Kemp Panel Says Enforcement Of Laws Would Benefit Housing

WASHINGTON - Financial regulators could improve the supply of affordable housing by vigorously enforcing community reinvestment and antidiscrimination laws, a federal advisory commission has told President Bush.

The call for stricter enforcement of the Community Reinvestment Act and Home Mortgage Disclosure Act was among 31 recommendations Monday by the Advisory Commission on Regulatory Barriers to Affordable Housing.

Procedures Called Barrier

The 22-member commission, appointed by the secretary of housing and urban development, Jack Kemp, examined regulations - ranging from zoning ordinances to environmental protection laws - that increase the cost of housing.

"Needless rules, red tape, and the |Not in my backyard' syndrome are keeping millions of American families out of housing they should be able to afford," the panel charged.

The commission said the 1989 thrift bailout law disrupted traditional credit relationships and imposed stricter lending rules. In some markets, the rules have spawned intense competition for funds, which is likely to continue to increase housing costs.

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