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CDFI Fund recipients Fund will help biz loans
NEW YORK (8/23/10)--Thursday's announcement that 21 credit unions were among the 180 community development financial institutions (CDFIs) to receive CDFI Fund awards means that credit unions can step into more business lending since banks have stopped lending, said one of the award recipients.
Click to view larger image The National Federation of Community Development Credit Unions was among the recipients of the U.S. Treasury's Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI) Fund awards in New York Thursday. From left are: U.S. Rep. Jose Serrano, U.S. Rep. Nydia Velazquez, federation President/CEO Cliff Rosenthal, and Treasury's CDFI Fund Director Donna Gambrell.
The U.S. Treasury Department's CDFI Fund announced $104.9 million in awards to 180 CDFIs at a restaurant financed by New York City's Lower East Side People's FCU, which received a $750,000 award. "The most important thing about this grant is that it will enable us to make more funds available to businesses all over the five boroughs of New York," said Linda Levy, CEO of Lower East Side Peoples FCU. "We have almost tripled our small business lending this year, and a good part of that is due to the fact that the banks have stopped lending. I think we all know this and we're all very sorry about this, and we have been trying very hard to step into the fray, but it's been hard because we don't have a lot of capital, so this is really going to help us help the community," Levy added. Also receiving a $750,000 award this round was Bethex FCU, Bronx, N.Y. Joy Cousminer, president/CEO of Bethex, explained that while some of the award would be used to expand lending to the 60-plus small businesses the credit union serves, the bulk will provide a new teller area with three windows, instead of two, and new bulletproof glass to allow members to speak without having to bend down and shout through the cash opening.
Click to view larger image U.S. Rep. Jose Serrano presents Bethex FCU President/CEO Joy Cousminer with a $750,000 award from the U.S. Treasury Department's CDFI Fund. (Photos provided by the National Federation of Community Development Credit Unions)
National Federation of Community Development Credit Unions also was among the recipients, receiving $750,000. "The CDFI Fund is an absolutely unique source of innovative funding, which has enabled us as a national entity to support hundreds of low-income credit unions across the U.S.," said federation President/CEO Cliff Rosenthal. "We've been doing this to help them build their capital during these very difficult times and to allow them to recycle their capital for additional lending," he added. He noted that this round of funding was a more equitable distribution, with some of the largest number of awards to community development credit unions in recent years, including various credit unions new to the fund. Of the 21 credit unions receiving awards in this round, 18 are members of the federation.
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