April 13, 2023
Superintendent Adrienne A. Harris Approves New Banking Development District Branch in the Bronx
Banking Development District in Melrose, Mott Haven, and Port Morris Neighborhoods in the Bronx Will Now Include an Existing Branch of Popular Bank, to Increase Access to Financial Services for Businesses and Consumers in a Historically Underserved Community
Superintendent of Financial Services Adrienne A. Harris today announced the approval of a Popular Bank branch to be included as a Banking Development District (“BDD”) participating branch in the existing Bronx Community District 1 (“CD 1”) BDD, continuing New York State’s efforts to expand and retain access to affordable financial services. The branch, covering the neighborhoods of Melrose, Mott Haven and Port Morris, has committed to providing affordable and accessible banking and credit products and supporting community development initiatives that will bolster small business development and financial empowerment in the community.
"Through collaborative efforts between community banks and government institutions, we can create a more inclusive financial ecosystem that benefits all New Yorkers,” said Superintendent Harris. “The reactivation of this BDD branch exemplifies our shared commitment to providing affordable and accessible financial services to underserved communities, empowering individuals and businesses to build a more secure financial future."
New York State’s BDD Program, administered by the Department of Financial Services (“DFS”), supports the establishment of bank and credit union branches in areas across New York State where there is a demonstrated need for banking services. The program is a public-private collaboration among DFS, local communities, and financial institutions. Strong community support from local organizations, residents, small businesses, and elected officials is a critical piece of establishing a BDD.
The reactivation of the Bronx CD 1 BDD, and the establishment of Popular’s Bronx Branch located at 374 East 149th Street as a BDD participating branch, will allow the Bank to be an on the ground partner with residents and small businesses in providing greater access to affordable banking products and services in the area. This is the fourth bank branch that DFS has approved to participate in the BDD program since Superintendent Harris joined DFS in September 2021.
To encourage participation in the BDD program, $10 million in subsidized public deposits and other benefits are made available to banks and credit unions that open or maintain a branch in an underserved community and offer access to affordable products and services. The Popular Bank branch has committed to engaging with NYCHA to participate in their Remote Rent Payment program in order to provide small business loans, consumer loans, home mortgages and Credit Builder loans.
“This is a great opportunity that has been approved by the Department of Financial Services, which would not only expand economic opportunity for our small businesses, but also encourage and educate the hard-working members of our communities that they are deserving of expanded financial access and inclusion,” Bronx Borough President Vanessa L. Gibson said. “I wish to congratulate Popular Bank in being a part of the solution and partnering with our neighborhoods on this important mission of improving affordable banking services and financial security.”
“Improving access to financial services for communities and local businesses strengthens the economy of our neighborhoods and our city,” said Bertha Rozier, Head of US Transformation and Retail Banking for Popular Bank. “As a bank that has served the South Bronx for more than 60 years, we are proud that our 149th Street location is now a Banking Development District Branch, reinforcing our commitment to be part of the communities we serve.”
“Communities like my district in the South Bronx need financial services that are accessible and equitable,” Assembly Member Amanda Septimo stated. “I am excited that with Superintendent Harris’ leadership, there will be more financial opportunities for the empowerment and financial elevation of our communities. Everyone deserves a chance to be financially educated, stable, and supported by banking services that care for the wellbeing of all communities, no matter the zip code. For this effort, I also commend Popular Bank for being a partner in enriching and elevating the lives of South Bronx residents by extending opportunities for financial freedom.”
- Learn more about the Banking Development District program.