Authored by Amanda Kahan
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Step up for Lobby Day

May 17th, 2023 by Amanda Kahan
Angie Liou, Chair of the MACDC Board

On Thursday, May 25, MACDC will hold its first in-person Lobby Day in four years, and we could not be more excited! On Lobby Day, staff, board members, and community members supporting our 102 member organizations will meet at the State House, rally around shared goals, and then bring legislative priorities from their communities to their elected representatives This is a face-to-face aspect of our democratic process that we all missed during the difficult years of the pandemic. As Chair of the MACDC Board, I have missed this important part of our organization’s annual program.

Lobby Day 2023 takes place at a critical moment for the community development movement. Our political leadership acknowledges that the Commonwealth is facing a housing crisis that threatens the foundations of our dynamic economy. With the support of the Legislature, Governor Healey has created a new state department charged with meeting this challenge head on, and has just named Housing Secretary, Ed Augustus to lead that department. We look forward to working with the Secretary to protect existing affordable housing and to continue to expand the supply of housing accessible to families and individuals making less than the state’s median income.

Lobby Day offers us an opportunity to advance our priorities through direct contact with legislative decision makers. After a 9:30 gathering in the Hall of Flags and food to boost our energy, we will hear a short line-up of community development leaders and some of the legislators leading the charge on community development issues, such as Senator Sal DiDomenico and Rep. Jay Livingstone.

Our speakers will leave us ready to fan out across the State House to visit the offices of our legislators and inform them on issues like the Community Investment Tax Credit, a hugely successful bill that is up for expansion and renewal this year. Lobby Day attendees will also have a chance to bring up budget items that will be under discussion that very day in the Senate chamber, and other legislative measures that are important in their communities.

Please consider joining us as we renew this long tradition of direct advocacy on issues that matter to us all. There is still time to join Lobby Day! Register today at: . I look forward to seeing you May 25th at Lobby Day!


MACDC Response to SVB Collapse

March 17th, 2023 by Amanda Kahan

The collapse of Silicon Valley Bank is significantly impacting MACDC's members who are working to build and preserve affordable housing to Massachusetts. As a significant player in the financial industry, the sudden downfall of Silicon Valley Bank left many organizations fighting to secure their funds deposited at the Bank and clarify the status of the active projects in which SVP was an investor. Sensing member concern about the situation, MACDC held an emergency meeting on Monday, March 13th, to discuss how the downfall of Silicon Valley Bank impacts our field, and we should respond as an Association.

In addition to sharing vital information about appropriate responses by CDCs, participants in the emergency meeting decided that MACDC and its members should endeavor to bring public attention to the potential impact of the bank closure on affordable housing and other community development activities. During the next 72 hours, MACDC, in collaboration with several member CDCs, messaged intensively to local media contacts, resulting in over a dozen articles and reports highlighting the community development challenges associated with SVB's demise.

The loss of vital loans and financial resources that these nonprofit organizations depend on to support affordable housing projects, infrastructure improvements, and community revitalization efforts is an immediate cause of the closure of SVB. These projects directly contribute to local communities' economic growth and stability.

SVB has played a vital role in funding affordable housing projects in our region; according to the Boston Globe, SVB has loaned over $2.7 billion and made investments worth $1.3 billion in new construction or rehabilitation projects. The federal government assured depositors that their funds held at SVB would be accessible even after the bank's collapse; however, the repercussions of the fall of SVB for affordable housing development in Massachusetts continues to be a matter of concern.

Over the weekend, when the news about SVB broke, MACDC's Interim Executive Director, Kevin Murray, stayed engaged with members to discuss the outcomes and reassure them that MACDC is aware of the situation and will be working with them to find a solution to the loss of this development finance partner. In addition to the contact made over the weekend, one-on-one meetings were held with our members to provide support and help ensure members were aware of the situation and how it would impact our field.

MACDC will continue to monitor the situation, support our members as needed, and advocate for a public disposition of SVB that minimizes the impact on the families and communities served by our member organizations.

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