MANCHESTER, N.H. (4/1/14)--The New Hampshire Credit Union League has launched an awareness campaign in response to bank attacks on the credit union tax status.
The league is airing a newly produced radio spot titled "You Matter," for two weeks on WZID-FM 95.7 to counteract the banks' campaign. The spots began running Monday, and will air weekdays four times a day--twice in morning drive time and twice in evening drive time.
The spots highlight the local cooperative nature of credit unions. "Credit unions know their members," the narrator states. "Loan decisions are made locally not by bureaucrats and computer models from across the country."
The New Hampshire Bankers Association (NHBA) try to argue that state credit unions are increasing membership due to a competitive advantage created by the credit union tax status. NHBA charges were outlined in a March 22 Union Leader article, a radio press conference and other public pronouncements (Daily CU Scan March 31).
The first credit union response came in a March 28 Union Leader op-ed from league Chairman Gerald Dumoulin, president/ CEO of Guardian Angel CU, Berlin, N.H. Credit unions are local institutions that serve consumers, Dumoulin wrote. "Credit unions are also locally owned and operated," he wrote. "In contrast, out-of-state banks control 56% of deposits of financial institutions in the state, an increase of 12% over the past two decades."
The league prepared a strongly worded response intended to debunk a new banker-placed attack--this one appearing Sunday in Foster's Daily Democrat. "If banks think credit unions have such an advantage, we urge them to come join our ranks and convert to credit unions," league President Paul Gentile wrote.
"Banks can quite easily become credit unions, but if they do so they can no longer pay their board members, which at credit unions are democratically elected from the membership," Gentile continued. "They also would no longer be able to serve anyone who walks in their doors and they would be immediately limited in how many commercial loans they can do."