Housing Finance Authority

  • The Housing Finance Authority (HFA) of Hillsborough County was created by the BOCC in the mid-80’s “for the purpose of addressing a housing shortage in the County.” Isn’t the problem now that there are too many houses on the market?


  • The FHA Board is composed of all volunteers, with no paid staff? No one from the BOCC sits on this board? How is it that FHA manages to direct millions of dollars of bonds/notes/mortgages?


  • What is the relationship of HFA to the Affordable Housing Department and the relationships to other affordable housing entities in the alphabet soup like HOME, CDGB, SHIP, NSP, HERA, SAIL, LIHTC, GNMA  and HUD? 


  • What is the $250,000,000 “finance plan” the BOCC just approved for FHA?                 

  • Who owns the mortgages that FHA purchases from participating lending institutions?                 

  • To whom do the home owners pay their mortgage payments? 


  • The mortgages are purchased by “servicers” who then “pools” them in a mortgage-backed security (MBS) that is guaranteed by GNMA (federal taxpayers)? The HFA bond proceeds are used to purchase these GNMA MBS, not the loans? Who are these servicers and who then owns the securities, FHA?


  • Hillsborough County is not on the hook for repayment of bonds or any securities? Who is on the hook; where does the money come from and who gets that money?


  • These are “revenue bonds”? The bondholders get paid from the bond proceeds and pledged revenue stream? How do the bonds, bond revenues, pledged revenue streams relate to Mortgage Backed Securities? Who owns what? Who owes who what?


  •  What regular oversight does the BOCC exercise over HFA other than a yearly financial audit report? Is this read and understood by the BOCC? The HFA may not be operating illegally, but is it operating ethically and first in the best interest of county taxpayers?


  • How did the HFA calculate the need for the $250,000,000 figure? Historically, how much has the HFA needed? How many first-time low-income homeowner mortgages are in the pipeline which are not eligible for other similar federal, state and local programs?


  • If you were to map the paths that the money takes, what hands do they go through and what real or potential profits are made at each stage? Who besides banks, other lending institutions, brokers, title companies, lawyers and investors are involved?


  • How is the $6 million HFA resources held that are needed for “negative arbitrage”? How did HFA accumulate that much money. 


  • Who is the “mortgage servicer” in the program that services these mortgages and pays HFA for the right to service them? Why doesn’t the County receive any money from these transactions?  What other fees does the servicer receive from pooling the individual mortgages into MBS with GNMA backing? How much money does HFA receive, from whom, for what and what is that money used for exactly? 


  • Why is the County of Hillsborough in the business of being in the loop of homebuyers, banks, GNMA, HFA and the servicers? Is it only to bestow municipal bond status to create federal-guaranteed tax-exempt securities for investors?             

  • Is the mortgage servicer in any way related to Mortgage Electronic Registry Systems, Inc. (MERS) or to one of the MERS affiliated companies such as Nationwide Title Clearing of Pinellas County? Why is it that MERS is being sued by counties all over the U.S. to recover lost mortgage transfer fees? Why is it that Nationwide Title Clearing is involved with mortgage irregularities?          

  • Is Hillsborough County losing any mortgage transfer fees as a result of the HFA “financing plan”? Is it costing the county any staff time to deal with home foreclosure issues?

Related News Articles:

Bank Regulators Launch Examination of MERS

Federal Agencies Examining Loan Servicers, MERS, and LPS

Comptroller of the Currency Announces MERS Investigation

 More transparency needed in mortgage mess

Comptroller of the Currency Announces MERS Investigation

Banks warned on foreclosure mess costs

Fed governor says foreclosure-doc mess poses risks

A Salem Trial for MERS?

County Recorder in Massachusetts Goes After MERS

 Legal challenges to foreclosure middleman are mounting

How Robo-Signing Destroys Credibility in the Mortgage and …

Inside a Florida Robo-Signing Document Assembly Line


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