UPDATE 4/24: Senator Stargel, who had proposed an amendment that would remove Section 7 from SB 1730, withdrew the amendment during the Tuesday April 23 Committee on Rules meeting. See below for how to help.
It’s not all bad news. Earlier this week we organized a delegation led by Nema Daghbandan, partner at Geraci Law Firm and our general counsel, to meet with key legislators involved with SB 1730 and SB 1632.
First, the good news: SB 1632 is dead.
The bill didn’t make it out of the Senate Committee on Banking and Insurance, so it is officially dead. And it was all because of your hard work contacting and sending letters to Committee members.
Senators on the Committee did not know the language would severely impact private lenders and their business-purpose borrowers. We were also able to make them understand the fundamental difference between business- and consumer-purpose residential borrowers, and why loans to the former should not require mortgage lender licensing to transact.
The bad news: The SB 1730 Section 7 amendment is still very much alive.
But not because the Senate Committee on Infrastructure and Security necessarily wants the language to pass. After meeting personally with Senator Lee – the Committee’s chair and SB 1730’s sponsor – and appearing before Tuesday’s committee meeting to testify, our delegation learned that the amendment could not be removed in the committee without killing an otherwise very popular bill.
Unlike SB 1632, SB 1730 is a much larger bill addressing Florida matters unrelated to mortgage lender licensing. The mortgage lender licensing amendment was added as a supposed “non-controversial” favor to another Senator.
How to help …
Legislators have been extremely receptive to our communication on the SB 1730 Section 7 amendment’s bad impacts. Most of the Committee members were unhappy to learn about the language’s controversial outcomes and how/why the amendment was added to the unrelated bill. Most members of the committee openly stated that they would like to remove or otherwise modify the language prior to SB 1730 becoming law.
There are two ways you can help ensure business-purpose mortgage lender licensing doesn’t pass:
- Ensure the mortgage lender licensing language isn’t added into SB 1730’s companion bill in the Florida House of Representatives. Contact HB 7103’s sponsor, Representative Fischer (R), to express your opposition to possible inclusion of the mortgage lender licensing language as the HB 7103 moves to align with SB 7130 in order to pass.
- Weed out the existing mortgage lender licensing language in SB 1730 by contacting Florida Senators to oppose the Section 7 language when they see it in the larger Senate.
- These Senators are on the Infrastructure and Security Committee, and will have influence within the larger Senate: Senators Bean (R), Hutson (R) and Hooper (R) are likely to oppose the language itself. Senator Stewart (D) is likely to oppose the method by which the amendment was added to the materially unrelated bill.
- If you live in Florida, contact your district’s Senator to express your opposition.
Download Sample Letters: