Apr 14 -- The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) is issuing a notice of a regulatory review to be conducted in accordance with the process set forth in its Regulatory Review Plan and is requesting comments on how its regulations may be made more effective and less burdensome. Comments on this notice of regulatory review must be received no later than June 13, 2023.
FHFA was established by the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008, Public Law 110–289, to supervise and regulate the Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae), the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (Freddie Mac) (together, the Enterprises), any affiliate of either Enterprise, the Federal Home Loan Banks (the Banks), and the Office of Finance of the Federal Home Loan Bank System (OF). In 2012, FHFA developed its Regulatory Review Plan (Review Plan) after considering principles set forth in Executive Order 13579, “Regulation and Independent Regulatory Agencies” (July 11, 2011). Executive Order 13579 requested—but did not require—independent regulatory agencies, such as FHFA, to develop, release to the public, and implement a plan for the periodic review of their existing significant regulations to determine whether any regulation should be modified, streamlined, expanded, or repealed to make the agency's regulatory program more effective or less burdensome in achieving its objectives.
Under its Review Plan, FHFA reviews its regulations at least every five years, except for those regulations that were adopted or substantially amended within the two years prior to issuance of a Notice of Regulatory Review and rules of agency organization, procedure, or practice. The Review Plan suggests factors that commenters should consider in order to assist FHFA with its regulatory review, including factors related to legal, regulatory, or market developments, regulatory overlap, less burdensome alternatives, and clarity of regulatory requirements.
Consistent with its Review Plan, FHFA's next regulatory review must begin not later than five years after its prior review, or in April 2023. All current regulations—except, as noted, rules of agency organization, procedure, or practice, or regulations adopted or substantially amended since April 2021 (meaning, within the past two years)—are subject to review. If members of the public comment on recently adopted or amended regulations, FHFA may consider those comments, as it deems appropriate. FHFA does not anticipate responding to individual comments.
Regulations administered by FHFA are published in chapter XII of title 12 of the Code of Federal Regulations, except for two regulations of predecessor agencies which FHFA has not yet moved. FHFA's regulations are also posted on the FHFA website at https://www.fhfa.gov
FHFA hereby requests comment on its regulations for purposes of improving their effectiveness and reducing their burden. Factors that FHFA's Review Plan identifies as relevant to the review, and which FHFA suggests should guide commenters, are:
(1) Legal or regulatory developments—including new laws, executive orders, or judicial decisions that have been adopted since the promulgation of a regulation—that make a regulation inefficient, obsolete, contrary to controlling legal precedent, or unduly burdensome;
(2) Marketplace developments, technological evolution, and related changes that may have rendered a regulation, in whole or in part, inefficient, outmoded, or outdated;
(3) The extent to which provisions of the regulation are written in plain language or need clarification;
(4) Compelling evidence that a consolidation of two or more regulations, elimination of a duplicative regulation, or other revision to regulatory requirements would facilitate compliance by Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, any affiliate of either Enterprise, the Banks, or OF with the regulation, or would improve supervision by FHFA of Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, any affiliate of either Enterprise, the Banks, or OF; and
(5) Demonstration of a better alternative method to effect a regulatory purpose or requirement, supported by compelling evidence of significantly less intrusive means or of a substantially more efficient method of accomplishing the same supervisory purpose.