New banking options will soon be available in Petersburg in the form of a credit union.
Alps Federal Credit Union, based out of Sitka, is creating a new branch for the first time and has chosen Petersburg as its new location.
John O’Brien, Alps CEO, said when they started looking for a new location they chose Petersburg because there is no credit union presence in town.
“A credit union is a member owned cooperative, which I think is something most people will be familiar with in a fishing community,” O’Brien said.
Credit unions and traditional banks offer the same services but the difference is in the structure of the organization. Credit union members, despite the size of their account, are owners as well. Each member gets a vote to influence its governance and can elect the credit union’s board of directors.
“In our market (Sitka) we have four banks and us,” O’Brien said. “We have better dividend rates than any of the banks. Generally our loan rates are lower on the longer terms.”
O’Brien said the new branch location should open sometime during the first of the year and will be located at Dolphin Street and North Nordic Drive.
He said the branch will likely employ two part-time and two full-time employees.
“We look forward to doing business with them (Petersburg residents) and supporting the community once we’re a part of it,” O’Brien said.