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Community Development Credit Unions to tap into CDFI funds

More than 150 credit unions that are certified by the Treasury as Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI) can apply for funds to spur lending to small businesses in low-income communities. The loans will carry a favorable interest rate, much lower than the usual charged. The money will come from TARP funds allocated by Congress to rescue the financial industry.

 

"This program is a milestone in the history of the CDCU movement," explained Clifford N. Rosenthal, president/CEO of the National Federation of Community Development Credit Unions. "The Federation has worked for more than two decades to win support for credit unions that serve low-income communities across the country. The establishment of the CDFI Fund in 1994 was a great victory. This is another."

 

The final terms and guidelines of the program have not been announced, but Rosenthal believes as much as $200 million could be invested in more than 100 qualifying credit unions serving low-income communities.

 

"There are no financial institutions closer to 'Main Street' than CDCUs. The Federation's more than 200 member credit unions serve over one-million people in low-income communities across the nation,” said Rosenthal. “Small and neighborhood businesses, homeowners, and hard-pressed consumers will all benefit from this program."

 

For credit unions interested in CDFI certification, the Treasury Department’s CDFI Fund is conducting a series of conference calls explaining the certification process. They will be held on the following dates:

  • Thursday, February 18, 2010, 3:00 - 4:00 p.m. EST
  • Thursday, March 18, 2010, 3:00 - 4:00 p.m. EST
  • Thursday, April 15, 2010, 3:00 - 4:00 p.m. EST
  • Thursday, May 20, 2010, 3:00 - 4:00 p.m. EST
  • Thursday, June 17, 2010, 3:00 - 4:00 p.m. EST

To access any of the conference calls, participants need to call 202. 927.2255 and enter the pin number 864232. No prior registration is necessary. For more information about CDFI Certification eligibility and the application process for credit unions, or the CDFI Fund’s programs, please visit the National Federation of Community Development Credit Unions.

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