As a longtime member and chairperson of the Buffalo-Niagara Association of Realtors’ Government Affairs Committee, I have been actively involved in defending the interests of both my peers and my clients in local, county and state politics, working diligently behind the scenes to advance legislation that benefits homeowners and rally against proposals that negatively impact buyers and sellers.
In my recent speech to the New York State Association of Realtors, I noted some of the major actions that the committee and the national Realtors Political Action Committee has worked on during the last year. For example, the state Fire Prevention and Building Council voted earlier this summer to not implement a proposal to require fire sprinkler installation in all homes – an action widely rallied against by homeowners, rental property managers and Realtors alike. Our committee also has worked at all levels of government, including at the state level where we continue to support efforts to extend the state property tax cap, an initiative that has helped to keep tax increases moderated and hold municipalities more responsible for governing within their means.
On local issues, the RPAC and Government Affairs Committee has also worked to oppose legislation that affects all property owners, like a recent West Seneca proposal that would have required home sellers to install a new discharge line at their own expense, as well as legislation that would require hard-wired carbon monoxide detectors be installed. Our committee is also continuing to work on the behalf of our clients and neighbors, most recently investigating a proposed natural gas compression facility in a residential area of Pendelton.
The words I used to close out my speech still ring true: “If you are not at the table, you are probably on the menu.” As a real estate agent, active member of the community and homeowner myself, I continue to work diligently on all of our behalves to keep us off the menu – and to make sure that menu keeps only palatable and lean options on the table.
Visit the Buffalo-Niagara Association of Realtors’ website to learn more about the BNAR and our ongoing efforts around the region.