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ALEXANDRIA, Va. – Federal credit unions added 42 underserved areas during the month of May, bringing nearly 3.7 million people into credit union fields of membership. May’s 42 underserved areas accounted for nearly half of the 89 underserved areas added so far in 2004, the most since October 2002. The total number of potential members was the most since June of last year. Helping these figures along was American Heritage Federal Credit Union in Philadelphia, which added seven underserved areas for more than 93,000 potential members, about the same as its current membership, according to NCUA’s Insurance Report of Activity for May. Additionally, $84 million Jetstream Federal Credit Union added three underserved areas for nearly half a million potential members, while VAC and Greater New Orleans Federal Credit Unions-both in Louisiana-each added two underserved communities for approximately 418,000 and 647,000 potential members, respectively. Eight credit unions were approved for community charters in May, NCUA’s data showed, all of which were relatively small, coming to just 1.35 million potential members in aggregate. The largest community was granted to APP Federal Credit Union in West Palm Beach for a population of 210,184. The $7.7 million credit union already has nearly 2,000 members. Next was City Utilities Federal Credit Union, an $8 million institution in Fort Wayne, Ind., which has 3,000 members and gained 195,719 from the community charter conversion. The $90 million NationsHeritage Federal Credit Union in Attleboro, Mass. converted to a community charter, adding 167,741 potential members, and added an underserved area of 55,469 in May. Additionally, the NCUA regions approved 24 credit union mergers in May, which continued to decrease the number of small credit unions remaining. Just two of the merged institutions were over $10 million in assets, while 13 had less than $10 million and nine had less than $1 million. The report also showed that one credit union, $35 million Fairfield County Federal Credit Union of Stamford, Conn., converted from a state to a federal charter. [email protected]

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