Last year Main Street Alliance of Oregon met with advocates in Southern Oregon, including members of Oregon and Action in Jackson County as part of a statewide Oregon Banks Local campaign to encourage city and county governments to divest from Wall Street and deposit in “Main Street” banks. Oregon Action advocates have followed up with the City of Ashland, which has developed and adopted a Responsible Banking Policy to encourage local investment and development, and help to bolster local small businesses and economies. Earlier this week, the City of Ashland passed such a resolution. Most notable, the new resolution specifically calls for identifying strategies and best practices that would enhance the chance for local participation in banking decision-making. It also works to identify and capitalize on new opportunities to increase commitments to local lending and other community investments like small business loan programs. All in all, great news for Ashland, and small businesses all over Oregon – this is definitely a step in the right direction.