A number of New York lawmakers in both the U.S. House and Senate were among those who signed letters backing a $300 million appropriation for the Community Development Financial Institutions Fund, which administers a range of innovative and effective programs that enable CDFIs to address the needs of underserved markets.
Two letters were circulated in the House and Senate to the heads of their respective appropriations committees. Rep. Nita Lowey, D-17 and chairwoman of the House Appropriations Committee, was among the recipients.
“For Fiscal Year (FY) 2020, we urge the Committee to continue its support for the CDFI Fund by providing an appropriation of at least $300 million,” the Senate letter states. “This will allow the CDFI Fund to meet the exceptionally high demand for these resources, which far outpaces the availability of funding.”
The House letter states: “CDFI Fund grants are awarded competitively to the organizations that best demonstrate how they will partner with their communities to address their economic development needs. Through its administration of these competitive grant programs the CDFI Fund has not only invested directly in local communities, but has also attracted billions of dollars in additional private-sector investments.”
More than 100 members signed the House letter, including Gregory Meeks, D-5; Nydia Velázquez, D-7; Reps. Carolyn Maloney, D-12; Adriano Espaillat, D-13; Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-14; Antonio Delgado, D-19; Joseph Morelle, D-25; and Brian Higgins, D-26. Notably, Maxine Waters, D-Calif. and chairwoman of the House Financial Services Committee, also signed the letter.
In the Senate, 37 senators signed their version of the letter, including Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand of New York.
The New York Credit Union Association supports the full financing of the CDFI Fund.