The Military Coalition, a consortium of nationally prominent military and veterans organizations representing more than 5.5 million current and former service members and their families, has written to Senator Dodd and Senator Shelby about the need for better protections against auto dealers and their lending practices. Under an amendment proposed by Senator Brownback, these lenders and their practices would be exempt from current financial reform legislation.
The text of the latest letter is below:
April 15, 2010
Dear Chairman Dodd and Ranking Member Shelby:
The Military Coalition, a consortium of nationally prominent military and veterans organizations, representing more than 5.5 million current and former service members and their families and survivors, would like to express our opposition to Senator Brownback’s amendment to the Restoring American Financial Stability Act of 2010. Senator Brownback’s amendment would exclude auto dealers and their lending practices from the financial reform bill.
The most significant financial obligation for the majority of service members is auto financing. Including the auto dealers financing and sales in the financial reform bill will provide greater protections for our service members and their families.
Providing a “carve-out” for auto dealers does just the opposite – it will allow unscrupulous dealers to continue to take advantage of service members and their families.
In a recent letter from the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness (USD P&R) to the Department of the Treasury’s Assistant Secretary for Financial Institutions (attached), Dr. Clifford Stanley states that the Department of Defense would welcome protections provided to service members and their families with regard to unscrupulous automobile sales and financing practices.
Additionally, Dr. Stanley highlights the extent of the problem in a recent informal polling of installation attorneys and personal financial managers/counselors. Of the 659 counselors and attorneys who responded, 72% stated that they counseled service members in the past six months on one or more unscrupulous practices (e.g., “bait and switch” financing, falsification of loan documents, failure to pay-off liens, and “packing loans”) when covering auto financing with their client.
Again, the Coalition wishes to reiterate our collective opposition to any “carve-out” of auto dealership financing from the financial reform bill and we thank you for your attention to this important issue impacting military members and their families.
The Military Coalition