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Posts Tagged ‘House Financial Services Committee’

HUD Program Misconduct Alleged by House, a Reason Why So Few Manufactured Homes are Being Built

September 26th, 2018 Comments off

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The report that follows below from the House Financial Services Committee (FSC) to the Daily Business News on MHProNews underscores several issues that have been spotlighted previously.

Among them is a question that was raised by the Urban Institute last January. Why are so few manufactured homes being built and sold?  Among the factors is the reality of subsidized housing and projects like the one noted in FSC report.

Think about the fact that dozens of cases like the one noted, per The Housing and Insurance Subcommittee report, are scandal plagued.

Think back to the comments from manufactured housing advocate, the Rev. Donald Tye Jr. raised.

Other related topics, after the allegations of possibly criminal and other scandalous issues, will be linked further below the FSC statement to MHProNews.

 

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Committee Examines Serious Allegations of Misconduct at Illinois Housing Authority

WASHINGTON – The Housing and Insurance Subcommittee met today to examine the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) oversight of the Alexander County Housing Authority located in Cairo, Illinois.

“Today’s hearing was essential to help get to the bottom of the Alexander County Housing Authority’s (ACHA) troubling role in allowing living conditions in both the Elmwood and McBride housing developments to deteriorate so much that HUD has to demolish both of them and has taken over possession of the ACHA. Due to the actions of the ACHA, nearly 200 families will have to uproot their lives and move from Cairo, Illinois to another city.

“What’s even more frightening is this could just be the tip of the iceberg, as 50 other Public Housing Authorities have been designated as troubled by the HUD Inspector General. We have to make sure all 3,300 PHA’s comply with HUD’s policies and address health and safety hazards to make sure another situation like Cairo never happens again,” said Subcommittee Chairman Sean Duffy (R-WI).

Key Takeaways

  • HUD’s Office of Public and Indian Housing (PIH) failed the residents of the Alexander County (IL) Housing Authority since 2010 by inaction, bureaucratic wrangling, and a failure of leadership.
  • HUD identified issues with ACHA’s governance and attempted to bring the agency into compliance; however, efforts did not lead to a positive impact on the conditions at ACHA.
  • The HUD OIG report noted that HUD staff was “stunned…at what [hud] saw, not just in terms of deplorable living conditions that [hud] encountered but at the poor, even absent record keeping, the staggering backlog of critical repairs, all of this going to the very health and safety of the residents living there.”

Topline Quotes from Witnesses

“Today’s hearing is about government’s failure to protect the vulnerable among us. Most of you have never heard of Cairo, Illinois – but it’s time you had… Many of us first learned the extent of the problems at the public housing authority in Cairo through reports in the Southern Illinoisan newspaper… Many had no appliances, heating, or air conditioning… After my Illinois colleagues and I requested a federal investigation, HUD placed the housing authority into receivership… The cause of this tragedy comes down to two words: greed and neglect… The federal government must do a better job of conducting oversight, especially when it involves the health and safety of people in need.” – The Honorable Mike Bost of the 12th Congressional District of Illinois.

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“HUD identified issues with ACHA’s governance, including the misuse of funds, conflicts of interest, and a failure to comply with HUD policies and Federal civil rights laws… Despite HUD’s attempts to bring ACHA into compliance, its efforts did not resolve the negative conditions at ACHA. Residents continued to live in deplorable conditions as ACHA languished, and ACHA officials were generally uncooperative in addressing the negative conditions HUD identified… Although it may to be too late to save ACHA, as of June 2018, 50 other PHAs were designated as troubled. Therefore, we offer four recommendations to improve PIH’s administration and oversight of troubled PHAs.” – Jeremy Kirkland, Acting Deputy Inspector General, Office of Inspector General, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

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There are dozens of articles that MHProNews has done on topics related to a simple economic principle.  Whatever you subsidize, you tend to get more of it.

Poverty vs Prosperity?

for some 50 years, the federal government – often in concert with state/local governments – is subsidizing housing and are building housing “projects.”  For decades, this has been problem plagued.  The Cabrini Green in Chicagoland was but one notorious example.

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HUD is sending signals that under the leadership of Secretary Ben Carson, some of this may be shifting course.  Secretary Carson has promised a new era of cooperation with our industry.  For more on that, see the related reports, further below.

A new style of private/public partnership, one that winds down the scandal-plagued programs of the past could help fuel a renaissance for manufactured housing, create more home owners, and could save taxpayers billions a year over time. See further below for more. “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

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Related Reports:

“A New Era of Cooperation and Coordination,” is Promised by HUD Secretary Carson, Saying “I Hear You”

 

Urban Institute Ask for Correction in Analysis of their Manufactured Housing Research, “Follow the Facts,” “Follow the Money”

Jeb Hensarling & Maxine Waters Unveil Bipartisan Capital Markets Reform Legislation

July 17th, 2018 Comments off
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Official photos of both Maxine Waters (D-CA) and Jeb Hensarling (R-TX) are provided by Wikipedia.

WASHINGTON, D.C. “House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-TX) and Ranking Member Maxine Waters (D-CA) announced Monday that they have reached an agreement on a package of strong, bipartisan capital-formation legislation to help America’s small businesses and entrepreneurs and to protect investors,” stated a released to the Daily Business News on MHProNews.

The legislative package is known as the “JOBS and Investor Confidence Act of 2018.” It’s comprised of 32 individual pieces of legislation that have passed the Committee or House this Congress with broad bipartisan support, stated a House Financial Services release to the Daily Business News.

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Jeb Hensarling, official photo.

Over the last several months, our Committee has been working hard to put forth a number of capital-formation bills that are designed to breathe new life into markets that are suffocating under aging regulations,” said Hensarling. “Thanks to the efforts of the Ranking Member and Members of the Committee on both sides of the aisle, we have a strong bipartisan package that will play an important role in sustaining long-term economic growth and global competitiveness.”

A stronger economy, more jobs for America’s families, and strong investor protections are top priorities for Committee

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Maxine Waters. Official photo,

Democrats,” Waters said. “I want to thank the Chairman and the staff of the Committee on both sides of the aisle for the work that they have been doing, working together to live up to what we always say—that we all support small businesses, their access to capital and protecting investors. This is true bipartisanship we are witnessing today.”

 

 

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— Start of balance of House Financial Services Committee report —

The bipartisan bills that comprise the package are:

H.R. 79, Helping Angels Lead Our Startups (HALOS) Act – Sponsored by Rep. Steve Chabot (R-OH) and cosponsored by Rep. Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ), this bill defines an “angel investor group” and clarifies a regulation issued by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to ensure that startups have the opportunity to make a presentation to interested parties without running afoul of the securities laws.

It passed the House on January 10, 2017 with strong bipartisan support, 344-73.

H.R. 435, The Credit Access and Inclusion Act of 2017 – Sponsored by Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN) and cosponsored by Rep. Robert Pittenger (R-NC), the bill amends the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) to authorize an entity, including the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to furnish data to consumer reporting agencies regarding an individual’s history of on-time payments with respect to a lease, or contracts for utilities and telecommunications services.

The bill passed the House by voice vote on June 25, 2018.

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H.R. 477, Small Business Mergers, Acquisitions, Sales & Brokerage Simplification Act of 2017 – Sponsored by Rep. Bill Huizenga (R-MI) and cosponsored by Rep. Brian Higgins (D-NY), the bill alleviates costs to small business owners by simplifying the securities registration system for mergers and acquisition brokers who help transfer the ownership of small, privately held companies.  It also disqualifies “bad actors” from utilizing the simplified process and does not allow transactions involving shell companies.

H.R. 477 passed the House with unanimous bipartisan support, 426-0, on December 7, 2017.

H.R. 1585, Fair Investment Opportunities for Professional Experts Act – Sponsored by Reps. David Schweikert (R-AZ) and cosponsored by Reps. French Hill (R-AR), Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ), H.R. 1585 modernizes the definition of accredited investor so those who do not have a high income or high net worth but do have the education and job experience to evaluate investment risks and merits can participate in the growth of promising companies.  This change will provide more Americans with greater investment opportunities and enable the businesses they invest in to create more jobs.

It passed the house by voice vote on November 1, 2017.

H.R. 1645, Fostering Innovation Act – Sponsored by Rep. Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ) and cosponsored by Rep. Trey Hollingsworth (R-IN), the “Fostering Innovation Act of 2017” amends Section 404(b) of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (SOX) to extend the exemption to comply with the law for certain low-revenue emerging growth companies (EGCs) that would otherwise lose their exempt status at the end of the five-year period that applies under current law.

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The bill passed the Financial Services Committee with a bipartisan vote of 48-12 on October 12, 2017.

H.R. 2219, End Banking for Human Traffickers Act of 2018 – Sponsored by Rep. Ed Royce (R-CA) and cosponsored by Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY), H.R. 2219 amends the Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protection Act of 2000 to add the Treasury Secretary to the President’s Interagency Task Force to Monitor and Combat Trafficking, requires the task force to submit to Congress an analysis of anti-money laundering (AML) efforts of the U.S. government and financial institutions relating to severe forms of trafficking in persons, and requires the Treasury Secretary to designate an office within the Office of Terrorism and Financial Intelligence to coordinate efforts to combat the illicit financing of human trafficking.

It passed the House with overwhelming bipartisan support, 408-2, on April 10, 2018.

H.R. 2364, Investing in Main Street Act – Sponsored by Rep. Judy Chu (D-CA) and cosponsored by Rep. Stephen Knight (R-CA), the bill amends the Small Business Investment Act by increasing the percentage a financial institution or federal savings association can invest in a small business investment company (SBIC) to 15 percent and require the financial institution or the federal savings association to be approved by their federal regulator prior to investing more than five percent.

H.R. 2364 passed the House by voice vote on July 24, 2017.

H.R. 3555, Exchange Regulatory Improvement Act – Sponsored by Rep. Barry Loudermilk (R-GA) and cosponsored by Reps. Lee Zeldin (R-NY), Gregory Meeks (D-NY) and David Scott (D-GA), the “Exchange Regulatory Improvement Act,” as amended, requires the SEC to set forth the facts and circumstances it considers in determining what is a “facility” of an exchange.

The bill passed the Financial Services Committee on July 11, 2018 by voice vote.

H.R. 3903, Encouraging Public Offerings Act of 2017 – Sponsored by Rep. Ted Budd (R-NC) and cosponsored by Rep. Gregory Meeks (D-NY), the “Encouraging Public Offerings Act of 2017” amends the Securities Act of 1933 to expand to all public companies certain provisions of Title I of the Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act, which previously applied only to an EGC. Specifically, the legislation allows issuers to submit to the SEC for confidential review, before publicly filing, draft registration statements for Initial Public Offerings (IPOs) and for follow-on offerings within one year of an IPO. Additionally, this bill allows all companies to “test-the-waters” before filing an IPO, which means they may meet with qualified institutional buyers and other institutional accredited investors to gauge those investors’ interest in the offering.

It passed the House with unanimous bipartisan support, 419-0, on November 1, 2017.

H.R. 3972, Family Office Technical Correction Act – Sponsored by Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY), H.R. 3972 clarifies that family offices and family clients, as defined in section 275.202(a)(11)(G)-1 of title 17, Code of Federal Regulations, are accredited investors under Regulation D of the SEC.

H.R. 3972 passed the House by voice vote on October 24, 2017.

H.R. 4281, Expanding Access to Capital for Job Creators Act – Sponsored by Rep. Ruben Kihuen (D-NV) and cosponsored by Rep. Alex Mooney (R-WV), the “Expanding Access to Capital for Rural Job Creators Act” amends the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 to have the SEC’s Advocate for Small Business Capital Formation identify any unique challenges to rural area small businesses when identifying problems that small businesses have with securing access to capital. H.R. 4281 also requires that the annual report made by the SEC’s Small Business Advocate include a summary of any unique issues encountered by rural area small businesses.

The bill passed the Financial Services Committee with unanimous bipartisan support, 60-0, on November 15, 2017.

H.R. 4292, Financial Institution Living Will Improvement Act of 2017 – Sponsored by Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-NY) and cosponsored by Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY), the bill amends the “Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act” to reform the resolution plan submission “living will” process by requiring bank holding companies to submit to the Federal Reserve Board (Federal Reserve) and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) resolution plans every two years. This bill requires the Federal Reserve and FDIC to provide feedback regarding a resolution plan within six months after a bank holding company submission. This bill also requires the Federal Reserve and FDIC to publicly disclose the assessment framework used to review the adequacy of resolution plans.

It passed the House on January 30, 2018 with unanimous support, 414-0.

H.R. 4294, Prevention of Private Information Dissemination Act of 2017 – Sponsored by Rep. David Kustoff (R-TN), the “Prevention of Private Information Dissemination Act of 2017” establishes criminal penalties for the unauthorized disclosure of living will and stress test determinations and other individually identifiable information by federal officials, consistent with existing penalties for other unauthorized disclosure of confidential records by federal officials.

It passed the House on June 26, 2018 with overwhelming bipartisan support, 392-2.

H.R. 4537, International Insurance Standards Act – Sponsored by Rep. Sean Duffy (R-WI) and cosponsored by Rep. Denny Heck (D-WA), the bill ensures that international insurance standards and agreements are consistent with our domestic insurance system and provides greater Congressional oversight and transparency on international insurance standard negotiations.

The bill passed the House by voice vote on July 10, 2018.

H.R. 4566, Alleviating Stress Test Burdens to Help Investors Act (Secs. 2 and 3) – Sponsored by Rep. Bruce Poliquin (R-ME), the section of this legislation to be included in JOBS Act 3.0 amends the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act to exempt nonbank financial institutions not  primarily regulated by either a federal banking agency or the Federal Housing Finance Agency from the Dodd-Frank Act’s mandatory company-run stress-testing requirements. Additionally, the bill clarifies that the SEC and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission retain their authority to issue regulations to require nonbank financial companies to conduct periodic analysis of the financial condition of such companies under adverse economic conditions.

The full bill previously passed the House on March 20, 2018 with a strong bipartisan vote of 395-19.

H.R. 4768, National Strategy for Combating the Financing of Transnational Criminal Organizations Act – Sponsored by Rep. David Kustoff (R-TN) and cosponsored by Rep. Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ), H.R. 4768 requires the President, through the Secretary of the Treasury, to develop a national strategy to combat the financial networks of transnational criminal organizations (TCOs) not later than one year after the enactment of this Act and every two years thereafter. In particular, the strategy will assess the most significant TCO threats and the individuals, entities, and networks that provide financial support or facilitation to those TCOs.  It also reviews current goals, priorities, and actions against TCOs’ financial support networks and will recommend new ways to deter and prosecute those who financially enable TCOs.

H.R. 4768 passed the House by voice vote on March 6, 2018.

H.R. 5288, Common Sense Credit Union Capital Relief Act – Sponsored by Rep. Bill Posey (R-FL) and cosponsored by Rep. Denny Heck (D-WA), the bill delays the effective date of the rule used by the National Credit Union Administration titled “Risk-Based Capital” from 2019 to 2021.

H.R. 5749, Options Markets Stability Act – Sponsored by Rep. Randy Hultgren (R-IL) and cosponsored by Rep. Bill Foster (D-IL), the legislation requires the prudential regulators to implement a risk-adjusted approach to value centrally-cleared exchange-listed derivatives as it relates to capital rules to better and more accurately reflect exposure and to promote  market-making activity.

On July 10, 2018, the bill passed the House with a unanimous vote of 385-0.

H.R. 5783, Cooperate with Law Enforcement Agencies and Watch Act of 2018 – Sponsored by Rep. French Hill (R-AR) and cosponsored by Rep. Bill Foster (D-IL), the “Cooperate with Law Enforcement Agencies and Watch Act of 2018” provides a safe harbor for financial institutions that maintain a customer account at the request of a Federal, State, tribal or local law enforcement agency.

The bill passed the House with overwhelming bipartisan support, 379-4, on June 25, 2018.

H.R. 5877, Main Street Growth Act – Sponsored by Rep. Tom Emmer (R-MN), the “Main Street Growth Act” amends the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 to allow for the registration of venture exchanges with the SEC to provide a venue that is tailored to the needs of small and emerging companies and offers qualifying companies one venue in which their securities can trade.

It passed the House by voice vote on July 10, 2018.

H.R. 5953, Building Up Independent Lives and Dreams (BUILD) Act – Sponsored by Rep. Barry Loudermilk (R-GA) and Rep. Brad Sherman (D-CA), H.R. 5953 allows certain non-profits that are conducting charitable mortgage loan transactions to use either the truth in lending (TIL), good faith estimate (GFE), and HUD-1 forms, or those required under the TILA-RESPA Integrated Disclosure (TRID) rule.

H.R. 5953 passed the House by voice vote on July 10, 2018.

H.R. 5970, Modernizing Disclosures for Investors Act – Sponsored by Rep. Ann Wagner (R-MO), the “Modernizing Disclosures for Investors Act” requires the SEC to provide a report to Congress with a cost-benefit analysis of EGCs’ use of SEC Form 10-Q, including the costs and benefits to investors and other market participants of the current requirements for reporting on Form 10-Q, as well as the expected impact of the use of alternative formats of quarterly reporting for EGCs. The bill also directs the SEC to report to Congress with recommendations for decreasing costs, increasing transparency, and increasing efficiency of quarterly financial reporting by EGCs.

The House passed H.R. 5970 by voice vote on July 10, 2018.

H.R. 6069, Fight Illicit Networks and Detect (FIND) Trafficking Act – Sponsored by Rep. Juan Vargas (D-CA) and cosponsored by Rep. Keith Rothfus (R-PA), the “FIND Trafficking Act” requires the Comptroller General of the United States to carry out a study on how virtual currencies and online marketplaces are used to buy, sell, or facilitate the financing of goods or services associated with sex trafficking or drug trafficking, and for other purposes.

The bill passed the House on June 25, 2018 by voice vote.

H.R. 6139, Improving Investment Research for Small and Emerging Issuers Act – Sponsored by Rep. Bill Huizenga (R-MI) and cosponsored by Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA), the bill requires the SEC to carry out a study to evaluate the issues affecting the provision of and reliance upon investment research into small issuers and pre-IPO companies, including EGCs and other small issuers.

It passed the House by voice vote on July 10, 2018.

H.R. 6177, Developing and Empowering our Aspiring Leaders (DEAL) Act – Sponsored by Rep. Trey Hollingsworth (R-IN), the “DEAL Act” requires the SEC to revise the definition of a qualifying investment to include equity securities acquired in a secondary transaction.

The bill passed the Financial Services Committee on July 11, 2018 on voice vote.

H.R. 6319, Expanding Investment in Small Businesses Act – Sponsored by Rep. Randy Hultgren (R-IL), the “Expanding Investment in Small Businesses Act” requires the SEC to study whether the current diversified fund limit threshold for mutual funds constrains their ability to take meaningful positions in small-cap companies.

The Financial Services Committee passed the bill by voice vote on July 11, 2018.

H.R. 6320, Promoting Transparent Standards for Corporate Insiders Act – Sponsored by Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA), the “Promoting Transparent Standards for Corporate Insiders Act” requires the SEC to consider certain types of amendments to Rule 10b5-1 to ensure that corporate insiders are not able to indirectly engage in illegal insider trading through changes to their trading plans.

The bill passed the Financial Services Committee on July 11, 2018 by voice vote.  

H.R. 6321, Investment Adviser Regulatory Flexibility Improvement Act – Sponsored by Rep. Gwen Moore (D-WI) and cosponsored by Rep. Bill Huizenga (R-MI), the “Investment Adviser Regulatory Flexibility Improvement Act” directs the SEC to consider alternative methods for businesses or organizations to qualify as a “small business” or “small organization” for the purposes of assessing the regulatory impact on investment advisers.

H.R. 6321 passed the Financial Services Committee by voice vote on July 11, 2018.

H.R. 6322, Enhancing Multi-Class Share Disclosures Act — Sponsored by Rep. Gregory Meeks (D-NY), the “Enhancing Multi-Class Share Disclosures Act” requires issuers with a multi-class share structure to make certain disclosures in any proxy or consent solicitation material that provide enhanced transparency regarding certain shareholders’ voting power.

It passed the Financial Services Committee by voice vote on July 11, 2018.

H.R. 6323, National Senior Investor Initiative Act of 2018 – Sponsored by Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D-NJ) and cosponsored by Rep. Trey Hollingsworth (R-IN), the “National Senior Investor Initiative Act of 2018” or the “Senior Security Act of 2018” creates an interdivisional task force at the SEC, to examine and identify challenges facing senior investors and requires the Government Accountability Office to study the economic costs of the exploitation of senior citizens.

The Financial Services Committee passed the bill by voice vote on July 11, 2018.

H.R. 6324, Middle Market IPO Underwriting Cost Act – Sponsored by Rep. Jim Himes (D-CT), the “Middle Market IPO Underwriting Cost Act” requires the SEC, in consultation with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, to study the direct and indirect costs associated with small and medium-sized companies to undertake initial public offerings.

The bill passed the Financial Services Committee on July 11, 2018 by voice vote.

H.R. 6380, Crowdfunding Amendments Act – Sponsored by Reps. Patrick McHenry (R-NC) and Maxine Waters (D-CA), the “Crowdfunding Amendments Act” allows crowdfunding investors to pool their money together into a fund that is advised by a registered investment advisor.

—- end of extended press release —

This report is another example of news that can impact your business and investments, and you won’t find this information elsewhere in MHVille trade media. That’s “News through the lens of manufactured homes, and factory-built housing.” ©  “Often first, always the best industry coverage.” ©  ## (News, analysis and commentary.)

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Related Reports:

White House Signing Ceremony on Historic Pro-Growth Financial Regulatory Reform

Doug Schoen, Clinton Adviser, warns – “Democrats must advance an agenda…to create a society of opportunity for all – not guaranteed outcomes achieved through wealth redistribution.”

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GAO, House Members Blast Controversial Federal ‘Office of Financial Research’

December 7th, 2017 Comments off

OfficeFinancialResearchFinancialServicesGovtAccountabililtyOffice660The Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations met today to examine the controversial Office of Financial Research (OFR), assessing its management and structure, public work-product, its cooperation with Congress, and support of the Financial Stability Oversight Council,” said the House Financial Services Committee in a release to the Daily Business News.

In September 2014, the House Committee on Financial Services requested that GAO review OFR, an office within the Department of the Treasury,” said the Government Accountability Office (GAO) in a separate media release to MHProNews.

Among other things, GAO was asked to assess the agency’s usefulness to regulators and Congress in assessing systemic risk in the financial system and any delays or set-backs in its major undertakings. GAO subsequently initiated a review of OFR in January 2015,” said the GAO.

The GAO added, that “However, during the course of its review, GAO encountered substantial delays in obtaining access to agency officials and information. Separately, whistleblower allegations and an ongoing Treasury OIG investigation led GAO to terminate the engagement.”

GAO closed by noting that: “GAO’s decision to terminate the engagement without issuing a product,” meaning, they were done chasing the OFR for details.

The GAO previously issued a largely favorable report on manufactured housing, linked below.

14 Years – Time to Revisit the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of 2000?

OFR Director Richard Berner appeared as the hearing’s sole witness,” said the Financial Services Committee.

From studies that impugn the workplace culture, to low morale, multiple ongoing investigations, and today’s harsh criticism of OFR by the Government Accountability Office, it appears to both outsiders and insiders that this organization is completely dysfunctional,” said Chairman Ann Wagner (R-MO). “Following these reports of mismanagement, questionable analysis, bureaucratic redundancy, and the inability to fulfill its statutory mandate, one question comes to mind; why does the OFR exist?”

Key Takeaways

  • Eliminating the OFR would improve risk management by encouraging diverse perceptions of rise and more robust risk management strategies.
  • Eliminating the OFR will result in one less redundant federal bureaucracy. There are already countless other federal agencies that perform market surveillance and collect and analyze data for purposes of identifying threats to financial stability.

Both federal statements today underscore the waste, fraud, and abuse that third parties claim cost taxpayers over $600 billion dollars annually. Fixing those problematic losses, cited in the report found as a download in the report linked below, could dramatically cut the federal deficit.

“Fiscal Carnage,” “Calamitous Economic Hole”  Decried by Citizens Advocacy Group

While not directly related, this expose also points to the years of problematic work by the CFPB.  Many in the MH Industry have seen the CFPB as overall harmful to the industry and consumers.  Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling recently reacted strongly to the CFPB dust-up there, for that report, see this link below.

House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling Reacts to CFPB Controversy

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Subcommittee Hearing on Security, Reforms to Protect Consumers and Businesses

November 1st, 2017 Comments off

CommitteeOnFinancialServicesDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsData security and credit records impacts almost everyone in America.

More specifically and closer to the interests of industry professionals, manufactured home retailers and communities deal with credit and personal data daily.

Producers, wholesale lenders, suppliers, and vendors deal with business credit and data daily too.

So today committee hearing on Capitol Hill could prove important to tens of thousands of industry professionals, and hundreds of millions of Americans.

The House Financial Services Committee tells MHProNews in a release about their hearing today on “security vulnerabilities and identify gaps in state and federal data security regulation.”

More than 15 million Americans were victims of cyber fraud or identify theft last year,” said Subcommittee Chairman Blaine Luetkemeyer (R-MO).

While data security has been a hot topic since the latest breach, Equifax isn’t where the problem started and if we don’t act, it isn’t where the problem will end. With each attack more dangerous and more advanced than the last, it is crucial that every aspect of data security is examined,” their statement said.

Today’s hearing reiterated that we need to work collaboratively to reduce red tape, create a prompt notification standard, and foster harmonization among federal and state agencies charged with data security regulation,” per their early evening media release.

While today’s hearing did not focus on a certain bill, I intend to work with my colleagues to produce data security reform legislation in the near future. This has turned into a crisis, and the American people deserve better.” Luetkemeyer said.

Video – Pro-MH Congressman, Andy Barr, Questioning Expert Witnesses 
during today’s hearing.

Key Takeaways

  • The increasing frequency and sophistication of cyberattacks demands heightened vigilance and enhanced efforts by industry participants to safeguard consumers’ financial data.
  • Protecting information and systems from major cyber threats, such as cyber theft, cyber terrorism, cyber warfare, and cyber espionage should be a priority for Congress.

CyberCrimeCyberSecurityDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Topline Quotes from Witnesses

  • The cybersecurity landscape is complex with a wide array of hostile actors, including criminals seeking financial gain, nation states engaged in corporate espionage or worse, and terrorist groups seeking to disrupt markets and create fear. Cybercrime is now a bigger criminal enterprise than the global narcotics trade. The financial services industry is a top target facing tens of thousands of attacks each day. While data breaches of customer information dominate headlines, and are an appropriate concern for policymakers, a major cyberattack on critical financial market infrastructure or one that destroys records and financial data, is a risk with a potentially far larger impact on the economy. While regulation and supervision of cyber preparedness has an important role in the collective cyber defense effort, the emergence of many regulations from multiple regulators may lead to a suboptimal balance of industry resources devoted to compliance versus security.” – Kenneth E. Bentsen, Jr., President and CEO, SIFMA

 

  • This is not a problem that we as an industry can fix on our own. What is so frustrating is that there is no amount of money we can spend to protect our consumers from being targeted by these criminals. The only thing that will help is to increase awareness so that our customers can help protect themselves.” – Daniel Mennenoh, President, H.B. Wilkinson Title Company

 

  • Data security, ensuring member safety, and how to incentivize and emphasize data safekeeping in every link of the payments chain is a top challenge facing the credit union industry today. Given the breadth and scope of many data breaches, we have reached a tipping point in the public dialogue about how to tackle these issues. NAFCU member credit unions and the 110 million credit union members across the country are looking to Congress to address data security issues and move forward with meaningful legislation that will make a difference to consumers.” – Debra Schwartz, President & CEO, Mission Federal Credit Union.

The Daily Business News reported previously on the widely covered Equifax breach, at this link here. ## (News, analysis, commentary.)

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Is it Judgment Day for the CFPB?

May 24th, 2017 Comments off
IsitJudgmentDayfortheCFPBcreditJournalIE-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

What is the fate for the CFPB? Credit: Journal IE.

Today is a big day in the history of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), as it heads to an appeals court in a case brought by PHH Corp.

That case could completely reshape the organization.

As Daily Business News readers are already aware, critics of the CFPB point to leadership structure, data collection and so-called “trophy wins” as issues that need to be addressed. A D.C. Circuit Court ruled that the CFPB was unconstitutional, in the legal action brought by PHH.

The court ruled that the CFPB’s structure was constitutionally flawed and that its director should be removable at the will of the president.

In advance of today’s hearing, the House Financial Services Committee, led by Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-TX) debated the future of the Financial CHOICE Act during a hearing on April 26th.

Originally introduced by Hensarling in 2016, the CHOICE Act included a proposal to replace the CFPB with a five-member bipartisan commission that would be subject to congressional oversight and appropriations.

jeb_hensarling__financialservice_house_gov__credit__rep_texas

Jeb Hensarling. Credit: House.gov

The Financial CHOICE Act re-establishes this rogue agency as a civil enforcement agency, patterned after the Federal Trade Commission. One that is responsible for actually enforcing the enumerated consumer protection laws written by Congress, instead of making up its own law in an unfair, deceptive, and abusive manner,” said Hensarling.

True consumer protection is only to be had in competitive, transparent and innovative markets which are vigorously policed for fraud and deception. That’s what the Financial CHOICE Act is all about.”

And, both experts and other politicians had their say on the matter at the hearing.

The CFPB is an unaccountable federal agency, as exemplified in the case PHH Corp., et al. v. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau,” said Norbert Michel, senior research fellow, Financial Regulations and Monetary Policy Institute for Economic Freedom and Opportunity at The Heritage Foundation.

CompanyMovesinfortheKillonCFPBcreditFlickrPHHCFPB-postedtothedailybusinessnewsphonewsmhlivingnews

Credits: Flickr, CFPB, PHH.

The PHH incident is a clear-cut case of an unaccountable federal agency flouting the basic principles of the rule of law. Private firms—financial or otherwise—cannot safely operate in such an environment without the expectation of being wrongly persecuted by the government that is supposed to protect all of its citizens from such actions.”

Congress can do even better by consolidating the various consumer financial protection statutes under one existing federal agency, such as the [Federal Trade Commission.]

Another Texas Republican was more to the point.

The CFPB is one of the most unacceptable and unaccountable agencies in the United States,” said Rep. Roger Williams. “This is what Dodd-Frank gave us and that is why it is so important to fix this disastrous law.”

 

A View From the Other Side…

CarsonApprovedbySenateCommitteeProvidesViewonMHcreditSherrodBrownOfficialPhoto-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Senator Sherrod Brown. Official photo.

Recent motions filed by U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) and U.S. Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.), argued that Congress wanted a single director for the agency, because lawmakers who drafted the Dodd-Frank Act, which established the CFPB,understood that the nation needed a regulator that could respond quickly and effectively to new threats to consumers … and it knew that the CFPB’s effectiveness could be hampered by the delay and gridlock to which commissions are susceptible.”

Sixteen state attorney generals and the District of Columbia also filed a motion, defending the CFPB in its current incarnation.

As the representatives of millions of citizens across the country, the state attorneys general have used their express statutory authority to bring civil actions to enforce consumer financial protection laws and to pursue regulatory actions in coordination with the CFPB to protect consumers against unfair, deceptive and abusive financial practices,” the motion said.

CordrayDefiantSaysTrumpWon’tChangeAgencycreditWikipediaMaxineWaters-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Representative Maxine Waters. Credit: Wikipedia

The current ruling, if permitted to stand, will undermine the power of the state attorneys general to effectively protect consumers against abuse in the consumer finance industry.” 

 

Could MHI Have Killed the CFPB? Another Opportunity Missed?

As we reported here, prior to the close of filings, MHProNews asked the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) if they would be filing an amicus brief in the closely followed PHH vs. CFPB case.

Several operations and organizations have been among those who filed an amicus brief in the case. Was MHI among those organizations?

MHProNews sources say no, and MHI won’t comment.

Why?

Frank Rolfe.

The folks at MHI – the industry lobby group – are nice people, but what’s with the concept of silence is golden? Negative articles on the industry are met with ‘no comment.’ Positive news opportunities are met with ‘no comment.’ I’ve never seen anything like it,” says Frank Rolfe.

When you refuse to talkit looks to the public like an admission of guilt, and when you refuse to promote your product it looks like you are embarrassed by it.”

Silence, according to Rolfe, isn’t golden.

The appearance, per Rolfe, is that someone – in this case, MHI – is hiding something.

 

The View From the MH Industry

GOPSenatorstoPresidentelectTrumpFireCFPBHeadRichardCordraycreditTwitter-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

A tweet from Senator Bob Sasse.

While the CFPB had the support of the Obama Administration, the Trump Administration has had the organization in its crosshairs since the election.

Those in the industry have not been shy about their feelings on the matter.

The information on this case also has indirect ramifications for the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI), and others in the industry, as the Preserving Access bill is being floated, which would modify portions of Dodd-Frank.

For more on what the Preserving Access bill means for the industry, check out the latest article on The Masthead.

 

The Daily Business News will continue to follow the hearing and provide updates.

For more on the CFPB’s impact on the manufactured housing industry, click here. ##

 

(Image credits are as shown above, and when provided by third parties, are shared under fair use guidelines.)

 

rcwilliams-writer75x75manufacturedhousingindustrymhpronews

RC Williams, MHProNews.

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.

 

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Is Time Finally up for the CFPB?

April 27th, 2017 Comments off
IsTimeUpForTheCFPBcreditPintrestWhattheFolly-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credits: Pinterest, What the Folly.

Movement by the House Financial Services Committee, led by Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-TX), could spell the end for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau as we know it.

According to ACA International, the committee debated the future of the Financial CHOICE Act during a hearing yesterday.

Originally introduced by Hensarling in 2016, the CHOICE Act included a proposal to replace the CFPB with a five-member bipartisan commission that would be subject to congressional oversight and appropriations.

The Financial CHOICE Act re-establishes this rogue agency as a civil enforcement agency, patterned after the Federal Trade Commission. One that is responsible for actually enforcing the enumerated consumer protection laws written by Congress, instead of making up its own law in an unfair, deceptive, and abusive manner,” said Hensarling.

jeb_hensarling__financialservice_house_gov__credit__rep_texas

Jeb Hensarling. Credit: House.gov

True consumer protection is only to be had in competitive, transparent and innovative markets which are vigorously policed for fraud and deception. That’s what the Financial CHOICE Act is all about.”

Recently, Hensarling introduced a 593-page draft of the act, which included a number of revisions. One of them includes changing the name of the CFPB to the Consumer Law Enforcement Agency (CLEA), and a director would lead the agency along with a deputy director, who could be removed at will by the President.

The CLEA would also be required to receive funding through congressional appropriations for the agency.

DecisionsinCFPBAppealcreditHousingwireCFPB-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credits: Housingwire, CFPB.

Under the new provisions, President Trump would have the authority to appoint an Inspector General for the organization no later than 60 days after the law takes effect. The inspector general would be required to testify at semi-annual hearings before the House Financial Services and Senate Banking Committees.

In the summary of the draft bill, the stated intention is to “create hope and opportunity for investors, consumers, and entrepreneurs by ending bailouts and ‘Too Big to Fail,’ holding Washington and Wall Street accountable, eliminating red tape to increase access to capital and credit, and repealing the provisions of the Dodd-Frank Act that make America less prosperous, less stable, and less free, and for other purposes.”

For critics of the CHOICE Act, and the dismantling of the CFPB, they see things differently.

CordrayDefiantSaysTrumpWon’tChangeAgencycreditWikipediaMaxineWaters-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Representative Maxine Waters. Credit: Wikipedia

A number of law makers, including Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA), argue that the act would remove consumer, business and investor financial protections and that the CFPB should not be dismantled and replaced with the CLEA.

Rep. Brad Sherman, (D-CA) says that bills included within the act should be voted on separately, with good reason.

These bills will pass this committee overwhelmingly if we consider them separately,” said Sherman.

As Daily Business News readers are aware, critics of the CFPB point to leadership structure, data collection and so-called “trophy wins” as issues that need to be addressed. A D.C. Circuit Court ruled that the CFPB was unconstitutional, in the case legal action brought by PHH.

The court ruled that the CFPB’s structure was constitutionally flawed and that its director should be removable at the will of the president.

CompanyMovesinfortheKillonCFPBcreditFlickrPHHCFPB-postedtothedailybusinessnewsphonewsmhlivingnews

Credits: Flickr, CFPB, PHH.

The CFPB is an unaccountable federal agency, as exemplified in the case PHH Corp., et al. v. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau,” said Norbert Michel, senior research fellow, Financial Regulations and Monetary Policy Institute for Economic Freedom and Opportunity at The Heritage Foundation.

The PHH incident is a clear-cut case of an unaccountable federal agency flouting the basic principles of the rule of law. Private firms—financial or otherwise—cannot safely operate in such an environment without the expectation of being wrongly persecuted by the government that is supposed to protect all of its citizens from such actions.”

Congress can do even better by consolidating the various consumer financial protection statutes under one existing federal agency, such as the [Federal Trade Commission.]”

Another Texas Republican cut straight to the point.

The CFPB is one of the most unacceptable and unaccountable agencies in the United States,” said Rep. Roger Williams. “This is what Dodd-Frank gave us and that is why it is so important to fix this disastrous law.”

According to Bloomberg, a markup for the legislation is reportedly scheduled for May 2.

 

The View From the MH Industry

IDontThinkThereWasEverMuchHighCostLendingInTheManufacturedHousingMarket-stillcreditCSPAN2--RichardCordrayCFPBdirector-Posted-MHLivingNews-com-

Still from an Inside MH video, reflecting how Richard Cordray himself said that there was never much high cost lending in the manufactured housing industry market.

While the CFPB had the support of the Obama Administration, the Trump Administration has had the organization in its crosshairs since the election.

Those in the industry have not been shy about their feelings on the matter.

The information on this case also has indirect ramifications for the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI), and others in the industry, as the Preserving Access bill is being floated, which would modify portions of Dodd-Frank.

For more on what the Preserving Access bill means for the industry, check out the latest article on The Masthead.

For more on the CFPB’s impact on the manufactured housing industry, click here. ##

 

(Image credits are as shown above, and when provided by third parties, are shared under fair use guidelines.)

 

rcwilliams-writer75x75manufacturedhousingindustrymhpronews

RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews

Senate Passes Bill to Allow MH Purchase with Section 8 Vouchers

July 15th, 2016 Comments off

Manufactured Housing Institute loge-credit-Manufactured Housing Institute-postedDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsThe Senate has passed H. R. 3700, as the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) informs MHProNews, the Housing Opportunity through Modernization Act (HOTMA), which will allow Section 8 vouchers to be used for the purchase of a manufactured home (MH). The House of Representatives passed the legislation in February, and President Obama is expected to sign it into law.

An amendment offered by Representative Peter Welch (D-VT) was added on the House floor—by voice vote– that allows Section 8 not only for the purchase of MH but also for leasing the land, mortgage payments, property tax and insurance.

This change would actually allow families to purchase a home instead of using their Section 8 voucher to rent an apartment. While the measure does not provide any direct funds or require anyone to use a voucher to live in an MH, it gives the 2.1 million Section 8 voucher holders the option to use their voucher to acquire a manufactured home.

The amendment was supported by House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-TX), and ranking member Maxine Waters (D-CA). The main thrust of H. R. 3700 is to improve the quality of life for public housing residents, cut program costs, encourage work and expand homeownership opportunities.

MHI was a part of a coalition of more than 40 housing and advocacy groups advocating for Senate passage of this legislation, including other manufactured housing professionals, and states it has worked for over a decade urging passage of these reforms. ##

(Image credit:Manufactured Housing Institute)

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House GOP Aiming to Lift Crippling CFPB Regulations

June 15th, 2016 Comments off

paul ryan with mother betty douglas the villages scott audette dash reutersDubbed “A Better Way,” House Republicans stated the red tape of bureaucracies has gotten out of hand, and they have proposed rules easing the drilling for oil, coal mining, governing internet traffic and promoting small business employment, according to what washingtontimes tells MHProNews.

House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI), in presenting the agenda, said it is intended to be a blueprint for unshackling the American economy and unifying the party, notably leaving out immigration and trade reform, two issues that separate Ryan and other Republicans from presumptive presidential candidate Donald Trump.

If the proposals that are cooked up in these bureaucracies are really so important, then let the people’s elected representatives decide — no major regulation should become law unless Congress takes a vote,” Mr. Ryan, (R-WI), said.

House GOP members say regulation cost the U. S. economy $2 trillion last year as the economy struggles to rise farther from the crippling 2008 recession. The party says coal mining can continue without wrecking the environment or putting the coal industry out of business, which would cost thousands of jobs.

On financial issues the GOP will push for bankruptcy not bail-outs if a big bank should fail. Said House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling, Texas Republican: “We were told the regulations of Dodd-Frank would make our economy more stable, but the regulations have led to the big banks getting bigger and the small banks getting fewer.”

Conservative pressure group Heritage Action likes the plan, but House Democrat Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) said the agenda would poison the water we drink and the air we breathe, “while rolling back critical protections for American consumers and taking the cops off the Wall Street beat.”

Although some conservatives want to dismantle the CFPB, the House GOP calls for reforming the agency, hopefully easing the rule that inhibits financing of manufactured homes, which hurts buyers and sellers especially at the lowest income scale.

Further, the House GOP wants to pull back on federal rules that increase compliance cost on colleges and universities that results in higher tuition costs. ##

(Photo credit: reuters/Scott Audette–Speaker Paul Ryan with mother Betty Douglas at The Villages in Fla.)

matthew-silver-daily-business-news-mhpronews-comArticle submitted by Matthew J Silver to Daily Business News-MHProNews.

CFPB Director Cordray tells Whistleblower to have her Attorneys “Back Down”

May 31st, 2016 Comments off

consumer_financial_protection_bureausteve rhode slas get oug of debt org__kicks_aClaiming senior managers within her office bullied and demoted her for filing a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) office, Angela Martin said in testimony before the House Committee on Financial Services that the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) had a “pervasive” culture of intimidation and hostility within the bureau, adding that CFPB Director Richard Cordray personally called her and said to have her attorneys “back down” after speaking out against mismanagement.

A senior enforcement attorney at the CFPB and former civilian attorney for the judge advocate general at Fort Bragg, Martin said Scott Pluta, the CFPB assistant director of the Office of Consumer Response, demoted her after she filed a formal complaint of discrimination for being “isolated” and prevented from performing any “meaningful work” in Dec. 2012.

There is a pervasive culture of retaliation and intimidation that silences employees and chills the workforce from exposing wrongdoing,” she said.

Martin alleges that in the two minute conversation with Director Cordray, he also said he was assigning her to another position within the agency, but the next day Martin discovered that position went to someone else, as MHProNews has learned.

A workplace private investigator who was hired by the CFPB to investigate the case, Misty Raucci, backed up Martin’s testimony, and said after six months she became a “veritable hotline for employees at CFPB, who called to discuss their own maltreatment at the bureau, mainly at the hands of Scott Pluta or [CFPB official] Dane D’Alessandro.”

Raucci stated Martin was subjected to “open bashing, bullying and marginalization” by D’Alessandro, and Pluta removed her from her position as chief counsel in the Office of Consumer Response.

Raucci alleges Pluta encouraged two lower-level employees to file complaints against Martin, one of whom stood to directly benefit from Martin’s removal from her position.

I found that the general environment in Consumer Response is one of exclusion, retaliation, discrimination, nepotism, demoralization, devaluation, and other offensive working conditions which constitute a toxic workplace for many of its employees,” said Raucci.

While Martin’s complaint is still pending, Raucci said she has received complaints from a dozen other CFPB employees.

Vowing to continue investigating what he sees is a hostile work environment at the CFPB, Rep. Jeb Hensarling (R-TX), Chairman of the House Financial Services Committee said, “Hearing evidence of government-sanctioned discrimination is beyond the pale. And as chairman of this committee, if this was merely restricted to Ms. Martin’s story—as compelling as it is—I would not have allowed this hearing to go forward,” Hensarling said. “But instead, regrettably, shamefully, this appears to be the tip of the iceberg.”

CFPB officials were invited to testify before the committee, but the agency refused to send any witnesses.

While first calling for cancellation of the hearing, Ranking Member of the Financial Services Committee Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) and Rep. Al Green (D-Texas) are now calling for a hearing with CFPB management to discuss the allegations against the agency since hearing Ms. Martin’s and Ms. Raucci’s testimony. ##

(Image credit: steverhodesletsgetoutofdebt)

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Dodd-Frank Act is Harming the Economy, says Donald Trump

May 18th, 2016 Comments off

Donald_trump__newsmax_mediaIn an interview with Reuters, presidential candidate Donald Trump stated financial reforms implemented under President Obama, specifically the Dodd-Frank Act, and the ensuing Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), are stifling the economy and he would ditch most all of their provisions.

Dodd-Frank has made it impossible for bankers to function,” he said. “It makes it very hard for bankers to loan money for people to create jobs, for people with businesses to create jobs. And that has to stop.”

In about two weeks he will release a plan for overhauling Dodd-Frank, which would be tantamount to dismantling of the legislation, prompting Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton to say that is a “reckless idea” which would “leave middle-class families out to dry.”

Dodd-Frank was passed in the aftermath of the Great Recession to make banks less vulnerable in times of crisis, but it also had the unintended consequence of making it more difficult for consumers to purchase manufactured homes, something the CFPB’s Director Richard Cordray could change with the stroke of a pen, as MHProNews understands.

Congressional Republicans have tried to ease the burden of the new regulations on small and medium-sized banks, and have called for the replacement of the sole CFPB director with a commission, as well as bringing the agency under Congressional oversight. Some have said the CFPB needs to be shelved altogether.

Banks and other lenders have spent six years and millions of dollars in attempting to comply with the law, according to newsmax.

John Hall, of the American Bankers Association (ABA), said, “Every law can be improved, and Dodd-Frank is no exception. Sometimes there are drafting errors. Sometimes a good idea in theory turns out to be unworkable after a closer look in the light of day.”

Representative Jeb Hensarling (R-TX), the chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, who has endorsed Mr. Trump, intends to release his own financial reform package in several weeks.

However, Dennis Kelleher of Better Markets said Trump’s plan would be “a slap in the face to the American people who have suffered so much from the 2008 crash.”

While Trump has not discussed specifics of his plan, he suggested that financial institutions should separate commercial banking activities from investment banking.

He did praise Fed Chair Janet Yellen for keeping interest rates low, but when her term expires he would replace her with a Republican.

For more information on an MH related topic, click here. ##

(Photo credit: newsmax–presidential candidate Donald Trump)

matthew-silver-daily-business-news-mhpronews-comArticle submitted by Matthew J. Silver to Daily Business News-MHProNews.