The National Asian American Coalition (“NAAC”) and two other nonprofit organizations won a resounding victory for low income and underserved homeowners last week as the California Third District Court of Appeals ruled that California officials must return $331 million to the National Mortgage Special Deposit Fund (“NMSDF”) – a special fund created to help financially distressed homeowners avoid foreclosure and to help solve the housing crisis in California.
NAAC and its co-plaintiffs – COR Community Development Corporation and National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference – sued California’s Governor, the Director of Finance, and the Controller in March 2014 to ask that a writ of mandate be issued to compel the state to return $331 million to the NMSDF, which they illegally removed from the fund for other budgetary purposes.
After trial in the original case entitled National Asian American Coalition, et. al. v. Brown et. al., the trial court found that the offsets were indeed unlawful and that California was obligated to restore the funds.
The appeals court affirmed the illegality of the fund transfers and ordered “the immediate return of these funds” to the NMSDF.
Faith Bautista, President and Chief Executive Officer of the NAAC, was elated with the verdict, stating “This is a victory for struggling homeowners. These funds will go a long way in helping to solve the homeownership crisis we are facing in California.”
Bautista appealed to state officials to “do the right thing” and take immediate heed of the appellate court ruling. “Governor Brown and the state legislature must do the right thing and put the money where it belongs,” Bautista continued. “That money belongs to homeowners in distress, so I hope they do what they were voted to do and help the people.”
The victory marks another milestone for the NAAC which, from its inception in 2004, has been at the forefront of fighting for the welfare of California homeowners.
As both a HUD-approved housing counseling organization and a Treasury-certified Community Development Financial Institution (“CDFI”), the NAAC has for the past fifteen years been providing invaluable services such as housing counseling, foreclosure assistance, and access to capital for the minority and low-to-moderate income (“LMI”) communities it serves.
Along with its sister organization – the National Diversity Coalition (“NDC”) – a broad based organization of prominent community, faith-based, and business leaders – the NAAC has also been performing effective and highly successful advocacy work before federal and state agencies, legislatures, and – as in this instance – before the courts.
About the National Asian American Coalition The National Asian American Coalition is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, a HUD-approved home counseling agency, and is certified by the United States Department of Treasury as a Community Development Financial Institution. Our primary mission is to empower the twenty million Asian Americans and two million Asian American small businesses to become a national economic powerhouse. The NAAC is the nation’s leading Asian American nonprofit advocating against foreclosures, advocating for greater economic and small business development, and advancing the growing economic and social power of Asian Americans.
About the National Diversity Coalition The National Diversity Coalition is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization that is comprised of community organizers, faith-based leaders, nonprofit directors, and business owners working collectively for greater financial equality and empowerment for underserved groups. Together we work with corporate and government leaders to advocate for greater opportunities in homeownership, small business, and financial literacy for all people. For more information: https://