NCUA has $2 Million Grant Fund for Low-Income Credit Unions

New products, technology modernization, and staff training are wish-list items that low-income designated credit unions could pay for with a Community Development Revolving Fund grant.

The NCUA has a pool of $2 million to award to low-income credit unions in round two of the 2015 grant process, and applications are being accepted through June 30. The $2 million grant allocation is the single largest technical assistance appropriation in the history of the fund. The allocation is six times the amount that was available during the first grant initiative of 2015 and is nearly double the amount that was available last year during round two funding.

“The reporting requirements are minimal, and the time it takes to fill out the grant is well worth the ten minute investment,” said John Trull, director of regulatory advocacy for the Northwest Credit Union Association. “This is a great opportunity that all low-income designated credit unions should take advantage of.”

“If your credit union does not have a low-income designation but may be eligible, you still have time to get the designation and apply for the grant,” Trull added.

Previous applicants can simply log in, while it takes only minutes for new applicants to register by submitting their charter number and providing a contact name, phone number and email address.

Credit unions can apply for funds in the following initiative areas:

Building Capacity and Growth

NCUA plans to award grants up to $24,000 to credit unions interested in opening a new branch in underserved areas or relocating from a home-based to a non-residential location.

Digital Growth

Up to $10,000 will be available for each eligible credit union to offer digital products to members, such as electronic bill payment, an interactive website, mobile or home banking, electronic or digital signatures, mobile or online loan applications and remote deposit capture.

Fraud Prevention and Cybersecurity

NCUA will provide up to $7,500 to each eligible credit union to assist in developing its fraud prevention and cybersecurity efforts. Credit unions may use funds for cybersecurity training, to convert debit or credit cards to EMV technology, or obtain a system’s test or risk assessment.

New Product Service Development

NCUA plans to award individual grants of up to $10,000 to credit unions that want to offer a new product or service such as implementation of a member business lending program, installation of a new ATM or an asset-liability management model. The applying credit union must not currently offer the product. Applicants can apply for a grant to develop one of the following products/services;

Share products

  • Share Draft Program,
  • Check Cashing for non-members,
  • Installation of a new ATM, and
  • Remittance.

Loan Products

  • Share Draft Program,
  • Check Cashing for non-members,
  • Installation of a new ATM, and
  • Remittance.

Obtain/Perform the following to create a strategic or business plan for growth:

  • Demographic study,
  • Product pricing analysis of existing products and services,
  • ALM Model Implementation, and
  • ALM Review.

Funding will be reimbursed to the credit union based on paid invoices up to the grant maximum. Credit unions can apply in more than one category but can receive funding in one. More information about the Community Development Revolving Loan Fund grants can be found here. The application can be found online.

Questions about this story? Contact James Pearson: 206.340.4790, jpearson@nwcua.org.

Posted in NCUA.