On Tuesday, April 12, thousands of Texas REALTORS® converged at the state Capitol and delivered a clear message to state legislators: protect our industry to preserve our economy.

This year, the Houston area delegation was well represented with six buses and more than 200 REALTORS® traveling to Austin. The HAR-TV crew met the buses on the East end of the Capitol, and continued to film our REALTORS® and staff throughout the day as they met with Houston area legislators and their staff.

Many of the HAR executive committee and HAR directors took time to make the drive to Austin and participate in our biennial one-on-one visits with lawmakers, including: Carlos Bujosa, Wayne Stroman, Danny Frank, Chaille Ralph, Margie Dorrance, Pattie Huey, Cindy Hamann, Christi Borden, Gayla Skates, Courtney Johnson Rose, Marilyn Arendt, Kenya Burrell-VanWormer, Mario Arriaga, David Schwarz, Tiffany Curry, Catherine Trevino and Amy Smythe-Harris.

State Representative Jim Murphy (R-Houston) presented REALTORS® Ed Wolff and Ann Woodroof with House Resolutions congratulating them for their recent awards received at HAR’s annual Realtor® Celebration in December 2010. He also presented a House Resolution Recognizing April 12, 2011, as REALTOR® Appreciation Day at the State Capitol.

Legislative Topics Discussed Include:

  • Deceptive Trade Practices Act – House Bill 2177 and Senate Bill 1353 would exempt real estate agents and brokers from liability under the Deceptive Trade Practices Act, as originally intended by the Legislature.
  • Private Transfer Fees – House Bill 8 would prohibit a real estate scam that allows private entities to collect a 1% real estate transfer fee on a property to be paid for up to 99 years.
  • Self-directed, semi-independent status for TREC – SB 1000 would make the Texas Real Estate Commission (TREC) a self‐directed, semi‐independent state agency, giving the commission the flexibility to use licensing fees to more effectively operate the agency in a way that is responsive to licensees and protects consumers.
  • TREC Housekeeping – Senate Bill 747 would increase consumer protections by strengthening the licensing and education requirements of real estate professionals.