On Tuesday, January 10, 2012, I sponsored Bill #2012-0014, which requires financial institutions seeking to become City depositories to make a commitment to community reinvestment in low to moderate income neighborhoods. The bill also instructs the City Controller to evaluate banks with which the City does business as to their success or failure in meeting this commitment.
This legislation was prematurely passed by Council last year but vetoed by the Mayor last year because of the lack of community input from low to moderate income neighborhoods. Also because as written the bill would have likely had the adverse effect on the communities it purports to serve. Changes in the Responsible Banking Bill were the result of an inclusive community process where I met with and discussed amendments with community leaders and organizations from low-moderate income communities.
City Council approved the Responsible Banking Bill today, April 17, 2012, which includes amendments introduced by me last week that incentivize financial institutions to make loans in low-moderate income neighborhoods in the City of Pittsburgh. This legislation now has stronger language that is aimed at ensuring banks are committed to investing in low to moderate income communities. A few of the important changes that my office has made to this legislation include the following:
It is my hope that this legislation will better assist low to moderate income communities economically grow and thrive within the City of Pittsburgh. I am determined to stimulate investment in communities of need. The amended Responsible Banking Bill is not a solution in itself, but one of many tools to be used towards this goal. Going forward, I will continue to look into creative and innovative ways to leverage resources and legislative tools to support policy initiatives aimed at revitalizing our low-moderate income communities.
I am very thankful the community partners that assisted my office in crafting this important legislation for the City of Pittsburgh. Community stakeholders that assisted in the process include Pittsburgh Community Reinvestment Group, Hill Community Development Corporation, Operation Better Block, Manchester Citizens Corporation, Northshore Community Alliance, and the Hill House Economic Development Corporation.
R. Daniel Lavelle
Office of Councilman R. Daniel Lavelle
414 Grant Street, 5th Floor | City County Building
Pittsburgh, PA 15219
telephone: 412-255-2134 | facsimile 412-255-0737