California: Single Vax Standard, SB 91 Amendment, & Survey

Sacramento capitol dome

This week, California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced that once the state distributes all priority COVID-19 vaccinations to seniors, health care workers, agricultural workers, teachers and school staff, it will move to an age-based eligibility system.

The goal is to allow the state to scale up or down quickly and also get vaccines to disproportionately impacted communities more efficiently.

The previous three-tier prioritization model (with financial institution staff categorized under Phase 1C — the third tier) is being shelved. We are monitoring the situation daily and will keep you apprised of any future changes.

Forbearance Notice Date Extended in SB 91 Amendment
Senate Bill 91 (a budget bill) was just amended to extend a consumer protection provision of Assembly Bill 3088 from last year.

The California Credit Union League worked extensively with Newsom last summer to shape the outcome of AB 3088. The League made sure the bill did not include language on foreclosure moratoriums, mandatory forbearance, or long-term eviction moratoriums to maintain credit unions' ability to work with their members.

Announced this week by the governor’s office in conjunction with California Senate and California Assembly leaders, this latest amendment to SB 91 would extend California’s eviction moratorium through June 30 to protect tenants and small landlords from losing their housing. It is being initiated alongside deployment of California’s share of the latest federal stimulus bill to ensure that up to $2.6 billion in renter aid is administered to at-risk households with unpaid back rent. Tenants and their landlords can choose to receive direct rental assistance in exchange for forgiving prior rental debt.

Under emergency federal legislation passed last year, a mortgage servicer that denies a forbearance request and provides written notice must do so between the servicer’s act of denial and April 1, 2021. However, the SB 91 amendment extends this date to Sept. 1. Since SB 91 is a budget-trailer bill, it will go into effect upon signature and does not need to go through the routine committee process.

For questions, email Robert Wilson, vice president of state government affairs for the League.

Financial Data Update Survey
With the California State Legislature beginning 2021 immediately focused on financial relief for households still impacted by last year’s COVID-19 economic recession, the League is already preparing to regularly inform state lawmakers to help guide their policy discussions on relief to individuals needing it the most.

The League has kickstarted its monthly Financial Data Update Survey for this year, an important aggregate picture of California credit unions' number of loans and outstanding dollar amounts within total portfolios (including forbearances on new autos, used autos, first mortgages, and second mortgages/HELOCs), as well as short-term emergency loans and fee waivers.

These monthly surveys are extremely critical as the League continues advocating for sensible legislative and regulatory policies coming out of both Sacramento and Washington, D.C. Credit union responses are MORE IMPORTANT than ever so the League can help the industry speak with one voice to state and federal lawmakers representing California.

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