January 17, 2019

Waters: Housing finance reform will maintain access for CUs

Waters priorities
House Financial Services Committee Chairwoman Maxine Waters outlines her priorities for the committee at a NAFCU-attended event Wednesday.

New House Financial Services Committee Chairwoman Maxine Waters, D-Calif., on Wednesday outlined issues she'd like to address in the 116th Congress and specifically said she plans to maintain transparency and access to the mortgage market to ensure credit unions and community banks are not disadvantaged.

Waters said that America's housing market has an affordability and availability crisis and her efforts will be centered around generating a surge of funding and resources to help create safe, decent, affordable homes. On GSE reform, Waters plans to maintain access to 30-year mortgages and appropriate capital reserves, and will work to ensure a smooth transition – including transparency and access in the market to not disadvantage credit unions – to a new system.

Thaler, Waters
NAFCU Vice President of Legislative Affairs Brad Thaler met with Waters on the first day of the 116th Congress earlier this month.

NAFCU has previously shared with Waters – through letters and in-person testimony – its core principles for housing finance reform, which includes credit unions' unfettered access to the secondary mortgage market, as well as the importance of 30-year fixed rate mortgages.

In addition to housing finance reform, NAFCU has urged the House Financial Services Committee to address issues such as data security and fintech to ensure consumers are protected and a level playing field.

Other priorities on Waters' list included credit score reform, approach to the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection and diversity and inclusion in the housing market.

NAFCU has worked closely with Waters during her time in Congress and as previous ranking member of the committee. The association will continue to work with Chairwoman Waters  as she pursues these priorities to ensure the credit union perspective is taken into account.