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Senate Appropriations bill funds Shaheen measure to investigate, reduce fraud in FHA mortgage programs

(Washington, D.C.) - U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen applauded Senate passage of $26 million for the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and its Inspector General (IG) to investigate and remove fraudulent mortgage lenders from Federal Housing Administration (FHA) programs. Shaheen led the charge earlier this year to provide the HUD IG with additional resources to investigate fraud, and this allocation, which was part of the Fiscal Year 2010 Transportation-HUD Appropriations bill, will help HUD protect important FHA programs.  The legislation provides funding for Shaheen's previously passed budget amendment, which set aside funds in the budget for anti-fraud activities.

"Protecting taxpayer money from fraud and waste and punishing those whose illegal activities precipitated this economic crisis are key components to economic recovery," said Shaheen. "I'm glad the Senate has given HUD the resources it needs to reduce fraud so that the FHA can continue to help families obtain affordable mortgages."

Since the housing crisis began, FHA has stepped up to play an important role in the housing market, insuring almost a third of all new mortgages.  Despite an increase in mortgage fraud claims by 10 times in the past six years, the offices investigating white collar crime remain severely understaffed.  This additional funding is necessary to ensure that fraudulent lenders are removed from FHA's programs.