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The $814 million Nevada Federal Credit Union, using an ad hitting on “an out-of-state credit union” coming into town, began soliciting business from members of the Community One FCU of Las Vegas, which was taken over last week by Utah-based America First FCU.On its Website and in radio ads, Nevada FCU asked, “Why do business with an out-of-state credit union?” when Nevada FCU “has been locally owned by Nevadans just like you since 1950 and we’re ready to service you.”The $4.9 billion America First, based in an Ogden suburb, had submitted the successful bid to the NCUA to take over the $159 million Community First, which for months has sustained large loan losses in its mortgage portfolio, ending up with net worth below 1%.John Lund, executive vice president of America First, dismissed the Nevada FCU ads as misguided, “considering America First has long had a presence in Nevada” through branches in Mesquite, a community on the Utah-Nevada line.Moreover, he said. there is a false premise to the ad regarding “ownership” of Community First, which is now a division of America First.“It’s the Community First members now become part owners of a much larger institution. That can be a great thing for them in being able to have available a wider range of financial resources,” said Lund. “This is not like a bank stock takeover.”However, Brad Beal, president/CEO of Nevada Federal, maintains the Community First takeover does present new opportunities in offering a “buy local” message.–jrubenstein@cutimes.com

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