3 Petition for Writ of Mandate and Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief
funds in question, and the Controller, the officer who carried out that directive, to reconstitute the Special Deposit Fund with the unlawfully diverted settlement proceeds. Petitioners are three California-based Section 501(c)(3) organizations whose constituents would benefit from replenishment of the Special Deposit Fund to help them weather the economic storm that continues to sweep so many families out of their homes. Petitioner National Asian American Coalition is a HUD-approved counseling organization that so far has helped more than 6,000 homeowners to avoid foreclosure and eviction. Petitioner COR Community Development Corporation, affiliated with Christ Our Redeemer African Methodist Episcopal Church, is committed to empowering impoverished communities by providing services in the areas of education, financial literacy, affordable housing, and civic engagement. Petitioner National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference is the largest Latino Christian organization in America, with 6 million members and 40,000 affiliated churches, including approximately 1,500 churches in California. The latter two Petitioners have the infrastructure in place and the intent to provide counseling programs and training to affected homeowners, but only if the required funding becomes available, such as through replenishment of the Special Deposit Fund. Petitioners bring this Petition on behalf of themselves and their California constituents, seeking a writ of mandate, along with declaratory and injunctive relief, against Governor Edmund Gerald “Jerry” Brown, Director of Finance Michael Cohen, and Controller John Chiang, and allege as follows:
Two years ago, the federal government and 49 states reached an historic $25 billion settlement with five of the country’s largest mortgage servicers. That settlement, known as the National Mortgage Settlement, promised retrospective compensation for millions of U.S. homeowners who had allegedly been victimized by the defendant mortgage servicers in the aftermath of the financial crisis. To limit future abuses, the settlement also promised prospective support for housing counselors, consumer fraud education, and other programs designed to assist Californians in their dealings with mortgage service providers, including in negotiating the often convoluted mortgage modification process.