Your source for Government Affairs Insight from NC REALTORS®

Welcome to 2019! This year has already started out with a bang in the government affairs world, so we look forward to a busy one. This week’s REALTOR® Advocate will be a little bit shorter than normal because the North Carolina General Assembly has not yet convened their 2019 session. Legislators will return to Raleigh next Wednesday (January 9) for their inaugural session (swearing in of members and election of leadership). They will then return later in January to begin their work.

In today’s edition, we will focus on multiple federal issues which have arisen since our last publication. We will also give you a peek inside the renovations at the Heck-Andrews House, as well as a preview of important NC REALTORS® events in 2019.

Federal Focus

On Wednesday, the 116th Congress convened their work for the next two years. Following the November elections, Democrats regained their majority in the House of Representatives while the Senate remains in Republican control. This Congress will have numerous important issues to address during its term, including some which carried over from the 115th Congress.

Impact of the Government Shutdown on REALTORS®

As the current partial government shutdown enters its 14th day, the effect has been wide-reaching. REALTORS® and their clients rely on numerous federally-back or supported programs as a part of their transactions so it is important to look at the impact that this current shutdown may have on those programs.

NAR has put together a comprehensive look at the impact you or your clients may be feeling. Included in this resource are NAR staff contacts who can provide you more details about how to assist your clients.

NC REALTORS® is also collecting data on transactions impacted by the shutdown. If any of your clients have encountered issues, let us know. Email Seth Palmer, subject line: “Government Shutdown.”

NFIP: Crisis Averted…For Now

In late December, Congress approved an extension on the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) until May 31, 2019. However, due to the government shutdown, conflicting information was distributed by FEMA, policy holders were being told that insurers weren't allowed to issues and renew policies. Thanks to the quick work by NAR lobbyists and affected members across the country, our advocacy work was successful and FEMA reversed their decision.

Learn More >>

NAR Joins Legal Battle on Association Health Plans

NAR, as a founding member of the Coalition to Protect and Promote Association Health Plans, has joined in an amicus brief in support of the Department of Labor’s (DOL) regulation expanding access to AHPs in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.

In this case, twelve attorney generals (AGs) filed suit against DOL challenging the Association Health Plan (AHP) rule issued in June. The state AG’s include New York, Massachusetts, California, Delaware, Kentucky, Maryland, New Jersey, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Washington, plus D.C. The lawsuit challenges DOL’s redefinition of “employer” under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA), which the AGs argue is unprecedented and in violation of the Administrative Procedures Act (APA). The AGs further allege harm imposed by the rule related to state insurance market destabilization and increased fraud and abuse by insurers, among other concerns.

Learn More >>

An Inside Look: Heck-Andrews House

As you may be aware, construction has commenced at the future home of NC REALTORS® Raleigh office, the historic Heck-Andrews House. Over the coming months, we will keep you updated on the progress, both through the REALTOR® Advocate, as well as in other NC REALTORS® communications.

In late December, WRAL TV came to the house to give viewers an inside look at the property. Check out the video >>

2019 Events

Check out this list of important NC REALTORS® events for 2019.

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