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Chris Dodd is Backing Obama's Plan in Bailout Bill Reform
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Dodd says he plans to offer four amendments to the recent bailout package passed by congress and signed by the president.

The first is to put in place a 90-day moratorium on foreclosures, touted by Obama. Second, Dodd would reform the credit card industry to prevent gouging of consumers. Third, he would toughen prohibition laws on predatory lending practices. Finally, Dodd says he would reform bankruptcy laws. He says this is a critical part of his package.

"The idea that John McCain with seven homes, can have six of them protected from a bankrupty court, and a person with one residence doesn't get that place protected is outrageous, and that ought to stop in the country and to give people a chance to keep those homes."

The banking committee chairman says he worries about the spiraling effect home foreclosures are having on communities and the economy.

Under an emergency appropriation for a community block grant program, Dodd says Connecticut has received about $25 million to ensure that neighborhoods can address the problems created by abandoned and foreclosed homes.

"In a one eight square mile, which is the average size of a city block, one foreclosure that day causes the decline of values of every other home on that block to decline by between one a two percent. And crime rates on that block go up one or two percent beginning that very week. You start getting that domino effect, in those neighborhoods, and it spirals down. Values decline, more foreclosures, more problems in those communities."

Dodd also put emphasis on the importance of refinancing the permanent affordable housing trust fund -- which was created in the housing bill passed last summer. The fund would ensure the building and preservation of thousands of units across the country, and create new jobs in the process. For WNPR, I'm Marie Kuhn.