WASHINGTON (4/3/08)—Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.), chairwoman of a House Financial Services subcommittee, this week introduced two bills intended to respond to the nation’s growing foreclosure crisis. The bills are The Foreclosure Prevention and Sound Mortgage Servicing Act (H.R. 5679) and The Neighborhood Rescue and Stabilization Act (NRSA, H.R. 5678). H.R. 5679 would create a legal duty for mortgage servicers to engage in reasonable loss mitigation activities before foreclosing. Waters, in a release, said she held off introducing the measure after a November 2007 hearing by her subcommittee on housing and community opportunity. The subcommittee heard complaints of homeowners, homeownership counselors, Legal Aid attorneys, and local government officials about the difficulties encountered in getting “prompt, reasonable action” by mortgage servicers. “At that time, however, I was still prepared to withhold final judgment on industry efforts,” Waters said, “I wanted to confirm whether the industry—as it repeatedly claimed—was still in the ramping-up phase of far more decisive and collective voluntary action by the mortgage servicers, especially through the much publicized and Bush Administration-endorsed HOPE NOW Alliance.” However, she called the results of those efforts “unimpressive.” Waters’ second bill, NRSA, would give states and large cities the resources to save devastated neighborhoods by purchasing, rehabilitating, and reselling/re-renting foreclosed and abandoned properties. Use the resource link below for more bill details.