ST. PAUL, Minn. – For the second consecutive year, the Minnesota Credit Union Network has created personalized gifts for state legislators. This year the gifts are personalized mugs complete with the legislator’s photo, name, party affiliation, district number and home city. The mugs, complete with a letter from MnCUN, a packet of cocoa, and a 12-page book about CUs and the credit union difference, were hand-delivered to all 201 members of the state legislature and Gov. Tim Pawlenty by the members of the MnCUN lobbying team on Jan. 26, MnCUN’s Credit Union Day at the Capitol. The mugs, like last year’s decks of popular playing cards that featured the legislators’ pictures, were the brainchild of MnCUN President/CEO Kevin Chandler who explained the idea for the mugs came from his daughter who gave him a mug with his picture on it for his birthday. “As a former legislator, I know that you sometimes have a tendency to get caught up in the politics and the `daily grind.’ The mugs are just a small way to lighten the mood around the capitol and provide a break from the day-to-day dealings with the weighty issues that our elected officials face,” Chandler said. The MnCUN President explained that Minnesota has a strict gift ban for legislators – they can’t accept any gift that costs more than $4 – “so that challenges us to constantly try to think of things legislators will keep around and not toss out while staying within the $4 limit.” Chandler said he hopes the mugs will turn up on legislators desks during committee hearings. “It’s a constant struggle to educate policymakers that credit unions are different from banks even though as credit unions become increasingly sophisticated, some look more like banks. We want to reinforce the point that credit unions are member owned, not-for-profit and different from banks,” he said. -

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