ANHD Statement on the Repeal of the Trump Administration’s Harmful Community Reinvestment Act Rule

July 23, 2021

ANHD Applauds the Biden Administration for Taking This Step towards Preserving and Strengthening This Key Anti-Redlining Law

Acting U.S. Comptroller Michael Hsu announced this week that the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) plans to fully rescind the final CRA rule passed unilaterally by the Trump Administration. Under the Biden Administration, the OCC will now join with the other two federal regulators at the FDIC and Federal Reserve Board in an interagency process to modernize the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA). 

ANHD applauds the Biden Administration and the OCC for taking this final step to finally put that harmful CRA rule behind us and move forward with what we hope will be a more impactful, equitable approach to the CRA. 

The CRA requires banks to lend and provide banking equitably and support community development in the communities where they do business. It has the potential to help address the longstanding racial and income injustices and the disparities the COVID-19 pandemic exposed and exacerbated. If fully implemented, the Trump Administration’s finalized rule would have hindered COVID recovery for the Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC); low- and moderate-income; and immigrant communities who were disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and its corresponding economic crisis.

These moves from the new OCC to rescind the harmful CRA rule show what happens when BIPOC, immigrant, and LMI communities lead, organize and fight back against policies that cause harm. From the moment it was announced in 2018, ANHD and our Equitable Reinvestment Committee (ERC) used every opportunity to oppose the proposal and fight for a CRA that improves conditions for our communities. We hosted former Comptroller Otting on a tour of Jamaica, Queens and expressed our opposition before he even introduced the proposal. After it was proposed, we educated our communities, took to the streets with our New York legislators in protest, spoke directly to regulators in DC, and testified at congressional hearings. We are also a member and long-time partner of the National Community Reinvestment Coalition, which - along with the California Reinvestment Coalition and Democracy Forward - sued the Trump Administration over this rule. Thanks to this movement standing up for civil rights laws like this one, one of Acting Comptroller Hsu’s first actions in his new role was to halt the implementation of the CRA rule, which he is now moving to rescind completely.

It is critical now for regulators to engage with the BIPOC communities who were and continue to be impacted by the racist and disparate policies and practices that led to the need for the CRA in the first place. The CRA never should have been color-blind, and it must give banks an affirmative obligation to engage, listen to, and serve people and communities of color with responsive, impactful activities and consequences for harm to the same communities. Community input and needs must be at the heart of the CRA.

We at ANHD and our Equitable Reinvestment Committee look forward to working with all state and federal bank regulators, legislators, and allies on a CRA reform that matches our priorities for a strong, equitable CRA: (1) evaluate banks for both quantity and quality, and penalize for harm and displacement; (2) keep community engagement central to the process; and (3) maintain the place-based local obligation. The CRA must be strengthened to increase access to banks and banking - our communities deserve no less.

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