Legislative Year in Review
December 2009 | Dave Corsi, MREIA's Legislative Awareness Chair
It’s time to review the past and prepare for the future. It has certainly been an interesting and trying year on the political front. MREIA and the New Jersey Association of Real Estate Professionals Association have had a busy 2009 attempting to deal with a never ending onslaught of legislation.
Unfortunately, the political climate portends for even more legislation being proposed in 2010. This is where each of us can play a pivotal role. If you hear about legislation that would impact the real estate industry please let us know. And better yet, take a pro-active approach. Let your elected officials hear from you. If one thing has become crystal clear it is that politicians are attuned to what the people back home are saying. Simply stated, if the choice is to take a stand that will cost them votes and possibly an election, very few will take on the voters of their district.
On the state level, some of the legislation worked on:
S 3099 Sale Leaseback Bill
S 3100 Lease purchase Bill
S 2765 Debt Adjusters Act
S 2557 Bed Bug Bill
A 3056 Animal House Legislation
A 4063 NJ Foreclosure Fairness Act
On the Federal Bill the main legislation worked on:
HR 1728 “Mortgage Reform and Anti-Predatory Lending Act”
HR 3440 The Installment Sale Bill
We have had measured success in 2009 in exerting influence in the legislation proposed. But as previously stated, it is an ongoing process meaning that we have to be ever vigilant. In early 2010 Congress will begin work on tax legislation. One of the most important pieces of legislation in the last twenty years is H.R. 3440 The Installment Sale Bill. Passage of this bill into law will give you the greatest opportunity to jump-start and expand your real estate investments.
Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukah and Happy New Year ________________________________________________________________________________________ The following is a sample letter to send to your members of Congress letting them know that you expect their support of this legislation.
Hon: [Name of Congressperson]
I am writing to ask you to support HR 3440 “The Installment Sale Bill.” Sponsored by House Ways and Means Committee members Rep. William Pascrell of New Jersey and Rep. Peter Roskam of Illinois, HR 3440 would amend the IRC code to allow dealers to use the “installment sales method” which is currently not allowed. The current financial crisis has had a dramatic negative impact on the real estate market and home ownership. Passage of HR 3440 would have many positive aspects including:
Stabilizing the balance sheets of financial institutions
Lowering the risk to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac
Strengthening the Financial Health of Builders and Rehabbers
Improving the Nation’s Housing Stock
Creating Employment Opportunities in Construction and Ancillary Businesses
Stabilizing Real Estate Values allowing for a Steady and more Predictable Tax Base
Keeping Home Ownership Levels High
Increasing Government Revenues
My family and I believe that this legislation is vital to helping restore financial health and security to our nation and urge you to consider becoming a co-sponsor and supporting this legislation.
[Your Telephone Number]
About the Author
Dave is a Past President of MREIA, the current Legislative Awareness Chairperson and has made presentations at MREIA meetings and the Learning Annex.