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After RedliningThe Urban Reinvestment Movement in the Era of Financial Deregulation$
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Rebecca K. Marchiel

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780226723648

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: May 2021

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226723785.001.0001

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Communities Must Be Vigilant

Communities Must Be Vigilant

The Financial Turn in National Urban Policy

Chapter:
(p.122) Chapter Four Communities Must Be Vigilant
Source:
After Redlining
Author(s):

Rebecca K. Marchiel

Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226723785.003.0005

This chapter explores how the reinvestment movement influenced national urban policy during the Carter years, when NPA found a receptive audience in the president and key members of Congress. Using data from the HMDA, activists made a persuasive case that urban banks had indeed abandoned low- and moderate-income neighborhoods as racial minorities moved in. Based on this new evidence, and relying on relationships with key congressional allies, activists won the Community Reinvestment Act of 1977, which gave citizens standing to challenge bank mergers and acquisitions when the banks in question failed to meet the credit needs of the neighborhoods outside their offices. But during this moment, as the movement gained momentum and grew in membership, activists lobbied for something more ambitious than the CRA. They wanted a national urban policy that would address resource disparities among city neighborhoods—coordinated federal efforts to direct public spending and private capital to neighborhoods most in need. Their expansive platform included affordable energy, economic relief for senior citizens, and more. The CRA thus proved a narrow victory in the context of movement demands.

Keywords:   Community Reinvestment Act, Jimmy Carter, national neighborhood policy

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