Amidst all the talk and stories surrounding the Wings-Continental hostile take-over fight and the continuing saga of the Lafayette credit union conversion soap opera, Colorado credit unions took one important step at their recently-concluded annual meeting to send a clear message to any credit union that would abandon their credit union charter: “please find another association to call your home if you choose to convert to a mutual savings bank.” In 2000, Colorado became the first and only league to allow a credit union that converts to a mutual savings bank (MSB) to retain its membership in the then-Colorado Credit Union League, now the Credit Union Association of Colorado (CUAC). The reasons for this 2000 bylaw change are a bit murky, but at the time, there was a feeling that we might find common advocacy purposes with MSBs and that allowing those entities to remain part of the Colorado credit union family might make sense, both from an association perspective and that of our league service corporation. How time has altered those views! It’s probably no surprise what caused our members to repeal this provision. It starts with the unwarranted and unrelenting campaign in Washington, D.C. by the bank lobby to destroy the credit union movement through its cynical tax, contain and convert strategy. Then there is the duplicitous and unctuous efforts by a number of groups represented by disgruntled credit union-lobbyists-now-turned-banker shills who masquerade as “friends of credit union choice,” all the while pushing conversions that serve to line their own pockets and destroy our movement. Even where a genuine decision–free of manipulation or greed– might be made to convert a credit union to a MSB, our members felt that such an entity had no place at our Association’s table.

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