Gov't Affairs, Govt - County Larimer

Larimer REALTORS Meet with Rep. Polis

A group of 21 REALTORS and staff met with Congressman Jared Polis recently during the August Recess. The meeting was scheduled at Polis’s request; he has consistently expressed learning more about the market in Larimer County, which became part of his district in January.

Polis said he opposes the PATH Act, a bill that includes a comprehensive restructuring of mortgage markets. The bill has two major goals: 1) dissolve Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and replace them with a new secondary mortgage market structure that does not include a government guarantee and 2) restructure and limit the FHA Mortgage Insurance Program. The bill is opposed by NAR because it would not include a government guarantee for the GSEs and includes FHA revisions that would be harmful to real estate.

The Congressman said there’s nothing new to discuss regarding tax reform. He promoted his latest bill, HR 2339 the “Condotel” bill, otherwise known as the Affordable Housing Regulation Simplification Act of 2013. The bill would facilitate affordable workforce homeownership in, and develop the full-time resident communities of high tourism areas. The bill authorizes Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac deal in affordable workforce housing mortgages for one-family residences for full-time residents wishing to purchase units in condominium hotels.

REALTORS at the meeting urged him to amend the bill to include non-resort areas but the Congressman stated that he felt it was better to keep the bill’s geographical scope limited. A member brought up the issue of FHA requirements for HOA recertification and the impact on smaller HOAs. Polis was interested in this issue and agreed to work with us on possible language.

The main issue Polis had on his mind is fracking. That shouldn’t be a surprise since he’s been in the news talking about this since rigs went up next to his Berthoud property. He was interested in getting feedback from REALTORS regarding how fracking is impacting property values and sales, but the only specific example given wasn’t exactly what he expected. A property in southwest Weld County with 20 oil wells recently sold for $50,000 more than the appraised price.

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