Greetings and Happy New Year!
Let me begin our 2023 Memo kickoff edition by wishing you all a Happy New Year filled with blessings, good health, and a lot of success. Again, I want to express my sincere gratitude for the opportunity to be your partner in advancing the credit union movement here in the Dakotas. It is our objective each year to work hard and provide value to our members. Credit unions truly are the best financial choice for consumers, families, and communities, so here’s to another outstanding year!
2023 marks the beginning of my 15th year here at the association, and I am truly blessed and thoroughly enjoy the opportunity to work in the credit union movement on your behalf. Meeting the evolving needs of our credit unions and our credit union members continues to be our primary focus, and with your continued partnership, we can continue to do remarkable things across the Dakotas.
“Border Battle” to Tackle Hunger gains momentum as Oahe FCU makes generous pledge!
Just prior to the holiday break, using the Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) national championship matchup between South Dakota State University and North Dakota State university as our launching pad, the Dakota Credit Union Association initiated the “Dakota Border Battle to Tackle Hunger.” This is simply a friendly food drive competition and challenge between North and South Dakota, with the goal to collect the most food items and cash donations to restock food pantries in both states in partnership with the North Dakota Great Plains Food Bank and Feeding South Dakota.
Sure, “bragging rights” and the national championship is up for grabs, but more importantly, there is a huge need right now in the Dakotas for both food and money to support individuals and families who are experiencing hardships. Last week, Oahe FCU in Pierre, SD stepped up with a generous $5,000 commitment! As of this morning, we have collected enough donations to provide more than 33,000 meals for those who need it most!
As a reminder, the campaign runs through this Friday, January 6 and the winning state will be determined using a formula that calculates to the “most meals provided.” Announcement of the winner of the “Border Battle” will be made on social media by noon on Saturday, January 7. Find all the details here and feel free to contact Lindsey Hefta with any questions.
Dakota Lawmakers are back at work!
Looking ahead, the Dakota Credit Union Association has laid out our legislative and regulatory advocacy strategies for the year and we are prepared for the challenges ahead. We will hit the ground running this week as the North Dakota legislative the 68th legislative session opens in Bismarck. Governor Burgum delivered his State of the State address on Tuesday, and committee hearings begin already this Friday.
In South Dakota, lawmakers head to Pierre next week and will open the 98th South Dakota Legislative Session on Tuesday, January 10th. Governor Kristi Noem will lay out her administration’s agenda for South Dakota with her state of the state address in the House Chambers around 1:00 p.m. (CT) that day.
Both of our Governmental Affairs Committees will be meeting weekly with our Advocacy Team throughout the legislative session. Stay tuned for alerts and updates as the session work unfolds over the next few months.
2023 Dakota Credit Union Advancing Communities Video available now.
I want to thank all our Dakota credit unions that sent us their photos and visual assets of the work they are doing in their communities. We have finalized a short video that highlights the impact that our credit unions are having in advancing their communities. Bottom line, Dakota credit unions are doing some amazing things in improving the financial well-being for our members. You can watch the video here.
The video will also be featured soon on the Credit Union National Association’s Advancing Communities platform. This site is designed to better promote the credit union difference through the lens of community impact and the financial well-being to our local and federal lawmakers.
New Dakota CUPAC/CULAC video tool to engage staff in advocacy efforts.
Now that the 2022 election is in the books, our CUPAC/CULAC funds need replenishing. One of the realities for credit unions is that we are continually just one vote away from losing what makes us unique, beneficial, and great. Like it or not, there are people who want to put credit unions out of business. The threat of taxation is always looming; the banking industry has made it their mission to tax not-for-profit credit unions. We have even faced that threat right here in the Dakotas.
Advocacy has always been at the heart of DakCU’s purpose and is underscored as our top priority; this cannot be done without a strong foundation. Contributing money to our Political Action Committees (CUPAC/CULAC) is the best way to ensure that we have a collective voice. Our most successful program, and one of the easiest for credit union employees to participate in, is our payroll deduction plan. To rebuild both our state and federal funds and to engage more of our stakeholders, we have updated a video tool that Dakota credit unions can download and use internally to engage staff and volunteers in the importance of support these efforts. You can download our new video here.
If you have any questions about offering payroll deduction or other ways to promote fundraising for credit union friendly legislators and candidates, please contact me or Jay Kruse, our Chief Advocacy Officer.
First 2023 Dakota CEO Virtual Town Hall on January 17th
The beginning of each quarter is a busy time for all; our goal is to keep you informed and up to speed on issues that are both timely and impactful. This is why we ask for 30 minutes of your time each quarter to share important updates on our legislative and regulatory advocacy, awareness, and upcoming educational opportunities. Our first CEO Virtual Town Hall of 2023 is set for Tuesday, January 17th at 3:00 p.m. (CT). Please watch for a calendar invite in your email inbox coming soon.
Have a great first week of the New Year!
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