2005 TABOR surplus not enough for breaks

Filed under: Banking & Finance |

Accountants at Biggs Kofford did a double take last week when they saw that tax planning information on the Colorado Department of Revenue Web site had changed.

Relying on information they had initially received from the DOR, accountants from the firm released information notifying taxpayers that excess revenue collected under the state’s Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights would not only mean they were entitled a refund from the state but also an opportunity for tax breaks in the form of the expanded Colorado source capital gain subtraction, charitable contributions subtraction, interest and dividend subtraction and the child care or child tax credit.

That information was incorrect, according to Biggs Kofford, and those deductions will not be available in 2005.

The 2005 budget surplus is not large enough to allow the tax changes, according to the DOR.

However, it is large enough to allow a conservation easement credit for 2005.

Springs’ U.S. Bank No. 1 for Hispanic loans

The Colorado Springs arm of U.S. Bank has won a company-wide contest for promoting the most loans in high-growth Hispanic markets.

The contest, called ¡Capital!, is a loan program aimed at lending more than $1 billion during the next five years to small businesses nationwide.

As part of the program, U.S. Bank will provide referral payments to local chambers of commerce for every loan that is booked through the program.

The Colorado Springs Hispanic Chamber of Commerce received a $5,000 check from U.S. Bank this week.

Bank officials tout the program as a way to provide a substantial new revenue stream for the chamber to help the organization meet mission-critical goals and objectives, such as allowing business members to expand and create jobs.

It’s also a way for U.S. Bank to attract new members.

U.S. Bank Regional President Tom Naughton and bank employees Shawn Clift and Merced Beattie were on hand to present the check to the chamber president, Peter Marky, and the president-elect, Alicia Trejo Jones.

Bauer now offering hometown program

Florida-based independent bank rating and research firm Bauer Financial is offering people looking for a new bank a new way to arm themselves in their search.

Your Hometown Bank Ratings gives consumers the opportunity to request a litany of local banking information, from nearby branch locations to bank ratings.

Bauer is mostly known for providing its star ratings system, which assigns a ranking to banks, ranging from zero to five stars.

The bank has long offered the courtesy ratings information via the Internet or by phone request. That service has resulted in thousands of requests each week, according to Bauer spokeswoman Karen Dorway.

In recent years, Dorway said, officials have noticed a shift in the way consumers want to conduct their banking business. Customers want more in-depth information about whom they entrust their money to.

The Hometown Bank Ratings program was created in response to those customer desires. It provides:

  • the star-ratings
  • the street address of every bank branch located within the given city or county
  • the telephone number, Web site and headquarter’s location of the bank
  • the total number of branches the bank has in the United States
  • the year the bank was established
  • the bank’s Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. certificate number to show proof of FDIC coverage

Information for a particular city costs $28. The cost is $38 for county information. Adjacent cities or counties cost an additional $10. Reports can be faxed or e-mailed to avoid shipping charges.

For more information, go to www.bauerfinancial.com.

FDIC journal’s winter edition available

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.’s Winter 2005 issue of Supervisory Insights is available on the organization’s Web site.

The winter 2005 issue features articles about banks’ financial modeling, the security of Internet banking transactions and bank insider misconduct.

“Model Governance” describes how strong governance procedures can help minimize this risk, and it suggests areas that examiners should target when evaluating a bank’s model oversight, control and validation programs.

“Enforcement Actions against Individuals: Case Studies” focuses on two case studies of insider misconduct – one involving embezzlement; the other, loan fraud. The story highlights weaknesses in internal controls that contributed to the misconduct and describes elements of an effective internal audit program.

The publication also addresses other community banking topics with articles, such as “From the Examiner’s Desk,” which describes the FDIC’s recently implemented Relationship Manager Program – an initiative that seeks to strengthen relationships between the agency and bank management, and improve the supervision process.

To read the journal online, go to www.fdic.gov. For a print copy, send a request to publicinfo@fdic.gov.

Rob Larimer covers banking and finance for the Colorado Springs Business Journal.