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December 2018 Government Affairs Update Archive

Government Affairs Update for December 21, 2018

FHA announces 2019 loan limits
On Dec. 14, 2018, the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) released its 2019 Loan Limits, effective January 1, 2019. FHA's loan limits are tied to the loan limits set by the Federal Housing Finance Agency for conventional mortgages. In high-cost areas the FHA national loan limit "ceiling" will increase to $726,525 from $679,650. FHA will also increase its "floor" to $314,827 from $294,515. Read more here.

Superintendent Maria Vullo to step down from Department of Financial Services
Maria Vullo announced she will leave her position as superintendent of the state Department of Financial Services at the end of January. The move will set the stage for Gov. Andrew Cuomo to nominate the third person to head the agency since its creation in 2011. Read more here.  

Governor Cuomo unveils 2019 agenda
Governor Cuomo unveiled his 20-point agenda for the first 100 days of the next legislative session which begins in January. At the top of the list was making the state’s property tax cap permanent and fighting to repeal the federal cap on state and local tax (SALT) deductions. Other priorities include measures to maintain the health exchange in New York to ensure pre-existing conditions are covered by insurance companies, additional gun safety measures, investing in infrastructure, reducing carbon in energy production, reforming rent regulations, legalizing recreational marijuana and reforming the criminal justice system. Read more here.

 Leadership positions announced in Assembly and Senate
Assemblymember Crystal Peoples-Stokes (D-Buffalo) was appointed Assembly Majority Leader replacing Joe Morelle who was elected to Congress. Assemblymembers Steven Cymbrowitz (D-Brooklyn) and Jeffrey Dinowitz (D-Bronx) will hold on to their committee chairmanships of the Assembly Housing Committee and Judiciary Committee, respectively. A full list of Assembly committee chairs can be found here. The Senate Democratic Majority announced State Senator Brad Hoylman (D-Manhattan) will be the chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee and State Senator Brian Kavanaugh (D-Brooklyn) will be chair of the Senate Housing Committee. A full list of Senate committee chairs can be found here


Government Affairs Update for December 14, 2018

REALTORS meet to discuss NYC issues
NYSAR’s New York City Issues Working Group met on Wednesday, December 12 to discuss NYC-centric REALTOR issues such as commercial rent control proposals, coop legislation efforts, the NYC property tax study and a residential fire sprinkler proposal introduced by the City Council. You can review the agenda and meeting materials here

Senate Democratic Majority announce 2019 committee chairs
Democrats announced incoming 2019 committee chairs in the State Senate. Manhattan State Senator Brad Hoylman will be the next chair of the Judiciary Committee and Brooklyn State Senator Brian Kavanaugh will be the next chair of the Housing Committee. A full list of committee chairs can be found here

State inaction allows some county mortgage recording taxes to expire
The state Legislature failed to pass bills extending authorizing for some counties to impose an additional local mortgage recording tax. These additional local recording tax expired December 1, 2018. State lawmakers have pledged to act on the bills early next year, but until then, counties such as Warren, Essex, Greene and Cattaraugus are unable to impose the additional 0.25 percent local mortgage recording tax. Read more here.



Government Affairs Update for December 7, 2018

Attend NYSAR’s NYC Issues Working Group Meeting – Dec. 12 at 11 a.m.
NYSAR’s New York City Issues Working Group will meet on Wednesday, December 12 at 11 a.m. at The Parkside Group offices at 132 Nassau Street, Suite 400 in New York, to offer an opportunity for all REALTOR members residing in NYC and its surrounding communities to discuss NYC-centric REALTOR issues. Staff will provide a post-election outlook and the Parkside Group will update members on commercial rent control legislation, coop legislation efforts, the NYC property tax study and residential fire sprinkler bill introduced by the City Council. RSVP to Franklin Essen at fesson@nysar.com or call 518-463-0300 ext. 216. Lunch will be provided. Feel free to use and distribute this flyer

Albany County withdraws residential fire sprinkler bill
A proposal has been withdrawn by the Albany County Legislature that would have required the installation of residential fire sprinklers in all new construction one- and two-family homes in Albany County. The Greater Capital Association of REALTORS has been active on this issue since May, meeting with county officials, testifying at public hearings and running a successful public awareness campaign with NYSAR to raise concerns with the proposal citing that consumers already have the choice to install sprinkler systems at any time. Read more here

Congress extends NFIP through December 21
Congress voted Thursday to fund the government through December 21, 2018, and in doing so extended the National Flood Insurance Program for two weeks. This extension comes just one week after the House and Senate approved of a one-week extension of the program to prevent the program from lapsing. “This is the 43rd extension of the NFIP since 1998, and the 41st short-term deal made to avoid a lapse in the program over the past 20 years,” said Shannon McGahn, NAR senior vice president of government affairs. “NAR urges the House and Senate to continue working towards responsible, long-term reauthorization that includes meaningful reforms, as the current process of continuous short term extensions is simply not sustainable.” Read more here

State Lawmakers to receive 63% pay raise
On Thursday the state Compensation Committee made the recommendation to raise the salaries of New York's state lawmakers and agency commissioners by 63% over the next three years, their first salary increase in 20 years. State Senators and Assemblymembers would see their base salary increase from the current $79,500 to $130,000 by 2021. The Compensation Committee, which is a panel of current and former comptrollers tasked with examining salaries for top state officials, also recommended that state lawmakers must limit their outside income to 15% of their base salary and eliminated most stipends for committee posts and leadership positions. These recommendations will take effect January 1 unless lawmakers take action to change them. Read more here.

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