Print this page
Print this page
|
Close this window
Close this window

 

MAJOR LEGISLATION TO STRENGTHEN ECONOMY AND HELP HOMEOWNERS NATIONWIDE PASSES SENATE 72-13

Bipartisan bill will help struggling homeowners, communities, housing markets

July 28, 2008

WASHINGTON, DC – Senators Chris Dodd (D-CT) and Richard Shelby (R-AL), Chairman and Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs, today announced that the Senate passed the Housing and Economic Recovery Act by a vote of 72-13.  This legislation is expected to help hundreds of thousands of Americans who are struggling to keep their homes, as well as countless homeowners and communities who are already experiencing the devastating effects of foreclosure.  The legislation also contains comprehensive reforms to our nation’s housing sector, including the creation of a strong, new regulator for the government-sponsored enterprises.  In response to recent turmoil in our financial markets, the bill also includes provisions requested by the Treasury Department to restore confidence in Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.
The Housing and Economic Recovery Act – the most comprehensive housing legislation in over a generation – is the product of months of bipartisan, bicameral collaboration. The bill will now be sent to the President, who has said he will sign it. 
In addition, Chairman Dodd announced today that he will convene a meeting this week with the Board of HOPE for Homeowners, an initiative created by the legislation to prevent foreclosures, to ensure that the program is implemented expeditiously.  The Board includes the heads of the Treasury Department, Federal Reserve Board, FDIC and HUD.
“With one of every eight homes projected to enter foreclosure over the next five years, and the economy shedding jobs as the costs of energy, health care and food skyrocket, the American dream has become a nightmare for countless families across the country,” said Dodd. “Today, Congress did more than send a bill to the President – we sent a message to American families that help is on the way.  In addition to providing urgently-needed relief to homeowners on the brink of losing their homes, this legislation will address our broader economic problems by helping to reform our housing sector and provide reassurances to our financial markets.  I am proud to have partnered with Senator Shelby on this effort – the strong, bipartisan bill we produced is proof that partisan gridlock is not a foregone conclusion when we work together in good faith and in common cause to solve our nation’s most pressing problems.  I look forward to the President signing this bill into law as soon as possible.”
“Today’s overwhelming vote underscores the merit of this legislation,” said Shelby.  “We have created a strong GSE regulator, as well as the conditions necessary for a recovery in housing markets.  We must now pursue vigorous oversight of the implementation and effectiveness of our efforts.  Now that the debate is over on reform of the GSEs and the permanent systemic risks they pose, I look forward to a robust discussion as to where the responsibility to monitor that risk should reside once the Fed’s temporary authority expires.”
The legislation contains a number of provisions that will help homeowners and communities.  The legislation also includes several tax measures authored by Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-MT) and Ranking Member Chuck Grassley (R-IA).  Key provisions include:
·         GSE Reform: Creates a world class regulator for the government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs) so that these vital institutions can safely and soundly carry out their important mission of providing our nation’s families with affordable housing.
·         Affordable Housing Fund: A new, permanent fund that will help create more affordable housing for Americans in communities across the country. 

A detailed summary of the legislation is attached.

Click for summary of legislation

-30-
 
Print this page
Print this page
|
Close this window
Close this window