CHEYENNE, Wyo. – A bill to give Wyoming credit unions greater access to small claims courts on loan recoveries is awaiting the signature of Gov. David D. Freudenthal who is expected to sign the measure. Enactment of the bill backed by the Wyoming Credit Union League empowers CUs to collect in small claims courts deficient balances up to $5,000, which is an increase from the previous $3,000. Previously, Wyoming CUs had to endure the expense of district court judgments, collection agencies and other operation expenses on soured loans. Clancy Heinrich, a director of the Wyoming League and president of the $20.5 million asset Laramie Plains Community FCU, said passage of the bill was long overdue and will go a long way toward “eliminating attorneys fees to reclaim debts from defaulted members” on a variety of unsecured loans including credit cards and overdrafts. The Senate-passed bill was adopted in final form by the Wyoming House on Feb. 25 with the Democratic governor slated to sign the measure late last week. Separately, the Wyoming League got behind another enacted resolution heightening awareness of financial literacy and education in the high schools. The resolution urges educators to use available materials offered by banks and CUs and encourages the state’s Department of Education to include financial curriculum in K-12 grades.

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