One of the most important investments in rural America is capital investment. When available, capital increases access to financial services that establish credit pathways and savings. This can quite literally save lives, and the Partners are consistently creating strategies to do so. Federal mandates frequently interact with our work, impacting how we maneuver in performing our mission. However, we are not only impacted by federal laws, we can benefit handsomely from them. A major key in rural development comes in the form of the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA). Due to structural deficiencies in the CRA tying qualifying investments to branch locations, bank investment in rural CDFIs lag behind investment in CDFIs serving urban areas.
The Partners are making three strong suggestions for amendments for the CRA in order to improve its efficacy. Read our full commentary here.