WASHINGTON – This week, Congressman Steve Stivers (R-OH) reintroduced the SAFE Transitional License Act. This bill changes the Secure and Fair Enforcement for Mortgage Licensing Act (SAFE) by providing regulatory relief for loan originators in an effort to make a smooth employment transition between bank and non-bank entities. Representatives Joyce Beatty (D-OH), Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ) and Bruce Poliquin (R-ME) joined as cosponsors of this bipartisan legislation.
“An unintentional consequence of the current law is inhibiting job mobility and putting independent mortgage lenders at a considerable disadvantage in recruiting talented individuals,” said Stivers. “Rather than leaving a job on a Friday and starting a new job on a Monday, as most of us do, a loan officer who moves from a federally-insured institution to a non-bank lender must sit on their hands for weeks, even months, while they meet the SAFE Act’s licensing and testing requirements. This is despite the fact that they have already been employed and registered as a loan officer. This is simply unfair.”
Currently, the SAFE Act requires mortgage loan originators (MLOs) employed by non-bank lenders to be licensed, which includes pre-licensing and annual continuing education requirements, passage of a comprehensive test, and criminal and financial background reviews conducted by state regulators. These MLOs are also registered in the National Mortgage Licensing System and Registry (NMLS). By contrast, MLOs employed by federally-insured depositories or their affiliates must only be registered in the NMLS, and do not have to meet testing and specific education requirements.
Stivers’ legislation would make a minor change to the SAFE Act to require states to issue transitional licenses to individuals who were employed by a financial institution and are a registered loan originator. These individuals would be able to continue originating loans for 120 days after being employed by a state-licensed non-depository entity. Similarly, a state-licensed loan originator in one state who takes a similar position in another state would have a 120-day grace period to obtain a license in the new state.
This bill is a simple solution that would allow these individuals to continue working and underwriting loans, while in no way weakening the important consumer protections of the SAFE Act.
Last Congress, a version of this bill introduced by Stivers passed the House of Representatives, but was not considered by the Senate. Read more about this legislation by clicking here.
WASHINGTON – Today, Representative Steve Stivers (R-OH) and Representative Mark Takano (D-CA) introduced legislation to ensure newly hired veterans in frontline medical positions at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) are able to take paid sick leave to receive the care they need. The Veteran Transition Improvement Act will correct a loophole in existing law to provide the same Wounded Warrior Act benefits that veteran employees in other federal agencies currently receive.
This change would provide immediate paid sick leave for veteran employees in their first year of work that they otherwise would have to accrue over time or take unpaid leave to receive care for their service-connected injuries. This is the House companion legislation to the bill (S. 899) introduced by Senators Mazie K. Hirono (D-HI), Jerry Moran (R-KS) and Jon Tester (D-MT).
“Veterans should not have to choose between receiving a full paycheck and receiving care for their service-connected disabilities. Unfortunately, current law puts many veterans in this exact position,” Stivers said. “This legislation will correct this shortcoming in the law to ensure these veterans who have made, and continue to make, incredible sacrifices for our country have the ability to receive care without sacrificing pay.”
“I am proud to be the lead Democratic co-sponsor of the Department of Veterans Affairs Veteran Transition Improvement Act,” Takano said. “We must ensure that every veteran with a service-connected disability hired by the Federal government receives the access to paid sick leave that they deserve. This legislation corrects an oversight in current law that has left disabled veterans who take a job as a healthcare provider with the Department of Veterans Affairs in the difficult position of having to take unpaid leave to receive care for conditions that stem from their service to our nation. I am thankful to Rep. Stivers for the opportunity to work with him on a solution to this problem, because we must always stand up for the brave men and women who have served our nation.”
In 2015, the Wounded Warrior Federal Leave Act was signed into law to make paid sick leave available to some new veteran federal employees with service-connected conditions rated at 30 percent or more disabled so they could receive treatment. However, this did not extend to “Title 38” employees, which includes VA physicians, physician assistants, registered nurses, chiropractors, podiatrists, optometrists, and dentists.
According to January 2017 data from the Veterans Health administration (VHA), there are over 13,000 “Title 38” vacancies nationwide.
This bill is supported by the National Association of VA Physicians and Dentists (NAVAPD), Nurses Organization of Veterans Affairs (NOVA), American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW), Paralyzed Veterans of America (PVA), Disabled American Veterans (DAV), Association of the U.S. Navy (AUSN), American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE), National Federation of Federal Employees (NFFE), Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA), AMVETS and the Federal Managers Association (FMA).
The following statement can be attributed to Congressman Steve Stivers (R-OH) regarding the attack at the Manchester Arena:
“In light of the tragic attack in Manchester last night, I want to extend my prayers to the victims and their families, and my thanks to the first responders. These senseless acts of violence should only strengthen our determination in the fight against terrorism.”
U.S. Reps. Steve Stivers (R-OH) and Terri Sewell (D-AL) recently introduced legislation to allow employer student loan repayment programs to be considered a non-taxable fringe benefit, reducing the tax burden on borrowers.
The bill, the Student Loan Debt Relief Act, would raise the cap on tax free educational assistance to $10,000 and doubles the maximum deduction of student loan interest from $2,500 to $5,000. It also raises the income ceiling to allow more young professionals to benefit from these programs.
“Students and recent graduates often face difficult financial hardship paying for their student loans with entry level jobs. There is no doubt that student loan debt can be a major obstacle in building a solid financial future,” Stivers said. “While this is just one step to addressing the cost of higher education, I am proud to support a stronger student loan repayment program to relieve the burden on the next generation.”
Currently, employers that provide student loan assistance and repayment benefits for their employees are then able to write off those costs as part of doing business. The Internal Revenue Service, however, classifies these programs as taxable income on the employees who are then taxed on that benefit as additional income.
This bill eliminates the classification to allow employees to receive this benefit without the burden of additional taxes on their paychecks.
“We cannot allow student loan debt to keep the American dream out of reach for our youngest generation,” Sewell said. “Recent graduates joining the workforce face many challenges, and student debt can be one of the most difficult. The Student Loan Debt Relief Act takes an important step forward by giving young people a better opportunity to work towards financial security.”
Current law sets an income ceiling of $80,000 for individual filers and $160,000 for couples filing jointly to be eligible for interest deduction. This bill will raise these amounts to $150,000 and $250,000, respectively, to allow more young professionals to qualify for this deduction.
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Raised in Ripley, Ohio, Steve Stivers learned from his mother and father the importance of family, hard work and public service, which have been the values he has carried with him through his life, whether as a student at The Ohio State University, a soldier serving overseas, as a State Senator, or as a Member of Congress.
Stivers is currently serving his third term as a Member of Congress and represents Ohio’s 15th Congressional District, which is made up of 12 counties including: all of Athens, Clinton, Fairfield, Hocking, Madison, Morgan, Perry, Pickaway, and Vinton counties, and parts of: Fayette, Franklin, and Ross counties.
Stivers is serving his third term his third term on the Financial Services Committee, which oversees the banking, insurance, real estate, public and assisted housing, and securities industries. Members who serve on the committee also work on housing and consumer protection legislation and oversee Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Federal Reserve Bank.
In addition, Stivers has been tapped to serve on the Committee on Rules, which is charged with determining which bills reach the House Floor for a vote. Historically, the Committee is often known as “The Speaker’s Committee” because it was chaired by the Speaker up until 1910 and is the means through which the Speaker of the House manages the House Floor. The Committee also determines how long and under what rules the full body of the House will debate each bill.
Throughout his career, Steve Stivers has led the way supporting programs and initiatives to encourage job creation, promote economic development, and put our country’s fiscal house in order. As he wrapped up a successful first term in office, two of Stivers veterans bills, the HIRE at Home Act and TRICARE for Kids, were rolled into the National Defense Authorization Act and signed into law by the President. In his second term in office, Stivers had two bills make their way to the President’s desk. These two bills, H.R. 1391 and H.R. 4189,would re-name two postal facilities located in Ohio’s 15th Congressional District after our fallen veterans. These bills are a small measure Congress can take to honor the lives of brave service members who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our freedoms.
Prior to running for Congress, Stivers served in the Ohio Senate and before that worked in the private sector for the Ohio Company and Bank One, where he focused on promoting economic development and encouraging job creation.
A career soldier, Stivers has served 29 years in the Ohio Army National Guard and holds the rank of Colonel. He served the United States overseas during Operation Iraqi Freedom in Kuwait, Iraq, Qatar and Djibouti where he led 400 soldiers and contractors and is proud that each and every one returned home safely to the United States. Stivers received the Bronze Star for his leadership throughout the deployment.
Stivers received both his bachelor’s degree and his MBA from The Ohio State University and resides in Columbus with his wife, Karen, and children, Sarah and Sam.
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Do you know an outstanding vet? Ohio Veteran Hall of Fame is accepting applications for the Class of '17 until 6/30. https://t.co/to8L0giId4