Bank sign on glass wall of business center

By NCRC / May 9, 2022 / Press Releases / 

Five-year plan focuses on supporting equitable access to capital for low- and moderate-income communities and communities of color.

U.S. Bancorp today announced a more than $100 billion, five-year community benefits plan, developed in partnership with the National Community Reinvestment Coalition (NCRC) and the California Reinvestment Coalition (CRC), as part of the planned acquisition of MUFG Union Bank. The plan continues and expands the important work underway by both financial institutions to build and support equitable access to capital for the communities they serve. 

The plan builds on U.S. Bank’s previously announced U.S. Bank Access Commitment efforts and integrates existing community impact efforts from MUFG Union Bank. A majority of the commitments, 60% of the total, will support efforts in California, the state most impacted by the acquisition. 

“We appreciate the commitment from U.S. Bank and the personal leadership of Andy Cecere to collaborate with us, CRC and our members to develop the largest ever community benefits plan,” said Jesse Van Tol, President and CEO of NCRC. “This plan is a milestone not only because of its overall size but also because of the scale of increases committed for mortgage and small business lending, affordable housing, environmental and social impact lending, and for the plan’s clear focus on racial equity and access to credit directed specifically to communities of color.”

“Banks are the economic engines of our communities. As such, we can make meaningful and significant impacts in supporting the ability of low- and moderate-income (LMI) communities and communities of color to access capital and build wealth,” said Andy Cecere, Chairman, President and CEO, of U.S. Bank. “Our CBP is outcome-focused and blends the best programs and thinking of U.S. Bank and MUFG Union Bank. We want our actions today to create a ripple effect that will life future generations.”  

“We know that when we organize, we win. This agreement represents months of hard work, and is a win for LMI neighborhoods in California and Black, Indigenous, and People of Color communities,” said Paulina Gonzalez-Brito, Executive Director of the California Reinvestment Coalition. “While there is still much work ahead, and a continued need to hold banks accountable, we celebrate these communities today as well as our members who were critical in discussions with the bank.”

The CBP was informed by multiple listening sessions with more than 200 community groups participating as well as a public hearing organized by regulators. Listening sessions were organized in partnership with the NCRC and CRC. The plan focuses on foundational components of community and economic development where the company can have the most impact: 

  • Access to Homeownership
  • Small Business Access to Capital & Technical Assistance
  • Community Development Lending & Investment
  • Philanthropy & Community Service
  • Branch Services in California
  • Environmental Stewardship & Commitment
  • Advancing a Diverse & Equitable Workforce
  • Diverse Segment Outreach
  • Supplier Diversity
  • Plan Implementation & Accountability 

“We are grateful for the time 208 organizations took to participate in the listening sessions. Their insights and perspective were critical to helping us understand where we can improve financial outcomes for underserved communities through our products, investments and service to the community,” said Cecere. “We look forward to working with community leaders to implement equitable and effective solutions for the communities that need it most.”

Since 2016, NCRC has facilitated similar community benefits agreements with 19 bank groups worth more than $541 billion for mortgage, small business and community development lending, investments and philanthropy in LMI and under-resourced communities. The agreement with U.S. Bank is the largest ever.

Community benefits agreements are a cornerstone of NCRC’s work to increase the flow of private capital into underserved and under-resourced communities and communities of color, and to end the racial wealth divide. The agreements depend on dialogue between banks, community organizations and local reinvestment coalitions to identify local priorities and strategies to address them, which continues after an agreement is established through community councils set up to advise on implementation and to monitor bank performance.

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