The final phase of the EMV chip rollout is scheduled to take place in mid-February. This will involve our largest group of members and probably the most utilized product/service – Our Debit Card. This card is tied directly to member accounts making it the primary purchasing tool and key to accessing cash. It is imperative that all members keep an eye out for their new cards in the mail and then immediately proceed to activate the new card. About 15 days after the mailing, the old card will be deactivated and so will its access to your funds.
The Card Carrier will be loaded with instructions with regards to Activation and Choosing a PIN, so the best time to take care of this will be when you open your mail. You will have to call from the phone number we have listed for you on our system. If you have a problem activating, please contact Member Services.
The distribution of our debit cards will complete the long process of getting all newly designed plastics into the hands of our members. The manufacturing and distribution of new plastics is an expensive process and cost control is a priority to Greater Metro. We also took this opportunity to close many inactive cards in the system.
The larger plastic rollout took place in September 2015 and affected our Credit Card holders. This process went smoothly even with all of the nuances involved with the new EMV chip card.
Our name change took place years ago along with our first logo design. Plans were in place for that first rollout when the final design and construction schedule of the Freedom Tower/WTC were announced. So we shelved our rollout and went back to the drawing board and even held a member survey regarding the update to our logo. We were then ready to move ahead and finally get away from our generic cards when the industry announced the move to EMV chip cards.
The move to (more costly) EMV chip-embedded cards has been a drawn out process affecting everyone; consumers, merchants, processors and financial institutions (ATM machines are still being upgraded). The use of the EMV cards has been and will still be a learning experience for all. Many merchants have new terminals but haven’t turned on the EMV switch. Some smaller merchants haven’t purchased the more expensive terminals. We all hope that the eventual outcome will live up to the intended fraud-free purchasing process. In any event, our members will finally be inserting or swiping a Greater Metro Federal Credit Union plastic!
The 2016 Annual Meeting
The Annual Meeting is scheduled to take place at the Credit Union’s main office in Long Island City on Wednesday, May 18, 2016 at 6 p.m.
Our 2016 Board Of Director Elections
As noted in November, a nominating committee was called together by the Board Chairman for the purpose of collecting the applications and resumes of members interested in volunteering their time for a position on the Board of Directors.
There is one seat that is up for election this year and the term is for three years.
Members who are eighteen years and older and are the primary account holders may submit their names to the nominating committee for consideration. Submissions must be received by the Nominating Committee no later than 5 p.m. on Friday, February 12, 2016 (this date extends the time from the original message).
Applications/Resumes can be emailed to NomComm@greatermetrofcu.org or mailed to the main office at 31-10 37th Avenue, Suite 403, Long Island City, NY 11101.
Our core processor has teamed up with a new Bill Pay vendor (Payveris) in their continuing effort to help reduce Credit Union costs and improve the quality of service. We are working toward an end of March transition. Some of the important dates relating to Bill Pay are as follows:
- No new enrollments will be allowed beginning March 7
- The current Bill Pay Service will be down from March 21-23
- Bill Pay with Payveris goes live on March 24
AD&D – A New Insurance Carrier
Accidental Death and Dismemberment coverage has gone through some upheaval here in New York over the last few years. Those members who have had coverage, continue to be covered by TransAmerica, but they no longer offer new policies. We have therefore partnered with CUNA Mutual to continue offering this coverage to members.
CUNA Mutual also offers Life policies through their TruStage Program. In 2016, we plan to consolidate other insurance offerings such as Home and Auto under this same Program.
Balance Transfer Promotion At 1.99% APR*
Greater Metro is excited to offer its first Balance Transfer Promotion to qualified cardholders in order to help members reduce their interest costs from higher interest rate cards. In early February, those preselected cardholders will receive correspondence in the mail with instructions on how to take advantage of the special offer.
Members who have available credit on their existing MasterCard Credit Cards will be able to transfer balances from higher interest rate cards beginning February 15th. The offer which lasts until May 15 will be in effect for 12 months from the first balance transfer. There will be a 2% Balance Transfer Fee.
When the promotion ends, the rate on the outstanding balances will revert to the then current rate in effect at that time.
Don’t Have A Greater Metro MasterCard Credit Card? Apply For One!
They Finally Did It!
The Federal Reserve that is! After years of anticipation, the FED finally raised rates 25 basis points at their December meeting. All variable rate products could be affected. Here at Greater Metro, most products are tied to the Prime Rate which moved from 3.25% to 3.50%.
2015 Tax Information
Your December Statements include your 2015 tax information. Members with First Mortgages who have Escrow accounts should have received their annual escrow analysis in mid-December.
Provide the IRS with Greater Metro’s Routing Number (221475605) and your account number so that the funds can be directly credited to your account.
Our ATM At The VA
We apologize for any inconveniences caused by our lobby ATM being out of service. Our maintenance company could not secure replacement cables from the manufacturer so we reached out to other ATM partners to get the machine up and running, with no luck. We are now in the process of purchasing a new EMV Chip-readable machine and hope to have it installed in the next few weeks.
Years ago, a monthly 25 cent credit was issued to members who signed up for E-Statements. February 2016 will be the last month for this Credit.
Remote Deposit Capture
Those of you who still enjoy searching for a stamp and mailing a check to the Credit Union and then waiting on the US Postal Service to deliver it here to Long Island City, forget about RDC. Or if you enjoy that trip to a Shared Branch to make that check deposit, disregard this little reminder.
Many members have taken advantage of this convenient service. If you have a smart phone, add our app, enroll in RDC and find other things to enjoy!
Credit Union Offices will be closed on the following days in 2016:
Presidents’ Day – Monday, February 15
Memorial Day – Monday, May 30
Independence Day – Monday, July 4
Labor Day – Monday, September 5
Columbus Day – Monday, October 10 (observed)
Veterans’ Day – Friday, November 11
Thanksgiving Day – Thursday, November 24
Christmas Day – Monday, December 26 (observed)
New Years Day 2017 – Monday, January 2 (observed)