The CDFI Fund did well in the 2017 federal budget continuing resolution, and now it’s time to focus on 2018. This week, the Trump Administration will unveil its budget proposal, which includes massive cuts targeting programs benefitting low-income and low-wealth people and places.
Reports are coming in that the Trump budget proposes to defund the CDFI Fund. This is not a surprise, but it is not good news, either.
Prospects for the President’s budget overall are dim, as it is getting panned by Republicans and Democrats before it is even submitted. In addition, the President’s political capital is down because of the multiple investigations into his Administration and Campaign’s activities related to Russia.
That likely means that Congress will write its own budget and that it will probably restore most, if not all, funding for the CDFI Fund. That support for the Fund might come as a tradeoff for other programs that CDFI practitioners care about and that CDFIs rely on.
CDFIs enjoy strong, bipartisan support in Congress. That will help. As news of other, related cuts comes out, however, CDFIs need to join in advocacy with others who also face fiscal peril.