22 May 2008

A message from Senator Bee

We need real consumer protections

May. 21, 2008 12:00 AM

Your recent editorial characterized Senate Bill 1028, which requires the licensing of loan originators, as a bill that will protect consumers.

I could not agree with you more that we must do everything we can to protect the public. Senators have expressed to me legitimate concerns about exempting the very proponents of the bill, including the ones responsible for a significant number of subprime loans ending in default.

Furthermore, proponents of the bill want to require that all licensed loan originators be employed only by brokers or banks. This eliminates competition from the mortgage industry. Thus, there are legitimate questions about whether this bill is truly about protecting consumers or, rather, a smoke screen to monopolize power.

It is disappointing to me that the efforts of Senate leadership to address significant concerns with this legislation have been severely criticized and are dismissed as "mindless red tape." Be assured we are working on a solution that will protect consumers from unscrupulous lenders. I believe that Arizonans deserve better from their elected officials and that we should enact solutions that provide real consumer protections for everyone. - Tim Bee,Tucson
The writer, a Republican, is president of the Arizona Senate.

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