The economic challenges facing the industry may be daunting, but the Texas Credit Union League, for one, said its PAC fundraising in 2009 hit record levels thanks to various factors, including reliance on payroll deductions for collecting contributions.
The "deduct a buck" campaigns have been around for some time among state leagues and CUNA, but the Texas League put the concept into high gear among management, frontline and back office staffers, and it has paid off big time, league officials said.
During the year, the league said its PAC brought in what it called "an astounding $313,494 or 125%t of its goal," and one small chapter, Big Spring, raised $6,000, or 476% of its goal.
"I think you have to credit that payroll deduction system, which makes it easier for employees to make a donation and who also seem to understand that this is their job's at stake," said Sherry Roman, president/CEO of the $8.5 million T&P Credit Union of Big Spring and chapter president. Roman also quipped, "There's nothing wrong with a little begging."
James Tuggle, president/CEO of the $42 million Transtar Credit Union of Houston, also credits the PAC increases on a more active role by CEOs in PAC fundraising and on the higher interest levels of tellers and frontline personnel "who seem to follow the issues."
"The media's focus on the problems of other financial institutions has really been an advantage to us," said Tuggle, who is president of the Houston chapter, which raised $88,000, the highest dollar amount among the 26 chapters.
Gretchen Ziegler, executive director of TCUL PAC, noted that despite 2009 being a tough year, "credit union leaders have recognized the importance of continuing to raise the funds necessary to support credit union friendly candidates." And she added, "with primary elections just around the corner-March 2010-timing is critical since in Texas many elections are won and lost in the primaries."