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Mountain America Federal Credit Union is enjoying its status as a federal charter after converting from a state charter in order to avoid a number of restrictions that were imposed by the state legislature at the behest of the banking lobby. But that doesn't mean MAFCU has washed its hands of the state charter, according to CEO Gordon Dames.

"The federal charter is really working well for us, and we're thrilled with how it's working out," Dames told The Credit Union Journal at CUNA's GAC. "And while the banks were busy trying to win the legislative fight, we concentrated on expanding and growing and serving our members. That's why I hired someone to handle the political affairs so that I could focus on what really matters: serving members."

But as happy as MAFCU is under its new charter and regulator, Dames said he still wants to see a stronger state charter in Utah. "We are still committed to fighting for a strong state charter," he said. "After all, there's no guarantee that we won't get another [former NCUA Chairman] Norm D'Amours at NCUA. We may need to have somewhere to go."

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