Archive

Posts Tagged ‘AMHRO’

Manufactured Homes Commission Abolished, Effective January 21, 2018

October 4th, 2017 Comments off

AxedPixabayDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsIn place for the last ten years, the Ohio Manufactured Homes Commission [OMHC] is an independent agency, with a team of trained professionals, knowledgeable about the homes and the way they are built and installed,” said a statement from the Ohio Manufactured Home Association (OMHA) to MHProNews.

The Commission does its job free of political influence, ensuring every home installation is inspected and each one is safe. Now, the rigorous inspection process currently in place in Ohio will be absorbed into the [Gov. John] Kasich Administration’s 800 employee Department of Commerce bureaucracy,” the OMHA said.

OHGovJohnKasichGOPWIkiDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

The Ohio trade association and several industry groups fought last year to stop the Kasich Administration from abolishing their inspection and regulatory process.  As was reported at the time on the Daily Business News (DBN), the OH House of Representatives initially went with the OMHA and the state’s resident rights home owner group.

But ultimately, Kasich’s efforts to abolish the OMHC succeeded.

OhioManufacturedHomesAssociationOMHAWeSupportOMHCommssion-DailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Image credits, OMHA, provided under fair use guidelines.

Fingers Crossed in Hope…

tim williams exev vp ohio mfg homes assoc

Tim Williams, OMHA.

Our Association along with the resident…rights group (The Association of Manufactured Homes Residents in Ohio – AMHRO) hope the Kasich Administration will continue to inspect 100% of all new and used home installations without unnecessary delays,” OMHA said.

Kasich, as those who follow national politics know, has become a bit of a wild-card in GOP politics, hinting he may leave the party if it doesn’t change to his liking.

GovJohnKasichGoogleSlateFoxDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

MH Industry sources with ties to the state tell MHProNews that they supported the governor’s political campaign. But those campaign contributions fell on deaf ears when this issue of their state regulatory agency came up.

OMHCCreditOMHCDailyBusinessNews

The Ohio Manufactured Homes Commission will formally end next January, 2018. What will take its place is not yet known. Credit, OMHC.

AndreaReichmanAstDirectorOhioManufacturedHomesAssociation

Photo provided by Andrea Reichman upon MHProNews request.

The manufactured homes industry provides Ohioans affordable homes that are well built and fire safe, helping people regardless of their income achieve the dream of home ownership,” said the OMHA’s statement. “Hopefully the administration will also realize that manufactured homes are safe, well built, and owned by people who care for their properties.”

PleaseBePatientOMHADailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

“OMHA plans to offer more information on the OMHC transfer as information becomes available. Your patience is appreciated as the industry prepares for this new era,” the OMHA said. Credit, OMHA.

We stand ready to assist the [Kasich] Administration in the transition. We hope the Administration will call on our Association and AMHRO during the transition. We also encourage the Administration to transfer the small Commission staff with 88 years of combined experience to the Department of Commerce to ensure continuity in the regulatory program. We look forward to working together to ensure homeowner safety for Ohio’s manufactured home residents,” the OMHA said. ##

Update 10.5.2017 at 9:48 AM ET:

As always, thanks for your interest in the Ohio battle,” said OMHA Executive Director, Tim Williams.

It is worth noting, that the industry support you reference for Kasich’s Presidential bid DID NOT come from OMHA,” Williams stated in an on-the-record email. “I am also not aware of any Ohio industry people directly supporting Kasich’s Presidential bid, though there obviously could be some who did. Regardless, political contributions are not a quid pro quo or designed to be but merely to express support for aspects of the political process supportive of quality affordable and safe manufactured homeownership.”

MHProNews did not intend to imply that OMHA supported Gov Kasich, so we welcomed this clarifying comment,” said publisher L. A. “Tony” Kovach. “Our sources for the information were OMHA members, but it was not the OMHA itself.”

It is always the aim of the Daily Business News on MHProNews to get the facts right, and we welcome comments, and make revisions if and as needed.  As it stands, Williams’ comments were a helpful clarification, but did not change the facts as reported. ## (News, commentary, analysis.)

(Image credits are as shown above.)

SoheylaKovachManufacturedHomeLivingNewsManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews-Submitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News on MHProNews.com

Big Win for OMHA/OMHC in House, Senate Vote Next

May 4th, 2017 Comments off
BigWinforOMHOMHCinHouseSenateVoteNextcreditsNYMAGMHProNewsReddit-postedtothedailybusinessnewmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credits: Reddit, NY Mag, MHProNews/OMHA.

In a story that the Daily Business News has followed closely, the Ohio Manufactured Housing Association (OMHA) saw the Ohio House of Representatives pass Substitute HB 49, the “State of Ohio budget bill” on May 2nd, restoring the Ohio Manufactured Homes Commission (OMHC), consistent with present law.

As we reported prior, the original proposal from Governor John Kasich’s’ office would have abolished the OMHC, and transferred its responsibility to the Ohio Department of Commerce (DOC).

At the core of the campaign against the Commission are claims from Ohio fire and environmental officials who say the board doesn’t do enough to prevent manufactured home fires and ensure clean drinking water in the MH communities.

DramainOhioFakeNewsFactsandMythscreditMediaNation-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credit: Media Nation.

As Daily Business News readers are already aware, we have pointed out the facts versus myths surrounding manufactured homes and fires, noting that homes built under post-1976 federal regulations have the same rates in this area as traditional homes.

The OMHC has wide ranging responsibilities as an independent agency, including all regulation of home installations & inspections, dispute resolution, sales licensing, and manufactured home community regulation.

The OMHC also conducts inspections of all new and previously owned manufactured home installations, resulting in less than 10 complaints in the last three years. By comparison, 23,000 home installations have occurred in the last decade, and prior to the Commission’s existence 500 -800 improper home installation complaints occurred annually.

OhioManufacturedHomesAssociationCallsforHelpcreditOMHA-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credit: OMHA.

The OMHA, along with the Association of Manufactured Home Residents of Ohio (AMHRO), representing homeowners and residents, vigorously opposed the proposal from the Kasich Administration during recent legislative testimony before the Ohio House.

During the testimony, AMHRO President Frank Pojman said: “I urge any of your Committee to review agendas and minutes of the MH Commission meetings, to see the all-important issues that are discussed, for the benefits and safety of manufactured homeowners.”

tim williams exev vp ohio mfg homes assoc

Tim Williams, OMHA.

The House of Representatives provided for thorough discussion during legislative testimony,” said OMHA Executive Director Tim Williams.

I am pleased the House recognized the value of maintaining the independent Manufactured Homes Commission and its record of consistently operating below budget, providing 100% homeowner safety inspections and reducing both homeowner and business fees.”

The Ohio Senate will now consider Substitute HB 49. The Daily Business News will continue to follow this story closely and provide updates. ##

 

(Image credits are as shown above, and when provided by third parties, are shared under fair use guidelines.)

 

rcwilliams-writer75x75manufacturedhousingindustrymhpronews

RC Williams, MHProNews.

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.

UPDATE: OMHA Fires Back in Manufactured Housing Commission Battle

April 4th, 2017 Comments off
UPDATEOMHAFiresBackinMHCommissionBattlecreditOfficialPhotosOMHAOMHCEPADigitalImagingReporter-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credits: Official Photos, OMHA, OMHC, Digital Imaging Reports, Ohio EPA.

In a story that the Daily Business News originally covered here, the battle between the office of Ohio Governor John Kasich and the Ohio Manufactured Housing Commission (OMHC) has heated up yet again.

And, the Ohio Manufactured Homes Association (OMHA) is firing back.

According to the Dayton Daily News, Governor Kasich is calling for the OMHC to be disbanded, and its responsibilities delegated to the Ohio Department of Commerce. The call is part of the governor’s budget proposal pending before the Ohio General Assembly.

At the core of the campaign against the Commission are the claims from Ohio fire and environmental officials who say the board doesn’t do enough to prevent manufactured home fires and ensure clean drinking water in the MH communities.

But industry professionals, including OMHA Executive Director Tim Williams, are backed with facts, and say that there’s more to the story.

The administration is spreading false information and misleading information because the commission is pushing back against Kasich’s proposal,” said Williams.

tim williams exev vp ohio mfg homes assoc

Tim Williams, OMHA Executive Director.

As Daily Business News readers are already aware, we have pointed out the facts versus myths surrounding manufactured homes and fires, noting that homes built under post-1976 federal regulations have the same rates in this area as traditional homes, and Williams pointed to similar data.

Local or state fire officials have no authority to inspect or educate or require different fire codes for manufactured homes,” said Williams.

Association of Manufactured Home Residents in Ohio President Frank Pojman says that in many cases, manufactured homes are actually safer.

When these houses are built, they are inspected at the factory,” said Pojman.

When they leave the factory, it has a tag that says it meets federal safety standards. You don’t get that in a stick built home.”

leadingcauseshousefiresscreditstoveguard-postedmhlivingnews0

Credit: Stoveguard, MHLivingNews.

For one industry professional, who is also involved with the commission, the need for it is obvious.

I believe wholeheartedly, whether I sit on the commission or not, it’s one of the best things that’s happened to the manufactured home community in Ohio,” said Evan Atkinson, general manager of Clayton Homes in Frazeyburg and a commissioner on the board.

Since the commission was created, the number of complaints about mobile home installation has plummeted from hundreds to a number you can count on one hand. What’s proposed now is to fragment it and stick it back out into deep bureaucracy.”

Atkinson says that the commission currently requires inspection of every single home installed in Ohio, and points out that it’s a commitment the Department of Commerce has not made.

I believe there’s a probably a good likeliness that homes may not be installed as well as they are currently being installed,” said Atkinson. He also noted that after establishing new rules for licensing and inspections, the commission has heard one complaint in the last three years, as opposed to the more than 500 complaints every year from consumers about mobile home installation before the commission was created in response to federal rules in 2003.

I think the Manufactured Homes Commission has proven they do the right thing by consumers in Ohio, and that’s very much proven by the number of dispute resolution cases there used to be and the number of dispute resolution cases today,” said Atkinson.

 

From Fire to Water

OhioManufacturedHomesAssociationCallsforHelpcreditOMHA-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credit: OMHA.

In addition to the onslaught from Ohio fire officials, the Ohio EPA told the Dayton Daily News that its efforts to “force Ohio mobile home parks [sic] to provide their residents safe drinking water have been slowed by inaction on the part of the commission.”

In a statement, the Ohio EPA says that it shares oversight with OMHC over the state’s 250 manufactured home communities that operate their own water systems.

This includes Pineview Estates in Miamisburg, where about 400 residents routinely lost running water; and Catalpa Grove Mobile Home Park in Dayton, where the owner failed to test the system for contaminants such as lead, copper and bacteria,” the EPA said in the statement.

In both cases, the Manufactured Homes Commission denied any appreciable assistance to the Ohio EPA in taking action on the park’s [sic] license, instead forcing the EPA to pursue the issue through lengthy court battles. The manufactured homes commission rarely – if ever – bothers to use its full regulatory authority to enforce safe water rules.”

According to OMHC director Janet Williams dealing with the EPA caused more confusion than progress.

We have never had clear authority to take action against a mobile home park [sic] owner’s license for water quality issues since we began licensing mobile home parks [sic] in December 2012,” said Williams.

We want to work with them in the process of whatever legal avenue we have to help them enforce the water rules they have in manufactured home parks [sic].”

Strong words from the Ohio EPA came as a surprise to Tim Williams.

The EPA showed little interest in increasing oversight of manufactured home communities in the past.”

Jim Demitrus, who was on the commission board from 2006 through 2015, pointed out that pulling a manufactured home community’s license over water issues would lead to serious and potentially severe consequences for residents.

If they pull the license, everybody in that community has to move out,” said Demitrus.

I would like to see somebody in state government do that. Pull the license, and you have to move 100 families.”

The Daily Business News will continue to follow this story closely and provide updates. ##

 

(Image credits are as shown above.)

 

rcwilliams-writer75x75manufacturedhousingindustrymhpronews

RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.