National Cooperative Development Act Will Create Jobs and Strengthen Communities in Need

Small, independent businesses anchor local communities, generate jobs, support economic development and keep wealth local. As community supported, member-owned businesses, cooperatives offer communities a sustainable solution to the...

Small, independent businesses anchor local communities, generate jobs, support economic development and keep wealth local. As community supported, member-owned businesses, cooperatives offer communities a sustainable solution to the economic crisis. Today, the US Congress took a step toward economically empowering Americans and strengthening communities with the introduction of H.R. 3677, the National Cooperative Development Act. Congressman Chaka Fattah (D-Penn.) and three co-sponsors introduced the legislation.

“I thank Representative Fattah and the other co-sponsors of the National Cooperative Development Act for their leadership,” said National Cooperative Business Association President and Chief Executive Officer Paul Hazen. “They recognize that America needs more co-ops to bring jobs, strengthen communities and keep wealth local. This breakthrough legislation supports communities in both urban and rural areas by providing resources and tools for cooperative development. As the United States continues to struggle with unemployment, these leaders recognize that cooperative enterprise holds a key to building our economy,” he continued.

The National Cooperative Development Act would establish a National Cooperative Development Center to provide capital, training and other resources to foster cooperative development. Addressing economic development though cooperative development will advance the economic stability of local areas; increase the circulation of capital locally; and develop, attract and anchor new productive capital in urban and rural underserved communities.

“It’s high time for cooperatives—a great idea that has come up from our urban neighborhoods and rural communities—to move onto our national radar,” said Congressman Fattah. “This legislation brings federal resources and policy priority to that effort. Cooperatives benefit the communities they serve while building opportunities for shared wealth. Cooperatives are truly vehicles for moving people into the middle class and creating economic growth,” he continued.

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