D. Keith Pigues, dean of the School of Business at North Carolina Central University, has been named to the board of directors of the Office of Mortgage Settlement Oversight.
The Office of Mortgage Settlement Oversight, or OMSO, was established early this year as a result of a national mortgage settlement. In February, the federal government, attorneys general of 49 states (all but Oklahoma), and five major banks and mortgage servicers reached an agreement to create new servicing standards, provide loan modification relief to distressed homeowners and provide funding for state and federal governments.
Pigues is one of five members of the board of directors that will oversee OMSO business operation. The board will have no direct role in overseeing the mortgage settlement. He was appointed by Joseph A. Smith Jr., a former North Carolina banking commissioner who is the monitor of the settlement. The other board members are former North Carolina Gov. James E. Holshouser, now a lawyer in private practice; John S. Allison, a former Mississippi banking commissioner; Bonnie Hancock, executive director of the Enterprise Risk Management Initiative at N.C. State University; and Donald A. Pape, an Oklahoma City lawyer.
The mortgage settlement calls for the five participating financial institutions — Bank of America, Citi, JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo and Ally/GMAC — to provide at least $25 billion in consumer relief. At least $17 billion will be in the form of principal reduction and loan modification for homeowners who need help to avoid foreclosure. Other funds will provide refinancing for “underwater” homeowners who are current on their mortgages but owe more than their homes’ current value.
The settlement also establishes first-ever nationwide reforms to mortgage servicing standards. These standards require better communication with borrowers, a single point of contact, adequate staffing levels and training, and appropriate standards for executing documents in foreclosure cases.