union charter is all but a done deal. Customers of Eastman Savings and Loan on Nov. 14 approved management's plan to jump charters, and ESL Federal Credit Union is expected to be operating early next year. "There are a number of forms that need to be filed with both regulators, the New York Department of Banking and the National Credit Union Administration," said David L. Vigren, chief executive of $1.2 billion- asset Eastman. "Hopefully we will have all that bundled up by early January." Apart from a new name, little will change at the institution. Much like a credit union, Eastman Savings serves a narrow customer base: Eastman Kodak employees, retirees and their customers. The thrift is converting because the New York regulator required it to obtain deposit insurance. Besides big savings on taxes and insurance premiums, if the thrift were to obtain coverage from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., it would be required to open its doors to the public, Mr. Vigren said. The conversion plan has won the approval of the NCUA board and Eastman's account holders. Of the 80,000 account holders, 48,000 cast votes - 99% of them in favor.

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