New Mexico Indian Affairs Department
Secretary Trujillo and General Counsel, Carrie Frias of the New Mexico Indian Affairs Department (IAD) joined the United States Treasury Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) and the Native American Finance Officers Association (NAFOA) on Wednesday, August 28, 2019 for a community bus tour and discussion with tribal economic development stakeholders from government, private, and non-profit sectors.
The purpose of the tour and discussion was to include tribal governments and the institutions that serve Indian Country in conversations regarding the importance of a modernized Community Reinvestment Act (CRA). The tour began in Santa Ana Pueblo, with stops in San Felipe and Santo Domingo Pueblos and ended with a tour of the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center. The visit concluded with a discussion with Comptroller Joseph Otting, tribal representatives, native serving organizations, and banks on the need for greater access to capital and financial services in tribal communities.
Modernization of the Community Reinvestment Act is critical to supporting tribal communities’ access to capital for projects such as housing and infrastructure and the growth of small businesses and native entrepreneurs.
“It was my honor to visit the Pueblos of New Mexico and hear firsthand about the success and challenges of serving the needs of their communities and the importance of banking and finance in Indian Country” said Comptroller of the Currency Joseph Otting. “The visit reinforced to me why the Community Reinvestment Act needs to be modernized to offer clarity and certainty for banks as they seek to fulfill the needs of their communities, including Indian Country and other rural communities.”
“We have the opportunity to expand innovative new products that are designed to meet the needs of customer and community with Community Reinvestment Act funds for those who cannot access formal financing,” said Secretary Trujillo. “With the support of Comptroller Otting and organizations like Native American Finance Officers Association we can ensure that tribal governments and native people across the country can access the capital they need for housing, education and business.”