Realtors travel to Washington for legislative meetings, expo


More than 9,000 real estate agents gathered May 13 through 18 in Washington, D.C., for the 2018 Realtors Legislative Meetings & Trade Expo.

The purpose of the expo is to advocate for real estate issues on behalf of current and future home and property owners, according to a news release from the Indiana Association of Realtors.

Members of the Jackson County Board of Realtors joined their peers from throughout the United States to attend meetings and informational sessions and meet with regulatory agency staff and lawmakers on Capitol Hill to discuss and advocate real estate issues affecting the real estate industry and their businesses, communities and clients.

The agents focused on several significant issues during the legislative-focused meetings, including fair housing, flood insurance and internet neutrality, according to the news release.

“Realtors are the leading advocates for homeownership and commercial real estate, which is why it is so critical that we connect with lawmakers and ensure they understand the issues facing the real estate industry and their constituents — of which many are home and property owners,” said Lonn Stuckwish, a member of the Jackson County Board of Realtors.

When speaking with U.S. Ninth District Rep. Trey Hollingsworth, R-Indiana, Stuckwish and his fellow association colleagues acknowledged the 50th anniversary of the Fair Housing Act and urged Congress to adopt sexual orientation and gender identity as protected classes under the Fair Housing Act, bringing it in line with the National Association of Realtors’ strict code of ethics.

Additionally, real estate agents advocated for strong net neutrality protections, fought to extend and reform the National Flood Insurance Program and urged Congress to index homeownership deductions for future inflation and permanently extend the tax exclusion on mortgage debt forgiveness.

During the meetings, Jackson County members and other attendees also received information from industry experts and leaders, including Mick Mulvaney, acting director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, who spoke about the latest initiatives out of the CFPB, plans for improved efficiency of agency operations and his perspectives on issues shaping the real estate industry.

In addition, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Dr. Ben Carson discussed the nation’s commitment to fair housing during the conference’s general session; U.S. Rep. Emanuel Cleaver, D-Missouri, shared a personal story about the importance of safe and affordable housing for all Americans; Chief Economist Danielle Hale provided an overview of current conditions in the residential and commercial markets; Federal Emergency Management Agency Administrator William “Brock” Long addressed a broad range of disaster and emergency management topics, such as National Flood Insurance Program reauthorization and federal disaster relief; and NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun shared residential and commercial real estate market updates and forecasts for the remainder of the year.

No posts to display