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Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Mike Enzi, R-Wyo., and his colleagues on the Senate Banking Committee passed a bill Thursday that would improve oversight of government-sponsored enterprises that help small banks in Wyoming provide affordable mortgages.

The Federal Housing Enterprise Regulatory Reform Act of 2005 provides for an independent regulator to oversee the operations of Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and Federal Home Loan Banks. While the operations of these organizations are critical to our nation’s economy, recent accounting failures at these establishments have put the housing market at risk and show the need for reform, according to Enzi.

“Smaller banks, like those in Wyoming, depend on the services that the government-sponsored enterprises provide. They help our small banks provide more low-cost mortgages that put people on their way to achieving the American dream of owning a home. The reforms in this bill would protect Wyoming’s housing market by helping to eliminate risky accounting behavior by entities like Fannie and Freddie,” said Enzi.

As a member of the Senate Banking Committee, Enzi helped draft the legislation. The bill is now ready to be debated before the full Senate.