The Treasury Department works with the Community Development Financial Institutions Fund to fund and support mission-driven financial institutions. Lew announced that Treasury will partner with the National Credit Unions Administration to double for number of CDFI-certified low income credit unions in 2016. There are 265 CDFI certified credit unions in the US today.
The Federation was instrumental in establishing the CDFI Fund in 1994 and is a permanent member of the the national CDFI coalition, and thus welcomes this groundbreaking agreement to increase the number of CDFI credit unions. “The Federation is pleased that the Treasury Department has chosen to work with credit unions to expand financial inclusion. Community Development Credit Unions provide safe, affordable and insured financial products and services to low- and moderate-income consumers throughout the country,” says Cathie Mahon, Federation President and CEO. “We look forward to working with Treasury, the NCUA, and the CDFI Fund on this historic expansion of CDFI certified credit unions.”
The agreement between the NCUA and the CDFI Fund will be signed on January 21, 2016. NCUA Chairman Debbie Matz says, “Since it was established in 1994, the Community Development Financial Institutions Fund has invested more than $2 billion in grants, investments and loans to financial intermediaries, $157 million of that in credit unions. Doubling the number of CDFI credit unions will allow significantly more low-income credit unions access to funding and technical assistance, available through the CDFI Fund, to serve underserved members and communities, and to expand financial products and services to them. We’re excited about this agreement and eager to get to work on the implementation.”
On February 22, 2016, the Federation is hosting the 5th Annual CDFI Roundtable at the GAC in Washington DC. Click here to register and meet our keynote speaker, Jessica Milano, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Small Business, Community Development and Housing at the US Department of Treasury.
An excerpt from Secretary Lew’s remarks relating to the expansion of CDFI credit unions appears below. To read the full transcript go to https://www.treasury.gov/press-center/press-releases/Pages/jl0319.aspx#.VplYKyXfpHI.email.
In addition to reaching out to include young people and eliminating the obstacles to retirement savings, Treasury is also helping to create and expand financial services offered in underserved communities. Without safe and affordable financial services, people often turn instead to alternatives that are very costly and can undermine a community’s financial stability while draining its wealth. And when people keep cash at home instead of in local institutions, that money does not work for them or their community and it is at risk of being lost, stolen, or spent. For twenty years, Treasury has worked through the Community Development Financial Institutions Fund to fund and support mission-driven financial institutions in some of our nation’s most distressed communities. The CDFI Fund has awarded more than $2 billion in grant funding to local community financial institutions all over the country. While we are proud of the work the CDFI Fund has achieved, we recognize that there is still more work ahead to reach individuals who still lack access to financial services in so many communities in our country.
The Federation was instrumental in establishing the CDFI Fund in 1994, is a permanent member of the national CDFI Coalition and is the CDFI and community finance authority for the credit union industry. The Federation’s member CDCUs represent 4 million members in low-income communities across the US, and we represent the majority of all CDFI-certified credit unions. The CDFI Fund is a unique source of capital for community development credit unions. CDFI grants can fuel growth in membership, deposits and loans in communities that are eager to join the cooperative finance movement. To date, the CDFI Fund has deployed $200 million in financial and technical assistance for CDFI-certified credit unions. Today, CDFI Certification is an essential credential for credit unions that seek a larger role in the development of their communities. In addition to representing CDCUs’ interest through advocacy with the CDFI Fund, the Federation is also an extensive resource for credit unions interested in learning more about CDFI-certification and offers expert certification and grant writing consulting services through its CU Breakthrough consulting group.
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