Congresswoman Dina Titus of Nevada's Third District sent the following letter to Secretary Geithner yesterday inviting him to Southern Nevada to meet with homeowners who have had difficulty working with their bank in an attempt to modify their mortgage and to discuss ways to improve current housing programs. Titus has been sending monthly letters to the administration on the foreclosure crisis in Southern Nevada.
Below is the text of the letter:
July 15, 2010
The Honorable Timothy Geithner
Secretary -- Department of the Treasury
1500 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, D.C. 20220
Dear Secretary Geithner,
Thank you for the work that you and the Obama administration did to develop and pass comprehensive financial regulatory reform legislation. Because of lax and inconsistent regulators and reckless greed on Wall Street, families across Southern Nevada are struggling to keep a roof over their heads or establish a strong financial future. It is my hope that the Senate will pass the final version of this legislation as quickly as possible so these badly needed reforms can take effect.
As you know, Southern Nevada is ground zero for our nation's foreclosure crisis. Years of unchecked speculation and Wall Street greed fueled a housing bubble that has burst, causing pain and hardship for many of my constituents. Through no fault of their own, many homeowners are struggling to stay current on their mortgages. In order to avoid foreclosure, some have tried to work with their lender to modify their mortgage to a payment structure they can afford. Unfortunately, for far too many of these homeowners, attempting to work with their lenders has yielded much frustration and few results.
My office was among the first Congressional offices to work directly with homeowners as they attempted to modify their loans. As a result, my staff has seen firsthand the frustration and anger experienced by struggling homeowners trying to work with their servicer to modify their loan. Phone calls often go unreturned, paperwork is misplaced or unread, and unclear information is provided. Despite receiving a bailout from the taxpayers, Wall Street appears to be comfortable turning its back on struggling homeowners on Main Street. I did not support TARP because I did not believe adequate safeguards were put in place to ensure that Wall Street would work to help homeowners.
I write today to invite you to Southern Nevada to meet with homeowners who have attempted to work with their servicers to modify their loans. This conversation will allow you to hear directly from homeowners stories of their experiences and suggestions for what can be done to improve modification efforts such as the administration's "Making Home Affordable" program.
As my constituents continue to struggle making mortgage payments and attempting to work with their servicers, I hope that this meeting can be arranged as quickly as possible.
Member of Congress