The Commercial Mortgage Securities Association (CMSA) has announced its support of Reps. Paul Kanjorski (D-PA) and Gary Miller (R-CA) for their leadership in urging a one-year extension of the Term Asset-Backed Securities Loan Facility (TALF) for commercial real estate through Dec. 31, 2010. Rep. Kanjorski, the House Financial Services Subcommittee Chairman on Capital Markets, and Rep. Miller, the Ranking Member on the International Monetary Policy Subcommittee, have released a bipartisan letter to Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke requesting that they extend TALF through the end of 2010 in order to provide liquidity and facilitate lending in the CMBS market. The letter, signed by several dozen Members of Congress, stressed that more time is needed for TALF to produce the desired results in the $6 trillion commercial real estate market following months of considerable turbulence. The letter emphasized that a TALF extension for CMBS would bring order to an important sector of the U.S. economy and help protect jobs connected to the commercial real estate industry. Patrick C. Sargent, President, Commercial Mortgage Securities Association, praised the efforts by Mr. Kanjorski and Mr. Miller and stated CMSA’s position that the extension of TALF for CMBS is critical. “For TALF to continue its positive effect on the capital markets, CMSA strongly believes the Federal Reserve should extend the program for another year,” said Mr. Sargent. “We are just beginning to see applications for TALF-backed loans from investors who are critical to private lending, so there is a crucial window of opportunity to revitalize the commercial mortgage sector” he said. “As we’ve seen recently, spreads on CMBS have tightened and private lenders and investors are beginning to get back into the market in response to the TALF program,” he said. “Additionally, most CMBS transactions take approximately four months to complete, which significantly limits the usefulness of the TALF program for the CRE market if it ends too early.” CMSA also is part of a larger “CRE Coalition,” a collection of industry groups advocating for the extension of TALF through the end of next year. The CRE Coalition believes that an extension is necessary to allow the private sector to gain more time in order to avert an even greater crisis for businesses, property owners, financial institutions and the overall U.S. economy. For more information, visit www.cmsaglobal.org.