After a request by financial institutions and trade associations, the Federal Reserve Board has agreed to postpone the effective date of the recent amendments to Regulation C from Jan. 1, 2003, to Jan. 1, 2004. Regulation C implements the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA).
The Board is, however, adopting an interim amendment to Regulation C, effective Jan. 1, 2003, mandating the use of 2000 census data in HMDA reporting.
On Feb. 15, the Board published amendments to Regulation C in the Federal Register effective for data collected beginning Jan. 1, 2003. Representatives of the financial institutions requested the postponement on the grounds that a 2003 deadline would not give institutions adequate time to ensure full compliance with the new rules. Consumer and community organizations generally opposed postponement of the effective date.
Direct and guaranteed loans are available for small rural communities wishing to build essential public facilities, such as fire stations, health-care clinics and day-care centers. These funds, from the Rural Housing Service of USDA Rural Development, are limited to communities of fewer than 20,000 people. Public bodies, nonprofit entities or Indian tribes may apply for the loans.
Grants are also available for up to 75 percent of project costs. A scale is used to determine grant funding limitations on the basis of population and income. Assistance also may be limited to the minimum amount needed for the economic feasibility of the project and may be limited by the availability of funds.
Applications are filed with USDA Rural Development field offices, which are listed in local telephone directories under the heading "U.S. Government, Department of Agriculture."
The deadline to apply for the first round of New Markets Tax Credit (NMTCs) allocations is Aug. 29.
Under the program, taxpayers can receive federal income tax credits for making qualified equity investments in community development entities, which in turn must use the funds for qualified investments in low-income communities. The credit to the taxpayer, claimed over a seven-year period, totals 39 percent of the investment.
The Treasury Department's Community Development Financial Institutions Fund will allocate the NMTCs annually under a competitive application process.
Additional information is available on the CDFI Fund's web site, www.cdfifund.gov.