Congressman Bill Foster of Illinois 11th District met with roughly 60 members of the Illinois Association of REALTORS® (IAR) as the first in a series of “Let’s Talk Real Estate” events hosted by IAR to connect members of Congress with their REALTOR® constituents back in the home district.
Among the topics discussed:
- The Protect Taxpayers and Homeowners Act (PATH) that passed the House Financial Services committee. This legislation essentially eliminates GSE’s Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and replaces with a secondary market that would not have a backstop in catastrophic situations. In addition it will make changes to the FHA program that would limit the ability for many to utilize this mortgage program.
- The Marketplace Fairness Act, this legislation was passed in the Senate and awaits House action. Congressman Foster is a co-sponsor to the house version of this legislation that will level the playing field in taxation for consumer goods, whether purchased online or at a bricks and mortar retail store.
- Immigration reform was also discussed, the comprehensive bill that passed the senate includes language that permanently reauthorizes the EB-5 immigrant investor regional center pilot program that is a great opportunity for economic development in Illinois. It also addresses the H-2B visa program that would help second home and resort communities.
Congressman Foster indicated that “REALTORS® went to bat and preserved secondary market place for Real Estate financing” during the disastrous housing slowdown. Having FHA, Fannie and Freddie helped preserve the marketplace.
Questions local REALTORS® posed to Congressman Foster included short sales and FHA fees which have increased for buyers since the housing slowdown. Congressman Foster discussed and took note of both.
Residential REALTORS® Rosemary West and Christine Chase and Commercial REALTOR® Brian Dolan provided market analysis for various areas of the district. The meetings were moderated and led by REALTOR® Jeff Gregory, the IAR designated Federal Political Coordinator (FPC) for the 11th District, IAR Treasurer-Elect from the region Mike Drews, and IAR Housing Policy Advisor Sharon Gorrell.
IAR thanks the attendees and Congressman Foster for making time for this valuable educational and networking opportunity for constituents in the 11th District.
Next week’s “Let’s Talk Real Estate” meetings include: