Credit unions in Michigan continue fill in the gaps left by other financial institutions that have scaled back their lending to small businesses.

The Michigan Credit Union League said the state’s credit unions increased their member business loans by 21.7% in 2011. According to the league, the state’s rate of MBL growth is more than three times the annual increase for all credit unions.

Citing statistics from the FDIC, the league said U.S. banks’ small business lending continued to decline in fourth quarter 2011 with a year-over-year bank decline of 4.3%.

“Credit unions continue to step up and support both small businesses and local families, as other institutions are stepping back,” said MCUL President/CEO Dave Adams.

“Michigan still has a long way to go to recover from the recession, but our credit unions are demonstrating that they can be counted on to support local economic growth and development as we begin to turn the corner,” Adams said.

In other lending areas, Michigan’s credit union loans totaled $23.2 billion by year-end, which was an annual growth rate of 0.2% over 2010. Consumer lending increased by $130 million for first home mortgages, the league said.