MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis plans to start a national center to spur development on Indian reservations, which have been plagued by poverty passed down through generations, according to the Fed bank’s outgoing president.

Minneapolis Fed President Narayana Kocherlakota announced the plan for the Center for Indian Country Development on Friday during a speech in Washington.

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“It’s not just that incomes have been very low on reservations for decades,” Kocherlakota said in prepared remarks. “We now have large-scale and very current evidence of poverty persisting across generations within individual families. . This persistence represents a social and economic failure to develop the full productive and human potential of many of our children.”

The Star Tribune reported the center will be co-directed by Sue Woodrow, a Fed official in Helena, Montana. There will be a search for another co-director. Kocherlakota, who is stepping down at the end of the year, said the plan is to have the center up and running by midsummer.

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“I expect to look back on the establishment of the Center for Indian Country Development as an important part of my legacy, and am happy to say that it has the strong support of our management team and board of directors,” he said.

The Minneapolis Fed has one branch in Montana and serves Minnesota, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, 26 counties in northwestern Wisconsin and the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. The area includes several large reservations.

Kocherlakota said the stage for poverty was set in the 19th century, as American Indians were forced to move to remote areas, their cultures were suppressed and their land was taken away.

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