Financial Services Committee Ranking Member Waters Introduces Housing Finance Reform Discussion Draft
Yesterday, Representative Maxine Waters (D-CA), the Ranking Member of the House Financial Services Committee, introduced a discussion draft outlining her vision for comprehensive housing finance reform. Waters’ draft, which is entitled the Housing Opportunities Move the Economy Forward Act of 2014 (HOME Forward Act), would gradually wind down Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and replace them with a lender-owned Mortgage Securities Cooperative (“the Cooperative”) that would be the sole issuer of federally backed mortgage-backed securities (MBSs). Waters also released topline and detailed summaries of the proposal, as well as a section-by-section breakdown of its provisions.
On March 24, House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp (R-MI) sent his Committee members a memorandum outlining his plan for pursuing tax reform and making some expiring tax provisions permanent this year.
Yesterday afternoon, Senate Banking Committee Chairman Tim Johnson (D-SD) and Ranking Member Mike Crapo (R-ID) released the text of their comprehensive housing finance reform legislation, entitled the Housing Finance Reform and Taxpayer Protection Act of 2014. The Senators also released the section-by-section description of the bill and a detailed summary. In their announcement, the senators indicate that they hope the Committee will consider this legislation in the coming weeks.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) recently provided guidance on implementing the new definition of rural, as revised by the Agricultural Act of 2014 (commonly referred to as the Farm Bill).
Yesterday afternoon, the U.S. Senate passed the Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act of 2013, H.R. 3370, by a vote of 72-22. This legislation would roll back many of the rate increases that National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) policy holders have been charged or are expected to be charged shortly.
Since the Administration released its FY 2015 Budget on March 4, federal agencies have released additional details about their Budget requests. NCSHA has updated and expanded its initial preliminary Budget analysis to include additional information on proposed housing program funding levels and policies.
On March 5, HUD Deputy Assistant Secretary for Multifamily Housing Ben Metcalf released a memorandum outlining the Office of Multifamily Housing’s highest policy priorities for calendar year 2014.
Last week the Obama Administration released the February Housing Scorecard, a monthly report on the state of the nation's housing market. According to the report, the housing market continues to show signs of improvement as new home purchases rise and foreclosure completions continue to exhibit a downward trend.
This morning, Senate Banking Committee Chairman Tim Johnson (D-SD) and Ranking Member Mike Crapo (R-ID) announced that they have reached an agreement on legislation to reform the housing finance system. The senators’ announcement says they intend to introduce the legislation within days and that the Committee will markup the bill in the coming weeks. The announcement also confirms that the legislation is based heavily on the Housing Finance Reform and Taxpayer Protection Act of 2013, S. 1217, introduced by Senators Bob Corker (R-TN) and Mark Warner (D-VA).
The Administration yesterday sent Congress its FY 2015 Budget, proposing funding for federal programs, including HUD and the Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) housing programs. In addition to funding proposals, the Budget also contains the Administration’s tax proposals.