Crain’s reports REALTOR® opposition to ad tax in Illinois

Crain’s Chicago Business has a story about a coalition of business and trade groups – including IAR – mobilizing a fight against a proposed ad tax. Quoted in the article is IAR President Jim Kinney, who says IAR is supportive of an effort to solve the state’s fiscal crisis but the ad tax idea is not a good way to go about it.

The IAR is one of several groups opposed to the concept, including the Illinois Automobile Dealers Association, the Illinois Press Association, the Outdoor Advertising Association of Illinois and the Motion Picture Association of America. This coalition created a website to fight the proposal and seven members of the press association have published editorials against it.

In the Crain’s article, Christopher Mooney, director of the Institute of Government and Public Affairs at the University of Illinois predicts that Gov. Bruce Rauner and legislative leaders will propose and pass legislation that establishes an advertising tax. He thinks they will present it to voters as something that must be done to raise revenue.

REALTORS® discuss real estate issues, economy with local government officials

(l to r) Kyle Remblake, Dennis Brim, James Ford, Charles Dryer, Tom Joseph, Diane Abell and Tim Ryan

Country Club Hills Mayor James Ford, IAR Local GAD Tom Joseph and three members of the Government Affairs Committee for Mainstreet Organization of REALTORS® came together with a pair of other local government officials for a roundtable discussion about municipal inspections, economic development, escrow, housing and more.

Included in the meetings were Government Affairs Committee Chair Tim Ryan (broker-owner of Real People Realty in Mokena), Dennis Brim (broker-owner Prestige Partners in Country Club Hills) and Diane Abell (Coldwell Banker in Flossmoor). In addition to Ford, other government officials included city administrator Charles Dryer and building commissioner Kyle Remblake.

In April, Ford was one of 40 individual candidates in Illinois who won local campaigns with IAR support, either through RPAC, Opportunity Races or Independent Expenditures. Ford’s campaign was aided by Independent Expenditure – assistance that isn’t coordinated through the candidates. In addition, IAR helped 70 percent of the local candidates win, and helped pass a property tax rebate/sales tax increase. Also, IAR helped defeat four home rule referenda and a real estate transfer tax.

LaHood, Mellon advance to September special election

Illinois Sen. Darin LaHood and Robert Mellon won the Republican and Democratic primaries, respectively Tuesday, and advanced to the Sept. 10 special election for the 18th Congressional District.

The two are fighting for the right to replace former U.S. Rep. Aaron Schock, who resigned his post earlier this year amidst questions about use of campaign and taxpayer funds.

The National Association of REALTORS® is supporting LaHood, who represents Illinois’ 37th Senate District and serves on the Senate committees on Criminal Law, Executive Appointments, Judiciary, Licensed Activities, Pensions and Revenue.

LaHood, a former federal prosecutor, collected 31,319 votes to defeat Michael Flynn of Quincy (12,559) and Donald Rients of Benson (1,231) for the Republican nomination in the 19-county district, according to the Springfield State Journal-Register. Mellon, a high school teacher, defeated Springfield School Board member Adam Lopez 4,538 to 3,054 to get the Democratic nomination.

New Chicago aldermen meet with IAR and CAR

(L to R) IAR Local GAD Brian Bernardoni, Kevin Lamm (staff of Alderman Milly Santiago), Alderman Raymond Lopez, Alderman Patrick Daley Thompson, Alderman Brian Hopkins, Public Policy Chair Gail Spreen, IAR Local GAD Kris Anderson, Vernon Wiltz (staff for Alderman Derrick Curtis), Alderman Greg Mitchell, Alderman Derrick Curtis and Alderman Anthony Napolitano.

New Chicago aldermen Brian Hopkins (2nd Ward), Greg Mitchell (7th Ward), Patrick Daley Thompson (11th Ward), Raymond Lopez (15th Ward), Derrick Curtis (18th Ward) and Anthony Napolitano (41st) met with members of the Illinois Association of REALTORS® Local Government Affairs team Tuesday in Chicago.

IAR Local Governmental Affairs Director Brian Bernardoni led the meeting, with assistance from IAR Local Governmental Affairs Director Kris Anderson and REALTOR® and outgoing Public Policy Chair Gail Spreen. The trio shared with aldermen past real estate issues as well as those likely to arise with the Chicago City Council. They also explained the concerns of real estate professionals in the Chicago market.

The gathering was organized and hosted by the Chicago Association of REALTORS®.

Anderson noted the group received several positive comments from aldermen after the briefing.

Village votes to allow first Sunday open houses in 40 years

Bigstock Photo

On July 5, REALTORS® and their customers in South Holland will make history when they conduct Sunday open houses in the village for the first time in more than 40 years, according to IAR Local Government Affairs Director Tom Joseph.

Earlier this month, village trustees voted to modify the community’s Sunday Closing Ordinance, allowing businesses the option to be open on Sundays, beginning in July. According to Village Administrator Jason Huisman, construction and landscaping will continue to be prohibited in residential areas, but a specific provision allows REALTORS® to hold open houses and show homes to prospective buyers from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.

For years, Joseph said, he has asked the South Holland mayor to consider a change to the ordinance. He is thankful that the mayor and trustees were open to changing the ordinance for the benefit of the property owners and the REALTORS® who work for them.