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ACORN People's Platform
ACORN Platform - Net Cache ^ | October 24, 2008 | ACORN

Posted on 10/24/2008 5:09:06 AM PDT by Calpernia

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To: Calpernia

I took a peek but I’m sick of Acorn. Think I will pass on that thread.

21 posted on 10/24/2008 7:10:36 AM PDT by ex-Texan (Ecclesiastes 5:10 - 20)
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‘Breakthrough’ Agreement on Fair Lending Standards

Unites Industry, Activists

WASHINGTON, D.C. – JULY 26, 2000 – In an accord that marks a breakthrough in cooperation between the subprime home mortgage industry and community activists, Ameriquest Mortgage Company and ACORN (Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now) today announced a pilot lending program designed to provide families in low-income neighborhoods with counseling and access to loans. The program will offer $360 million in mortgage financing over a three-year period – and set strong new consumer protection standards for the subprime lending industry.

In addition to the agreement with ACORN, Ameriquest has adopted an unprecedented set of consumer safeguards that will define industry-leading standards of ethics in home mortgage lending.

"Helping families achieve ‘the American dream’ of homeownership is the heart and soul of Ameriquest’s mission," said Kirk Langs, president of Ameriquest – one of the nation’s largest lenders to consumers with impaired credit ratings. "With this partnership for new investment in low and moderate income housing, ACORN and Ameriquest will unite in helping families gain high-quality housing – with a range of consumer safeguards and education that will also help them achieve long-term financial security."

"The ACORN pilot with Ameriquest is an exciting new program that offers families in low income neighborhoods a better deal than they will get with any other subprime lender," said Maude Hurd, national president of ACORN. "ACORN members and others in low income neighborhoods need access to credit to become homeowners; to repair their homes; and to meet other critical financial goals. This program will deliver loans to meet these needs – and it will do so offering the strongest safeguards and the best terms in the industry. Just as important, this initiative will help raise the bar for the rest of the subprime industry."

The three-year pilot program will make subprime mortgage financing available – with the industry’s strongest set of consumer safeguards – to residents in up to 10 low- and moderate-income urban neighborhoods around the country in which Ameriquest has branches. In addition to Ameriquest’s mortgage financing, ACORN and its affiliate ACORN Housing Corporation will provide consumer information, financial education and loan counseling services to community residents. The pilot program cities are:

"The ACORN-Ameriquest pilot program includes provisions that are far better than those available anywhere else in the subprime market, including critical measures such as no prepayment penalties, a 3% limit on fees, interest rates 50 points below average, and no credit life insurance," added Hurd. "These provisions are just what ACORN Housing Corporation’s mortgage counseling clients have been looking for."

"These new safeguards – the strictest standards in our industry – will help ‘elevate the vision’ for good corporate citizenship among all subprime mortgage lenders," said Langs. "We are in the forefront of a public-spirited reform effort to raise the level of consumer protection and public service throughout our industry."

"We applaud Ameriquest for enhancing its code of "Best Practices" – in particular their precedent-setting willingness to extend the rescission period to 7 days from the standard 3 days," said Hurd. "Ameriquest’s code puts the company on record in opposition to many of the outrageous practices that are all too common in the subprime industry."

The new "Best Practices" code of conduct was formulated during a series of meetings among senior Ameriquest officials and leaders of two nationally recognized community activist groups: ACORN and the Consumer Mortgage Education Consortium (CMEC). CMEC is an organization formed in 1996 with the support of Ameriquest and three leading Washington, D.C.-based civil rights organizations – the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights, the National Fair Housing Alliance and the National Association of Neighborhoods.

"Working families deserve a fair deal in our society, and these new standards will help make sure they get a fighting chance for success in our economy," said Wade Henderson, co-founder of CMEC. "Ameriquest has long been recognized for its strong ethical standards, and these ‘Best Practices’ will show every lender that good corporate citizenship is also a good way to do business."

The "Best Practices" include:

"Providing reasonably priced credit to borrowers who have been denied loans by conventional lenders helps people get the capital needed to work their way out of financial problems," said Langs. "By setting strong ethical standards, and by supporting programs that promote nationwide financial education for home buyers and homeowners, we will show the industry that consumer protection is good for borrowers and good for lenders."

"Full disclosure, competitive pricing and access to sound financial advice from many sources are essential factors in ensuring consumer protection," added Langs. "By adopting this enhanced package of ‘best standards,’ Ameriquest hopes to inspire the entire industry to reinforce its commitment to consumers. Fair access to credit is the foundation of economic opportunity, and these standards will assure that borrowers can make well-informed decisions about the loans they seek and the credit they need."

About Ameriquest Mortgage Company:

Ameriquest is the nation’s largest retail subprime lender. We are a residential mortgage company that originates, purchases, sells and services specialty finance mortgage loans. The company currently operates 193 retail branches in 30 states, and has over 2,700 employees. Our borrowers typically seek to consolidate debt and reduce their monthly payments. The majority of our loans are made to specialty finance borrowers who are unable to qualify for traditional credit because their credit history, income, or other factors cause them not to conform to standard agency lending criteria.

About ACORN:

ACORN is the nation’s most successful national association of low and moderate income community organizations, and is celebrating its 30th anniversary in 2000. ACORN’s most important strength is its commitment to building large scale organizations of low and moderate income families which have the power to achieve justice for their members, for their communities, and for the nation. ACORN has over 150,000 low and moderate income members, organized into 700 neighborhood chapters in 40 cities across the country.


22 posted on 10/24/2008 7:13:47 AM PDT by Calpernia (Hunters Rangers - Raising the Bar of Integrity
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To: ex-Texan

There are archives I’m finding on the mortgage and housing though.

23 posted on 10/24/2008 7:14:42 AM PDT by Calpernia (Hunters Rangers - Raising the Bar of Integrity
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Cites Discriminatory and Predatory Lending Practices By Both Companies


Washington, DC: The Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN) is asking federal banking regulators to prohibit the purchase of Associates First Capital, largest consumer lender in the country, by Citigroup, the largest financial services company in the world.  In written comments filed today with the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) and the Federal Deposit Insurance Commission (FDIC), ACORN cited abusive lending practices by Associates, such as charging borrowers for unnecessary and expensive credit insurance, and a discriminatory pricing and delivery system by Citigroup, in which Citibank provides quality home loans to select borrowers, but serves lower income and minority communities with much higher cost loans through its subprime affiliates.


“This is the perfect opportunity for the regulators to finally do something more than just talking about the predatory lending problem,” said Maude Hurd, ACORN’s National President.  “Will the regulators demand that Citigroup and Associates stop their unethical and harmful  practices, or will the regulators again turn a blind eye to the problem and allow our neighborhoods to continue to be ravaged by predatory lenders? The regulators should not just rush into granting permission for this merger,” Hurd continued.  “At the very least, they need to take adequate time to consider the community’s views, and to hold a public hearing.”


In its comments, ACORN noted that Associates is currently under investigations by the Federal Trade Commission, the U.S. Department of Justice, and the North Carolina Attorney General’s Office for various illegal lending practices.  ACORN urged the banking regulators to withhold approval of the merger until these investigations are completed and changes are made to ensure that any identified predatory practices do not reoccur in the future.

Among Associates predatory practices, ACORN highlighted the problems related to Associates’ high-volume sales of single-premium credit insurance policies in conjunction with the loans it originates.  Associates is the fifth largest seller in the country of credit life insurance – insurance which will pay off the borrower’s debt with Associates if the borrower dies. Borrowers are often pressured into buying the credit insurance policies or are even sold the policies without their consent or knowledge.  The policies, which are financed into the high-interest loan are extremely profitable for Associates.  While group life, health, and accident insurance policies have historically had loss ratios (the ratio of claims paid out to premiums collected) of around 75 percent, Associates has a loss ratio on its credit life insurance policies of below 42 percent.


“Credit insurance is a giant rip-off for the consumer, but an enormous money-maker for Associates,” ACORN President Maude Hurd stated.  “Associates pays out so little of the money they take in, and since credit insurance pays the company which made the loan, rather than the customer, all of the claims paid out by Associates’ insurance policies are paid right back to Associates.”


In addition to Associates’ abusive subprime lending practices, ACORN also cited its serious concern about Associates National Bank, which is based in Delaware and part of the larger Associates corporation.  Associates National Bank received a “Needs to Improve” rating in its most recent Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) exam.  Less than two-percent of all banks receive a rating lower than “satisfactory.” 


ACORN stated that without regulatory action there was no reason to believe that Associates’ practices would be brought up to an acceptable standard after the merger.  Citigroup has defended the sale of single-premium credit insurance, and Citibank has concentrated its lending activity in higher-income and predominantly white communities, leaving low and moderate income and minority communities to its subprime lending affiliates and their higher fee, higher interest rate loans that more often contain predatory conditions.


ACORN also pointed out that another Citigroup affiliate, Salomon Smith Barney, has been a major securitizer of subprime loans, and thus far, has refused to adopt standards that would stop it from funding predatory loans.  ACORN stated that if Associates becomes part of Citigroup, it would grant Associates much easier access to the capital which Associates needs to carry out its predatory lending.


ACORN (Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now) is a national grassroots membership organization that fights for better schools, jobs, and neighborhoods and works to secure fair access to credit for low-income and minority neighborhoods.    Over the last year, ACORN members across the country have been waging a full-scale campaign against predatory lending: releasing studies documenting the impact of predatory lending; confronting predatory lenders directly to improve their practices; exposing Wall Street investment firms which finance predatory loans; pushing state and federal regulators to aggressively investigate lenders and take appropriate actions; holding meetings and workshops to educate the community; and working for legislative change on a local, state, and federal level.



24 posted on 10/24/2008 7:22:21 AM PDT by Calpernia (Hunters Rangers - Raising the Bar of Integrity
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ACORN Targets Predatory Lending at National Convention
First National Gathering of Grassroots Activists and Lending Victims

Over 2000 ACORN members from across the country will take action against predatory lending at as the issue takes center stage at ACORN's 30th Anniversary National Convention in Philadelphia June 24-26. ACORN's convention will be the first national gathering of grassroots activists and community leaders to address the issue.

"We have fought for years to increase reinvestment in our communities only to be victimized by predatory lenders. ACORN will fight to take back our communities from these loan sharks street by street if we have to," according to Maude Hurd, ACORN National President. "Although we are celebrating our victories and our endurance after 30 years, we are coming to Philadelphia this June Fighting for Our Future."

Over the past year, ACORN has engaged in direct action against both large and small predatory lenders, using a wide range of tactics to expose their abuses, pressure them to change their practices, and to generate support for ACORN's efforts to win regulatory intervention and needed legislation with increased consumer protections. ACORN has targeted some lenders nationally because of their outrageous practices and the large volume of complaints we have received from their customers. ACORN's campaign has resulted in HUD investigations, the introduction of state legislation, local ordinances, and national legislation.

Over 30 years, ACORN has become the nation's largest organization of low and moderate-income in the country. ACORN will celebrate its 30th Anniversary with a host of national civil rights and labor leaders including: Linda Chavez-Thompson, Executive Vice President of the AFL-CIO; New York civil rights leader Rev. Al Sharpton ; Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr.; and Dennis Rivera, President of Local 1199/SEIU, and other community and labor leaders.

From an organization founded by welfare mothers in Little Rock, Arkansas, ACORN celebrates its growth, longevity and success as it has grown to an organization with over 150,000 African-American, white and Latino family members in 34 cities. Organizational accomplishments include:

ACORN is the nation's oldest and largest grassroots community organization, with offices in 34 cities. Our multi-racial membership of low and moderate income families work in neighborhood chapters to improve local conditions as well as work on larger citywide, statewide, and national issues such as affordable housing, quality education, living wage jobs and increased homeownership.


More net archives:

But in Little Rock, Hillary Clinton joined the male-dominated Rose Law Firm. The decision, she wrote in her memoir, was partly economic, an effort to secure the family's finances while Bill Clinton pursued a career in politics.

Although she continued to do free legal work for some groups, her new career occasionally put her at odds with constituencies with whom she'd traditionally been aligned. In the late 1970s, a community group won a major victory with the passage of a Little Rock ballot measure regarding utility rates. The proposal aimed to make the rates more affordable by creating a fixed price for the first 400 kilowatt hours of consumption, so low-income customers could have power for their basic needs, said Wade Rathke, the founder of the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now, the group behind the measure. The measure would have forced large utility users, such as businesses, to pay more.


Looks like Hillary did free legal work for ACORN, which birthed in Little Rock.

25 posted on 10/24/2008 7:44:27 AM PDT by Calpernia (Hunters Rangers - Raising the Bar of Integrity
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Wade Rathke - co-founded ACORN and SEIU, board member TIDES Foundation

Memo from ACORN. Investigated for tax fraud for accepting contributions from a non-profit “dummy” organization they run called Project Vote.


The New York Times reports:

The June 18 report, written by Elizabeth Kingsley, a Washington lawyer, spells out her concerns about potentially improper use of charitable dollars for political purposes; money transfers among the affiliates; and potential conflicts created by employees working for multiple affiliates, among other things

It also offers a different account of the embezzlement of almost $1 million by the brother of Acorn's founder, Wade Rathke, than the one the organization gave in July, when word of the theft became public. . .

Ms. Kingsley's concerns about the way Acorn affiliates work together could fuel the controversy over Acorn's voter registration efforts, which are largely underwritten by an affiliated charity, Project Vote. Project Vote hires Acorn to do voter registration work on its behalf, and the two groups say they have registered 1.3 million voters this year

As a federally tax-exempt charity, Project Vote is subject to prohibitions on partisan political activity. But Acorn, which is a nonprofit membership corporation under Louisiana law, though subject to federal taxation, is not bound by the same restrictions.

26 posted on 10/24/2008 8:14:13 AM PDT by Calpernia (Hunters Rangers - Raising the Bar of Integrity
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To: LucyT

did you get a ping to this? (Acorn, very long)

27 posted on 10/24/2008 2:49:15 PM PDT by Fred Nerks
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To: Calpernia


>>“If we lose freedom here, there is no place to escape to. This is the last stand on Earth.”
- President Ronald Reagan
October 27, 1984<<

28 posted on 10/24/2008 3:42:52 PM PDT by KylaStarr (..keeping watch)
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To: Fred Nerks; Kevmo; null and void; pissant; george76; Polarik; PhilDragoo; Candor7; FARS; ...

Thanks Fred Nerks. This is one to bookmark.


29 posted on 10/24/2008 4:17:25 PM PDT by LucyT
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To: Calpernia; DAVEY CROCKETT; LibertyRocks; PGalt; Velveeta; milford421; Rushmore Rocks

Have local law enforcement agencies distribute warning flyers whenever a rape or assault occurs in a neighborhood. <<<

What kind of fools are these folks?

The above will cure the rapes....if attached to the end of a rope and thrown over a tall tree limb.

As I read your first post, all I could think of was, “This is what they worked so hard to bring to pass with the communist manifesto............

And they want it all now.

How boring that life will be, I shudder to think of it.

An excellent thread, thank you, exceptional researcher should be your title.

30 posted on 10/24/2008 10:46:47 PM PDT by nw_arizona_granny ( SURVIVAL, RECIPES, GARDENS, & INFO)
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To: Calpernia

Great research! Job well done!

31 posted on 10/25/2008 1:25:38 AM PDT by M. Espinola (Freedom is not 'free'.)
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To: Calpernia; AdmSmith; Berosus; Convert from ECUSA; dervish; Ernest_at_the_Beach; Fred Nerks; ...

Thanks Calpernia.

32 posted on 10/25/2008 11:36:06 AM PDT by SunkenCiv ( finally updated Saturday, October 11, 2008 !!!)
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To: nw_arizona_granny; Calpernia; All

Thanks very much for the ping, granny. OUTSTANDING post, Calpernia! Educational, informative, enlightening. Thank very much for all of your work.


33 posted on 10/26/2008 11:27:26 AM PDT by PGalt
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To: Calpernia

Ameriquest and Obama’s speech contibutor (/sarcasm) Deval Patrick.

Update of March 12, 2007: From Deval Patrick, following his $360,000 a year part-time service on the board of directors of the predatory lender Ameriquest / ACC: “As a former board member, I was asked by an officer of ACC Capital to serve as a reference for the company and agreed to do so. I called Robert Rubin, a former colleague from the Clinton administration and an executive at Citigroup, to offer any insight they might want on the character of the current management... I appreciate that I should not have made the call.”

34 posted on 10/26/2008 12:27:28 PM PDT by PGalt
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