MBA Advocacy Update

Steve O'Connor soconnor@mba.org; Bill Killmer bkillmer@mba.org

April 22, 2019

   

Congress continued its two-week recess as members remained in their districts for the Passover/Easter/Spring District Work Period. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Director Kathy Kraninger gave a speech detailing her approach to the Bureau, while FHA issued guidance clarifying eligibility for downpayment assistance sources.   

CFPB Director Kathy Kraninger Lays Out Vision for Bureau
Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Director Kathy Kraninger outlined her vision for the Bureau in a speech at the Bipartisan Policy Center, touching on her views on appropriate use of the Bureau's regulatory, supervisory and enforcement powers.  

A consistent theme was the need to emphasize prevention of consumer harm before it occurs through education, regulatory clarity and use of the supervisory process. Of particular note was her announcement of a Fair Debt Collection Practices Act rule in the near future that would place bright-line limits on collection calls and provide clarity on appropriate use of new technology. Kraninger stated her belief that the need to prospectively address issues of consumer harm will spur CFPB to clearly define how to measure prevention of such harm. It is her hope that success will lead to fewer public enforcement actions.   

This speech was a welcome development and signaled a focus on several important issues to MBA and its members. Her emphasis on clear, bright-line rules and commitment to understanding regulatory burden are crucial components of MBA's CFPB 2.0 Road Map that lays out how the Bureau should continue its evolution into a stable, neutral and vigorous consumer regulator. This is a vision that Kraninger specifically endorsed in the Q&A following her speech.  

For more information, please contact Justin Wiseman at (202) 557-2854 jwiseman@mba.org.  

FHA Issues Guidance on Eligible Downpayment Assistance Sources
On Thursday, HUD issued Mortgagee Letter 19-06, which clarifies parameters of eligible downpayment assistance sources for FHA-insured loans (https://www.hud.gov/sites/dfiles/OCHCO/documents/19-06hsgml.pdf).   In the letter, HUD notes that "It has come to FHA's attention that certain Governmental Entities may be acting beyond the scope of any inherent or granted governmental authority" when providing downpayment assistance.  

To address this concern, HUD will now require new types of documentation from lenders to ensure that government entities are acting in their governmental capacities when providing funds to borrowers. Notably, the letter also appears to limit downpayment assistance by federally recognized Indian Tribes to properties located on Tribal land or to borrowers who are enrolled members of the Tribe.   This guidance is effective for all loans with FHA case numbers assigned on or after April 18.  

For more information, please contact Dan Fichtler at (202) 557-2780 dfichtler@mba.org; Julienne Joseph at (202) 557-2782 jjoseph@mba.org; or Andrea Oh at (202) 557-2922 aoh@mba.org.  

FHFA Names Adolfo Marzol as Principal Deputy Director
Shortly after Mark Calabria was sworn last week as Federal Housing Finance Agency Director, the Agency announced Adolfo Marzol has been appointed Principal Deputy Director. Marzol, a respected industry veteran, has held senior leadership positions with Essent, Fannie Mae, Chase Mortgage, Equitable Mortgage and HUD. In his role at FHFA, Marzol will report directly to Calabria and advise on a wide range of policy issues.  

The appointment of Marzol comes as FHFA not only undertakes a leadership change, but also as the Agency works to finalize rollout of the Uniform Mortgage-Backed Security and make further progress on an updated capital framework for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. MBA looks forward to ongoing work with Calabria, Marzol and the rest of the FHFA leadership team as these initiatives advance.  

For more information, please contact Dan Fichtler at (202) 557-2780 dfichtler@mba.org.  

MBA Comments on Proposed Maryland Lender Regulations
MBA submitted a comment letter last week (http://mba-pc.informz.net/mba-pc/data/images/Maryland%20Regulations%20Comment%20Letter_FINAL.pdf) to the Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation in response to its proposed changes to regulations that govern mortgage lending activities in the state (http://mba-pc.informz.net/mba-pc/data/images/Proposed%203-1-2019%20Mortgage%20Lender%20Regulations.pdf).  

Published in the Maryland Register on March 1, the proposal touches on multiple aspects of the mortgage business--origination, servicing, legal compliance and technology policy. In addition, the recent proposal reflects an update to proposed regulatory changes that were previously offered in 2017.  

MBA and a variety of other stakeholders provided comment on the previous proposal and some concerns that were raised in those comments are addressed by DLLR's most recent version of the proposal. MBA will continue to work with DLLR going forward and advocate for greater consistency in its proposed rules.  

For more information, please contact Kobie Pruitt at (202) 557-2870 kpruitt@mba.org.  

Momentum for Remote Online Notarization Continues in Multiple States
Last week, Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey (R) signed SB 1030 into law, making Arizona the sixth state in 2019 to enact remote online notarization. Sixteen states have now established RON as a permissible method of performing notarizations for real estate finance transactions. In addition, the Maryland General Assembly (SB 678) and the Washington State Legislature (SB 5641) passed their own RON laws, which are now being prepared for signature by their respective governors. Both bills follow the contours of the MBA-American Land Title Association model state RON bill, which is helping to establish a national consensus among state policy makers for RON laws and rules.  

Recently, MBA also collaborated with the New York Mortgage Bankers Association, ALTA and the New York State Land Title Association on a letter to sponsors of New York RON legislation (A4076/S4352) that does not comport with developing consensus on how to safely implement RON. In the letter, the groups suggested the sponsors review the MBA-ALTA state RON bill and consider adopting the language of the model.    

To view the model bill, all the support materials for the MBA-ALTA campaign, and the latest RON developments, please visit MBA's RON Resource Center at www.mba.org/RemoteOnlineNotarization.  

For more information, please contact William Kooper at (202) 557-2737 wkooper@mba.org; or Kobie Pruitt at (202) 557-2870 kpruitt@mba.org.  

MBA Education Webinar Apr. 25 on Basics of Private-Label RMBS
Join MBA Education on April 25 as subject matter experts present an introduction to private-label residential mortgage-backed securities.  

This webinar will begin with a history of RMBS, including pre- and post-crises RMBS issuances. It will also cover basic RMBS structures and related documentation and agreements. The roles of typical parties to those agreements, and the role of mortgage bankers in particular, will also be analyzed. Finally, select legal considerations, such as the requirements of Regulation AB and the enforcement of representations and warranties relating to the mortgage loans, will be discussed with a focus on how those issues apply to mortgage bankers.  

To register for the webinar, click https://www.mba.org/store/events/webinar/understanding-the-basics-of-private-label-rmbs.  

For more information, please contact Lisa Volb at LVolb@mba.org or 202-557-2919.

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