Capitol Connection: March 13, 2015
|Tell your legislators to Support SB177!
Urge your State Legislators to SUPPORT SENATE BILL 177—Fix the Defect in Colorado’s Construction Law
A big hurdle to building more entry-level housing is a defect in state law that exposes homebuilders and homeowners to a high risk of expensive, time-consuming litigation. It is referred to as the construction defects law. It has created a climate that puts the chill on new construction of affordable, multi-family housing, scaring off investment in the affordable-housing market.
Senate Bill 177, sponsored by Senators Scheffel & Ulibarri and Representatives DelGrosso & Singer, would begin to fix this problem and foster conditions that encourage builders to construct more affordable housing, provide increased homeownership opportunities for all Coloradans and stimulate our state’s economy. This bill is calendared for its first committee hearing Wednesday afternoon in the Senate Business, Labor and Technology Committee.
If you have any stories or testimonials of buyers who could not purchase, owners who could not sell, or owners who could not refinance because their property was encumbered by litigation, please let us know at GovAffairs@coloradorealtors.com.
Wildfire Tax Deduction to Tax Credit
CAR initiated House Bill 15-1260, Change Wildfire Mitigation Tax Deduction to Credit by Representative Pete Lee (D-Colorado Springs) and Senator Ray Scott (R-Grand Junction), was introduced last week. HB 1260 is modeled after HB14-1009 which was recommended by the Wildfire Matters Review Committee. The bill eliminates the wildfire mitigation income tax deduction and creates a wildfire mitigation state income tax credit. This year’s iteration will allow for a tax credit of 25% of the costs of mitigation, up to $2500. The credit can be carried over for 5 years.
CAR believes HB-1260 is a targeted and reasonable policy solution that provides resources for homeowners to better prepare for and mitigate wildfire risks. Policy proposals that are focused on incentivizing activities that reduce the risk of wildfire are more likely to have a long term impact. Providing financial incentives such as tax credits to help property owners properly prepare are the best means by which to mitigate the risk and are critical to changing property owner behavior over the long term.
Effort Renews to Curb Patent Trolls
NAR-backed legislation to make it harder for so-called patent trolls to demand payments from end users of their products has been re-introduced in the U.S. House. Patent trolls acquire broad patents and seek licensing payments from unsuspecting end users, including real estate companies and licensees. Late last month, Vince Malta, NAR’s 2015 Liaison for Law and Policy, testified before a House panel expressing the need for patent reform. Click here for more information.
NAR REALTORS® Legislative Meetings and Trade Expo REGISTRATION OPEN
The REALTORS® Legislative Meetings and Trade Expo is taking place May 11-16, 2015 in Washington, D.C. We will be scheduling meetings with the Colorado delegation, and you don’t want to miss out! Register here today.
Racing with RPAC event at Spring Meetings
April 21, 2015 6PM – 8PM. This fundraising event, hosted by CYPN, will be held at Johnny Martin’s Car Central in Colorado Springs and is open to all members. $50 RPAC investment required for entry and includes 1 drink ticket, appetizers, and games. Additional racing simulation games will be available for an additional RPAC investment. For more information or to register, please click here.
Transit Alliance Spring 2015 Citizen’s Academy- APPLICATIONS DUE TODAY!!
The Transit Alliance is hosting their annual spring 2015 Citizen’s Academy from April 1, 2015-May 16, 2015. This is a great opportunity to discuss transportation, community development, and sustainability in Colorado. The class is limited, so please get your applications in to take part! More information, as well as the application, can be found here, and the deadline for applying is TODAY, Friday, March 13th at 5PM.