WASHINGTON Senate Banking Committee Chairman Tim Johnson and Sen. Mike Crapo, the panel's top Republican, announced Thursday they have reached an agreement on legislation to overhaul the Federal Housing Administration.
The duo did not release details on the deal, but are expected to provide more information next week. Instead, they released a joint statement indicating the deal was the first step toward comprehensive housing finance reform, which would be pursued after FHA reform is enacted.
"Earlier this year, we agreed that the Committee would first address the issues facing the solvency of FHA before turning to comprehensive housing finance reform legislation," the statement said. "After months of hard work we have reached bipartisan agreement on a path forward to give the FHA the tools it needs to get back on stable footing. We are in the process of finalizing the text of our bipartisan bill and plan to release details publicly next week. We believe we have found solid common ground and are optimistic that we will be able to move this bipartisan legislation forward expeditiously."
House Republicans released a GSE reform bill on Thursday that also included changes to the FHA. Under the bill by House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling, R-Texas, and other top GOP panel leaders, the FHA would be split off from the Department of Housing and Urban Development and rolled back to serve just first-time and moderate-income borrowers.