Your morning jolt: Johnny Isakson bill would require lenders to consider cost of home-buyers’ energy bills

U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson, R-Ga., today will endorse legislation that would require federal loan agencies to take into account the energy bills that homeowners will have to pay – on top of their mortgage payments.

The measure is intended to give underwriters a more accurate picture of what prospective home buyers can afford, and encourage the demand for new, energy-efficient homes.

Only two weeks ago, Isakson teamed up with U.S. Rep. Tom Graves, R-Ranger, to introduce legislation that would allow homeowners tap their tax-free 401(k) funds – without the 10 percent penalty – in order to catch up on home mortgage payments.

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Also in Washington, the bipartisan Gang of Six headed up by U.S. Sens. Saxby Chambliss, R-Ga., and Mark Warner, D-Va., this morning will brief 12 members of the deficit-slashing “super committee” panel in a closed-door meeting.

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Incumbents and climatologists take note: Political novice John Carson, a banker and certified public accountant, crushed former state Sen. Robert Lamutt in a special runoff election on Tuesday to fill the House District 43 seat left vacant by the death of Bobby Franklin.

Carson took 65 percent of nearly 2,000 votes cast. Both east Cobb County candidates are Republican.

***
Herman Cain’s “999 plan” was put through a blender last night, in a GOP presidential debate in Las Vegas that the delicate New York Times characterized as “brutish.” Through the magic of video and the Associated Press, we offer the following two-minute assessment for those of you who were too obsessed with a dancing Nancy Grace to watch:

An interesting couple paragraphs from CNN analyst David Gergen this morning:

”Who can remember a debate when a Republican front-runner like Romney has been called a liar at least three times in a party debate? When Reagan ran in 1980, he and George H.W. Bush clashed hard over issues, but it was never personal — and when it was over, Reagan tapped Bush as his running mate.

“Can anyone imagine Romney tapping Perry? If there is still a Republican establishment, its members ought to call the candidates and tell them to cool it. Call No. 1 should go to Santorum: For a man so far down in the polls to continue launching personal attacks against the party front-runner is both egotistical and self-indulgent.”

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The AJC’s Politifact Georgia today offers up a set of quick fact checks on last night’s GOP presidential debate in Las Vegas.

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The Republican contest to challenge U.S. Rep. John Barrow of Savannah in the 12 District appears to be growing by the minute. Two candidates, state Rep. Lee Anderson of Grovetown and Augusta business Rick Allen, are already in. On Tuesday, we told you that Maria Sheffield of Mableton, an unsuccessful candidate for state insurance commission, is thinking of moving her residence to southeast Georgia, her family’s stomping grounds.

Now we hear that Augusta real estate attorney Wright McLeod, a political novice, has reserved next Tuesday to announce his entry into the GOP contest.

***
Possibly the lesson is not to hire a stranger to tear down an opponent’s yard signs – because he may be an undercover cop. Another possibility: Don’t promise $2 per sign, and only pay $1.

In any case, 70-year-old Bobby Sigman has bowed out of the race for mayor of Covington, thanks to a video recording released by local police authorities:

The details:

Speaking after police Tuesday released undercover video showing him accepting 50 stolen signs from an undercover informant, Bobby Sigman told Channel 2 that he was “tired of seeing my supporters raked over the coals for nothing.”

Sigman, who has not yet officially notified the Newton County Board of Elections that he was quitting the campaign, denied having done anything with criminal intent, “although I made some bad decisions.”
Covington police have said that after receiving a complaint that mayoral candidate Ronnie Johnston’s signs were being stolen, Covington police set up a sting operation, and the video resulted.

The 70-year-old Sigman said the video showing him picking up a pile of signs “were signs I found on the right-of-way, and I planned to return them” to Johnston. “I did not steal any of his signs,” Sigman said.

- By Jim Galloway, Political Insider

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47 comments Add your comment

Eric

October 19th, 2011
9:55 am

Come on! Where’s the “what part of illegal don’t you understand” crowd? Should be in full force on this blog! Maybe I’m just early.

Bootnewt

October 19th, 2011
9:55 am

SURE Sigman was not stealing signs…..he just didn’t want his opponent to face fines for placing them in a right-of-way. How thoughtful!!

jt

October 19th, 2011
9:59 am

Hopefully, the OWS crowd will be “tapping” in to Isackson’s retirement fund…soon.

Eric

October 19th, 2011
9:59 am

Oh, and with Graves’ financial troubles, is anyone surprised that he would offer a bill to allow folks to circumvent contract law to save his own….bacon? You folks really dont have a clue. Let the idiocy begin!!

ByteMe

October 19th, 2011
10:03 am

Isakson continues to nibble around the edges instead of just going for a change that would make a difference: require that banks allow homeowners to refinance mortgages at a lower rate even if the home is “underwater” on the mortgage and without requiring PMI if PMI wasn’t already being paid (and without receiving cash via the loan). In other words, if you owe $300K on a house now valued at $260K, you can refi the mortgage balance at today’s low rates without worrying about whether the value of the house is appraised below the value of the loan. Slow the bleeding and the only real negative is that the bank won’t be able to make as big a profit off your loan (as opposed to taking a loss when the house falls into foreclosure).

Stop the nibbling!

clem

October 19th, 2011
10:21 am

boy johnny that is legislation that really is top priority

Aquagirl

October 19th, 2011
10:26 am

Wait….TOM GRAVES introduced a bill about repaying loans? We should tap our 401 K’s while he defaults on $2.2 million plus cleanup costs for his abandoned property?

Road Scholar

October 19th, 2011
10:35 am

Shouldn’t the banks use the tried and true..if the house and tax payment is less than 30% of the buyers gross income, then they can afford the home. This was the “rule” 40 years ago when I bought my first home and was endorsed by my mother who was a real estate broker.

mike

October 19th, 2011
10:37 am

I think we need more of these debates. The more they have, the worse these people look. I now understand why people are saying there are too many. Maybe they can continue to sell them as long as they do not appear on tv. I was curious where the Ga delegates have been hiding. Making out with banks as usual.

findog

October 19th, 2011
10:57 am

Herman was whipped by a bunch of clowns with no actual plans of their own. Newt back handed compliment that it was bold was followed by the former speaker’s dismissal of the plan. Why don’t hey just ask Grover what he wants, and will approve, and save the forest they will destroy to print plans that will not be voted on until Grover blesses it?

double

October 19th, 2011
11:05 am

Aqua he settled that loan with the bank.they knew he could not pay back the loan so it was their fault for the failure.Centrist way of thinking.

yuzeyurbrane

October 19th, 2011
11:08 am

What Isaakson and Graves are concerned about is that their buddies in the mortgage and real estate industry get paid even if it means eviscerating homeowners’ retirement accounts and has a negative impact on our Federal deficit (yes, homeowners currently have the right to tap their retirement acct. but Isaakson’s proposal would deprive the govt. of the revenue from the 10% penalty for doing so).

findog

October 19th, 2011
11:21 am

Will the government rebate the 10% they took from people who had to do that during previous down turns

catlady

October 19th, 2011
11:29 am

So, you and I will pay more in taxes so that others (inprovident) will be able to avoid the 10% tax charged on the 401K withdrawals? Sounds like the deal for elders to avoid paying most of the property tax, which means the non-elderly pay more to make up the difference, or the regular GA taxpayers pay more so the wealthy can “donate” their tax money to the private schools to use as scholarships for the children/grandchildren of the wealthy to attend those private schools. Let someone else pay it, that’s their mantra.

Shine

October 19th, 2011
11:32 am

This is Isukson’s J-O-B plan?

Self_Made

October 19th, 2011
11:34 am

I like Isakson’s plans. The “energy bill review” is a free-market solution addressing faulty underwriting in mortgage lending and promotion of energy efficient homes without a tax expenditure. The break on the 10% penalty is long overdue. I’m with findog, can that be retroactive? Going into your own savings is a better option than the government bailing you out. If it’s a measure to keep you from losing your home or otherwise going under, it’s being put to better use than anything the Feds will do with the 10% penalty.

Centrist

October 19th, 2011
11:51 am

The liberal partisans are out in force this morning with their favorite AJC. I simply don’t see anything here worth commenting about.

GaBlue

October 19th, 2011
11:57 am

If you ever met Ronnie Johnstson, you’d see why the old coot was so scared he resorted to the nasty business of sign stealing. Ronnie is a great guy! (I sure hope politics doesn’t corrupt and ruin him like it does to so many…)

Sharde

October 19th, 2011
12:09 pm

:…Isakson teamed up with U.S. Rep. Tom Graves, R-Ranger, to introduce legislation that would allow homeowners tap their tax-free 401(k) funds – without the 10 percent penalty – in order to catch up on home mortgage payments.”

Bad, bad idea. 401(k) and IRA accounts are off limits for a reason, so people will have some retirement savings to supplement Social Security. Unless you knew you could catch up your mortgage payment, keep it current, AND replenish your retirement savings this wouldn’t be a smart move.

the original and still the best John Galt

October 19th, 2011
12:16 pm

Here’s the really infuriating thing about the attitude that the mortgage industry has about refinancing versus foreclosing. They actually do better by foreclosing, because the U.S. government in many cases picks up the tab, and then the mortgage bank gets to double dip on recovery.

Let’s say for example that they foreclose on a $200,000.00 mortgage. The bank sells the foreclosed property for $100,000.00, and the U.S. government writes the lender a check for the difference, courtesy of the taxpayer. The lender can then sue the debtor for that $100,000.00 difference, and, get this, anything they collect goes straight to the bottom line as Profit and Loss Recovery. (Remember always that loans are assets, deposits are liabilities, to a financial institution.)

There’s no wonder that there is a five year backlog of forclosures on the books, or that real estate values keep falling, or that the bankruptcy courts are busier than ever.

Same process applies to so-called “short sales.” The many folks out there who are being garnished to pay the difference between their short sales and the total of their mortgage before the short sale, ought to be mad enough to be sharpening up the pitchfork.

Alabama Communist

October 19th, 2011
12:41 pm

More Breaking News On Herman 999 plan Getting Clobber By His Enemies……..A unknown Source deep within the Casio Basement said today” Herman got his clock clean tonight when he try to use the old the Oranges and Apple defense and ended up coming up with the Grapefruit and Nuts 911 Tax Federal Reserve Republican Tea Party Plan”

honested

October 19th, 2011
12:46 pm

There was another ‘debate’ last night?

Did it garner the same ‘massive’ viewership that these clownfests have drawn so far this year?

Until it opens with all of these losers driving on stage and hopping out of a tiny car (with their wigs, big floppy shoes and noses already in place) there is no reason to watch.

Since their attachment to the failed policies of the shrub years seems unrelenting.

honested

October 19th, 2011
12:50 pm

Shine,

Not quite, johnny isakson is following the standard repulicant job plan…… no plan at all.

double

October 19th, 2011
12:53 pm

Why so much controversy over 999?Cain will not be elected.If Obama supported it the pugs would refuse it.

ABSURD

October 19th, 2011
1:03 pm

JOHNNY – is this all you’ve got????? REALY??? Either you are FOR THE BANKS or you are FOR THE PEOPLE – get off the middle…..With the banks being bailed out I can’t even believe what side you’re leaning on!!!

Is this all that our Senators can come up with for folks?????

We are doomed!!!!!

Wallace T. Coper

October 19th, 2011
1:03 pm

cane will not win no elecshin, an 999 will be votid out, cane an obama must be votid out of congriss, so we can take this contry back, for us wites, the blacks, an allegal aleens, have made us wites, poor an its time, to vote down 999, an all the black plans before are contry is taken over by china

Wallace T. Coper

October 19th, 2011
1:07 pm

time too stan up for are rites, an constitushin of this, grate contry we are losing, to the occupied wall street, wach fox news when they said, it is a wase of tax payers money, an obama an cane don,t care

ABSURD

October 19th, 2011
1:11 pm

TO: John Galt

Is what you wrote for REAL? So, let me see here: For sure, if a home is foreclosed on ($200K loan) – a bank sells for 100,000 – the FEDS pay them the other 100,000. Then, knowing they have gotten their money our FEDS ALLOW them to still go after people for the other 100,000???? Meaning they now have $300,000???

If this is true – PERHAPS OUR wonderful U. S. Senators – i.e. Johnny et al – can STOP this THIEVING from happening !!!!!!!!!

double

October 19th, 2011
1:15 pm

Wallace T. Coper Are you related to TD? just asking.

Wallace T. Coper

October 19th, 2011
1:15 pm

i agree, an obama an cane, only care about the blacks, an cane is a black pretending to be wite, but i,m not fooled by his actin job, he just wants to get in congriss to give my money to the other blacks, an allegal aleens

Wallace T. Coper

October 19th, 2011
1:18 pm

i done have no td in my famly, that sounds like a black name, an we done mix our races in this famly

the original and still the best John Galt

October 19th, 2011
1:34 pm

To: ABSURD

What I described is not the way it works in every foreclosure, but it certainly is true in certain cases. Check it out. There have been a couple of articles in the media about the double dipping that is going on.

Big Hat

October 19th, 2011
1:37 pm

Herman Cain is the Koch brothers’ “House Negro”. …and he plays the role perfectly.

td

October 19th, 2011
1:50 pm

double

October 19th, 2011
1:15 pm
Wallace T. Coper Are you related to TD? just asking.

So we have some DA on here acting like a racist and you want to associate it to me? You know that is total BS. Typical lib action and just proves the point that most of you all have no integrity and only want to destroy our once great nation. Nice work pal.

Wallace T. Coper

October 19th, 2011
1:56 pm

to big hat, that is why we have to vote, cane from the primarry, we done need no negros, look what obama done, to us with his dets, an his no smarter then you an me, an i no when its time to stop given away money to the blacks, an allegals, its time to take are contry back, cane is not the anser, u can,t fight welfare an the war on drugs and allegal immagrashin, if u put anothr black in the primarry

Wallace T. Coper

October 19th, 2011
1:57 pm

to td, u or a black or wite?

Jack

October 19th, 2011
1:58 pm

Franklin’s replacement won with less than 10% of the electorate voting: that’s why we have Obama as president. And unless that percentage changes, we’ll likely have him for another four years.

Smoke

October 19th, 2011
1:59 pm

News: 1. A Dixiecrat is wanting more useless government regulation on banks. 2. Clarence, who has not come up with anything productive since he has as been in DC, is the co-chair of the Gang of 12. 3. A bunch of Dixiecrats want to run for Congress against Barrow, and will beg for stimulus and government programs if they win. 4. Another Dixiecrat who refuses to take responsibility for his own actions, but rather blame it on the establishment.

SAWB

October 19th, 2011
3:08 pm

Wouldn’t it make more sense to simply assume that people are responsible enough to pay their bills? Wait we tried that didn’t we – oh well I got nothin.

??

October 19th, 2011
3:46 pm

@the original and still the best John Galt

Isn’t GA a non-recourse state? Means that the banks can’t come after you after they foreclose and resell – correct?

Smoke

October 19th, 2011
4:54 pm

Let’s see 1,200 decided who would represent a senate district of 30,000 eligible voters, and more than 20,000 who don’t care. Doees anyone remeber Neal Boortz ranting about fols who vote for a living? It looks more like the winner attends a larger church.

the original and still the best John Galt

October 19th, 2011
6:11 pm

Banks most certainly can sue the debtor for the balance after disposing of foreclosed property in this state, and then proceed to collect by garnishment or other legal action.

There are three scenarios under which they can collect more than the original amount owed:

1. If there is mortgage insurance, of if the mortgage is a FHA or VA loan. The lender can collect from these insurance policies and still sue the debtor. The massive losses in the last three years have required these funds to be refunded several times.

2. If the lender is bought by another lender, especially in the many deals brokered by the FDIC in which a failed bank is taken over by another bank, most all of those deals include loss protection, paid for by the taxpayer, which insures the new bank against any loss from the assets it takes over. If it then forecloses, the government picks up the tab, and the new bank can still recover from the debtor.

3. Loan losses are a charge against taxes. It’s usual to charge against bad debt in one year, then recover in the next, and it’s nothing unusual for loan loss recovery to gain more money than the reduction in taxes owed.

Have you noticed in some neighborhoods that one house got foreclosed on and sold within the space of a few months, while another gets abandoned, but remains on the books for two or three years? One of the reasons for this is that the lenders prioritize foreclosures so that they happen first on insured loans, while holding the uninsured as long as possible before having to admit that they are losses. Some have now been held open on the bank’s books for as long as three years without a single payment. Bank of America is particularly notorious for this.

double

October 19th, 2011
6:23 pm

td lighten up.You are what you are,regardless your handle.

Al

October 20th, 2011
8:54 am

Let’s regulate the banks and homeowners out of existence- at least the little ones. That way when everything hits the fan, all the banks left will be “too big to fail”. Has the great Johnny latched onto Graves-like fiscal policy?

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