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Notice

S.A.F.E. (SAFE) Mortgage Licensing Act; Notification of Availability of Model Legislation

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AGENCY:

Office of the Assistant Secretary for Housing—Federal Housing Commissioner, HUD.

ACTION:

Notice.

SUMMARY:

This notice announces that the Conference of State Bank Supervisors and the American Association of Residential Mortgage Regulators have developed model legislation to assist states in meeting the minimum requirements of the SAFE Mortgage Licensing Act. HUD has reviewed this model legislation and finds that it meets the minimum requirements of the SAFE Mortgage Licensing Act. The model legislation is available on HUD's Web site at http://www.hud.gov/​offices/​hsg/​sfh/​reguprog.cfm, along with HUD commentary on certain provisions of the statute, and the model legislation.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

For information contact William Matchneer, Office of Regulatory Affairs and Manufactured Housing, Office of Housing, Department of Housing and Urban Development, 451 7th Street, SW., Washington, DC 20410-8000; telephone number 202-708-6401. (This is not a toll-free number.) Persons with hearing or speech impairments may access this number through TTY by calling the toll-free Federal Information Relay Service at 1-800-877-8339.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

The Secure and Fair Enforcement Mortgage Licensing Act of 2008 (SAFE Act or Act) was enacted into law on July 30, 2008, as part of the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008. This new law encourages the Conference of State Bank Supervisors (CSBS) and the American Association of Residential Mortgage Regulators (AARMR) to establish a nationwide mortgage Start Printed Page 313licensing system for the residential mortgage industry for the purpose of providing (1) uniform state-licensing application and reporting requirements for residential mortgage loan originators, and (2) a comprehensive database by which such mortgage loan originators may be found and tracked. This new law also imposes the obligation on states to adopt mortgage licensing requirements that meet the minimum standards specified in the law in lieu of HUD establishing and maintaining a licensing system for loan originators.

To aid and facilitate states' compliance with the requirements of the SAFE Act, the Act directs the establishment of a nationwide mortgage licensing system and registry (NMLSR), to be developed and maintained by CSBS and AARMR. If HUD determines that a state's mortgage loan originator licensing standards do not meet the minimum requirements of the Act, HUD must implement and administer a licensing system for that state. A loan originator in such a state would have to comply with the requirements of HUD's SAFE Act-compliant licensing system for that state as well as with any applicable state requirements. A HUD license for a state would be valid for that state only, even if HUD must implement licensing systems in multiple states. Additionally, if HUD determines that the NMLSR is failing to meet the requirements and purposes of the SAFE Act, HUD must establish a system that meets the requirements of the SAFE Act. While states are charged with enacting licensing standards that meet the requirements of the SAFE Act, overall responsibility for interpretation, implementation, and compliance of the SAFE Act rests with HUD.

To assist states in complying with the requirements of the SAFE Act, the CSBS and AARMR have developed model legislation. This legislation was developed through outreach to and consultation with the states and industry. HUD has reviewed this model legislation and finds that it meets the minimum requirements of the SAFE Act. State legislation that follows the provisions of the model state law will not be determined by HUD to be noncompliant with SAFE Act.

The model legislation, reviewed by HUD and found to be compliant with the SAFE Act, is available on HUD's Web site at http://www.hud.gov/​offices/​hsg/​sfh/​reguprog.cfm. Additionally, the Web site provides HUD commentary on certain provisions of the SAFE Act, and the model legislation.

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Dated: December 24, 2008.

Brian D. Montgomery,

Assistant Secretary for Housing—Federal Housing Commissioner.

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[FR Doc. E8-31389 Filed 1-2-09; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4210-67-P