Predatory deals against american cities

Predatory deals against american cities

I f you want to know what life in the Third World is like, just ask Lisa Pack, an administrative assistant who works in the roads and transportation department in Jefferson County, Alabama. Pack got rudely introduced to life in post-crisis America last August, when word came down that she and 1, of her fellow public employees would have to take a little unpaid vacation for a while. Nearly a fourth of that went to pay for her health insurance, which the county no longer covered. She also fielded calls from laid-off co-workers who had it even tougher. For some of the men supporting families, it was so hard — foreclosure, bankruptcy. This article appeared in the April 15, issue of Rolling Stone.

Cities Can Sue Banks for Predatory Lending, Rules U.S. Supreme Court

Supreme Court on Monday ruled that cities may sue banks over predatory mortgage lending to minorities that harms municipal finances, but cast doubt on whether such cases can succeed by throwing out a lower court decision that had allowed litigation brought by Miami to move forward. The court, ruling , tossed out a ruling by the Atlanta-based 11th U. Miami said Wells Fargo, Bank of America and Citigroup steered non-white borrowers into higher-cost and riskier loans they often could not afford, even if they had good credit.

As a result of this alleged discriminatory lending, Miami said, property values declined because of the high rate of loan defaults that led to foreclosures. The city said it lost property tax revenue and was forced to pay to repair and maintain properties that went into foreclosure. Writing for the court, liberal Justice Stephen Breyer said Miami had the legal standing to sue the banks but needed to present more evidence that the injuries it claims to have suffered were tied to alleged violations of the federal Fair Housing Act.

Miami accused the banks of a decade of lending discrimination in its residential housing market. Other U. Miami filed the cases in , in the aftermath of the U. The city sued under the housing law, which prohibits discrimination in housing sale, rental and financing. Citigroup Inc C. N decided not to appeal to the Supreme Court. Business interests have sought to narrow the scope of the Fair Housing Act in an effort to ward off expensive litigation. In , the Supreme Court ruled in a major Fair Housing Act case from Texas, upholding a broad interpretation of discrimination claims allowed under that law, in a setback to lenders and insurers.

Then, Kennedy joined the liberal justices in the majority. Discover Thomson Reuters. Answers On Innovation Thomson Reuters. Directory of sites. United States. Supreme Court. Lawrence Hurley. An auction sign for a property is seen at the front garden of a foreclosed house in Miami Gardens, Florida in this September 15, file photo. Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

How to Address Predatory Small Business Lending in Your Community

The U. Supreme Court announced Tuesday that it will hear arguments during its next term on whether the city of Miami can sue Bank of America and Wells Fargo for alleged predatory lending. The Supreme Court will not rule on the merits of the lawsuits, but rather whether the city of Miami is allowed to bring the lawsuits, which accuse the megabanks of engaging in long-term mortgage lending discrimination in the city. District Judge William Dimitrouleas initially dismissed the lawsuits in July , ruling that the city lacked standing to sue, and that the alleged harm was too remote from the banks' conduct. Miami originally filed lawsuits against Bank of America, Wells Fargo, and Citigroup in , stating that the banks engaged in predatory lending to minority borrowers.

Supreme Court on Monday ruled that cities may sue banks over predatory mortgage lending to minorities that harms municipal finances, but cast doubt on whether such cases can succeed by throwing out a lower court decision that had allowed litigation brought by Miami to move forward. The court, ruling , tossed out a ruling by the Atlanta-based 11th U.

New York, NY: Community groups in cities around the country are staging actions to call for greater transparency and accountability around predatory financial deals that have cost state and local governments billions and forced them to cut funding from essential services like public education. They did this through their role in crashing the economy and through a systematic effort to suppress taxes and prevent progressive revenue solutions. The Grassroots Education Movement, a coalition of labor, community, and watchdog organizations in Chicago, gathered at City Hall this morning to demand that Mayor Rahm Emanuel immediately file a claim with the Financial Industry Regulation Authority to reclaim the lost money from dishonest banks.

U.S. top court says cities can sue over predatory lending but sets high bar

At least 20 states have laws that make it illegal for communities to offer local government-owned high speed internet access. Wednesday, Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler threw consumers a bone by suggesting that the agency could make it easier for cities to skirt those laws. As internet users suffer through slow broadband speeds, spotty service in rural areas, only one or two service providers to choose from, and now, the threat of preferential treatment via an "internet fast lane," many communities have been looking into becoming their own internet providers. Offering gigabit speeds, maintaining local control, and avoiding discrimination is enticing. Provided that cities or municipalities actually file a request with the FCC.

The FCC Can't Help Cities Trapped By Predatory Internet Deals With Big Telecom

New York legislators are pledging to change laws that have allowed predatory lenders to use the state court system to seize the assets of thousands of small businesses across the country. Brad Hoylman, incoming chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, called the current situation "alarming" and said he'd try to enact changes during next year's legislative session. Confessions are legal instruments that lenders use to win court judgments against debtors without a judge's involvement. Bloomberg News reported last month that merchant cash-advance companies have obtained more than 25, judgments against small-business borrowers since by filing confessions with New York county clerks. In interviews and court pleadings, borrowers described lenders who forged documents, lied about how much they were owed or fabricated defaults out of thin air. All are Democrats. The party controls the Assembly and will take over the Senate when the legislative session begins next month. Governor Andrew Cuomo, also a Democrat, didn't respond to requests for comment. Cash-advance companies require borrowers across the country to sign a New York confession as a condition of a loan.

Supreme Court to consider Miami's predatory lending suit against Bank of America, Wells Fargo

Jason D. Fischer, Sarah H. Cleeton, Timothy P. Lyons, James R. Miller, Urbanization and the Predation Paradox:

Supreme Court to consider Miami's predatory lending suit against Bank of America, Wells Fargo

Click here to view the English version of the report. Wells Fargo targeted Puerto Rico with billions of dollars in predatory payday loans that are crushing the island. This report focuses on diversity within the financial services industry, and specifically on the role that investment consultants can play in advancing financial performance by valuing diversity. Click here to view the report. Higher education in the U. We see evidence of this crisis in huge cuts in funding for public schools, skyrocketing costs of attendance at both private and public schools, and increases in student debt burdens. Financialization of Higher Education. How deals involving hometown investment bank Piper Jaffray are draining millions from Minnesota cities, hospitals,state agencies, and non-profit organizations.

New York lawmakers say state must stop enabling predatory loans

Cities should proactively talk to businesses about their borrowing needs and rights and lead them in the right direction towards trustworthy sources of capital. Access to credit can make or break a growing business. Right now though, the incremental recovery from our recent economic recession means funding for businesses from traditional banks and the government is still very limited. This credit situation has caused business owners to turn to unregulated, non-bank lenders for their borrowing needs. However, some of these alternative lenders are using savvy marketing campaigns to lure businesses into taking out loans with unaffordable interest rates and hidden fees. The Bill of Rights calls for transparent pricing and terms, responsible underwriting, and fair collection practices from lenders and prohibits abusive strategies like debt traps, hidden penalties, and irresponsible credit reporting. Read about how your city or organization can sign on here. The Big Ideas for Small Business , a national peer network of economic development staff from cities across the country, hosted a conversation with Gwendy Brown, the Vice President of Research and Policy at Opportunity Fund, one of the creators of the Bill of Rights. Gwendy shared her suggestions for how cities can prevent local business owners from obtaining a predatory loan. Survey business owners about their credit usage.

He has nowhere else to go.

The FCC Can't Help Cities Trapped By Predatory Internet Deals With Big Telecom

The case before the justices was brought by Miami after the financial crisis. The city said that discriminatory mortgage lending practices by Bank of America and Wells Fargo had led to a disproportionate number of defaults by minority home buyers and, in turn, to financial harm to the city. Peck, a lawyer for the city. Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. Peck that the harms Miami claimed to have suffered were secondhand. Justice Anthony M. Other justices worried that a ruling for Miami would allow all sorts of people and entities to sue for indirect harm from discriminatory practices. Curtis E. Gannon, a lawyer for the federal government arguing in support of the city, offered a limiting principle. He said people, businesses and local governments hurt by a decline in property values ought to be able to sue under the housing law. Katyal, a lawyer for the banks, said Miami was not aggrieved just because it asserted an indirect financial injury.

Mortal Engines pre-dated the steampunk explosion; Reeve was unaware of the term at the time. To find a reason to make it move, I decided it would be hunting other cities. That seemed like an idea. The film adaptation arrives at a time when blockbuster cinema is obstinately risk-averse. I imagine the film will find a way of doing that as well. It certainly feels like the right time for the world of Mortal Engines to be revisited. Reading the book as a year-old, I was enthralled not only by the extraordinary concept at its heart, but also by its world-ending super weapons, deadly cyborgs and soaring airships.

The U. Supreme Court bolstered the nation's housing-discrimination laws Monday, allowing cities to sue banks for racially biased home-loan practices -- but only if they can show that those practices are causing financial harm to city governments. With Chief Justice John Roberts joining more-liberal colleagues to cast the deciding vote, the court ruled that local governments, and not merely individuals, can challenge so-called predatory lending that targets racial minorities. Newly appointed Justice Neil Gorsuch did not participate. The ruling comes two years after the court departed from its generally conservative stance on civil rights in a decision that allowed housing-discrimination suits based on sales, lending and zoning practices that disproportionately harm minorities, even if no intentional racism can be proven. In Monday's case, the court refused to dismiss a suit by the city of Miami accusing Bank of America and Wells Fargo of targeting black and Latino borrowers with risky mortgages on less favorable terms than those offered to white customers -- among other things, higher interest rates and fees, large prepayment penalties, and refusals to refinance or modify loans to avoid defaults. The banks deny those allegations, which have not yet gone to trial. The city said the banks' lending practices caused foreclosures and vacancies that have increased housing segregation, reduced property values and local tax revenue, and drained city coffers of funds to fight housing blight, crime and other dangers in the affected neighborhoods. He noted that the court had ruled in that the law could be invoked not only by minorities who were denied housing, but also by white tenants who claimed discriminatory rental practices were depriving them of benefits from interracial relationships. A ruling allowed a village to sue over alleged discriminatory practices that affected its racial balance and tax revenue. Cities and counties from around the nation, along with civil rights groups, had urged the court to allow municipal lawsuits. In arguments on behalf of 26 local governments from multiple states, the city of San Francisco said Congress, in passing the law, "understood that the increased crime, poor public health and educational outcomes, and weakened employment prospects that plagued the inner city were part of a vicious cycle that housing discrimination spawned. But the court stopped short of saying what a city must do to prove economic harm. A federal appeals court had ruled that Miami could argue that its financial losses were "foreseeable" results of discrimination by the banks.

VIDEO ON THEME: DN! How the Nations Biggest Banks Are Ripping Off American Cities
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