Tralee Credit Union held its Annual General Meeting on Monday 14th of December in Fels Point Hotel with its Board of Directors reporting a very positive and busy year. Its assets now stand at €185 Million and local members savings growing to €158m.
The noticeable highlight of the year was the transfer of assets of Killorglin Credit Union to Tralee Credit Union last December.
Chairman, Tom Lawlor said that they were aware of the transfer at last year’s AGM but were bound by the confidentiality agreement with the Central Bank not to publicise it due to the sensitivity of the issue and concerns that savings might be withdrawn in Killorglin.
Services and Vital Links
The transfer to Tralee Credit Union ensured that services and vital links remained in the Killorglin area and that all members are now owners of a stronger credit union.
Katrina Rice, CFO highlighted the healthy financial position of the credit union for the year. Total income was up by 18% to €7.5 million, mainly from the interest they received from the interest on members’ loans and their investments, although Katrina mentioned that the level of return from their investments continues to fall. Total expenses of €2 million was down on last year mainly due to less provisioning in bad debts and very strong recovery in loans written off.
Delinquency levels for the credit union were at its lowest in seven years with over €500,000 bad debts recovered from the Killorglin area alone. This highlights the number of members who continue to work with the credit union in repaying their debts.
The salaries bill increased substantially in the year by 33% to €1.5 million due to the addition of Killorglin and necessary additional staff to deal with compliance and internal audit functions.
The credit union paid out €645,000 to cover its members for Death Benefit Insurance and Life Savings and Loan Protection Insurance, highlighting the uniqueness and value of being a credit union member. As a not for profit financial co-operative, the good news for its members was the level of surplus income being returned to members by way of Dividend and Loan Interest Rebate to borrowers.
Loans the Maine Source of Income
The AGM passed a proposal of .75% Dividend of over €1 million to members. They highlighted that the high DIRT tax rate of 41% will mean that over €433,000 of this dividend will go directly to Revenue.
The proposal to give borrowers 7.5% Loan Interest Rebate – a refund on the interest they paid on their loans – was also passed with over €320,000 being returned to its borrowers and this is not subject to DIRT.
“Loans are the main source of income for the credit union. This year again €4.3 million (almost 60%) of our income came from our borrowing members so we were delighted to reward our members for borrowing with us,” said Chairman, Tom Lawlor.
Meanwhile, Fintan Ryan CEO said: “We have over 42,000 members who can now access their account in any of our three offices in Tralee, Castleisland and Killorglin. The building in Killorglin is a huge asset and we are currently looking at ways to make it more productive for us.”
Mr. Ryan also highlighted the high volume of transactions going through the credit union, with an average of 62,700 transactions a month. He also remarked on the that the credit union could take pride in the level of personal service the members receive.
Debit Card Testing
“We are working hard to bring you a Debit Card and are presently testing the card among our staff and board members. This is an exciting development for Tralee Credit Union and will complete our banking suite of services,” said Mr. Ryan as he outlined the importance of the Loan Book to the credit union’s income and its key to a sustainable future.
Tralee Credit Union lent out over €25 million last year and that’s over €2 million going into the local economy per month. Apart from taking on Killorglin’s loan book, the credit union’s overall loan book increased by over €2 million to €56.7 million.
“This year we have €30 Million to lend so for anyone who needs a loan, talk to us. We have reduced our Motor Loan rate available on all loans until March and are part of the National Pilot Personal Micro Credit Loans for any social welfare recipients who wish to borrow and repay their loan through An Post’s Household Budget Scheme,” Mr. Ryan concluded.
Membership of Tralee Credit Union is voluntary and open to everyone who lives and works within the Tralee, Castleisland and the Killorglin areas. For further information call in to Tralee Credit Union or visit their website with a click on the advert here: