TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (1/27/16)--In what the League of Southeastern Credit Unions described as “good news” for its member credit unions, a bill to clear the way for state-chartered credit unions to enter the Federal Home Loan Bank (FHLB) mortgage purchasing program has passed the House Insurance and Banking subcommittee.
HB 1233, sponsored by Rep. Cynthia Stevenson (R-St. Johns), would amend current law to allow the Florida Office of Financial Regulation (OFR) to share examination reports with FHLBank Atlanta under an information-sharing agreement that would need to be entered into by Aug. 1.
The legislation would allow member credit unions to sell mortgages into the secondary market in a more efficient and cost-effective manner (eSignal Jan. 26).
“The legislation helps credit unions because currently the OFR believes they are not permitted by law to share examination reports with FHLBank,” Jared Ross, LSCU senior vice president of association services, told News Now. “This bill specifically allows and requires them to enter into an information-sharing agreement. Once the agreement is in place, state-chartered credit unions would be able to enter the FHLBank's mortgage program.”
FHLBank Atlanta has similar information-sharing agreements with other states. The bill now moves to the Government Operations Appropriations Subcommittee. The Senate bill (SB 1490), sponsored Sen. Rene Garcia (R-Hialeah), will be heard in its first committee soon.
Also, HB1181, a bill that would amend the state Patent Troll Protection Act, passed out of the House Civil Justice Subcommittee Tuesday.
As originally filed, the legislation removed the private cause of action language that the league fought hard to include last year. After several weeks of discussions with the stakeholders and the sponsor of the legislation, most of the league's concerns were addressed. Ross testified about those concerns, which were recognized by members of the committee and the bill sponsor, Rep. Jamie Grant (R-Tampa). They committed to working with all interested parties moving forward.
The bill, which did have private cause of action reinstated, now moves to the Judiciary Committee.
The Senate bill (SB 1298), sponsored by Rep. Jeff Brandes (R-St. Petersburg), has not yet been heard in committee but is expected to be soon.