The second-most powerful Democrat in the Senate called the Obama administration's mortgage modification program"a waste of time" Wednesday, hours after the White House released disappointing new data about the program's effectiveness.
This morning, the Treasury Department announced that the program had helped 360,165 homeowners reduce their mortgage payments. However, that is only 16 more homes than received new foreclosure filings during the month of July, according to RealtyTrac.
In response to the new data, Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin said, "Waiting for banks to 'volunteer' to end this foreclosure crisis is a waste of time. Treasury's latest report shows this approach has failed miserably."
The Treasury Department has been critical of the performance thus far of mortgage servicers. Although the number of servicers participating in the plan has increased from 38 in July to 47 in August, some servicers have produced alarmingly low rates of loan modifications that could avoid foreclosures. As of the end of August, the servicer with the most eligible loans -- Bank of America with 835,680 eligible modifications -- has only started modifications on 59,891 of them, a rate of 7 percent.
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