Iowa credit unions cautiously congratulated themselves Thursday for handling the corporate dilemma by linking up with the National Cooperative Bank.
CU leaders applauded the planned correspondent tie-in with the Washington co-op bank along with likely dissolution of the $100 million Iowa Corporate Central CU, perhaps in early 2011, as an example of the industry's collaborative spirit during a tense period.
"We must remember that credit unions are cooperatives and, as such, belong to a broader group of like-minded individuals and like-mission organizations," declared Joe Hearn, chairman of the Iowa Credit Union League and party to the proposed NCB-Iowa Corporate deal.
Hearn, who also is COO of the $900 million Dupaco Community CU in Dubuque, was making reference to a tentative agreement signed with NCB in September to provide CU correspondent services to the league's 140 CU members.
"Iowa credit unions and the Iowa league last year rolled up their shirt sleeves and tossed the box," quipped Hearn. "We decided we would not limit ourselves to the tired old ways of doing things" and after a league-owned bank proposal fell apart in 2009, "we became more determined to find a solution that would best serve Iowa credit unions and their members."
When all is said and done, said Hearn, "we expect Iowa credit unions to realize great value and benefits from the NCB arrangement" adding "it remains to be seen whether the NCB/Iowa credit union model is the right fit in other states, but we hope other credit unions and leagues can appreciate Iowa credit unions' way of thinking."