July 09, 2014

Senate confirms Castro to HUD

July 10, 2014 – The president's nomination of San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro to be secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development was approved by the Senate Wednesday on a vote of 71-26.

NAFCU President and CEO Dan Berger congratulated Castro on his confirmation. "We look forward to working with Mr. Castro and HUD in continued efforts to advance credit unions' concerns about housing finance and impacts on their members and communities," Berger said.

Castro will replace Shaun Donovan, who has been nominated to head the Office of Management and Budget, once Donovan vacates the HUD post. Donovan's nomination has been favorably reported to the Senate and awaits a vote on confirmation.

In June, Castro told the Senate Banking Committee he shares the panel's goals of protecting taxpayers and continuing access to mortgage credit in housing finance reform.

Without backing any specific legislative proposal, Castro told the committee he thinks taxpayers should have more protection than they have now under the current structure for government-sponsored enterprises Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. He also said the GSEs' current situation is unsustainable and that private capital should be in the first-loss position.

NAFCU has been in ongoing discussions with key lawmakers, HUD, the Federal Housing Finance Agency and White House and other administration officials on the future of housing finance. The association is working to ensure that any reform provides credit unions unfettered access to the secondary market for mortgage loans as well as fair pricing based not on loan volume, but loan underwriting quality.