“Small businesses in the Central Valley rely on banks for reasonably priced credit to help them start, expand, and hire workers. These changes may dilute banks’ focus on rural communities which will have a devastating effect on small businesses, homeowners, tenants, and community institutions. Anyone who cares about rural America should care about the weakening of CRA,” said Salam Nalia, CEO of Access Plus Capital and CFO of Fresno EOC.
Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) is the most impactful law that most people have never heard of. CRC estimates that the Community Reinvestment Act has encouraged banks to lend and invest billions into low income communities and communities of color to support homeownership, small business ownership, and financial stability.
CRA is currently under attack, as the national bank regulator has put forth a Trojan Horse proposal which NCRC estimates will put at risk over $25 billion in asset building bank investments over the next 5 years in CA.
CRC and Greenlining Institute are partnering with local leaders to discuss how CRA has benefitted the Valley, what the latest proposal means for area asset builders, and how participants can engage in order to protect community reinvestment and positive bank partnerships. The panel may also discuss harmful bank practices such as displacement financing and payday lending, and how CRA should be strengthened to hold banks more accountable to serving local communities.
Participants will be encouraged to engage on CRA reform to prevent a devastating and long lasting set back to local wealth building efforts. The target audience includes local government and nonprofit organizations. Potential outcomes include education regarding CRA and current regulatory reform proposals, advocacy in the form of regulatory comments letters and access to social media resources, templates for local efforts such as city council resolutions and responsible banking ordinances, and ways for local groups to engage in local CRA efforts with a bank to promote greater community reinvestment.
|Andrea Luquetta-Kern, Deputy Director, California Reinvestment Coalition
Andrea provides strategic and operational leadership, conducts regulatory and legislative advocacy, and negotiates with banks to provide credit, capital, and financial services to underserved communities. Prior to CRC, Andrea was a litigator at Western Center on Law and Poverty. She is a graduate of UCLA School of Law’s Epstein Program in Public Interest Law and Policy, where she also completed a Concentration in Critical Race Studies. Andrea is a former undocumented immigrant brought to the US by her parents when she was a child. Today, she enjoys living in the East Bay with her wife, Kathie, where they are raising a brand new human named Lucia, and three not-so-brand-new dogs named Lulu, Duckie, and Bleu.
|Rawan Elhalaby, Economic Equity Program Manager, Greenling Institute
As the daughter of working-class refugees, Rawan is all too familiar with the obstacles to achieving self-sufficiency in the United States for low-income, immigrant families. As such, she has spent her career addressing these obstacles one-on-one with recently arrived refugees from Iraq, Somalia, Syria, and Afghanistan (among others) to San Diego at the International Rescue Committee. She left the IRC to pursue a Master of Public Policy at the Goldman School of Public Policy (GSPP). During her time at GSPP, she worked as a policy consultant to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the County of San Diego, the Western Regional Advocacy Project, and the Dellums Institute for Social Justice. Currently, Rawan is the Economic Equity Program Manager at the Greenlining Institute where she oversees bank accountability efforts using the Community Reinvestment Act. Rawan holds a degree in Political Science from San Diego State University.
|Tate Hill, Senior Manager of Administration, Access Plus Capital
Tate Hill, II is the Senior Manager of Administration of Access Plus Capital (formerly Fresno CDFI), a certified community development financial institution that offers financing, training, and asset development services for low- and moderate-income entrepreneurs through central California. Access Plus serves 14-county region in central California and is a subsidiary of Fresno Economic Opportunities Commission (Fresno EOC), one of the largest community action agencies in the country. At Access Plus, Tate is responsible for fund development, investor relations, fund & grant compliance, technical assistance, and public relations.
As the former president & CEO of the Fresno Metro Black Chamber of Commerce, he has an extensive network of businesses and service providers throughout the Central Valley and established regional programs including the Central Valley Business Diversity Partnership, the Women’s Entrepreneurship Network and the Fresno Green Team. He serves the community as a board member of the Greenlining Institute and the Fresno County Office of Education Foundation and in various advisory capacities including the Mayor’s Advisory Council and the Southwest Specific Plan Committee. He holds an M.S. in Community Economic Development from Southern New Hampshire University and a bachelors of science in business administration- finance from California State University Fresno.