On Tuesday, April 28, 2009, the House Financial Services Committee voted in favor of attaching an amendment to H.R. 1728, "The Mortgage Reform and Anti-Predatory Lending Act of 2009" that would withdraw the Final RESPA Rule. The amendment, offered by Representative Judy Biggert (R-IL), stated that the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) should work in conjunction with the Federal Reserve Board (Board) to develop and issue a new rule to address simplifying the mortgage process within six months of the passage of H.R. 1728.
This is a victory for NAMB as we have requested that HUD withdraw the RESPA Rule and work together with the Board to simplify the mortgage process in our comment letters, calls to action, and communications to Congress. H.R. 1728 is tentatively scheduled to be voted upon by the full House of Representatives on May 7, 2009.
My question is this. Does the legislative branch have the authority to direct HUD to withdraw its final rule? I don't think so. They can certainly apply pressure but unless they are re-writing RESPA itself, the rulemaking is the prerogative of the regulator isn't it?