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ICYMI: Ranking Member Maxine Waters Applauds Treasury Secretary Yellen for Working with Democrats to Support Community Financial Institutions, Small Businesses, and Close the Racial Wealth Gap


Yesterday, Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-CA), the top Democrat on the House Financial Services Committee, spoke with U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen during a full Committee hearing. During the hearing, Congresswoman Waters highlighted the Biden-Harris Administration’s successful economic record and also discussed the following issues with the Secretary:

  • Supporting Low-Income Communities of Color: The Treasury Department, under the leadership of Secretary Yellen, successfully deployed $12 billion secured by Congresswoman Waters and Committee Democrats for Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) and Minority Depository Institutions (MDIs), which both serve as a crucial lifeline for communities of color who have long been ignored by our nation’s biggest banks. This critical funding has given traditionally underserved communities the opportunity to secure urgently needed financial products and services.

  • Working to Support Programs for Small Businesses: As a result of the work carried out by Congresswoman Waters, Committee Democrats, and the Biden-Harris Administration, the Treasury Department has been deploying $10 billion in Federal funds to support up to $100 billion in new small business loans and investments through the State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI). This program is helping to ensure that small businesses, including start-ups and minority-owned businesses, have the loans and investments they need.

  • Fighting for Minority-Owned Small Businesses: As part of the SSBCI program, the Treasury Department distributed an unprecedented $125 million for technical assistance to the Minority Business Development Agency – the only federal agency solely dedicated to the growth and global competitiveness of minority businesses. This crucial funding has helped to ensure small businesses have the legal, accounting, and business planning advice they need to grow and prosper.

  • Continue Supporting All Communities: Congresswoman Waters urged Republicans to work both with Secretary Yellen and Democrats to ensure that small businesses in both urban and rural communities and towns can access programs like SSBCI or be supported by CDFIs and MDIS. Waters asked that Secretary Yellen work with Republican members along with urban and rural communities to help raise awareness of these programs, which can help level the playing field and ensure entrepreneurs have access to the capital they need.

During the hearing, Congresswoman Waters highlighted how the efforts taken by Secretary Yellen and the Biden-Harris Administration will work to close our nation’s widening racial-wealth gap. While Committee Democrats continue to deliver results, Republicans, on the other hand, are pushing forward a radical MAGA-led extremist agenda known as Project 2025, which plans to take away the rights and freedoms of our communities, and simultaneously destroy our nation’s economy.

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