It was a privilege and a pleasure for me to attend the National Association of REALTORS® January 28-31, 2013 orientation for new Federal Political Coordinators (FPC) held at the Omni Shoreham in Washington, D. C. Included in the contingency from the Houston Association of REALTORS® were new FPCs, HAR Chairman Danny Frank, First Vice-Chair Nancy Furst and former TREPAC Chair Marilyn Burt, veteran FPCs Vicki Fullerton and John NicholS and HAR President and CEO Bob Hale.
FPCs from across the nation gathered to hear legislative updates from NAR staff and congressional staff. In addition, the FPCs had an opportunity to attend Rick Miller’s interview with Ira Shapiro, author of “The Last Great Senate: Courage and Statesmanship in Times of Crisis.”
The HAR contingency also took the opportunity to visit the staffs of all members of the Greater Harris County Congressional Delegation: Representatives Kevin Brady, John Culberson, Al Green, Gene Green, Sheila Jackson-Lee, Michael McCaul, Pete Olson, Ted Poe, Steve Stockman, and Randy Weber. While the House was in recess at the time of our visit, the Senate was in session. Luckily, Texas’ newest U. S. Senator, Ted Cruz, took a few minutes to greet his long-time friend, Nancy Furst, and visit with Danny, Marilyn, and me and he paused for a few photos.
Each congressional staffer we visited was presented with a copy of HAR’s first-ever consumer based legislative priorities survey.
Congressional Visits May 15 and 16
New FPCs will join veteran FPCs when we gather again in Washington to visit one-on-one with our federal lawmakers on May 15 and 16.
Issues we will cover with our legislators include the following:
Qualified Residential Mortgage Rule– NAR has been actively involved in shaping the debate and structure of the 804-page Qualified Mortgage (QM) Rule issued by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) created by the Dodd-Frank Reform Act. The rule is scheduled to be effective January 10, 2014.
Federal Housing Administration Reform – NAR opposes any changes to the Federal Housing Administration that will cause a disruption to the housing sector and undermine fragile local real estate markets.
Mortgage Interest Deductibility – NAR remains vigilant in opposing any future plans that modify or exclude the deductibility of mortgage interest.
To access the NAR MidYear Legislative Meetings schedule visit http://www.realtor.org/educsessmid.nsf/midGovMeetingsbyDateAll?OpenForm.