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Letter to the Honorable Eric Holder, Attorney General of the United States, U.S. Department of Justice, the Honorable Ben S. Bernanke, Chairman, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, and the Honorable Timothy Geithner, Secretary of the U.S. De

Congresswoman Shelley Berkley today released the text of a letter signed by 14 members of the House Democratic Caucus Housing Stabilization Task Force sent to U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, Attorney General Eric Holder and Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke. The letter, spearheaded by Berkley, calls on the trio to utilize their respective authority to examine how the nation's financial institutions are handling foreclosure proceedings. The inquiry is in response to recent revelations about employees responsible for certifying foreclosure documentation failing to spend the time required to review each file. Berkley is co-chair of the House Democratic Task Force on Housing Stabilization. The full text of the letter and the names of those on the Task Force who signed along with Berkley appear below:
October 5, 2010

The Honorable Eric Holder, Attorney General of the United States
U.S. Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Room 1145
Washington, D.C. 20530

The Honorable Ben S. Bernanke, Chairman
Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System
Twentieth Street and Constitution Avenue, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20551

The Honorable Timothy Geithner, Secretary of the U.S. Department of the Treasury
U.S. Department of the Treasury
250 E Street, S.W., Room 9048
Washington, D.C. 20219

Dear Secretary Geithner, Attorney General Holder and Chairman Bernanke:

Recent reports that financial institutions may have approved thousands of foreclosures without having the proper documentation in place have caused us great concern. The undersigned Members of the U.S. House of Representatives Democratic Caucus Task Force on Housing Stabilization (Task Force) urge you to review and examine how our nation's financial institutions are handling foreclosure proceedings.

Many of our constituents have spent their lives working toward the American dream of homeownership. Yet, recent news coverage suggests that the employees responsible for certifying foreclosure documentation spent no more than a few moments reviewing each file. Our constituents deserve better.

While we have worked hard to strengthen the housing sector, we cannot do it alone. We need our banks and financial institutions to operate at the highest levels of responsibility and integrity. Failures, such as those currently being reported, simply cannot be tolerated. Therefore, we request that you respond to the following questions, in writing, as soon as possible:

* What steps are your respective departments taking to ensure that each and every foreclosure initiated by all financial institutions had been properly reviewed? How will you hold those who did not follow proper procedures accountable?
* How will your respective departments ensure that, moving forward, all mortgage servicers are following the proper procedures and safeguards throughout the foreclosure process?
* What steps, if any, will your respective departments take to help mitigate the harm to American homeowners affected by the troubling practices of these financial institutions?

Thank you in advance for your immediate attention to this matter. We look forward to working with you to address this issue.

Sincerely,

DENNIS CARDOZA
Member of Congress
Task Force, Co-Chair

SHELLEY BERKLEY
Member of Congress
Task Force, Co-Chair

JOE BACA
Member of Congress

JIM COSTA
Member of Congress

DANNY DAVIS
Member of Congress

THEODORE E. DEUTCH
Member of Congress

SAM FARR
Member of Congress

JIM MCDERMOTT
Member of Congress

BRAD MILLER
Member of Congress

ALBIO SIRES
Member of Congress

DINA TITUS
Member of Congress

TIM RYAN
Member of Congress

JOHN GARAMENDI
Member of Congress

KATHY CASTOR
Member of Congress

cc: Elizabeth Warren, Assistant to the President and Special Advisor to the Secretary of the Treasury on the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau


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