WASHINGTON (2/6/13)--The top Democrat of the House Financial Services Committee Tuesday asked that panel's chairman to conduct a hearing about "the abrupt end of the Independent Foreclosure Review (IFR) process."
Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.), who has been an advocate for foreclosure prevention, noted in her request to Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-Texas) that on Jan. 7, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and the Federal Reserve Board announced a settlement with 14 mortgage servicing companies, in which it was agreed to replace the process with an $8.5 billion settlement, effectively terminating the IFR.
Waters identified concerns regarding the settlement. She said it lacked:
- Identification of a minimum amount for principal reductions,
- An escalation process for homeowners, and,
- The prevention of foreclosures for the 4.4 million borrowers still in their homes.
House Financial Services has its first hearing scheduled for today. The topic is "Examining the Proper Role of the Federal Housing Administration in our Mortgage Insurance Market."
Scheduled witnesses are:
- Edward Pinto, resident fellow, American Enterprise Institute;
- Anthony B. Sanders, distinguished professor of real estate finance, senior scholar, Mercatus Center at George Mason University;
- Basil Petrou, managing partner, Federal Financial Analytics, Inc.; and,
- Julia Gordon, director, Housing Finance and Policy, Center for American Progress.