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In Response to Calls From Cortez Masto, Federal Housing Finance Agency Announces Necessary Review of Federal Home Loan Bank System

August 31, 2022

Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator Cortez Masto (D-Nev.) applauded the Federal Housing Finance Agency’s (FHFA) announcement that it would conduct a review of the Federal Home Loan Bank system, which includes 11 regional government-sponsored entities that lend to their member financial institutions and insurance companies. The FHLB system’s explicit mission is to support housing investment and meet communities’ economic development needs. Under Director Sandra Thompson, the FHFA has begun a necessary and long-overdue review of this trillion-dollar system.

Throughout her time in the Senate, Senator Cortez Masto has advocated for further investments by the FHLBanks in their mission. She has raised the issue of a review of the FHLB system personally and at a hearing with Director Thompson. Senator Cortez Masto has also highlighted the fact that Nevada has been treated unfairly by the system, and she has sought additional investment in Nevada by the FHLBank of San Francisco. In a letter this week to Director Thompson, Senator Cortez Masto called for a review of the FHLBanks and requested that that review consult stakeholders and outside experts to ensure this 90-year-old government-sponsored entity is responsibly using its federal funding. She also asked that the review consider how the FHLB system can better support affordable housing, rural and tribal communities, income inequality, infrastructure investments, and climate resilience. The letter also urged the director to consider tying executive compensation to mission investments.

“The Federal Home Loan Bank system needs a refresh,” said Senator Cortez Masto. “Throughout my time in the Senate, I’ve focused on ways to increase investment in housing, small business, community development, and infrastructure in Nevada, and it’s clear that the entire Federal Home Loan Bank system should – and could – do more to meet the investment needs of communities in Nevada and across the country. I’m glad to see Director Thompson’s leadership on this issue, and I applaud this important review to ensure that the Federal Home Loan Bank is fulfilling its mission.”

Senator Cortez Masto has been a leader in the issues of affordable housing and community development. She has worked consistently with the Federal Home Loan Bank of San Francisco to increase FHLB-SF funding for affordable housing and community development in Nevada. She secured a commitment for a targeted affordable housing fund for Nevada from the Federal Home Loan Bank of San Francisco. In addition, Senator Cortez Masto’s support of the American Rescue Plan helped deliver $800 million in affordable housing funding to the state of Nevada. Her support for federal housing investment has helped preserve or build more than 17,000 affordable homes in the state in the past five years. She supported legislation that has provided rental assistance to more than 81,000 Nevadans in the past two years. In 2021, she introduced the Federal Home Loan Banks’ Mission Implementation Act, S. 1684, to direct the FHLBanks to do more to fulfill their mission to meet the affordable housing and community economic development needs of the communities they serve.


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