A 'California-Like Deal With Columbia Board

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Four members of a dissident group of Columbia CU members are expected to add their name to that of four incumbents and what is expected to be numerous other candidates on the ballot for four board openings in election called for September. The beleaguered board of the credit union, which narrowly survived an unprecedented recall campaign in March, has eliminated any signature requirements for board candidates, inviting any valid member to run for one of the board vacancies.

"It's going to end up a California-like deal. Anybody can get on the ballot," Steve Straub, one of the leaders of Save Columbia CU and a potential candidate himself, told The Credit Union Journal.

The board has nominated four incumbents for the four vacancies to be filled at the annual meeting Sept. 15. The regularly scheduled meeting was postponed for six months while members digested the rare recall battle, in which eight of the nine directors retained their seats (a ninth was not up for recall). The dissident members had sought to remove the panel for its support of the failed effort to convert the $600-million credit union to a mutual savings bank.

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