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'Bleeding The System'

April 29, 2002

Congressman Spearheads Effort To Address Mortgage Fraud

Inman News Features

Rep. Kanjorski (D-Pa.) has spearheaded efforts to address mortgage fraud as a result of a situation in his district where phantom financing and inflated appraisals have reportedly contributed to an abnormally high number of mortgage foreclosures.

In Monroe County, Pa., hundreds of foreclosures and bankruptcy filings in recent years have indicated a pattern of questionable real estate practices and last year, federal, state, county and local law enforcement officials launched a joint investigation into widespread real estate fraud.

As part of his campaign against real estate fraud, Kanjorski has contacted the heads of numerous companies, associations and agencies to seek their input and to enlist their assistance.

Kanjorski told members of the Appraisal Institute's Leadership Development and Advisory Council Tuesday during a luncheon address that he favors increased scrutiny of the appraiser regulatory structure, and is seeking more involvement of professional organizations such as the Appraisal Institute in the regulatory process.

Kanjorski also told the Appraisal Institute audience that he is anxious to see results from the ongoing Government Accounting Office investigation into the effectiveness of the current appraiser regulatory system, which was requested last month by Senator Paul Sarbanes, (D-Md.), and Senator Zell Miller, (D-Ga.). The system has been criticized for lax enforcement at the state and federal levels, and for encouraging inconsistent standards and requirements throughout the country. Kanjorski said he hopes the study will illustrate the problems within the current appraiser regulatory structure, because the lack of enforcement is "bleeding the system."

Copyright: Inman News Service

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