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Home | News | Foreclosure | California Democrats Call for Investigation into FHFA Lobbying
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California Democrats Call for Investigation into FHFA Lobbying

""As debate continues"":http://www.dsnews.com/articles/maa-issues-call-to-action-against-california-legislation-2012-05-29 over California Attorney General Kamala Harris' ""Homeowner Bill of Rights,"" members of the ""California Democratic Congressional Delegation"":http://www.cadem.org/about/congress are questioning involvement by the ""Federal Housing Finance Agency"":http://www.fhfa.gov/ (FHFA).

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A ""letter issued from the delegation"":http://calreinvest.org/system/resources/BAhbBlsHOgZmSSJXMjAxMi8wNS8zMC8xMV8xNF8xOV84NzBfTWF5XzMwX0NEQ0RfRkhGQV9Mb2JieWluZ19JbnZlc3RpZ2F0aW9uX0xldHRlcl9SZWxlYXNlLnBkZgY6BkVU/May%2030%20CDCD%20FHFA%20Lobbying%20Investigation%20Letter%20Release.pdf Wednesday criticized ""another letter"":http://calreinvest.org/system/resources/BAhbBlsHOgZmSSJRMjAxMi8wNS8zMC8xMV8xNF8zMV83MTlfRkhGQWxldHRlcm9wcG9zaW5nX3JvYm9zaWduaW5nX2FuZF90ZW5hbnRzX2JpbGxzLnBkZgY6BkVU/FHFAletteropposing%20robosigning%20and%20tenants%20bills.pdf sent to the California State Legislative Conference Committee from FHFA general counsel Alfred Pollard on May 11. Pollard's letter addresses several concerns regarding several bills introduced by Harris in the wake of the national mortgage settlement.

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One such concern Pollard writes about is SB 1471, a bill that establishes penalties for the practice of ""robosigning"" foreclosure documents. In the letter, Pollard takes issue with what he feels is vague wording in the bill and excessive punishments, saying that these provisions go ""well beyond anything in the National Mortgage Settlement and pose significant risks for the housing market.""

He goes on to point out that ""state actions that increase costs, create new liabilities for mortgagees and delay foreclosures where most borrowers are unable to cure deficiencies do not benefit the majority of homeowners.""

In their response, the Democratic members of the delegation assert that Pollard's letter was unsolicited and ""takes its substance from the talking points of the banking and mortgage industry."" The members say that Pollard's note ""is devoid of any meaningful substantive analysis, takes the path of least resistance"" and goes against the FHFA's mandate of protecting the public interest.

The delegation's letter received support from ""Tenants Together"":http://www.tenantstogether.org/index.php and the ""California Reinvestment Coalition"":http://www.calreinvest.org/, two advocacy groups who are calling for an investigation into what they see as lobbying efforts by the FHFA.

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About Author: Tory Barringer

Tory Barringer
Tory Barringer began his journalism career in early 2011, working as a writer for the University of Texas at Arlington's student newspaper before joining the DS News team in 2012. In addition to contributing to DSNews.com, he is also the online editor for DS News' sister publication, MReport, which focuses on mortgage banking news.

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