Congresswoman Supports Bipartisan SCHIP Expansion Pkg.
CONGRESSWOMAN SHELLEY BERKLEY today [September 20, 2007] called on President Bush not to veto a bipartisan package that will provide more healthcare to children in Nevada and across the nation through an expansion of the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP).
"This package will not only protect those kids now enrolled in Nevada Check Up, it will also help provide healthcare to 70,000 additional Nevada children who are eligible for coverage. Keeping kids healthy by making sure they are able to receive regular medical and dental check-ups saves money in the long run for our nation," said Berkley. "President Bush is wrong to oppose giving more healthcare coverage to our kids and I will vote to override his veto. Nevada Check Up has already helped tens of thousands of families in the Silver State, but with more resources we can ensure more youngsters have regular access to vital healthcare services. Unfortunately, Nevada continues to have one of the highest percentages of uninsured families in the nation, and passage of this SCHIP package will mean more help for children in Las Vegas and other communities," Berkley said.
The Berkley-backed SCHIP legislation, expected before Congress next week, will continue to cover the six million children who currently participate in the program. The package also seeks to include an additional four million eligible kids who today have no healthcare coverage. The bipartisan proposal has the support of the National Governor's Association (NGA) and organizations such as AARP, Families USA, National Partnership for Women and Families, Alliance for Retired Americans, American Nurses Association, Mental Health America, American Academy of Pediatrics, American Academy of Family Physicians, American Heart Association, American Diabetes Association, Children's Defense Fund, Catholic Charities, Easter Seals, and March of Dimes.
Struggling with High Mortgage Costs
Package OK's More FHA Loans for
Refinancing Homes at Affordable Rates
CONGRESSWOMAN SHELLEY BERKLEY today [September 18, 2007] voted in favor of legislation that seeks to help Nevada families facing rising mortgage payments and possible foreclosure on their homes. The legislation, H.R. 1852, would allow the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) to guarantee refinanced loans for borrowers unable to make increased mortgage payments that have sky rocketed in many cases. Berkley's vote for The Expanding American Homeownership Act of 2007, which passed the House 348-72, comes as new reports show that Nevada led the nation in foreclosures during the month of August, with rates three times the national average.
"All across the U.S., families are facing the loss of their homes because of rising mortgage payments and this legislation will help Nevadans who desperately need to refinance their loans," said Berkley. "New figures show that Nevada led the nation last month in foreclosures, so anything Congress does to address this crisis helps the families I represent in the Las Vegas Valley. One important provision of this bill will enable the FHA to offer zero or low down payment loans to families in need, enabling many to avoid predatory lenders or to refinance at a rate they can afford. The goal of this package is to help keep more families in their homes and to lower the overall cost of home ownership for more Americans."
Key Provisions of The Expanding American Homeownership Act of 2007:
- Directs HUD to offer refinancing loans to help borrowers currently in default or at imminent risk of being in default.
- Permits the FHA to offer zero and lower down payment loans in refinancing home loans.
- More than doubles federal funding for housing counseling, to help subprime homebuyers who fall behind on their mortgage payments, and requires counseling for higher risk FHA borrowers prior to purchasing their home.
- Requires disclosures regarding the costs associated with lower down payment loans, so that borrowers can make a more informed decision about the type of loan they should take out.
- Directs FHA to serve higher risk borrowers who would otherwise be forced to turn to predatory and high priced mortgage loan alternatives, and authorizes HUD to set risk-based fees for these higher risk borrowers.
- Authorizes up to $300 million a year for affordable housing.