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Calif. Eyes Tough Creditor Law

SACRAMENTO-Credit unions and other lenders could be liable for erroneous information on credit reports under a new bill introduced in the state Assembly. The Truth in Credit Act would require creditors and credit reporting agencies to correct false information on credit reports or face civil penalties of as much as $2,500 per event.

The proposal would expand existing consumer protections by requiring creditors upon a consumer inquiry to review the information; correct any inaccurate information; and report to the credit agency the results of the investigation any corrections.

The bill has the support of the California Association of REALTORS and Consumers Union.

'Opt-In' Privacy Advances In Calif.

SACRAMENTO-A tough new privacy bill which would require financial institutions to obtain a customer's permission before sharing it with third parties for marketing purposes passed the state Senate and was sent over to the Assembly, where it has a less certain future.

The bill has the support of the California CU League as it would carve out exceptions for credit unions, requiring that they provide members an 'opt-out' option for sharing with affiliated parties, like CUSOs.

Lawmakers are under the gun to pass a privacy bill this year, after three recent failures, otherwise consumer groups have threatened to take the issue to voters in a referendum next year.

Couple Ties Knot In CU Wedding

LOMA LINDA, Calif.-La Loma FCU was the scene of a hurried wedding ceremony between the sister of an employee and her fianc?e, a U.S. Army corporal now on his way to the Middle East for the possible war in Iraq.

The wedding between Nancy Fox, 28, and Cpl. Steven 'Tony' Salazar, 30, took place just three hours before Salazar was to report for active duty and two days before his overseas departure.

So credit union employees ran out to buy flowers, a cake and champagne, erected a makeshift altar and put together a wedding with only three hours notice.

Because of the hurry, Salazar wore his standard Army-issue fatigues and boots, while the bride wore the clothes she dressed in that morning.

Interest-Free Loans For Teachers

BALTIMORE-First Financial FCU is teaming up with Baltimore County to provide interest-free loans of up to $2,000 to all new teachers who want them.

Teachers will have up to 12 months to pay the money back interest-free.

Inside Job Suspected In Embezzlement

TROY, N.Y.-Police are probing the disappearance of as much as $180,000 from their own credit union, Troy Police and Fire CU.

Two credit union members, both police officers, are being investigated on possible embezzlement charges, police said.

The probe was initiated in January when a routine internal audit uncovered the discrepancy. Since then the credit union's books have been turned over to an outside audit firm for a more comprehensive accounting.

PFCU Offers $5,000 Reward

PHILADELPHIA-Philadelphia FCU is offering a $5,000 reward for information leading to the arrests and conviction of two men who robbed its downtown branch Feb. 11 in a takeover-style hold-up.

The two assailants approached employees reporting to work around 8 am that morning and forced them into the branch at gunpoint, then escaped with an undisclosed amount of cash. They are considered armed and dangerous, according to the FBI.

Fifth Third Signs Two CUs

CINCINNATI-Fifth Third Bank Processing Solutions signed electronic funds transfer processing agreements with two North Carolina credit unions, Duke University FCU, Durham, and Piedmont Aviation CU, Winston-Salem.

Fifth Third will handle card production, service the credit union's ATM and Visa check/debit card processing, and will upgrade the ATM and debit services for both credit unions. Fifth Third Bank Processing Solutions handles $83 billion in credit card sales annually and is a unit of Fifth Third Bank.

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