VIDEO: House Passes Amendment Introduced by Rep. Tulsi Gabbard to Increase Funding for the Native American CDFI Assistance Program

September 13, 2017
Press Release

Washington, DC -- The U.S. House of Representatives today passed Amendment No. 220 to the appropriations package which was introduced by Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard (HI-02) to provide an additional $1 million to the Native American Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI). The Amendment will provide additional awards to organizations that make credit, capital, and other essential financial services available to underserved and impoverished Native communities.

Video of Rep. Tulsi Gabbard’s speech on the House floor is available here

Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard said:

“I rise today in support of an Amendment to provide additional funding for the Native American CDFI Assistance Program. The CDFI Fund’s Native Initiative Program seeks to level the economic playing field by providing awards to organizations that make credit, capital, and other essential financial services available to underserved and impoverished native communities.

“In the past, this program has funded organizations like Lei Ho’olaha which provides financial training and loans to charter schools and community centers in Hawai‘i to help make them creditworthy. The program has also funded the Council for Native Hawaiian Advancement to improve access to capital for people living in Native Hawaiian communities who want to purchase affordable homes, start new businesses, and help drive commerce.

“We must build upon this progress in Native communities and increase funding for the CDFI Fund’s Native Initiative to build businesses, create jobs, empower native communities, and spur economic growth. Please support this amendment.”

BackgroundNative Americans, Native Alaskans, and Native Hawaiians face unique and heightened challenges to accessing basic financial services in this country - hampering economic growth nationwide. The program has awarded more than $120 million and provided over 1,600 hours of training to Native CDFIs.

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