Arkansas and Community Development

In September 1994, President Clinton signed the Riegle Community Development and Regulatory Improvement Act. This act aimed to assist the financial services industry when handling community development activities. The President remarked on his experiences with economic inclusion while Governor of Arkansas:

“Long before I ran for President, the founders of Shore Bank in Chicago helped us to launch the Southern Development Bank Corporation in Arkansas. My wife and I and our administration, including Bob Nash, who now works with Secretary Espy at the Agriculture Department, worked to make an idea that had worked in an urban community in the north take roots in rural communities all over the southern part of our State.

In 1992 I visited an awful lot of places where I thought these same things would work. I'll never forget the first time we had people up to the Governor's conference room to talk about what it was like when they got their first loan, when they thought their lives had ended and that they were going to be consigned to public assistance or living off welfare, but instead were starting businesses and making money, some of them even able to hire other people. It made an impression on me that I will carry with me always.” – President Clinton

Click here to learn more about the Southern Development Bank Corporation in the Clinton Digital Library.