Summary: H.R.1315 — 112th Congress (2011-2012)All Information (Except Text)

Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

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Passed House amended (07/21/2011)

Title I: Consumer Financial Protection Safety and Soundness Improvement Act of 2011 - Consumer Financial Protection Safety and Soundness Improvement Act of 2011 - (Sec. 102) Amends the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act to authorize the Chairperson of the Financial Stability Oversight Council to issue a stay of, or set aside, any regulation issued by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) upon the affirmative vote of the majority (currently, two-thirds) of Council members, excluding the Chair of the Commission of the CFPB (as provided for in this Act).

Applies to a petition by nonvoting members of the Council for review of a CFPB final regulation the procedures and requirements that apply to a petition by an agency represented by a member of the Council.

Authorizes an agency or a nonvoting member of the Council to make petitions on any subject matter, regardless of their areas of particular expertise.

Prohibits a Council member from voting on the decision to issue a stay of, or set aside, any regulation under Dodd-Frank if such member has, within the previous two-year period, been employed by any company or other entity that is subject to such regulation.

(Sec. 103) Requires the Council, upon the petition of a member agency of the Council, to set aside a final regulation prescribed by the Bureau if the Council decides that such regulation is inconsistent with the safe and sound operations of U.S. financial institutions. (Currently the Council is merely authorized, upon petition, to set aside a final regulation, but only if the regulation would put the safety and soundness of the U.S. banking system or the stability of the U.S. financial system at risk.)

Repeals: (1) the prohibition against Council set-aside of a regulation after expiration of a specified deadline (unless a stay is issued); and (2) mandatory dismissal of a petition if the Council has not issued a decision by such deadline.

Requires Council meetings that are convened to issue a stay of, or set aside, any regulation to be open to public observation. Requires the Council to provide live online streaming or broadcasting of the meetings.

(Sec. 104) Establishes a Commission to serve as head of the Bureau, in lieu of a single Director, and to prescribe regulations and issue orders. Prescribes the composition of the Commission as the Vice Chairman for Supervision of the Federal Reserve System and four additional members who shall be appointed by the President, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate. Requires such members to have strong competencies and experiences related to consumer financial protection. Recommends that they also should want to protect service members and their families who are sacrificing their lives for this country from abusive financial practices.

Requires one member of the Commission to have as his or her primary responsibility the oversight of CFPB activities pertaining to protecting consumers, with a focus on consumers who are older, minorities, youth, or veterans, from unfair, deceptive, and abusive lending practices.

Requires that no more than two members of the Commission be of the same political party.

(Sec. 106) Designates the single calendar date for the transfer to the Bureau of the consumer financial protection functions of other specified agencies to be: (1) the date that would have been designated, but for the application of this Act, and (2) the date on which the Chair of the Commission of the Bureau is confirmed by the Senate.

(Sec. 107) Directs the Inspector General of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System and the CFPB (IGs) to report annually to Congress and make accessible to the public: (1) a list of all new rules, guidelines, and regulations prescribed by the CFPB within the previous fiscal year; (2) a detailed list of all authority which the IGs believe overlaps with the efforts of other federal departments and agencies; (3) all administrative expenses of the CFPB, including the amount spent on salaries, office supplies, and office space, and (4) the current amount in the CFPB Fund.

(Sec. 108) Requires the CFPB, each time it proposes a new rule or regulation, to carry out: (1) an initial regulatory flexibility analysis, including the financial impact of the proposed rule or regulation on all financial entities, regardless of size; and (2) an analysis of whether the proposed rule or regulation will impair the ability of individuals and small business to access credit from financial institutions.

Title II: FHA Refinance Program Termination Act - FHA Refinance Program Termination Act - (Sec. 202) Rescinds and permanently cancels all unexpended balances of certain amounts made available under the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act (EESA) that have been allocated for use under the FHA Refinance Program of the Making Home Affordable initiative of the Secretary of the Treasury.

(Sec. 203) Declares null and void Mortgagee Letter 2010-23 of the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

Prohibits HUD from: (1) issuing any regulation, order, notice, or mortgagee letter based on or substantially similar to such Mortgagee Letter; or (2) newly insuring any mortgage under the FHA Refinance Program except pursuant to a commitment to insure made before enactment of this Act.

Directs HUD to: (1) terminate the FHA Refinance Program, and (2) study and report to Congress on the extent of its usage by and its impact upon, covered homeowners (members of the U.S. Armed Forces, veterans, members and veterans with service-connected disabilities [and their survivors and dependents], and persons eligible to receive a Gold Star lapel pin as a widow, parent, or next of kin of certain deceased members of the Armed Forces).

(Sec. 204) Requires HUD to publish on its Website that: (1) the FHA Short Refinance Program has been terminated, and (2) individuals having trouble paying a mortgage and needing help contacting their lender or servicer to negotiate or acquire a loan modification should contact their Members of Congress to assist them.