Greenlining Letter to the Federal Reserve and FDIC Continuing to Oppose Merger between PacWest and CapitalSource

The Greenlining Institute and members of its coalition have been following the proposed merger since it was announced. CapitalSource Bank’s community development performance far surpassed that of PacWest. In September, Greenlining sent a letter calling on regulators to deny the merger due to concerns that the merger would decrease resources to affected communities. Greenlining and other community groups entered into negotiations with PacWest to identify goals and priorities of a larger PacWest. Unfortunately, the final plan exhibits a lack of commitment to inclusion and community development. Greenlining and other community groups are open to changing opposition with a commitment to increased investments and a demonstrated plan for diversity and inclusion.

To read the letter, Click Here.

Greenlining Opposes Proposal for Regionalization of the Western Power Grid

Greenlining submits an Opposition Letter to AB 726 and AB 813 that collectively regionalize the administration of the western power grid. Greenlining is not opposed to the concept of regionalization, but finds significant problems with the language and lack of public process of AB 726 and AB 813. Greenlining is concerned about the potential impacts of the bills on low-income and communities of color who overwhelmingly reside closest to the dirtiest polluters on our power grid. Read the letter here.

Greenlining Public Comment to the FDIC on PacWest Applicaton to Merge

Greenlining believes that until PacWest submits a formal plan for enhancing its community development and small business lending, the application to merge should be denied. PacWest’s CRA record pales in comparison to CapitalSource Bank’s history of outstanding service to the community. As Comptroller of the Currency Thomas Curry recently stated, “satisfactory won’t cut it at big banks.”

For too long, banks have been checking their regulatory boxes by meeting minimum or below minimum standards to meet their CRA requirement. The FDIC and Federal Reserve must set a precedent that mediocre lending, service, and investments to the community will impede all mergers and acquisitions.

Finally, regulators must not solely rely on written comments for mergers and acquisitions. It is imperative that the community have a voice in how these banks will impact their community. We are therefore asking that regulators include opportunities for public hearings by the community as part of the merger process.

To Read More, Click here.

Greenlining Sponsor and Support Letter: AB 961 Community Energy Benefits

Greenlining is sponsoring AB 961, authored by Assembly member Eloise Gomez Reyes of the 47th District. AB 961 would adopt a recommendation in the California Energy Commission’s unanimously adopted SB 350 Low-Income Barriers Study to establish common definitions of “non-energy benefits” or community benefits of clean energy programs, develop standards to measure them, and prioritize projects that promote them in Environmental Justice Communities. This means that regulators would consider additional benefits of clean energy programs, including job creation and improved community health, in evaluating their effectiveness.

Greenlining Strongly Opposes Proposed Rulemaking on Public Charge

The Greenlining Institute issued comments strongly opposing the Department of Homeland Security’s Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on Public Charge. The proposed rule would expand the list of factors considered in whether immigrants applying for green cards would be “public charges,” or dependent on government assistance. This rule threatens the food, health and housing security of immigrant families and would undermine our nation’s public health.

 

Greenlining Support for San Joaquin Valley Energy Access Pilot Projects

Greenlining urged the California Public Utilities Commission to approve a series of pilot projects to bring long-overdue relief to low-income rural communities lacking natural gas service, providing residents with cleaner and healthier alternatives for heating and cooking, as well as home weatherization and energy efficiency upgrades.

Greenlining Supports Section 1071 of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform Act

On September 14th, The Greenlining Institute submitted a letter to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, along with 33 nonprofits, Chambers of Commerce, and business associations, strongly urging the CFPB to implement Section 1071 of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform Act. The rule amends the Equal Credit Opportunity Act to require financial institutions to compile, maintain, and report critical information about small business lending activity including an applicant’s race, ethnicity, and gender. Section 1071 will be critical in ensuring fair access to capital for small, women- and minority-owned businesses. Read the letter here.

Greenlining to Congress: Relief Must Promote Racial Equity in Our Healthcare System

The Greenlining Institute calls upon Congress to pass a 4th stimulus package with health and racial equity considerations. Relief should be prioritized to safety net hospitals and clinics that serve a high number of low-income and uninsured patients. Health systems that receive funding should be required to 1) provide free COVID-19 testing to low-income and uninsured patients, 2) collect and report racial and ethinic demographic data to State public health departments for transparency and accountability, and 3) prioritize screening and resources for domestic violence.