The CDFI Fund provides a critical influx of resources to rural America, as many communities lack access to basic financial services due to low population density and high poverty rates. President Trump's proposal to eliminate the $233 million CDFI Fund will disproportionately hurt the red states that carried him to victory in the 2016 election.
Fast Company provides a compelling overview of the CDFI Fund's role as an effective public-private partnership addressing critical economic development challenges. As Ellis Carr, CEO of Capital Impact Partners, a nonprofit CDFI loan fund, shared, "With the current administration, some of the sound bites you hear are around the forgotten man or the forgotten people. CDFIs have been doing this work for 30 years - we've been working with that forgotten population all along."
Proposed Elimination of US Treasury Community Development Finance Fund will close off economic opportunity for millions of hardworking people in America’s hardest hit communities.
President Trump is expected to release his budget proposal tomorrow Thursday, March 16th. Calling for a dramatic $54 billion increase in military spending, he is expected to call for significant cuts to domestic discretionary funding, which according to the New York Times, calls for a CDFI Fund that is "all but eliminated" from the federal budget.
The President's proposal however, is just the first step in the federal budgeting process. As Congress holds the purse strings and oversees the final decisions on appropriations. CDBA is actively working to educate congressional legislators on the vital role that CDFI banks play in their communities and the role that the CDFI Fund plays in supporting CDFIs.
CDBA along with partner banking trade associations: The American Bankers Association (ABA), Independent Community Bankers Association (ICBA), and the National Bankers Association (NBA) released a joint press letter calling for $250 million for the CDFI Fund, including $23 million for the BEA program in FY 2017 and $25 million for it in FY 2018.
This new podcast asks community members and organizations across the U.S. about the challenges they are facing and solutions they’ve found for significant social issues like economic mobility, affordable housing, small business development and community reinvestment. Each episode showcases successful programs that help provide access to opportunity for low- and moderate-income individuals and families. The latest episode, "Access to Community Ownership," features organizations helping manufactured home residents take ownership of their communities to improve economic stability and security. The first episode, "Access to Affordable Consumer Credit," released in Dec. 2016, highlights an innovative small-dollar loan program.
CDBA Member, Community Bank of the Bay, an Oakland, California-based CDFI recently announced the completion of a $12 million private placement, which will result in approximately $11.5 million of net proceeds to the Bank. As CEO William Keller shares, "This capital raise will allow Community Bank of the Bay to better meet the needs of our clients and the communities we serve. We are especially excited to be able to support in a greater way the dynamic growth that is occurring in Oakland, a community that we have been proud to serve for over twenty years."
President Trump met with nine community bankers last week to discuss the needs of community banks within the greater framework of regulatory reform. On reflection of the meeting, Rep. Jeb Hensarling, Chairman of the House Financial Services Committee shared that, "It is encouraging to have a president who is listening to the concerns of community bankers who have been buried under an avalanche of burdensome regulations as a result of Dodd-Frank."
Concerned citizens around the country are closing their accounts with "Big Banks" either in protest of investments in controversial projects such as the Dakota Access pipeline or in support of a more localized form of community investment in the case of the #BankBlack movement. As Beneficial State CEO Kat Taylor shares, "We know how mass movements can start and increase and aggregate to something that moves hearts and minds - and markets."
Carver State Bank was established in 1927 and is the oldest bank headquartered in Savannah. This year, they are celebrating their 90th anniversary. Learn more about Carver in the profile written by bank President Robert E. James.