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New office planned for Pa. credit union

July 23, 2000|By DON AINES

New office planned for Pa. credit union



CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. - For almost three decades, the Community of Healthcare Employees Credit Union has been serving its members from offices in Chambersburg Hospital.

That will change early next year when the credit union, which has about 3,000 members in Franklin and Fulton counties, opens a new office on Phoenix Drive in Chambersburg. CEO Laura Pitzer and Linda Helfrick, president of the board of directors, recently used gold shovels to break ground on the new building in a business park off Walker Road.

"For 27 years we've seen continued growth in our credit union," Helfrick said during the Thursday ceremony. Pitzer said the new $200,000 office is scheduled to open in March 2001 and will include a drive-up window, night deposit and an automatic teller machine.

The credit union will continue to maintain offices at Chambersburg Hospital. Pitzer said members at Waynesboro Hospital, the Quincy Home and Village and the Fulton County Medical Center will continue to be served through weekly visits by "a roving teller, our member services representative."

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Along with employees at Chambersburg and Waynesboro hospitals and the Fulton County Medical Center, Pitzer said employees and volunteers at most area nursing homes, medical clinics and practices and their family members are also eligible for membership.

The list of participating businesses, however, also includes a trucking company, a lumber company, a church and the Children's Aid Society in Chambersburg. "We are always looking for groups to take in and they do not have to be in health care," Pitzer said.

She said the non-profit credit union has about $7.5 million in assets and can offer members competitive loan rates and higher dividends than some lending institutions because of lower operating fees.

James J. McCormick, president of the Pennsylvania Credit Union League, said there are about 800 credit unions in the state with $16 billion in assets and 3.2 million members. Patriot Federal Credit Union, which began by serving employees at Letterkenny Army Depot near Chambersburg , is one of the largest in the state, he said.

There are at least a dozen credit unions serving the area, including separate ones for teachers in Franklin County, Pa., and Washington County, Md.; the Washington County Hospital Employees Credit Union, and credit unions serving employees and family members of local industries and state employees in the region.

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