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‘Challenging’ 2013 for town’s credit union

Portlaoise Credit Union’s income decreased by 9 per cent to nearly €2.5 million during 2013 but loans increased by a similar rate by to €7.8 on last year, its AGM was told.

In her treasurer’s report, Ms Patricia Mulhall revealed theat loans fell for the first eight months of 2013 but the loan book was showing positive signs in the final quarter.

She said the year was “challenging” but it was in a “strong position” due to prudent planning.

The treasurer’s post will be replaced by the chief executive next year.

The annual report shows spending increased by nearly €164,000 while the surplus for the year fell by nearly €400,000 to €512,000. The proposed dividend was 0.5%. Total income slipped by over €244,000 to almost €2.5 million. Debtors and prepaid expenses doubled to more than €605,000. The provision for bad debts remains €2.3 million. Current assets reduced by €1.6 million to €13.5 million.

Loan accounts reduced by €1.6 million to some €15 million. Members shares remain high at €45.7 million albeit €266,784 less than 12 months ago. In total, almost €290,000 extra was set aside for the statutory reserve, additional regulatory reserve, and general funds.

The value of the fixed assets fell due mainly to a fall of some €2.6 million on the freehold premises. An impairment on the value-in-use of the Credit Union’ office on Lyster Square was €400,000.

The report carries a detailed report on pensions. It reveals that an acturarial valuation disclosed a past service hole or deficit of €28.7 million. To address the shortfall the trustees submitted a new funding proposal to the pensions board to ensure that the scheme could satisfy the funding standard at March 2019. The scheme’s solvency last February was 97%.

Administrative expenses were €40,000 short of €2 million. There was nearly €520,000 income over spending but this was more than €400,000 less than the 2012 surplus.

Wages fell below the €500,000 mark but pensions rose by €10,000. It costs €20,000 to hold the agm. Legal and professional fees doubled to €62,000.

Bad debts charged off were just over €341,000 while just over €141,000 bad debts were recovered. The AGM revealed that the biggest bad debt written off in the past 12 months was €25,000. The largest loan written off in recent years was €117,000.

The AGM hear that the credit union has been at court in “one or two cases” over bad debts.

The oversight Committee chairman reported that this has been “another difficult year for all credit unions as the Central Bank imposes more and more influence and pressure”.

 

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