WASHINGTON (3/1/11)--Speaking before the Credit Union National Association’s (CUNA) 2011 Governmental Affairs Conference, U.S. Treasury Undersecretary Jeffrey Goldstein thanked credit unions for providing working families with access to critical financial services, noting that those who lack access to credit unions are often forced into using higher-cost financial options. The Treasury official also praised credit unions for working with the Treasury on several key initiatives. One such initiative was the development of the Obama administration’s housing market reform plan, and Goldstein noted that CUNA was one of many groups that met with administration officials as they developed their plan. The Obama administration last month proposed nearly eliminating the government's role in the mortgage market as one of several solutions to the current predicament caused by the government's 2008 conservatorship of mortgage market entities Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. The administration has also proposed limiting the government's intervention in the mortgage market to times of financial distress and using a system of reinsurance to backstop private mortgage guarantors to a targeted range of mortgages. Goldstein said that the administration would proceed carefully and balance the pace of housing finance reform with the pace of market recovery. A vital part of these reforms is ensuring that credit unions have much needed access to the secondary mortgage market, Goldstein added. He added that the administration is committed to allowing the private market to serve as the main source of mortgage credit.