State issues

Texas House of Representatives studies housing

Two days ago I posted the interim studies being conducted on housing by the Texas Senate.  Let’s expand that list of studies by including the ongoing hearings being held by three committees in the Texas  House of Representatives.

The House Committee on Urban Affairs will conduct hearings on interim charges 1, 3, 4 and 5 (see below) this Thursday at 10:00 a.m.  A broadcast of the hearing will be streamed on the web.

HOUSE COMMITTEE ON URBAN AFFAIRS

1. Assess the current senior housing market and available options for affordable senior housing.

2. Research and update legislation that permits residential neighborhoods whose deed restrictions have lapsed to reinstate those deed restrictions or create neededdeed restrictions through a petition committee by expanding them to more areas.

3. Study and evaluate the levels, methods and alternatives by which the state funds all affordable housing programs, focusing on administrative cost-effectiveness to determine greater returns on investment, savings and efficiency. Examine the current procedures and applications of the annual, integrated Low IncomeHousing Plan prepared by the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs, and prepare recommendations for the development of a comprehensive, long-range, statewide plan or model to address growing needs throughout the state.

4. Monitor current methodology involving departmental rules, procedures andpolicies governing state and federal compliance in the evaluation and ranking of all multifamily affordable housing applications for the allocation of funds during the annualawards cycles.

5. Examine the development and implementation of a physical standards (asset oversight) rating system for multifamily residential rental facilities, to be used by all local and state issuers of tax-exempt bonds and tax credits, to determine eligibility for future financing and for compliance enforcement purposes.

6. Examine the policies and procedures by which local tax appraisers value rent-restricted affordable housing properties, and authorize legislatively established tax exemptions. Evaluate application and interpretation of existing statutes by local appraisal districts to affordable housing properties throughout the life cycle of developments. Make recommendations for statutory changes. (Joint Interim Charge with the House Committee on Local Government Ways and Means)

HOUSE COMMITTEE ON INSURANCE

7. Study the need for a state catastrophe fund to protect the Texas economy against major disasters. Examine the structure and performance of such funds in other states and assess the potential of such a fund to reduce the reinsurance costs and premiums borne by Texas homeowners.

HOUSE COMMITTEE ON FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS

1. Monitor federal rules and regulations on lending and determine the state’s role in regulating issues that relate to the mortgage foreclosure process, disclosures for loan terms, home equity, mortgage brokers, mortgage bankers, consumer protections, and counseling for mortgage products.

2. Monitor the implementation of HB 716, 80th Legislature, Regular Session, to determine if there is a need to further legislate the protection of homebuyers in mortgage fraud schemes, emphasizing the impact in the foreclosure process.

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