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Reflecting Denver’s housing shortfall, the $920 million Elevations Credit Union of Boulder is closing a metro branch and laying off 13 employees, or 6% of its workforce come Jan. 30. Credit union officials attributed the cutbacks, or “expense control initiative,” to less than expected housing growth in Erie, a north Denver community . Elevations, with 8% capital, said it remains healthy, earning $10 million through the first nine months. The layoffs will result in $1.2 million in savings, said the credit union. “The branch in Erie was the first time we had entered into an emerging and undeveloped market,” said Gerry Agnes, president/CEO. “In the initial analysis, there was a significant projected increase in the number of households within the market area in addition to large retail developments that were planned for this area.” The projected growth “and economic assumptions simply did not materialize,” he said, adding the credit union does “not foresee the market conditions changing substantially over the next several years.” The Erie branch had been opened in September 2008. Elevations has eight other branches and 80,000 members.

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Peter Westerman

Credit Union Times

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