Last week Montauk Credit Union was merged into Bethpage Federal Credit Union. Montauk made news last year as one of the New York credit unions impacted by the declining NYC taxi industry. The credit union was placed into conservatorship last September due to its "unsafe and unsound practices". This was a merger without NCUA assistance which is one of the most favorable outcomes that can happen after a credit union is placed into a conservatorship. Montauk members won’t lose any of their deposits and their existing CDs should be unaffected.
One interesting outcome of this merger is what’s happening to Bethpage Federal Credit Union. Montauk’s field of membership (FOM) is being added to Bethpage’s FOM. Montauk used to declare itself as having an "open charter" which enabled them to extend membership to anyone. Bethpage appears to be adding that open charter to its FOM. This FOM expansion is described in this Long Island Business News article:
Linda Armyn, Bethpage senior vice president of corporate affairs, said the merger gives others around the nation access to the credit union, ending any geographic limits.
"Our territory has expanded beyond Long Island and we now have a branch in New York City," Armyn said. "Our charter is not limited by geography at this time."
While she said Bethpage can now serve people around the nation, the credit union at least in the short-term doesn’t plan to seek to expand across the country.
This gives everyone access to Bethpage’s products. In the past, Bethpage has come out with some nice CD deals. Also, Bethpage has a reward checking account called Bonus Checking. Its top rate is low for reward checking (currently 1.00% APY), but there’s no balance cap. The 1% applies to all balances if the monthly requirements are met.
It should be noted that it’s possible that Bethpage could change its mind regarding a nationwide FOM. When USA Federal Credit Union merged into Navy Federal in 2010, Navy Federal decided to exclude part of USA Fed’s FOM that allowed anyone to join via an association. Many DA readers were able to join Navy Fed by joining USA Fed before the merger was completed. Those who waited too long, were out of luck in qualifying for a Navy Fed membership.
Many thanks to DA member alan1 for posting on this news in the DA forum