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ALEXANDRIA, Va.-NCUA recently published its Insurance Report of Activity showing that nearly 3.2 million potential members were added through underserved area adoptions. Primeway Federal Credit Union in Houston alone accounted for nearly two million of those potential members. Other large ones included Jeep Country Federal Credit Union, which added 188,598 potential members by adopting underserved areas and Pinal County Federal Credit Union in Florence, Ariz. adopting an area with a population of 179,727. Additionally, Paragon Federal Credit Union, which was approved for a community charter expansion of 1.4 million new potential members at the NCUA Board’s December meeting, added three underserved areas totaling another 164,800 potential members. Two credit unions, $28 million Post Office Employees Credit Union in Shreveport, La. and University of Utah in Salt Lake City ($322 million), converted from state to federal charters in December, bringing the total for the year to 17. Just 12 federally chartered credit unions converted to state charters in 2003, according to NCUA. “Recent data on credit union conversions seem to indicate that NAFCU’s efforts to enhance the federal charter are continuing to pay off,” NAFCU President and CEO Fred Becker commented. He added that four years ago, when he first came on board at NAFCU, there had been over 100 federal to state conversions in the previous four years “representing billions of dollars in assets.” NAFCU did not have data on the state to federal conversions during that timeframe. “Concerned about the future of the federal charter and wanting to ensure the continued viability of the dual chartering system, we have – and continue to – devote a considerable amount of time and effort toward the enhancement of the federal charter to make sure it is on an equal footing with state charters,” Becker said. “I believe our efforts to change NCUA’s FOM and chartering rules have had a real impact.” He said that there seems to be a better balance between the federal and state charters, while vowing to continue to seek improvements to the federal charter. He also promised to work with other trade associations to enhance the credit union movement as a whole for the future. Also in December 2003, according to NCUA’s report, the credit union community lost another 17 small credit unions to mergers. Twelve of the 24 mergers that took place in December eliminated credit unions under $10 million in assets plus another five with less than $1 million in assets. Three of these merged institutions were joined with other credit unions under $10 million in assets. Community charter conversions continued to press on in December adding more than nine million new potential members to 14 credit unions’ fields of memberships. [email protected]

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