LANSING – February 13, 2009 – (RealEstateRama) — Sen. Randy Richardville, chair of the Senate Banking and Financial Institutions Committee, emphasized his commitment to addressing the home foreclosure crisis in Michigan Wednesday as the committee held its first meeting of the legislative term.
“During the past two years, I introduced several legislative packages to help improve problems in the mortgage industry,” said Richardville, R-Monroe. “Although the new laws are helping, we need to do more to address the home foreclosure crisis. I worked with the state House last year on bipartisan legislation, and I will continue to move forward on this important effort to help Michigan families stay in their homes.”
Richardville was recognized in 2008 for helping advance legislation that protects homeowners, reduces mortgage fraud and appraisal coercion, and safeguards public investment funds.
Richardville and committee members heard from the Filene Research Institute and the Rochester Institute of Technology on how to reduce foreclosures in Michigan and across the nation. The research team identified major factors that have contributed to the rise of mortgage foreclosures and recommended 10 policy changes that could decrease the foreclosure rate.
“As lawmakers, it’s important that we address the foreclosure crisis using sound research and facts,” Richardville said. “This academic study could help guide policymakers as we continue to develop solutions for this major problem. The committee will review the findings further to see how they may help Michigan homeowners.”
The committee also approved legislation that would allow credit unions to participate in a program that provides greater protection for funds invested by local governments and schools.
Senate Bills 195 and 196 would allow credit unions in Michigan to participate in the Certificate of Deposit Account Registry Service (CDARS) program offered by Promontory Interfinancial Network (PIN) if the network opens participation to credit unions or if another option for this same service emerges.
In 2008, state law was updated to permit local units of government and school districts to deposit public funds using the CDARS program offered by PIN, a nationwide network of banks.
“The legislation we passed last year allows participating financial institutions in Michigan to network with other banks to insure public fund deposits in excess of the $100,000 insurance threshold,” Richardville said. “It provides another method of safeguarding our local organizations’ investments in these uncertain economic times. Credit unions would like to have this same opportunity if possible in the future.”