Value Walk, April 8, 2020: Activists sue Trump Administration for weakening of the CRA’s anti-redlining protections
Today, the National Community Reinvestment Coalition (NCRC), represented by Democracy Forward, sued the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) for failing to locate and produce records and analysis that the Trump administration relied on for its proposed revisions to the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) regulations. As a result, OCC and FDIC continue to shield from public scrutiny the basis for the administration’s proposal to weaken the anti-redlining protections of the CRA.
OCC and FDIC’s January 2020 publication of the potential CRA changes failed to include the data and analysis that the agencies cited as the basis for the proposed rule. NCRC submitted a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request seeking that data and analysis, including records related to the formula the agencies proposed, which would allow banks to fail their CRA exams in nearly half of the geographical areas in which they are examined but still receive full credit under the law; information about benchmarks used for the CRA performance measures; and records containing analysis of or information about the proposal to define “affordable housing” to include housing for middle-income households.