Ginnie Mae's commitment authority would rise 22% and FHA's ability to insure mortgages would swell by 40% for the rest of this fiscal year under legislation that cleared the House and now is before the Senate Banking Committee.

H.R. 2531, the Housing Programs Extension Act of 1992, in essence lets Ginnie Mae and FHA avoid running out of commitment authority before the fiscal year closes on Sept. 30. The bill pushes the Government National Mortgage Association's commitment authority to $107.7 billion from $88 billion and the Federal Housing Administration's mortgage insurance authority to $92.15 billion from $65.91 billion.

The measure was approved at 1 a.m. June 29 in the House on a voice vote with scant debate. There was no immediate word on when it would be taken up by the Senate, which doesn't return to work until July 12 but presumably would act on it quickly.

The legislation also extends a requirement to Sept. 30, 1994, for reciprocity for housing subdivision mortgage approvals between HUD and the Department of Veterans Affairs. The provision, which expired June 15, lets HUD consider a VA certificate of reasonable value on one or more properties in a housing subdivision to be an administrative approval for an entire subdivision.

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