It’s hard to believe that we’re halfway through 2019! I’ve really enjoyed traveling around our beautiful state, visiting local associations and meeting so many Pennsylvania Realtors®.
PAR held its Spring Business Meetings in June and we’re working on several items in the association’s strategic plan. As part of the plan, members gave input on our governance structure and a presidential advisory group will be reviewing the structure and making recommendations to the board of directors. We also have a PAG looking at the association’s branding this summer.
We were pleased to see that legislation to define and regulate teams was introduced in early June. House Bill 1572 would amend the Real Estate Licensing and Registration Act to provide a statutory definition for teams and team administrators. The bill was introduced by Rep. Todd Polinchock, a Bucks County legislator and a past PAR president. The legislation is the result of input from a variety of sources, including a PAR presidential advisory group, the Real Estate Commission, brokers, team leaders and agents.
PAR’s legal hotline moved in-house in June. The hotline was previously handled by outside legal counsel and is now being answered by four in-house staff attorneys. The transition has gone smoothly and we’re looking forward to the information we learn to provide better service and updated resources as a response to changing members’ needs.
PAR worked to amend proposed legislation that would regulate short-term rental platforms like AirBnB. House Bill 787 (Heffley, R-Carbon) would have required certain real estate brokers who handle short-term rentals to disclose a list of their clients to state and local tax authorities in order to collect the hotel taxes. PAR voiced its concern about mandating that real estate agents and brokers provide a list of their clients and sought an amendment to exempt real estate licensees, who are regulated under the State Real Estate Commission.
Many of your fellow Realtors® met with their Pennsylvania congressional representatives during NAR’s Legislative Meetings in Washington, D.C. They visited with 18 elected officials to explain NAR’s top federal legislative priorities including: fair housing, federal tax cuts, National Flood Insurance Program, Association Health Plans, Qualified Opportunity Zones, GSE reform and federal mortgage programs.
We have met with several people at the Real Estate Commission and the Bureau of Professional and Occupational Affairs to discuss a number of issues, including ongoing challenges with PALs and follow through on complaints. We’ve been collecting specific examples that brokers, agents and local association schools have faced to provide to the commission and will continue to meet to find resolutions to these challenges.
Congratulations to our two PAR members, Sean Anthony of Athens and Jordan Collier of Harrisburg, who were named to Realtor® Magazine’s 30 Under 30 list. And kudos to Pennsylvania Realtors® who were honored for their investments to RPAC during NAR’s RPAC Hall of Fame ceremony: Ron Croushore, Pittsburgh; Al Perry, Philadelphia; Helen Hanna Casey, Pittsburgh; Jane Maslowski, Blue Bell and Deb Weidman-Phillips, Blue Bell.
Thank you for your continued support! I look forward to talking with more of you in the coming months.