No ‘significant’ deposit changes at Newbridge after bailout
Politicians claim there has been a lack of transparency at credit union since last year
The group expressed incredulity at the court order and said the credit union had been both solvent and profitable.
Mr Crowley said the impromptu meeting at the town’s community centre had been called following the “covert operation that took place over the weekend by the gentlemen in the Central Bank”.
“This is not a done deal, we still have an opportunity to contest this and we intend to take that option,” he said.
The meeting was attended by up to 100 people with angered credit union members expressing their support for the former board members.
Many felt that the community would be damaged by the loss of the 45-year-old operation and that a new “banking culture” there flew in the face of what it stood for.
Ex-director Maria McDonald addressed the contentious issue of one historic loan for €3.2 million, insisting that while large, it would be paid back.
“This person is still a member. That loan will be paid because this person is in the process of selling a premises what will pay the loan,” she said.
There were some angry exchanges when one member of the audience, Ian Hennessy, accused the ex-directors of “running the credit union into the ground” due to the nature and scale of much of its lending activity.
A merger between Newbridge and Naas Credit Union had been on the cards, but Naas decided not to proceed with the deal.
Naas Credit Union said it had “investigated, negotiated on and carefully evaluated” a merger.
However, having fully investigated a possible combination, the board decided that doing so “would not be in the best interests” of its members.
The credit union is not affiliated to the Irish League of Credit Unions (ILCU).
Rather, along with 11 other credit unions, it is a member of the Credit Union Development Association (CUDA), an association working on behalf of member-owned, member-directed and professionally managed credit unions.
However, the league did assert in a statement that it is concerned that the move “may not be in the best interests of the members of Newbridge Credit Union.”
“We believe it is of critical importance that a credit union service continues to be available to the Newbridge community.”
In an assertion of the strength of the sector, the ILCU said that its forthcoming figures will show that those affiliated to the ILCU “are in a strong financial position with capital levels equal to or in excess of those required by the Central Bank.”
Credit union savings are State-guaranteed up to € 100,000.