Welcome to the Government Affairs department of the Indiana Association of REALTORS®, this, under the leadership of Senior Vice President Maggie McShane, is the member advocate in state government. The department also assists local REALTOR® Boards/Associations and the National Association of REALTORS® with respective advocacy efforts, working to energize members to be involved at all levels. Through various programs, summarized below, the department strives to meet the dual purpose of serving as the REALTOR® liaison between and influencing the legislative and executive branches of state government. The department provides a strong lifeline of information via its bi-monthly e-publication, the Indiana REALTOR® Advocate.
For more information, select the particular sub page under the Government Affairs tab. And, e-mail us if you are not receiving the department’s e-publication or other IAR e-publications.
The 2009 Indiana General Assembly began on November 18th with an Organization Day that was mostly ceremonial, highlighted by new members being sworn into office. Legislators will re-convene on January 6th and have until roughly the middle of the month to file bills, at which time they will begin work in earnest. The Government Affairs team, made up of five registered lobbyists, will be at the Statehouse everyday advocating for REALTOR® interests and running defense against harmful proposals. Watch your inbox for the Indiana REALTOR® Advocate, a weekly e-publication by which Government Affairs will keep members abreast of legislative happenings, and watch for the debut of REALTOR® radio, another IAR communications vehicle.
REALTORS® Defense Fund
During their September 2008 meeting, members of the IAR Board of Directors voted to create the REALTORS® Defense Fund, a dedicated fund out of which monies will only be used to help REALTORS® battle harmful and promote positive policy proposals on behalf of the real estate industry and property owners. Check the sub page on this for more information.
Monies from the REALTORS® Political Action Committee, or RPAC, are used to help elect candidates who are knowledgeable, fair and who will listen to the REALTOR® point of view. RPAC fundraising is crucial to advocacy efforts.
First-time Homebuyer Tax Credit
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 features an $8,000 tax credit for first-time buyers who purchase a home on or after January 1, 2009, and before December 1, 2009. Click here for more information.
Compare this credit with the one passed in 2008 here.
On December 4, 2008, the Director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency, Jim Lockhart, wrote to NAR President Charles McMillan to follow up on the questions raised by REALTORS® at the Orlando meetings that he was unable to answer at the time. Director Lockhart is the conservator for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and the federal regulator of the two government sponsored enterprises (GSEs). In Orlando, Director Lockhart spoke at a standing-room-only session to 600 REALTORS® and then fielded questions for nearly an hour. He also attended the meeting of the Conventional Finance and Lending Committee to discuss GSE issues in a smaller setting.
Click here to read the letter.
The American Clean Energy and Security Act
The recently passed American Clean Energy and Security Act has been met with much interest by our members. As is usually the case with controversial legislation, some are fanning a few flames. However, much of the fuel feeding the fire is simply incorrect. Jerry Giovaniello, NAR Senior Vice-President Government Affairs, and Dale Stinton, NAR Chief Executive Officer, are writing not to debate, rather simply to provide you with a brief description of how we got here and what steps we will be taking as we move forward.
Click here to read the memo.