A Dozen Northwest CUs Receive ECIP Funds; Here’s How a Few Plan to Use It

A reposted Article from CU Today

SEATAC, Wash.— The Northwest Credit Union Foundation is reporting 12 Northwest credit unions with CDFI certification will receive tens of millions of dollars in Emergency Capital Investment Program grants.

As CUToday.info reported here, the funding was announced by the U.S. Treasury Dec 14. In all, 84 credit unions received more than $2 billion in long-term secondary capital loans as part of the ECIP program, according to Treasury.

“The Northwest Credit Union Association and the Northwest Credit Union Foundation continually encourage our member credit unions to leverage resources such as ECIP grants so they can better serve their members,” said Sharee Adkins, executive director, NWCUF. “These grants are going to have an enormous impact as credit unions use them to provide loans, forbearance, and other financial relief to the communities that most need this help.”

The NWCUA and NWCUF said they worked with many of their CDFI member credit unions to apply for the grants after the program opened in August. Among those CUs is Mid Oregon Credit Union in Bend, which may use some of the ECIP funding to build on a previous NWCUF grant.

Expanding Housing Loans

“Mid Oregon Credit Union is proud of its history of service to low- and moderate-income communities in Central Oregon,” said President Kevin Cole. “If we accept funding through ECIP, we plan to expand the Workforce Housing Loan Program that was piloted with a grant from NWCUF. These funds may also be used to support mortgage and small business lending. A majority of Mid Oregon’s loans are issued to low-and moderate-income households, and ECIP funds will allow us to expand programs that have been successful at meeting the credit needs of Central Oregon.”

The NWCUA said the grants also could be used to help offset downward pressure on credit unions’ net worth, a result of the influx of deposits amid the pandemic, which is the case at Nampa, Idaho-based Clarity Credit Union. Clarity’s team has been instrumental in educating regulators and lawmakers at the state and federal levels about the pandemic’s impact on credit union net worth, operations, and ultimately, member services, the NWCUA said.

“We are very excited and glad to have the Emergency Capital Investment Program. It will help us to increase our capital ratio, which will allow us to better serve our members through new and broadening lending capabilities,” the CU said.

The List of Winners

According to the NWCUA, in addition to Mid Oregon and Clarity other Northwest credit unions receiving ECIP grants include:

  • Central Willamette Credit Union, Albany, Ore.
  • Consolidated Community CU, Portland, Ore.
  • Industrial CU, Bellingham, Wash.
  • Ironworkers USA FCU, Portland, Ore.
  • Lewis Clark CU, Lewiston, Idaho
  • Newrizons FCU, Hoquiam, Wash.
  • O Bee CU, Lacey, Wash.
  • Peninsula CU, Shelton, Wash.
  • Seattle CU, Seattle, Wash.

“When resources such as the ECIP are available to help operational efficiencies and member services, credit unions should not sit on the sidelines,” Adkins said. “Our members were very successful with these grant applications and the funding they will receive will go a long way.”

Posted in NWCUA in the News.