The Department of Banking News Bulletin
Bulletin # 2728
Week Ending June 3, 2016
This bulletin constitutes the only official notification you will receive from this office concerning any of the following applications. Any observations you may have are solicited. Any comments should be in writing to Jorge L. Perez, Banking Commissioner, Department of Banking, 260 Constitution Plaza, Hartford, CT 06103-1800. Written comments will be considered only if they are received within ten days from the date of this bulletin.
STATE BANK ACTIVITY
Section 36a-145 of the Connecticut General Statutes requires certain applications for a branch, or for a limited branch at which loans will be made, address how the establishment of the branch will be consistent with safe and sound banking practices and promote the public convenience and advantage. Plans are submitted when such applications are filed and are available for public inspection and comment at this Department for a period of 30 days. Questions concerning branch activity should be directed to the Financial Institutions Division, (860) 240-8180.
Eastern Savings Bank
220 West Town Street
Norwich, CT 06360
Opening Date -
Full Service Branch
Foreign Bank Branch Relocation
On June 18, 2016, pursuant to Section 36a-428f of the Connecticut General Statutes, UBS AG, Stamford Branch will relocate from 677 Washington Boulevard, Stamford, Connecticut to 600 Washington Boulevard, Stamford, Connecticut.
STATE CREDIT UNION ACTIVITY
On June 1, 2016, The Dutch Point Credit Union, Inc. (“Dutch Point”), a Connecticut credit union, and MiddConn Federal Credit Union (“MiddConn”), a federal credit union, filed an application pursuant to Section 36a-468a of the Connecticut General Statutes seeking approval for the merger of MiddConn with and into Dutch Point.
CONSUMER CREDIT DIVISION ACTIVITY
Order Refusing to Renew Mortgage Broker License
On May 24, 2016, the Commissioner issued an Order Refusing to Renew Mortgage Broker License (“Order”) In the Matter of: QuinStreet Media, Inc. (NMLS # 2547) (“Respondent”), Foster City, California. The basis of the Order was that Respondent failed to designate a qualified individual for Connecticut at its main office with the required experience and mortgage loan originator license, which constituted sufficient grounds to refuse to renew Respondent’s mortgage broker license pursuant to Section 36a-494(a)(1) of the 2016 Supplement to the General Statutes and subsections (a) and (b) of Section 36a-51 of the Connecticut General Statutes, and that Respondent failed to meet minimum standards for renewal under Section 36a-489(a)(2)(A) of the Connecticut General Statutes. The Commissioner ordered the license of Respondent to act as a mortgage broker in Connecticut not be renewed and the license was deemed expired.
On May 26, 2016, the Commissioner entered into a Consent Order with MMS Mortgage Services, Ltd., NMLS # 131062 (“MMS”), Farmington Hills, Michigan. The Consent Order was based on an investigation by the Consumer Credit Division. As a result of such investigation, the Commissioner alleged that, from approximately January 2015 to April 2016, MMS acted as a mortgage servicer in this state without a license, in violation of Section 36a-718 of the 2016 Supplement to the General Statutes. To resolve the matters alleged, MMS became licensed as a mortgage lender and provided the supplemental mortgage servicer surety bond, fidelity bond and errors and omissions coverage required pursuant to Section 36a 719c of the 2016 Supplement to the General Statutes and paid $10,000 as a civil penalty.
On May 26, 2016, the Commissioner entered into a Consent Order with Sound Mortgage, LLC (“Sound Mortgage”) (NMLS # 71423), Guilford, Connecticut. The Commissioner alleged that Sound Mortgage changed the address of its main office specified on its most recent filing with the Nationwide Multistate Licensing System and Registry (“NMLS”) and failed to file such change with NMLS at least 30 calendar days prior to such change and to provide directly to the Commissioner, a bond rider or endorsement, or addendum, as applicable, to the surety bond on file with the Commissioner that reflects the new address of the main office, in violation of Section 36a-490(b) of the Connecticut General Statutes. As part of the Consent Order, Sound Mortgage paid $500 as a civil penalty.
On May 27, 2016, the Commissioner entered into a Consent Order with Benchmark Municipal Tax Services, Ltd. (“Benchmark”) (NMLS # 1483181), Bridgeport, Connecticut. The Consent Order was based on an investigation by the Consumer Credit Division. As a result of such investigation, the Commissioner alleged that Benchmark acted within this state as a consumer collection agency without the requisite license, in violation of Section 36a-801(a) of the 2016 Supplement to the General Statutes. As part of the Consent Order, Benchmark was ordered to cease and desist from acting as a consumer collection agency without a license, and paid $10,000 as civil penalty. Benchmark has been issued a consumer collection agency license.
SECURITIES AND BUSINESS INVESTMENTS DIVISION ACTIVITY
Permanent Bar Issued
On May 13, 2016, the Banking Commissioner entered a Consent Order (No. CO-16-8275-S) with respect to Paul Anthony Steffany, a former broker-dealer agent of Raymond James & Associates, Inc. The Consent Order alleged that grounds existed for initiating administrative proceedings under Section 36b-15(a) of the Connecticut Uniform Securities based on an October 8, 2015 bar (No. 2014041650301) imposed by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority against Steffany. The FINRA action had alleged that Steffany was trustee of a testamentary trust for an estate that was a customer of Raymond James; that from January 2007 through April 2014, Steffany violated NASD Rule 2330(a), FINRA Rule 2150(a), NASD Rule 2110, and FINRA Rule 2010 by converting at least $112,742 of estate funds purportedly as compensation for Steffany’s services as trustee; that Steffany converted the funds by transferring monies from the estate’s brokerage account at Raymond James to an estate bank account held outside of the firm, having the bank account statements sent to his home to conceal his conduct from Raymond James and writing checks from the estate account to cover his personal expenses; and that from August 2007 through April 2014, Steffany violated NASD Rule 2110 and FINRA Rule 2010 by forging the signature of a co-executor on at least twelve checks made payable to the estate and later used certain of these funds for his personal use. According to the FINRA action, Steffany ultimately refunded approximately $112,742 to the estate and resigned as trustee.
The Consent Order permanently barred Steffany from 1) transacting business in or from Connecticut as a broker-dealer, agent, investment adviser or investment adviser agent; 2) soliciting or accepting funds for investment purposes from public or private investors in or from Connecticut; 3) engaging in any activity that would require Steffany to obtain a license or register under Chapters 668 or 669 of the Connecticut General Statutes governing Nondepository Financial Institutions and Regulated Activities, respectively, and 4) serving as a control person, qualified individual or branch manager of any entity regulated by the Commissioner under Chapter 668 of the Connecticut General Statutes.
Dated: Tuesday, June 7, 2016
Jorge L. Perez