Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-CA), Chairwoman of the House Committee on Financial Services, gave the following statement at a full Committee markup.
Today, this Committee will consider a number of bills to reduce housing costs, save lives, put consumers first, support small businesses and entrepreneurs, and protect whistleblowers.
As we mark homeownership month this June, I want to acknowledge how the sharp increase in home prices have exacerbated barriers to homeownership. To reduce those barriers, we will mark up my bill, H.R. 4495, the “Downpayment Toward Equity Act of 2021,” which would authorize $100 billion to provide financial assistance to first-time, first-generation homebuyers to put towards a downpayment for a home.
We will also mark up two more bills that will also help reduce housing costs for families. These bills include, H.R. 3111, the “Grandfamily Housing Act,” led by Representatives McGovern and Pressley, which would authorize $100 million to support the housing needs of intergenerational families, and H.R. 68, the “Housing Fairness Act,” introduced by Representative Green, which would provide significant new investments to fight housing discrimination and segregation, and help make housing more available and affordable for everyone.
Additionally, to ensure the safety of the lives of families in federally assisted housing, we are marking up H.R. 6528, the “Housing Temperature Safety Act of 2022,” led by Representative Torres, which would establish a pilot program at HUD to install and study the efficacy of temperature sensors in federally assisted housing, as well as H.R. 7981, the “Public and Federally Assisted Housing Fire Safety Act of 2022,” a bipartisan bill led by Representative Dean, that would require the installation of tamper-resistant or hardwired smoke alarms in federally assisted housing.
With this markup, we also continue this Committee’s effort to put consumers first by marking up H.R. 4277, the “Overdraft Protection Act”, led by Representative Maloney, which would strengthen disclosures to consumers under the Truth In Lending Act and protect consumers against exorbitant overdraft fees. In addition, H.R. 5912, the “Close the ILC Loophole Act,” a bipartisan bill introduced by Representative Chuy Garcia, would close a loophole that puts consumers at risk by allowing commercial firms to open and operate FDIC-insured banks as industrial loan companies without being subject to the same supervision that traditional banks are subject to under the Bank Holding Company Act.
We also continue this Committee’s work to support small businesses and entrepreneurs that are the backbone of our economy. My bill, H.R. 7977, “Promoting Opportunities for Non-Traditional Capital Formation Act,” aims to do just that by requiring the Advocate for Small Business Capital Formation at the SEC to assist traditionally underserved small businesses, and those led by entrepreneurs of color, on how to raise funding within our securities markets. And, as the pandemic continues to harm small businesses around the country, Representative Lawson’s bill, H.R. 6814, “Small Business Fair Debt Collection Protection Act” would amend the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act to extend protections to small businesses that are currently in place for individual consumers to guard against predatory debt practices.
Finally, to promote a culture of accountability by protecting whistleblowers, we will also mark up a bill led by Representative Adams, H.R. 7195, entitled “to provide for certain whistleblower incentives and protections,” which would modify the structure and function of the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network’s, or FinCEN's, recently mandated whistleblower program.
We will also mark up a bill by Representative Wagner, the “Risk-Based Credit Examination Act,” to empower the SEC to more effectively oversee credit rating agencies.
The bills we are marking up today will benefit working families all across this country—building on House Democrats’ efforts to address the rising inflation by reducing the cost of housing, preventing corporate price gouging, and holding bad actors accountable.