For over 40 years, the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) has been a critically important tool to promote the revitalization of low- and moderate-income neighborhoods and improve economic opportunities for individuals in those communities. Current law requires the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), the Federal Reserve System and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) to assess bank performance regarding lending, investment and services in the communities in which they have a physical footprint.
This webinar offers a conversation with two of the three bank regulators to help us learn more about how financial institutions are assessed regarding CRA performance, what activities are eligible for CRA consideration and discuss current efforts to make CRA work better for targeted neighborhoods and populations, as well as regulated financial institutions.
Recent comments to an OCC-published Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking had a majority of responders indicate that the current CRA lacks objectivity, transparency and fairness. An overwhelming majority of commenters also said that CRA requirements are hard to understand. When CRA was first enacted, there was no civil rights law, known as the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), to promote equal opportunity and protection against discrimination for people with disabilities. In 2019, working-age adults with disabilities are participating in the workforce and contributing to the economy in record numbers. As the world of banking and financial services has changed, there is a large conversation now occurring about how to modernize CRA to reflect a changing environment that recognizes banks offer services outside their physical presence in branches and deposit-taking ATMs. Significant customer populations for an individual bank are now driven through services online, as well as in branches. Regardless of approach, this webinar will discuss how bank regulators can direct attention to the investment, lending and service needs of low- and moderate-income people with disabilities.
- Jessica Farr, Manager of Examinations, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta
- Paul Ginger, Community Affairs Officer, Office of the Comptroller of the Currency
- Michael Morris, Executive Director, NDI
- Mark Richert, Director of the Center for Disability-Inclusive Community Development