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Press Releases - County Council

Council Unanimously Passes Resolution Supporting Community Reinvestment Act

For Immediate Release: Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Resolution calls on federal administration to make updates to strengthen
landmark civil rights law prohibiting redlining and not to enact provisions
that would weaken the law

ROCKVILLE, Md., March 24, 2020--Today the Council introduced and unanimously enacted a resolution to support the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA). The CRA is a landmark civil rights law enacted on Oct. 12, 1977 to end the practice of “redlining,” in which financial institutions would draw a red line on a map around the neighborhoods they did not want to offer financial services. Before the enactment of the CRA, redlining made it nearly impossible for low and moderate income Americans, racial and ethnic minorities, and their neighborhoods to access credit services, such as mortgages and business loans, regardless of their qualifications or creditworthiness.

Councilmember Will Jawando is the lead sponsor. Council President Sidney Katz, Council Vice President Tom Hucker and Councilmembers Gabe Albornoz, Andrew Friedson, Evan Glass and Nancy Navarro are cosponsors.

Changes in the banking industry and the economy require updates to the CRA. However, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation have proposed revisions to the CRA that would substantially weaken the law. This resolution calls on the federal administration to modernize the CRA without the provisions that weaken the intent of the law.

“The Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) has become an invaluable tool to ensure that communities which have historically been marginalized or excluded from mainstream financial resources get access to those resources,” said Councilmember Jawando. “While the CRA does need to be updated to keep up with changes in the banking industry and economy, we must make sure the recommendations do not subvert local lending and investment by the nation’s banks.”

The Council staff report for this resolution can be viewed here.

Councilmember Jawando’s remarks can be viewed here

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Release ID: 20-112
Media Contact: Cecily Thorne 240-777-7811