Key senators and consumer groups are urging Congress to wait for a Government Accountability Office study before taking legislative action on Federal Housing Administration reforms -- but don't expect the study to be completed anytime soon."We haven't received the formal request, and we haven't initiated anything," a GAO official said. A spokesman for the Senate Banking Committee said a letter requesting the report would be sent to the GAO by the end of the week. At a June 20 hearing, Sen. Wayne Allard, R-Colo., said he is asking the GAO to conduct a study on the Bush administration's FHA single-family reform proposals and wants the GAO to recommend the "most viable options FHA can pursue to serve additional low-income and first-time homebuyers." Senate Banking Committee Chairman Richard Shelby, R-Ala., recently urged Senate appropriators not to include the FHA reforms in a Department of Housing and Urban Development appropriations bill, and FHA reform was kept out of the bill. "We have commissioned a study by GAO to examine the implications of the reform proposal," Sen. Shelby said in a July 17 letter. "We believe that it would be premature to legislate without this additional information."

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