Minnesota Story Archive

Minnesota’s Commissioner, Grace Arnold Joins the MnCUN Impact 22 Event

The Minnesota Credit Union Network hosted a series of state-level meetings this week, guests included Senate Majority Leader Jeremy Miller, Minnesota House Speaker Melissa Hortman, and Commerce Commissioner Grace Arnold.

This event provided an overview of legislative priorities for this session and a high-level look at the most recent consumer survey.

For more information on Impact 22, contact Ryan Smith, MnCUN Director of Governmental Affairs, with questions.


Happening in Minnesota: Minnesota Credit Union Foundation announces capital drive to support black-led CU

Published in CUNA News

February 1, 2022 — The Minnesota Credit Union Foundation has established a special fund to receive donations from supporters of Village Financial Credit Union, and is seeking to raise $1 million in capital from the credit union community. The Association for Black Economic Power (ABEP) is a nonprofit organization created to establish a Black-led credit union to address systemic financial challenges impacting Minneapolis residents, particularly people of color, and is raising capital for post-opening operating expenses for Village Financial Credit Union.

“Establishing the only Black-led, cooperative credit union in Minnesota is an opportunity to effect positive change, empower growth and economic stability while directly addressing the core cause of systemic poverty on a variety of levels,” said Debra Hurston, Executive Director of the Association for Black Economic Power. “The original organizers were very passionate about having a community-led credit union that would directly respond to the community wealth gap. Also, having the credit union-owned and operated by the community provides a huge source of pride and independence for the members.”

“Credit union history and principles are rooted in serving the underserved and cooperation among cooperatives,” said Mark Cummins, President of the Minnesota Credit Union Network and the Minnesota Credit Union Foundation. “Coming together to support this effort is one way we can put our DEI commitments into action. It’s simply the right thing to do.”


Consumers still in control with new debt collector rules that allow text, email, social media to seek repayment

January 4, 2022 — New debt collection rules now allow debt collectors to use email, text and social media messaging to track down consumers in seeking repayment of debts. While the new rules change how Minnesotans can be contacted by debt collectors, consumers are still in control to specify which communication method a debt collector can use. In some cases, the new rules offer more protection to consumers and change the way collection agencies conduct their business.

The Minnesota Department of Commerce, which licenses individual debt collectors and collection agencies that conduct business in Minnesota, is alerting consumers to be aware of recent rule changes that may impact a consumer’s experience with the debt collection agency.

“If you’re contacted by a debt collector, you can specify which way you want to be contacted,” Minnesota Department of Commerce Commissioner Grace Arnold said. “You can tell the debt collector to stop contacting you by text, email or social media, and instead say how you would prefer to be contacted. As a consumer, you are still protected under the new rules.”


Coopera Collaborates with Minnesota Credit Union Network to Study Statewide Demographics

August 18, 2021 — A partnership between the Minnesota Credit Union Network and Coopera will produce a report outlining opportunity for multicultural membership growth for Minnesota credit unions. This partnership will play a part in the Minnesota Credit Union Network’s mission to ensure the growth and vitality of Minnesota credit unions, as well as to support diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) initiatives within the credit union movement.

Coopera is nationally recognized within the credit union industry as a resource for underserved market growth. Formerly a Hispanic-focused company, Coopera has recently evolved to include many of the growing multicultural segments in the U.S. Coopera leads the way for diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives in the credit union space and partners with several Leagues across the country.

“As the state trade association for Minnesota’s credit unions, our purpose is to offer knowledge and resources that benefit our credit union community,” says Minnesota Credit Union Network President & CEO Mark Cummins. “This partnership with Coopera will help unveil opportunities for Minnesota credit unions to grow market share and determine ways for more consumers to be served by credit unions in the future.”


Affinity Plus Becomes One of the First Credit Unions in Minnesota To Launch Contactless Cards for All Members

February 22, 2021 – Minnesota’s second-largest credit union just completed reissuing new, contactless card technology for more than 209,000 cards used by its 218,000 members. Since July, Affinity Plus Federal Credit Union (Affinity Plus) has invested $1.5 million in contactless card technology to safety and security for members amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We strive to be a leader in bringing convenient, secure payment experiences to our members,” said Nic Peterson, Vice President of Payment Systems and Card Services, Affinity Plus. “Contactless card technology builds a better experience by offering a faster, more secure transaction. This has been critical during the pandemic as contactless cards allow for less contact with cashiers, payment terminals and ATMs, making it safer for our members.”

Benefits of contactless card technology include:

  • Safety of the Cardholder: Transactions at checkout take less time and allow for a quick tap or hover over the terminal, meaning less physical contact and less potential for transmitting germs.
  • Security of Account Information: Each transaction uses a one-time code to ensure safe payment and keeps your information safe from fraud. Because they don’t make physical contact, cards are more difficult to read or copy illegally. Each payment is initiated by the merchant, so cardholders cannot accidentally pay if they are near the terminal or tap the card more than once.


Minnesota Dept. of Commerce reminds regulated firms of customer obligations and investors about risks of stock price volatility

January 29, 2021  Minnesota Department of Commerce reminds regulated firms of customer obligations and investors about risks of stock price volatility

The Minnesota Department of Commerce today called on financial management firms, financial advisors and other regulated entities to ensure that investor protection obligations are being met during recent price volatility in shares of certain publicly traded companies.

“Regulated entities have an obligation to their customers. Commerce will work with fellow regulators to ensure that investor protection, fairness and transparency are upheld in the public securities markets,” said Maxwell Zappia, Commerce Deputy Commissioner of Financial Institutions. “We are closely monitoring this developing situation and will examine actions by online brokerages and others to ensure that they are in compliance with their client obligations.”

The Department of Commerce also cautioned investors about the risks associated with investing in publicly traded companies that are experiencing volatility. Investors should understand their risk tolerance when considering such investments.

The Department of Commerce has more info more here: Investor education materials.

Jessica Looman takes reins as commissioner; Rothman steps down after 7 years
Nov. 17, 2017 — Jessica Looman is appointed to serve as Commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Commerce. Beginning Friday, Nov. 17, Commissioner Looman succeeds Commissioner Mike Rothman, who announced the same day his plans to step down after seven years of service.

SJU Student-Run Credit Union Branch Provides Hands-On Experience
April 22, 2015 – Collegeville, Minn. – The Collegeville Community Credit Union is a perfect example by having the first student-run branch on a university campus in Minnesota. The branch location is small (Only 120 square feet) but President Mark Douvier says it provides a convenient location for students.

Free Paper Shredding Events Throughout Twin Cities in April, May
April 7, 2015 – It’s tax time. Purge your piles of sensitive data in a hurry instead of feeding a personal shredder two sheets at a time. Now through May, there are plenty of free or low-costshredding options in the Twin Cities.

Student-Run Credit Union Branch Adds Access, Experience

November 16, 2014 – Collegeville, Minn. – The “office” where Nico Marusco works isn’t really an office at all. It’s more like a wooden counter that separates a 120-square-foot space from the surroundings outside the St. John’s University Bookstore in Sexton Commons. 

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