After a seven-year hiatus, Alabama's largest credit union, the $2.6 billion Redstone Federal has officially rejoined CUNA and the League of Southeastern Credit Unions, with its CEO pledging help in the interchange fight.
Joseph H. Newberry, president/CEO, acknowledged that the decision to reaffiliate took some time for Redstone's board to mull over but considering the challenges now facing industry, the decision to rejoin is a correct one.
Doing his part on the lobbying side, Newberry said he rounded up local CU support two weeks ago for a special breakfast session on strategy in contacting local congressmen.
Newberry said he is particularly concerned about the Durbin amendment's long term impact on card pricing, citing the mechanics of a two-tiered Visa and MasterCard system and retailer deals resulting in higher consumer fees.
"Look what happened after the CARD Act went into effect," said Newberry. "Did consumers really benefit by getting lower rates?"
Newberry made his interchange comments as CUNA and the League of Southeastern Credit Unions heralded the Huntsville CU's reaffiliation with the trade groups. Newberry had said recently that RFCU was looking to put aside past personal and political schisms of the CU's previous management to consider "the importance of the industry speaking with one voice."