St. Pete leaders collaborate with Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta

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St. Petersburg, FL — Leaders from the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, including Atlanta Fed President and CEO Raphael Bostic, traveled to St. Petersburg on Wednesday to discuss strategies to improve affordable housing, minority and women business contracting, data-driven initiatives and job creation. 

City and community leaders explored themes related to community economic development (CED) systems; capital absorption and CED systemic opportunities and challenges; partners in achieving greater economic mobility and resilience; and strategies to reach our comprehensive goals. 

The visit included a series of Community Partners Round Tables and a bus tour of the city. 

“Collaboration and partnership are cornerstones of progress. These conversations help our city evaluate strategies employed elsewhere, how they are working or not working, and how they can be successfully implemented in St. Petersburg to benefit our residents, businesses, workforce and stakeholders,” said St. Petersburg Mayor Kenneth T. Welch. “Through these conversations, we were able to brainstorm with the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta on the current opportunities and challenges facing our community, creative community economic development strategies, and ways to promote economic mobility and resilience in St. Petersburg.” 

Takeaways from the meeting included:  

  • Community Economic Development & Partnership – to enable the city and local leaders to better address a range of low- and moderate-income needs and challenges through a better working relationship with the FRBA along with access to their research, tools, and expertise to help improve the economic vitality for all residents of our city.
  • Economic Mobility and Resilience – equipping our community with the “Infrastructure of Awareness” tools and information, such as Federal Reserve ‘Opportunity Occupations Monitor’ that will spur economic mobility and resilience to better assist the city and local leaders with understanding and addressing why some people and places in our city thrive economically and bounce back from economic shocks while others struggle.
  • Federal Reserve Expertise in Research & Policy – will better inform the city and local leaders as to how and why many deeply entrenched systemic barriers prevent people, especially historically underserved communities and people of color, from achieving their full economic potential to better serve our residents.  
The Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta agreed to return to St. Petersburg in the Fall to convene experts who can provide guidance and resources on economic development strategies. Mayor Welch and Deputy Mayor Stephanie Owens will work with Fed staff to further explore this important collaborative opportunity. 

“The goal of our trip was to better understand St. Petersburg’s unique economic opportunities and challenges, including the issues facing communities that are not fully participating in the economy, and to hear from people about how the stresses of high inflation are affecting their lives,” said Atlanta Fed President Raphael Bostic. “We learned about efforts being made to help the region move forward, and we look forward to working with the City of St. Petersburg to ensure that the economy is working for all.”  

Bostic is a participant on the Federal Open Market Committee, the monetary policymaking body of the Federal Reserve System. The Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta serves the Sixth Federal Reserve District, which covers Alabama, Florida, and Georgia, and parts of Louisiana, Mississippi, and Tennessee. The Bank has branches in Birmingham, Jacksonville, Miami, Nashville, and New Orleans.