FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 1, 2012
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Oregon Homeowners will Suffer While they Wait for Foreclosure Relief
With the short February session winding down, advocates today believe that all hope of passing foreclosure reform is lost. Two bills, SB1552 and SB1564 would have brought significant relief to homeowners across Oregon who are at risk of foreclosure. SB1552 and SB1564 were passed with large, bi-partisan majorities by the Senate, but stalled in the House.
“The overwhelming tide of foreclosures and financial security are threatening to permanently undermine the foundations of our state. We needed our Legislators to make decisions to protect Oregonians, and take action to rebuild our state,” said Janet Byrd, Chair of the Housing Alliance. “These bills would have been decisive action to stop the havoc and despair caused by foreclosures.”
SB1552 and SB1564 would have provided homeowners with timely and accurate information about their choices to allow them to make informed decisions. The bills would have also guaranteed fair dealing by the banks, and would have equipped homeowners to make good decisions based on good information. Together with the national settlement resources, these changes would have significantly and positively affected Oregonians at risk of foreclosure.
“Without these protections, we will continue to see homeowners act in good faith on information provided to them, only to learn that the sands have shifted,” continued Byrd. “We still have choices to make that can help Oregon homeowners. Now is the time for Legislators and others to come to the table and figure out a way forward using the Attorney General settlement dollars to positively impact the lives of Oregon homeowners. We need to use this precious resource wisely.”
While the Housing Alliance knows that homeowners and communities will suffer as they wait until the next Legislative session for decisive action, we continue to be hopeful that the bi-partisan agreement by the Legislature to put funds from the Attorney General settlement into uses that will help support homeowners will continue. These resources can make a significant difference for Oregon homeowners.
“While the path ahead is difficult, we continue to believe that Oregonians working together can find solutions to the foreclosure crisis,” said Byrd. “We can make the right choice to best protect and ensure the future we all want.”