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SPRINGFIELD, Mass.-NCUA assumed control of service and operations at D. Edward Wells Federal Credit Union in Springfield, Mass. as of Feb. 21. D. Edward Wells was placed into conservatorship for failing to provide full access to its books and records and serious operational deficiencies, according to NCUA, including unreconciled financial records and failure to comply with the Federal Credit Union Act and NCUA Rules and Regulations. NCUA Region I Director Layne Bumgardner said it was “difficult to tell” if the record keeping problems at the $4.9 million credit union were the result of incompetence or fraud at this point in the investigation, but management was certainly unable to fix the problems. The agency expected to have a conservatorship manager in the credit union by deadline. NCUA, Bumgardner said, fully intended to give the credit union back to the members when appropriate. Credit Union Times previously reported (See July 17, 2002 issue) that D. Edward Wells attempted to obtain a temporary restraining order against NCUA, fearing that the agency would seize the credit union. The judge denied the motion, saying it could not keep the regulator from entering the credit union. Bumgardner said his office tried to work through D. Edward Wells’ problems as much as possible without taking administrative action. Just prior to the credit union’s attempted restraining order, NCUA had received a letter from the National Federation of Community Development Credit Unions complaining that the credit union did not return at maturity the principle of a share certificate after several requests. Carol Aranjo, CEO of D. Edward Wells, is the past chairman of NFCDCU. Aranjo could not be reached as she was not allowed on the CU’s premises once the conservatorship was served. Service will continue seamlessly for the institutions 2,600 members. NCUA reassured members that their funds are safe and that accounts are insured up to $100,000 through the National Credit Union Share Insurance Fund. [email protected]

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