Two years ago, Congress passed the SAFE Act, intended to regulate commercial lenders and protect homeowners from unfair mortgage lending. Some states, however, have misinterpreted the law, imposing major burdens on local Habitat for Humanity affiliates, such as expensive bonding and licensing requirements, even though this bill was never meant to restrict nonprofit organizations like Habitat. Many local Habitat affiliates simply cannot continue serving families in need if these onerous requirements are applied to them. And in some states, time is quickly running out.
In California, the SAFE Act was signed by the Governor in October 2009 and will take effect soon. On behalf of the 49 Habitat affiliates in California, our affiliate sent an exemption request and a legal analysis to the Department of Corporations. That request is pending. We are also seeking support from the Attorney General. We will keep you posted on that, but in the meantime, Rep. Heath Shuler of North Carolina has stepped forward with a simple and effective fix. In a single stroke, the Shuler bill (H.R. 4400) will provide clarification at the national level, allowing states to protect Habitat mortgages, and allowing Habitat affiliates to continue their important work—but only if we ensure it has enough votes to pass.
Please contact your congressperson and encourage him/her to co-sponsor Rep. Shuler’s fix to the SAFE Act. Let’s get our members of congress to support this bill!
All you need to do is click here. Time is running out. Please take 2 minutes to ask your Congressperson to support this critical, common-sense effort.
Please send an email and encourage family and friends to do the same. Information on the SAFE Act will be posted to our website. For more information on the Shuler bill, visit www.thomas.gov and search for H.R. 4400.
Thanks for your help.
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Labels: attorney general, build with Habitat for Humanity, california governor, congressman government, mortgage lending, safe act