Texas Credit Union Commission Meets to Discuss and Adopt Actions to Benefit the Public

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Commission member Vik Vad ratifies measures aimed at safety and transparency.

Once again, as new technology becomes available, we have to find ways of using it effectively and efficiently.

The Credit Union Department of the state of Texas is an agency that regulates these financial institutions, in order to safeguard the public interest, protect the financial interests of credit union members, and promote public confidence in the credit union industry, according to its website. It is overseen by a nine member Commission, appointed by the Governor, to ensure that these goals are adhered to, and to provide guidelines to the department for doing so. The Commission meets three times per year, with this morning's meeting being the final session for this year.

The meeting consisted of a host of agenda items, with Commission members listening to reports by the staff of the Department, asking questions, and voting on issues. The environment for credit unions to operate continues to be difficult due to a slow economic recovery, and other hangover effects of the financial crisis of 2008-2009. However, increasing assets on deposit, as well as healthy loan demand, make a good case for a more positive future outlook.

One of the agenda items concerned the safety at unmanned teller machines. "This item has to do both with physical security as well as the security of the information regarding one's financial accounts," states Vik Vad, one of the Commission members. "Safeguarding the data of customers is a critical function in today's technology rich world, as well as educating them about ways that they may inadvertently expose themselves." The Credit Union Department and individual credit unions will have to work together to decide ways in which security can be implemented without inconveniencing customers, or becoming prohibitively costly or ineffective to the credit union itself.

Another item on the day's agenda consisted of discussion on a new law relating to videoconferencing for public meetings. "Once again, as new technology becomes available, we have to find ways of using it effectively and efficiently," notes Vad. "The government is sometimes slow, or misinformed about methods that can revolutionize the way business is conducted, and, having a background in technology, it is my duty to help define practices that are useful and in tune with the times." The new bill that was passed sets forth requirements for remote participation by Commission members, and enhances on-site participation by members of the public.

The Credit Union Commission's next meeting will be held on Friday, February 21, 2014, at the same location on 914 E. Anderson Ln, Austin, TX 78752. A tentative agenda packet will be available to the public approximately 10 days before the meeting.

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Vik Vad

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