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Fla. CU Closed Down

HIALEAH, Fla.-NCUA last week said it closed down and liquidated First Hialeah Community FCU and transferred member accounts for the $28- million credit union to Government Employees CU of Florida. The liquidation, the biggest credit union failure in two years, was prompted by a high delinquency rate, 11.3%, and a $1.4-million loss last year, pushing net worth for the 32-year-old institution down to just 3.5%. The credit union will reopen next Tuesday as a branch of the $130-million, Jacksonville-based Government Employees CU of Florida.

Robber Strikes Early

WARRENTON, Va.-A robber lying in wait overtook a female employee of Northern Piedmont FCU as she went to open the credit union last week, then bound her and locked her with a subsequently arriving male employee in the bathroom before making off with an undetermined amount of cash. The robbery occurred just before opening time at 8 am. The robber was unarmed but able to overpower both employees, police said.

U.S. Central Net Is Up

OVERLAND PARK, Kan.- U.S. Central Credit Union reported that during the first quarter of this year net income was $18.9 million, an increase of $8.3 million over the the first quarter of 2001. During that same period, U.S. Central hit record-high assets of $37.7 billion on March 1t closed the quarter with $35.9 billion in assets and $30.8 billion in members' share and certificate accounts, with both totals exceeding first-quarter 2001 levels. "While liquidity isn't building at the rate it was a year ago, it isn't lessening either," said CEO Dan Kampen, "As system liquidity remains high, credit unions continue to need high-quality investment products to help manage their balance sheets." U.S. Central said its primary capital totaled $740.3 million as of March 31.

Utah's CUs Take To The Radio

SALT LAKE CITY-The Utah CU League launched a new flight of radio ads last week highlighting the benefits of credit unions. The ads, which tout choice and friendly member service as credit union advantages, are a follow-up to the earlier ad campaign that was aimed at explaining the restrictions under which the state's credit unions currently work. The radio spots will be aired through mid-July.

MACU Names New President

LANSING, Mich.-The MACU Association Group, a trade group representing credit unions in Michigan, Illinois and Ohio, has named Joni Senkpeil to replace long-time president Ronald Boots, who died in March. Senkpeil, 41, was president of Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway CU in Cicero, Ill., for more than 20 years and a MACU board member since 1997. Effective May 31, MACU will move to Lisle, Ill, where Senkpeil resides.

Digital Insight Agrees To Order

AUSTIN, Texas-Digital Insight Corp., has agreed to a court order preventing it from accessing, using or disclosing any trade secrets or confidential information or infringing on the copyrights of FundsXpress Financial Network as part of a civil suit filed by FundsXpress, a competing ISP for credit unions. The suit, filed in federal court in Texas, charges that Digital Insight conspired with former FundsXpress employees to steal trade secrets and other confidential information in order to destroy or damage FundsXpress's ability to compete with DI for the credit union market. Under the order, DI has also agreed to remove any of FundsXpress's intellectual property, return all materials to FundsXpress, and to account for all FundsXpress material destroyed or returned. FundsXpress is asking the court to assess damages of $75 million in the case.

Fund Makes 3 New Loans

ALEXANDRIA, Va.-NCUA said Community Development Revolving Loan Fund has made new loans to: Northeast Community CU, Elizabethton, Tenn. ($100,000); Independent Employers Group FCU (formerly HT&T FCU) Hilo, Hawaii ($100,000), and Arlington Hotel FCU, Hot Springs, Ark., ($50,000).

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