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SEATTLE-NCUA Credit Union Development Analyst Nancy Padilla told attendees of NAFCU’s 35th Annual Conference that it is important to understand the difference between a low-income area and an underserved area. By adding underserved areas, credit unions are not necessarily serving low-income areas and vice versa. In locating an investment area, credit unions should consult the CDFI Web site. “Underserved areas must be based on a well-defined, local community, neighborhood or district,” Padilla explained. All federal credit unions can add an underserved area and “more than one federal credit union can serve the same area,” she pointed out. Currently, nearly 50% of federal credit unions are located in low-income areas. “It indicates a substantial willingness on the part of credit unions to do more,” Padilla commented.

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