The NAHB State and Local Government Affairs Committee recently granted funding requests from three HBAs striving to make a positive impact on housing affordability and homeownership.
HBRA of Northern Vermont: $12,000. After the Vermont Department of Labor issued problematic, restrictive definitions on classifying a worker as either an employee or independent contractor and what that means to both workers compensation and unemployment insurance, home builders were left shaking their heads. The interpretation of the law now allows any service or trade contractor that provides a service to a general contractor in the “normal course” of their businesses can be classified as an employee. NAHB’s previous grants have allowed the HBA to make great strides in educating the public as well as the legislature. With this additional funding, the HBA will continue to hire consultants to convince legislators to clarify the law, make it less punitive for small businesses and implement an accompanying public relations strategy.
MBA of King and Snohomish Counties: $10,000. For nearly 30 years, the Master Builders Association of King and Snohomish Counties in Bellevue, Wash. has held a one-day candidate school that trains local candidates and prepares them to run for public office. HBA leaders want to offer a more comprehensive training program by expanding the curriculum and offering sessions once a month for a year. The funding will allow the association to reach more qualified prospects that will be pro-housing and pro-business candidates once elected into office.
Florida HBA: $15,000. Florida has a reputation for being a very litigious state. This has extended to construction defect litigation, particularly involving the application of stucco to building exteriors. The state’s Unfair and Deceptive Trade Practices Act has an uncertain trigger that in some cases begins once final payment is received. This often doesn’t allow time for the builder to fix the problem before being hit with a lawsuit. The Florida HBA will use the grant to draft, file and with luck, pass construction defect litigation legislation, or a“Right to Cure” bill. This legislation would allow time to repair unavoidable but fixable human error and offer coverage for many builders.
The State and Local Issues Fund provides financial assistance to HBAs involved in advocacy efforts on issues affecting the affordability of homeownership. To learn more, contact Katie Bernard at 800-368-5242 x8402.