CUNA wrote House Ways and Means Committee leadership with several recommendations for the Treasury’s Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI) Fund. The committee conducted a hearing Thursday on the administration’s FY24 budget proposal.
“Credit unions, banks, and loan funds that are certified as CDFIs have faced new and numerous hurdles in the past two years as they have attempted to navigate the grantmaking process with the CDFI Fund at the U.S. Department of the Treasury,” the letter reads. “With the Fund lacking expertise with the regulatory and prudential environment in which insured credit unions must operate, our CDFI credit unions have been frustrated with a certification and grant process that they have previously expertly navigated for many years prior to 2021.”
CDFI Fund Director Jodie Harris recently announced her departure, and CUNA recommends the next director of the CDFI Fund have experience with insured depository financial institutions and their regulatory environment.
“CUNA urges the CDFI Fund to establish an Ombuds Office to provide confidential, neutral, and independent sources of information and assistance regarding the CDFI certification and grant process,” the letter reads. “The Ombuds Office could help clarify and mediate confusion for CDFIs experiencing confusion or frustration during the application or recertification process and help improve the function and efficiency of the Fund.”