointed out that CUNA was very effective with the interchange message and thanked the association and credit unions for the efforts. At another meeting, CUNA lobbyists Michele Johnson urged Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) to include credit unions in any public hearings on the interchange bill.