• May 26, 2015

    Last week, the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (Fed) released a proposed rule that would change how certain municipal bonds are classified under federal banking liquidity standards. Specifically, the proposal would allow large banks to count some of their municipal bond investments as high-quality liquid assets.

  • May 26, 2015
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    On May 21, Senator Al Franken (D-MN) and Senate Finance Committee member Rob Portman (R-OH) introduced the Housing for Homeless Students Act, S. 1412, which would add a new exemption to the Housing Credit student rule to allow full-time students to qualify to rent a Housing Credit apartment if they were a youth experiencing homelessness at any point within the seven years prior to moving into their Housing Credit apartment (according to the definition of homeless children and youth used in the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act) or if they are a veteran and were homeless at any point within the five years prior to moving into their Housing Credit apartment.

  • May 21, 2015
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    Earlier this week, the House Financial Services Subcommittee on Housing and Insurance held a hearing examining the Rural Housing Service (RHS) and the role it plays in the single-family mortgage market. During the hearing, Subcommittee members debated the findings of a 2012 Government Accountability Office (GAO) report that suggested that RHS's single-family lending programs be consolidated with similar programs administered by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA). The witnesses at the hearing were Tony Hernandez, the Administrator of RHS, and Mathew Scire, the Director for Financial Markets and Community Investment at GAO.

  • May 20, 2015
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    The Obama Administration announced today that Michael Stegman will join the National Economic Council (NEC) this week as its top housing official. In this role, Stegman will be the White House’s top advisor on housing policy.

  • May 14, 2015
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    The House Appropriations Committee yesterday voted along party lines to pass the Fiscal Year (FY) 2016 Transportation, Housing and Urban Development (THUD) funding bill. With the exception of a handful of successful amendments unrelated to housing programs, the bill is unchanged from the version the THUD Subcommittee reported April 29. Despite the small number of changes to the bill, several Committee members expressed frustration during the markup about the difficulty of providing adequate funding for programs in the Subcommittee’s jurisdiction because of the constraints of spending limitations imposed by the Budget Control Act of 2011 (BCA).

  • May 14, 2015
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    Earlier this week, Senate Banking Committee Chairman Richard Shelby (R-AL) released a discussion draft of legislation that would amend a number of federal financial services standards. The legislation, entitled The Financial Regulatory Improvement Act of 2015, includes changes to federal mortgage rules and also places new restrictions on the Government-Sponsored Enterprises (GSEs), Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

  • May 12, 2015
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    Last week, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) issued a Notice of Final Determination that establishes minimum energy standards that newly-constructed housing units must meet to be eligible for insurance through various HUD and USDA programs.

  • May 8, 2015
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    HUD recently released the full version of its Worst Case Housing Needs: 2015 Report to Congress following the release of its summary findings in early February. This is the 15th report in a biannual series that HUD prepares for Congress to discuss trends in and causes of worst case housing needs.

  • May 7, 2015
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    Earlier today, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) announced that it is expanding the categories of affordable multifamily loans that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac may purchase without having to count such activities against their annual caps on multifamily lending.

  • May 7, 2015
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    For the first time in six years, both houses of Congress have adopted a concurrent budget resolution—the final product of negotiations between the Senate and House on their respective budget resolutions released earlier this spring. The Concurrent Resolution on the Fiscal Year (FY) 2016 Budget (S.Con.Res.11) outlines the chambers’ Republican policy priorities, aims to eliminate the deficit over the next decade with more than $5 trillion in spending cuts without raising taxes, adheres to the FY 2016 discretionary spending caps imposed by the Budget Control Act of 2011 (BCA), and includes procedural language that could be used to repeal the Affordable Care Act.