News & Media

Homeowners strongly condemn consent decree proposed by federal agencies that would let big banks off the hook for mortgage fraud

PICO National Network

April 6, 2011

For Immediate Release: April 6, 2011
Liz Ryan Murray, National People's Action: 562-310-7330  liz@npa-us.org
Tim Lilienthal, PICO National Network: 413-537-0631 tlilienthal@piconetwork.org 

Homeowners strongly condemn consent decree proposed by federal agencies that would let big banks off the hook for mortgage fraud 

Encourage federal agencies to work with 50-state Attorneys General to reach shared agreement 

Once again the Federal banking regulators are showing their true colors and standing up for big banks and not American homeowners.  The Federal Reserve, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation are reportedly moving ahead with a consent agreement against the nation's big bank mortgage servicers that lets them almost completely off the hook for their illegal behavior and years of consumer abuse.

 The Banking Accountability Campaign comes out firmly against these moves by the federal regulators.

 "The actions of the federal bank regulators are yet another in a long line of blatantly ignoring the illegal behavior of the big banks while periodically giving them a slap on the wrist.   The regulators clearly assert in the consent order that the banks undertook illegal behavior, but then in the very next section, they tell the banks to develop their own plan to start complying with the law," says Rev. Eugene Barnes, of National People's Action.

 "Judges don't tell burglars to go design their own plan to stop breaking into people's homes and report back in 30 days.  A judge would get laughed off the bench if they did this, and yet this is exactly what the Fed, OCC and FDIC have chosen to do.  Rather than stand with the Attorneys General in a real settlement, they are telling the banks that they need to sign a piece of paper where they promise to do the right thing and follow the law. This is completely unacceptable," says Rev. Lucy Kolin of the PICO National Network.

 The banking regulators must immediately withdraw these impotent and ineffective consent decrees and instead work together with the state Attorneys General to reach a comprehensive agreement against the banks who have wreaked such havoc in the lives of millions. The agreement must contain mandatory loan modification programs including widespread principal reduction for millions; redress for homeowners who have lost or are in process of losing their homes; meaningful monetary penalties; and iron-clad, independent enforcement of all the provisions. 

About The Banking Accountability Campaign

The Banking Accountability Campaign (BAC) was formed in 2010 with the goal of building a movement that challenges established big bank interests on behalf of struggling communities.  The campaign is a coalition of national, state, and local groups including: National People's Action (NPA), PICO National Network,  Alliance for a Just Society, Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment (ACCE), and Industrial Areas Foundation of the Southeast (IAF-SE).  The Campaign has three main areas of focus:

  • Fixing the Foreclosure Crisis
  • Consumer Lending Reform
  • Making Big Banks Pay Their Fair Share