Bipartisan Senate Community Development Finance Caucus Will Support CDFIs & MDIs

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Miss.) today announced she is a founding member of the Senate Community Development Finance Caucus (CDFC), a bipartisan effort to increase opportunities in rural and low-income communities through leveraged lending.

Hyde-Smith is among the initial 14 members of a caucus dedicated to supporting the mission of Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) and Minority Depository Institutions (MDIs).  CDFIs can be banks, credit unions, loan funds, or venture capital funds, all of which play a critical role in providing responsible and affordable credit to underserved communities.  

“Mississippi communities use the CDFI resources to maintain and create job opportunities, and this caucus gives us a new platform from which to increase federal support for these local activities.  This is important not only as we tackle high inflation but also look to promote sustained economic growth in rural and underserved communities,” Hyde-Smith said.

U.S. Senators Mark Warner (D-Va.) and Mike Crapo (R-Idaho) unveiled the Senate CDFC Monday.  Additional members include Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Mike Braun (R-Ind.), Jon Ossoff (D-Ga.), Steve Daines (R-Mont.), Jack Reed (D-R.I.), Tina Smith (D-Minn.), Cynthia Lummis (R-Wyo.), Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), Jerry Moran (R-Kan.), Rev. Raphael Warnock (D-Ga.), and Mike Rounds (R-S.D.).

Numerous organizations and financial institutions support the Senate CDFC, including the Jackson-based Hope Credit Union, National Bankers Association, Community Development Bankers Association, Opportunity Finance Network, African American Credit Union Coalition, CDFI Coalition, and others.  Read their commentary here.

During the pandemic, CDFIs demonstrated their ability to deliver billions of dollars to underserved businesses through the Paycheck Protection Program.  A December 2020 COVID relief package also included the Jobs and Neighborhood Investment Act (S.4255), which Hyde-Smith cosponsored, to provide grants and tier-one capital investments available to CDFIs and MDIs to leverage support local communities.

As ranking member of the Senate Financial Services and General Government Appropriations Subcommittee, Hyde-Smith has continued her advocacy for CDFIs, most recently questioning the FY2023 budget request for the CDFI Bank Enterprise Program.