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Financial Services Bills Address Rural Housing and Appraisals

BillThe U.S. House of Representatives passed five bills offered by House Financial Services Committee Members on Tuesday, three of which are directly housing related. 

The bills included the Homebuyer Assistance Act of 2019 (H.R. 2852), which seeks to make it easier for homebuyers to buy a home with a Federal Housing Administration (FHA) mortgage by alleviating the current shortage of certified appraisers. This bill was introduced by Rep. Brad Sherman.

The House also passed two bills related to multifamily and public housing, the Strategy and Investment in Rural Housing Preservation Act of 2019 and the Safe Housing for Families Act of 2019. The Rural Housing Preservation Act  would permanently authorize the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Multifamily Housing Preservation and Revitalization (MPR) Program and further authorizes $1 billion to carry out the program. It also requires USDA to come up with a plan for preservation of rural multifamily housing backed by USDA loans and establishes an advisory committee to advise USDA in implementing this plan.

The Safe Housing for Families Act is a bill that protects residents of public housing from carbon monoxide poisoning by authorizing over $300 million over three years to fund the installation and maintenance of carbon monoxide detectors in Department of Housing and Urban Development-subsidized housing units that have combustion-fueled appliances or a ventilation system that connects them to such units.

A non-housing related bill passed on Tuesday titled the Ensuring Diverse Leadership Act of 2019. This bill would require the Federal Reserve Bank to interview at least one individual reflective of gender diversity and one reflective of racial or ethnic diversity in making the appointment of a regional bank president. This bill was introduced by Rep. Joyce Beatty, Chairwoman of the Subcommittee on Diversity and Inclusion. 

Another non-housing bill was the Bank Service Company Examination Act. The bill’s goal is to amend the Bank Service Company Act by enhancing the coordination of state banking agencies with federal banking agencies in regulating and examining the activities of bank service companies. It also allows for the sharing of information related to examinations and regulations between federal and state agencies related to banks’ technology service providers.

About Author: Seth Welborn

Seth Welborn is a contributing writer for DS News. He is a Harding University graduate with a degree in English and a minor in writing, and has studied abroad in Athens, Greece. An East Texas native, he also works part-time as a photographer.

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