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ST. PAUL, Minn. – Affinity Plus FCU, the third largest credit union in the state, has been chosen by NCUA over four other credit unions, to merge with Metro Community Credit Union (formerly Burlington Northern CU) in Arden Hills. Affinity Plus was one of five credit unions that were chosen by NCUA for consideration as a merger partner with Metro Community which, according to APFCU President/CEO Kyle Markland, was having “loan procedural problems.” The other four CU contenders, all located in Minnesota, were: City-County FCU, Brooklyn, Center; St. Paul Postal Employees CU, North St. Paul; Hiway FCU, St. Paul; and U S FCU, Bloomington. Each prospective partner was instructed by NCUA to provide its plan for maintaining Metro CU’s charter and services to its approximately 5,000 members. Markland said Affinity Plus was selected because of its “financial soundness and expertise in lending.” According to Callahan & Associates’ “2001 Credit Union Financial Yearbook”, Affinity Plus ranked third among credit unions with $250 million or more in assets in return-to-members. “We demonstrated to NCUA that we can serve the members of Metro Community. It’s important to NCUA and to the state that a credit union presence be maintained in the community,” said Markland. Affinity Plus has $610 million in assets with 98,000 members; Metro Community has $11 million in assets and approximately 5,000 members. Affinity Plus has an association charter. Its field-of-membership currently includes anyone who receives expense reimbursements, grants or compensation from state controlled funds; and the alumni of the seven Minnesota state universities. The CU’s FOM also includes a few select employee groups. Metro Community’s field-of-membership included the six communities identified as being in the metro community, as well as some SEGS from its original affiliation with the railroad and the community. As a result of the merger, Affinity Plus will gain Metro Community’s FOM. It will be considered to have a multiple group charter. The merger was effective June 29. Affinity Plus’ products and services, as well as access to its branch locations, will be available to Metro Community members Aug. 1. Affinity Plus plans to keep open Metro Community’s headquarters and run it as a “metro community” branch of APFCU. Markland noted how quickly the process took for the merger to be completed – six weeks from when APFCU submitted its proposal to when the merger was completed, and only two weeks from when APFCU was selected by NCUA. “We are extremely pleased that we have been chosen to partner with Metro Community Credit Union,” said Markland. “Not only does the merger recognize Affinity Plus’ industry leadership position and strong financial base, it provides members of Metro Community with the opportunity to meet all of their financial services needs at their local credit union.” -

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