March 14, 2014

Johnson, Crapo release GSE bill text

March 17, 2014 – Senate Banking Chairman Tim Johnson, D-S.D., and Ranking Member Mike Crapo, R-Idaho, just yesterday released the details of the housing reform draft they have agreed on, but one panel member is already urging plenty of time for review and markup.

The senators, in an announcement released on the eve of a week-long recess, said their legislation would:

  • protect taxpayers from bearing the cost of a housing downturn;
  • promote stable, liquid, and efficient mortgage markets for single-family and multifamily housing;
  • ensure that affordable, 30-year, fixed-rate, prepayable mortgages continue to be available, and that affordability remains an important consideration;
  • provide equal access for lenders of all sizes to the secondary market;
  • facilitate broad availability of mortgage credit for eligible borrowers in all areas and for single family and multifamily housing types.

Speaking last week, Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., a committee member, said when the bill language is released, the committee should be in no hurry to rush it to markup and instead give the panel plenty of time for review (American Banker, March 13).

NAFCU, which is reviewing the bill text, is working closely with Congress to ensure that any final reform measure includes government-guaranteed access for credit unions to the secondary mortgage market and loan pricing based on loan quality, not quantity.,

NAFCU lobbyists noted that while the release of the measure is a big step, there are many issues still to be resolved before any GSE reform is finalized by both chambers of Congress.