February 15, 2012

Federal officials: Deal holds banks accountable

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In a guest column today in the Las Vegas Sun, Secretary Donovan and Attorney General Eric Holder talk about the historic mortgage servicing settlement.

Too often, real progress in Washington can be stymied by bureaucratic red tape, turf fights, or conflicts between federal and state authorities. Unfortunately, it has become a place where partisan deadlock and political games can threaten to crowd out substantive debate.

In times of crisis – when people’s livelihoods are in jeopardy and families are losing their homes to foreclosure – they deserve better than intransigent bureaucracy. They need and deserve a government that actually solves problems.

This past week, the Obama Administration and a bipartisan coalition of 49 state attorneys general demonstrated what can be accomplished when people put aside turf wars and focus on what they can do to make things better. By working closely with one another across federal agencies, state boundaries, and party lines, we reached a historic mortgage servicing settlement on behalf of American homeowners.

This $25 billion joint federal-state civil settlement – the largest ever obtained – addresses foreclosure processing violations by the nation’s five largest mortgage servicers. It will provide immediate relief to 1.75 million homeowners, in part by forcing banks to reduce the principal balance on many loans, refinancing loans for “underwater” borrowers, and paying billions of dollars to states and consumers.

Read more at Las Vegas Sun.com

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