Councilwoman and Congressional candidate Tiffany Renee has launched an online petition asking the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) to declare a moratorium on foreclosures, auctions and evictions for the holidays.
Renee says she has personal experience with foreclosure, having been foreclosed on twice while growing up in Sacramento.
"Foreclosures, auctions, and evictions are always an extremely difficult experience, but they are especially painful during the holiday season when individuals and families want to celebrate with loved ones in the comfort of their homes," Renee wrote in her petition.
"We implore the FHFA to show compassion during the holiday season for individuals and families who are facing hard times by temporarily suspending all eviction proceedings, auction notices, and delaying the start of new foreclosures until January 2, 2012."
Around the country, an estimated 1.5 million homes are in foreclosure. Petaluma has not been spared, with thousands of local families impacted. In October the number of local properties in some state of foreclosure jumped to 122, up from 90 in September, according to RealtyTrac.
On Monday, the City Council is expected to pass a resolution encouraging local banks to put a temporary moratorium on foreclosures. However, doing so may be impossible because most home loans have been bundled and resold and are not controlled by one institution and are held by large, diversfied, national or international lending companies, according to a housing counselor with Catholic Charities, which has been working with Sonoma County families who are in foreclosure.
Petaluma Patch's calls to Bank of America's corporate office asking if the bank would be willing to honor a temporary hold of foreclosures have not been returned.