Bills to Protect Borrowers, Use State Property for Housing, Renewable Energy Advance

DENVER, CO– The House Business Affairs and Labor Committee today passed bills that would create consumer protections for mortgage borrowers and require the state to create an inventory of its unused property to determine if any buildings owned by the state could be transformed into affordable housing, renewable energy projects, or child care facilities. 

HB21-1282, sponsored by Representative Mike Weissman, would regulate mortgage servicers, including requirements around notification, record keeping, examinations, inspections and enforcement, and a violation would be considered an unfair or deceptive trade practices. An assistant attorney general would be empowered to regulate the industry and receive complaints that could be acted upon. 

“After the financial collapse of 2008, we put in place rules to ensure that banks and other financial institutions play by the rules and can’t take advantage of consumers who use their products and services,” said Rep. Mike Weissman, D-Aurora.  “But the financial sector has continued to evolve since then and Colorado is lagging behind many other states in oversight of non-bank mortgage servicers even as those entities handle an ever-larger share of the market.  This bill ensures that non-bank mortgage services play by the rules and provides the Attorney General with the tools needed to investigate and stop abusive practices that threaten to harm Colorado homeowners.”

HB21-1274 would require the state to create an inventory of all unused state-owned real property and determine if any of them could be used for affordable housing,renewable energy projects, or child care facilities. The department that owns the property would be authorized to solicit proposals from and enter into contracts with private partners to capitalize on the potential use of the property

“All across Colorado, our state government owns unused properties that could be developed and turned into affordable housing, renewable energy facilities, or child care facilities – three types of projects that nearly every Coloradan wants to see more of,” said Rep. Brianna Titone, D-Arvada. “We need to put this land to use so that local communities can meet their housing and energy needs while also providing critical capacity for child care for working families.”

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