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Inside Washington (01/30/2008)
* ALEXANDRIA, Va. (1/31/08)—The National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) has approved the first nationwide Trade, Industry or Profession (TIP) charter for the grocery and supermarket industry, saying yes to an application from $210 million-asset TruGrocer FCU, Boise, Idaho. The field of membership includes employees who work regularly in the grocery and supermarket industry, but does not include employees of such places as “super warehouse” stores, “free-standing” convenience stores, or pharmacies, whether or not attached to a grocery store. The NCUA amended its field of membership rules in 2003 to allow TIP charters ... * WASHINGTON (1/31/08)--Senate Democrats said they are committed to keeping conforming loan limits for government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs) and Federal Housing Administration (FHA) reform provisions in the economic stimulus package passed Tuesday by the House (American Banker Jan. 29). Senate Banking Committee Chairman Christopher Dodd (D-Conn.) and Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) said the package must include the loan limits. Others, including Sen. Richard Shelby (R-Ala.) and Sen. Mel Martinez (R-Fla.), said they would oppose raising the loan limits without comprehensive GSE reform. Other senators are pushing for FHA reform, even though Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson indicated earlier this week that he wanted to scrap it. The FHA reform could be put in a second stimulus package, if needed, said Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio). Schumer and Sen. Robert Casey (D-Pa.) said they hoped to add $500 million to the package for foreclosure counseling, and Dodd also suggested adding $10 billion so local governments could resell foreclosed homes ... * WASHINGTON (1/31/08)--Reforms to improve insurance claim processing for wind and water-related hurricane damage were proposed in a report requested by House Financial Services Ranking Member Spencer Bachus (R-Ala.). The report also calls for Congress to give the Federal Emergency Management Agency the power to collect wind and flood damage claims from insurers so it can better assess the accuracy of flood payments on damaged properties. Some entities may have improperly shifted costs or charged higher reimbursement rates to the federal government, Bachus said. The report contains recommendations that will clarify the process, and its findings warrant discussion in the Financial Services Committee, he added ...

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