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HARRISBURG, Pa. – The Pennsylvania Department of Banking, the Pennsylvania Credit Union Association and three state-chartered CUs filed briefs in Commonwealth Court on Aug. 10 regarding the ongoing litigation with the bankers over community charters. The three credit unions were Corry Jamestown CU, Freedom CU and TruMark Financial CU, the three credit unions involved in the case that dates back to November 2003 when the CUs first submitted their community charter applications to Secretary of Banking William Schenck’s office. In December 2004, the DofB approved community charters for Freedom and TruMark and remanded Cory Jamestown’s notice of conversion to staff for further consideration. The Pennsylvania Bankers Association and several financial institutions subsequently challenged the community charters from the time they were filed alleging that the tax status provision of the Pennsylvania Credit Union Code violates the state constitution. The regulator held administrative hearings on the issue, and earlier this year the bankers appealed the DofB’s decision. The briefs support the Department’s approval and analysis of the community charter packages. “The briefs demonstrate our support that the Department did its due diligence,” said PCUA SVP Communications and Marketing Mike Wishnow. The PCUA, DofB and the credit unions briefed the Commonwealth Court on the tax issues in May. Oral arguments before Commonwealth Court are scheduled for the week of Nov. 14 “unless the bankers decide to drop this in the interim,” quipped Wishnow, adding, “I don’t foresee that happening.” He described the filings as “part of an ongoing situation.”

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