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An update from the office of
U.S. Representative Michael E. Capuano
8th Congressional District of Massachusetts

Congressman Capuano's
E-UPDATE

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September 21, 2007

Recent Votes

On Tuesday the House considered H.R. 1852: Expanding American Homeownership Act of 2007. This legislation makes it easier to obtain a mortgage from the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) and will help ease the difficulties that some homeowners in the sub-prime mortgage market are experiencing. The FHA was established in order to provide affordable mortgage loans for first-time home buyers. H.R. 1852 increases the FHA loan limit so that families in high cost housing areas, like Boston, have access to an FHA loan. Such loans are not available in many higher-cost areas of the country because the average cost of a home is too high. As a result, some are forced to turn to the sub-prime market and higher interest loans in order to purchase a home. This legislation lowers the down payment requirement for those who can afford to pay a monthly mortgage, but do not have enough for a down payment. In certain circumstances, no down payment will be required. This legislation increases funding for housing counseling loan programs and authorizes that up to $300 million a year in new FHA surpluses be directed to an affordable housing fund, instead of getting sent back to the General Treasury. H.R. 1852 also directs the FHA to provide mortgages to qualified, higher risk borrowers without charging them excessive fees. I voted YES. H.R. 1852 passed in the House with strong bipartisan support and the entire vote is recorded below:

 

YEA NAY PRESENT NOT VOTING
DEMOCRAT

225

0

0

6

REPUBLICAN

123

72

0

6

TOTAL

348

72

0

12

 

 

 

 

 

MASSACHUSETTS

9

0

0

0

TRIREA

On Wednesday the House considered legislation that I filed, along with Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank: H.R. 2761, the Terrorism Risk Insurance Revision and Extension Act of 2007 (TRIREA). Our bill extends the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (TRIA) for fifteen years and will spur the development of a private market for terrorism risk insurance. After the 9/11 terrorist attacks, many insurance companies excluded terrorism events from their insurance policies. As a result, Congress passed TRIA in 2002 which created a federal backstop to protect against terrorism related losses. In 2005, the measure was extended for two years and currently is set to expire at the end of 2007.

The Terrorism Risk Insurance Revision and Extension Act of 2007 (TRIREA) will: extend TRIA for fifteen years; include coverage for nuclear, biological, chemical and radiological (NBCR) attacks; include acts of domestic terrorism and add group life insurance to the lines of insurance for which terrorism coverage must be made available. The legislation also requires continued study of the development of a private market for terrorism risk insurance. TRIA has helped make terrorism insurance available and affordable to businesses, particularly those in our major urban areas. Improving and extending this program will help spur America's continued economic development by providing certainty that terrorism insurance will continue to be available. I voted YES. H.R. 2761 passed in the House with strong bipartisan support and the entire vote is recorded below:

 

YEA NAY PRESENT NOT VOTING
DEMOCRAT

224

2

0

5

REPUBLICAN

88

108

0

5

TOTAL

312

110

0

10

 

 

 

 

 

MASSACHUSETTS

8

0

0

1

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)

On Thursday the House considered H.R. 2881: FAA Reauthorization Act of 2007. This legislation reauthorizes FAA programs through fiscal year 2011. It provides funds to upgrade and modernize airports and air traffic control systems. The bill funds runway safety programs, directing $42 million over four years for runway incursion reduction programs and $74 million over four years for the purchase and installation of runway status lights. H.R. 2881 also contains a number of important consumer protection provisions, including a requirement that airlines establish plans for passengers if a flight is delayed for a lengthy period of time and must wait on the tarmac. These plans must include food, water, clean restrooms, medical care and a policy for deplaning if a delay is considered too lengthy. The legislation also directs the FAA to work with the airlines to reduce the practice of over-scheduling, which often results in flight delays. I voted YES. H.R. 2881 passed in the House and the entire vote is recorded below:

 

YEA NAY PRESENT NOT VOTING
DEMOCRAT

224

0

0

7

REPUBLICAN

43

151

0

7

TOTAL

267

151

0

14

 

 

 

 

 

MASSACHUSETTS

9

0

0

0


What's Up Next

Next week, the House is expected to consider legislation reauthorizing the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP).


Congressman Mike Capuano
8th District, Massachusetts
Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure
Committee on Financial Services
Committee on House Administration

District Offices:

110 First Street, Cambridge, MA 02141
and
Roxbury Community College, Campus Library, Room 211

District Office Phone:

(617) 621-6208

DC Office:

1414 Longworth Building, Washington, DC 20515

DC Office Phone:

(202) 225-5111

Website and e-mail:

capuano.house.gov


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