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TUCUMCARI, N.M. — As the only financial institution in the area Everyone’s Federal Credit Union is making itself at home in Vaughn, N.M. After Wells Fargo pulled out its Vaughn branches earlier this year saying “market conditions” made it unprofitable to stay, Everyone’s FCU lived up to its name and stepped in. “After several months of research and planning, we are excited to bring this new branch to Vaughn,” said Andi Baum, CEO of Everyone’s Federal Credit Union. “We look forward to a long and productive relationship with the citizens and businesses of this great community.” Leasing space from ENMR Plateau Telecommunications in Vaughn, the credit union branch will be housed at the ENMR offices and is expected to open by January 1. “Our board considers this a unique collaboration — two cooperatives joining forces to help the community. ENMR Plateau generously provided the space in its retail office to enable Everyone’s Federal Credit Union to provide financial services and products to the people of Vaughn and the surrounding area,” Baum said. “This truly embraces the credit union philosophy of ‘People helping people.’ Governor Bill Richardson and New Mexico Secretary of Economic Development Rick Homans were on hand for the signing ceremonies. The governor took the opportunity to announce a proposal to keep financial institutions operating in the smallest and poorest New Mexico communities, and to attract financial institutions to communities that lack them. “Small communities like Vaughn are the heart and soul of New Mexico, and they cannot survive without the economic stability of a local credit union or bank,” said Governor Richardson. “We are looking beyond this accomplishment in Vaughn and finding ways to make this kind of event happen in many more communities across New Mexico.” The Governor approved proposed legislation to create a “linked deposit program” that would permit the State Treasurer’s Office to dedicate up to 14% of state deposits, representing about $50 million, to financial institutions that serve rural, at-risk communities. The proposed legislation would allow the State Treasurer’s Office to accept a rate of return on those deposits that would be one percentage point below the market rate. The maximum deposit allowed per institution would be $10 million. The plan would require financial institutions to provide a minimum level of service, including being open during business hours five days a week and having a night drop box. The program is designed to help provide operating capital to credit unions or banks that are in communities with a population under 1,000 with either declining population or a median household income less than 80% of the state level.

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