WASHINGTON-The Senate passed its version of the Veterans Affairs, Housing and Urban Development, and Independent Agencies (VA-HUD) Appropriations bill, which contained $20 million more in funding for the Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI) Fund than the House. The Senate’s bill approved a borrowing authority for the Central Liquidity Facility (CLF) of $1.5 billion and $1 million to the Community Development Revolving Loan Fund (CDRLF) with $350,000 earmarked for technical assistance grants, which is identical to the House bill. However, the Senate approved $100 million in funding for Treasury’s CDFI, whereas the House only approved $80 million. President George W. Bush had originally proposed $68 million. CUNA and NAFCU have said they will continue to lobby for the CLF’s full statutory authority, which is 12 times capital plus surplus, into the future. The appropriations bill now moves to a House and Senate conference to work out the differences. The Senate named conferees when the bill passed, including Senators Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.), Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Tom Harkin (D-Iowa), Robert Byrd (D-W.V.), Herb Kohl (D-Wis.), Tim Johnson (D-S.D.), Ernest Hollings (D-S.C.), Daniel Inouye (D-Hawaii), Christopher Bond (R-Mo.), Conrad Burns (R-Mont.), Richard Shelby (R-Ala.), Larry Craig (R-Idaho), Pete Domenici (R-N.M.), Mike DeWine (R-Ohio), and Ted Stevens (R-Alaska).

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