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Congress, HUD, Trump Administration Warned – “Profoundly Damaging Unintended Consequences” – Manufactured Housing Industry, Lower & Moderate-Income Americans

July 5th, 2019 Comments off

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  • While we believe that this bill is well intended and that HUD Code manufactured housing is a key part of the solution to the nation’s affordable housing crisis…”
  • “…we also believe that the legislative provisions needed to advance the availability and affordability of manufactured housing are already contained in the existing federal manufactured housing law.”
  • By contrast, we believe that H.R. 926 is not only unnecessary, but could have profoundly damaging unintended consequences for both the mainstream HUD Code manufactured housing industry and the lower and moderate-income American families who rely on those mainstream manufactured homes as the nation’s premier source of affordable, non-subsidized homeownership.”

 

The bulleted pull-quotes above are from a recent letter to elected and appointed leaders in Washington, D.C. dated June 26, 2019.

 

MarkWeissMHARRphotoLogoManufacturedHousingAssocRegulatoryReformlogoIn separate letters to the leadership of the House Financial Services Committee, the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs, copied to President Trump’s Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney, and FHFA Director Mark Calabria, the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) took direct aim at legislation that is being backed by the coalition that includes Prosperity Now, the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI), and the National Association of Manufactured Housing Community Owners (NAMHCO).

The letters are essentially identical, save the Senate version of the MHARR letter cites their bill number as S. 1804.  The House version of the MHARR letter cited their pending proposal as H.R. 926.  

The Daily Business News on MHProNews will do some additional analysis following the House version of the MHARR letter, from Mark Weiss, J.D., President and CEO, that follows.

ManufacturedHousingAssociationforRegulatoryReformMHARRLogoJune26LetterDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

 

 

Hon. Maxine Waters Hon. Patrick McHenry
Chairman Ranking Member
House Financial Services Committee House Financial Services Committee
Suite 2129 Suite 2129
Rayburn House Office Building Rayburn House Office Building
Independence Ave. and S. Capitol St., S.W.

Washington, D.C. 20515

Independence Ave and S. Capitol St., S.W.
 

 

 

Washington, D.C. 20515

 

Dear Chairman Waters and Ranking Member McHenry:

The Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) is a Washington, D.C.-based national trade organization representing the views and interests of independent producers of manufactured housing regulated by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) pursuant to the National Manufactured Housing Construction and Safety Standards Act of 1974 as amended by the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of 2000. (42 U.S.C. 5401, seq.). MHARR’s members are primarily smaller businesses located throughout the United States.

We are writing to apprise you of our serious concerns with — and opposition to — a bill currently pending before your committee, entitled “The HUD Manufactured Housing Modernization Act of 2019” (H.R. 926).

While we believe that this bill is well intended and that HUD Code manufactured housing is a key part of the solution to the nation’s affordable housing crisis, we also believe that the legislative provisions needed to advance the availability and affordability of manufactured housing are already contained in the existing federal manufactured housing law. By contrast, we believe that H.R. 926 is not only unnecessary, but could have profoundly damaging unintended consequences for both the mainstream HUD Code manufactured housing industry and the lower and moderate-income American families who rely on those mainstream manufactured homes as the nation’s premier source of affordable, non-subsidized homeownership. Indeed, if enacted into law, this bill could ultimately undermine all of the gains, advancements, recognition and acceptance that the industry (and consumers) have achieved under the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of 2000 and the reforms within that law designed to transition manufactured homes from the “trailers” of yesteryear to modern, legitimate “housing” for all purposes.

Specifically, this bill in light of recent developments concerning the Duty to Serve Underserved Markets (DTS) provision of the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008 (HERA) and the apparent effort by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, promoted by some in the industry, to divert DTS support to a supposed “new class” of pseudo-manufactured homes while providing no support whatsoever to existing, mainstream manufactured homes financed through personal property loans (which comprise 80% of the HUD Code manufactured housing market) – appears to be tailored not only to legitimize the so-called “new class” of pseudo-manufactured home, but also to mandate government support for the utilization of that “new class” of home. The legislation, consequently, if enacted, would legally validate the discriminatory DTS policies adopted by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and the establishment of two separate “classes” of “residential manufactured homes” the new class of high-cost, site-built-like hybrid homes favored and prioritized for securitization and secondary market support by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac on the one hand, and a “second class” comprised of existing, affordable, mainstream HUD Code manufactured homes on the other, with continued and worsening discrimination against the “second-class” of mainstream HUD Code manufactured homes.

The legislation would thus sanitize and institutionalize the diversion of DTS support from mainstream manufactured housing to this so-called “new class” of home. It would also pave the way for local jurisdictions to utilize this “new class” of home — while in many, if not most cases, continuing to exclude and discriminate against mainstream, affordable HUD Code manufactured housing in order to access HUD grants and other funding. The bill does this through a two-step process of altering the definition of “manufactured home” currently contained in federal law and then requiring the inclusion of homes meeting this altered definition in the “Consolidated Plans” that jurisdictions must submit to HUD in order to receive federal funding under multiple HUD programs.

In relevant part, the bill directs HUD to “issue guidelines for jurisdictions relating to the appropriate inclusion of residential manufactured homes in a Consolidated Plan of the jurisdiction.” (Emphasis added). The definition of “residential manufactured home” contained in the bill, in turn, while referring to the definition of “manufactured home” contained in the National Manufactured Housing Construction and Safety Standards Act of 1974, as amended by the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of 2000, would nevertheless alter that definition by using the term “residential,” which is not contained or included in the existing federal law definition. The bill, accordingly, would create a discrepancy between the existing definition of “manufactured home” and what does — or does not — constitute a “residential manufactured home,” potentially without any type of vetting, analysis or due consideration, that would elevate the so-called “new class” of home for use in every jurisdiction receiving HUD grants and other funding, while reducing mainstream, affordable HUD Code manufactured homes, once again, to second-class “trailer” status contrary to the 2000 reform law.

The bill, accordingly, poses a significant threat to existing, affordable, mainstream HUD Code manufactured housing and the lower and moderate-income families that rely upon those homes. At a minimum, with its altered definition of “residential manufactured home,” which is materially different from the definition already contained in federal manufactured housing law, the bill, if enacted, would create immediate market confusion — particularly for existing HUD Code manufactured homes, homeowners, and purchasers that could further suppress the mainstream, affordable HUD Code market and could lead to legal liability and litigation over just what does or does not constitute a “manufactured home” for purposes of federal regulation and a multitude of other issues.

Specifically, the bill is unnecessary and potentially harmful, in that it:

  • Would perpetuate a negative connotation and image of existing, mainstream, HUD Code manufactured housing through its title, which implies that manufactured homes are in need of “modernization” notwithstanding the sweeping institutional reforms of the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of 2000. In addition, the title is misleading and inaccurate, in that the HUD program and the legal treatment of manufactured housing itself were already “modernized” by the 2000 reform law, after input from all stakeholders and the National Commission on Manufactured Housing. Consequently, if this bill is advanced in any form, its title should be changed to the “Manufactured Housing Parity and Equality Act of [Insert] ;”
  • Would, by changing the definition of what constitutes a “manufactured home,” create a substantial risk that the so-called “new class” of manufactured homes could lead to the establishment of a new baseline for all federal manufactured home standards, which would destroy the fundamental affordability of manufactured homes;

Would even if it does not lead to more expansive and costly federal standards, as above re-relegate existing, mainstream, affordable HUD Code manufactured homes to second class “trailer” status;

  • Would undermine gains and advances made through and as a result of the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of 2000 to elevate the status of mainstream, affordable manufactured homes to that of legitimate “housing” for purposes (including federal and federally-sponsored housing programs);
  • Would legitimize and institutionalize continuing discrimination against mainstream, HUD Code manufactured home personal property loans under DTS;
  • Would legitimize and reinforce the discriminatory exclusion of mainstream, affordable HUD Code manufactured homes in jurisdictions seeking HIJD grants and other related funding by effectively directing those jurisdictions instead to higher-cost, “new class,” hybrid-type homes;
  • Would direct HUD funding and grants to jurisdictions that continue to discriminate against and exclude mainstream, affordable HUD Code manufactured homes and manufactured housing residents;
  • Would create immediate market confusion, would further suppress the existing HUD Code manufactured housing market and depreciate the re-sale value of such mainstream, affordable manufactured homes;
  • Would benefit just a handful of industry conglomerates at the expense of smaller, independent industry businesses and the lower and moderate-income American homebuyers who rely on the affordability of mainstream HUD Code manufactured housing.

Consequently, rather than this bill, with its inconsistent language and potentially devastating consequences for mainstream, affordable HUD Code manufactured housing, MHARR instead supports language that could be included in any moving bill involving HUD or housing finance that would ensure equal, non-discriminatory treatment for all HUD Code manufactured housing in both HUD housing and community grant programs, and housing finance programs under the jurisdiction of HUD (i.e., the Federal Housing Administration and Ginnie Mae) and/or the Federal Housing Finance Agency (i.e:, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac). It is worth noting that under the 2000 reform law, manufactured housing producers have — and have always — been capable of building homes with additional upgrades and features. Thus, the MHARR-suggested language below:

  • “The Secretary of Housing and Urban Development shall provide for the inclusion of manufactured homes in all housing, federal housing assistance and community development programs and activities, including community development grants, administered by the Department, and shall ensure that any jurisdiction participating in any such program or applying to participate in any such program does not exclude or unreasonably restrict the placement of manufactured homes as defined by and regulated pursuant to the National Manufactured Housing Construction and Safety Standards Act of 1974, as amended by the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of 2000 (42 U.S.C.

5401, et seq.) within that jurisdiction.”

‘The Federal Housing Finance Agency shall ensure that the Government Sponsored Enterprises provide securitization and secondary market support for loans to purchase manufactured homes regulated pursuant to the National Manufactured Housing Construction and Safety Standards Act of 1974, as amended by the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of 2000 (42 U.S.C. 5401, et seq.), including loans secured by manufactured homes titled as real estate and manufactured homes titled as personal property, on an equal basis with all other types of single-family homes.”

Such language, attached to any moving bill in Congress, would propel parity and equality between existing, mainstream, affordable HUD Code manufactured housing and all other types of housing, while simultaneously prohibiting discrimination against HUD Code housing (and manufactured homeowners) in vital areas. By contrast, when the innocuous veneer of the pending bill is stripped away, it becomes apparent that it would do serious harm to existing, mainstream HUD Code manufactured housing and the lower and moderate-income American families who rely on the non-subsidized affordability of those homes.

Consequently, while MHARR recognizes and appreciates the positive intent underlying this bill, it does not and cannot support H.R. 926 and urges your committee to take no further action to advance it. If, however, further action is taken on this bill, we respectfully urge your committee to hold a full hearing on the highly-damaging potential consequences of such legislation on mainstream, affordable manufactured housing, and would ask that MHARR be provided an opportunity to offer the above proposed language that would actually advance your positive intentions without harming the HUD Code manufactured housing industry as it exists today.

Thank you

Sincerely,

 

Mark Weiss
President and CEO

cc:  Hon. Norma Torres

Hon. Ben Carson

Hon. Mick Mulvaney

Hon. Mark Calabria

HUD Code Manufactured Housing Industry Members

###

In conversations between MHProNews’ publisher L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach and key legislative staff from both political parties, Kovach noted that starting with the title of the bill, the measure is problematic.  He said that “The HUD Manufactured Housing Modernization Act of 2019” makes it sound like HUD Code manufactured homes needs to be ‘modernized,’ thus sending the wrong message to the millions who might here about the bill but never get beyond a headline.

Tony Kovach did not go into the same points that MHARR did, as his contacts with Congress relative to this measure were prior to the MHARR letter.  But he did note similar concerns, namely, that what is needed is enforcing existing laws, not passing a new one that might in fact undermine the enhanced preemption portion of the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act (MHIA) of 2000.

Rephrased, MHARR and MHProNews’ leadership came to similar concerns and conclusions apart from each other about this bill. GovTrack gives it only single digit odds of passage. But even the discussion of the measure – due to the name of the bill – can prove damaging.

Our prior report on this is linked below and is very relative in the light of the more recent MHARR comments.

It should be noted that MHProNews was a leader in sounding the alarm about the new class of homes promoted by Clayton Homes and their association mouthpiece, Arlington, VA based MHI.

We said at that time that it could prove to be a Trojan horse for the industry and warned that it could undermine the sales and acceptance of all other types of manufactured homes. That warning has been repeated several times, such as when the Government Sponsored Enterprises (GSEs) of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac rolled out their programs, which made distinctions between the ‘new class’ of homes and all other manufactured homes.

The ‘new class of homes,’ related issues, and this new measure are examples of how the good news about manufactured homes can be and has been obscured. That has often been done by those who claim to be promoting the industry.

That the promotion of operations owned by Berkshire Hathaway, such as Clayton Homes, or MHI and some ‘big boy’ members there has not been successful is self-evident, based upon the latest shipment data and recent new manufactured home sales trends.  See that report, linked below.

 

Manufactured Housing Production and Shipments, Official HUD Data, Report for May 2019

 

That it need not be so is exemplified by companies that are growing, while others that are shrinking in sales.  A publicly traded example is spotlighted in the report linked below.

 

Nobility Homes Bucks National Trends, Reported Serious Growth, plus Manufactured Home Stock Updates

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What Congressional Representatives, Senators, and Industry Professionals Should Be Asking About Duty to Serve Manufactured Housing

June 18th, 2019 Comments off

 

WhatCongressionalRepsSenatorsIndustryProfessionalsShouldBeAskingGSEDutyToServeManufacturedHousingMHProNews

There are several ways to understand people and organizations. One method, is to listen to what they say.

 

Another is to see how what they claim compares to what they actually do. 

Yet another is the investigator’s method, which is “follow the money.”

A classic variation on the above is the question: Cui Bono? Who benefits?

Toadies and lemmings will simply follow mindlessly, even if they are following a ‘leader’ over a cliff.

ToadySycophantDefinedDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

MHInsider, George Allen, others are arguably the current examples of toadies to the industry’s powers that be.

The Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) has been pushing, prodding, and calling for action, not words by the Government Sponsored Enterprises (GSEs) of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac with respect to their congressionally mandated Duty to Serve (DTS) manufactured housing.

By contrast, the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) has taken money from the GSEs to sponsor events that have failed to deliver DTS.

Who benefits from that, other than the largest corporate players that are trying to consolidate manufactured housing into ever fewer hands?

With that introduction, let’s dive into MHARR’s release, which follows below. That will be followed by some additional comments, links, insights, and information. 

MHARRlogoMHARRNewsHeaderMHProNews

MHARR REITERATES CALL FOR DTS INVESTIGATION

 

Washington, D.C., June 18, 2019 – The Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR), in a June 13, 2019 communication to Fannie Mae Vice President Jonathan Lawless (copy attached), has reiterated its call for a congressional investigation into the failure of both Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to implement the statutory Duty to Serve Underserved Markets (DTS) in relation to manufactured home personal property (or “chattel) loans.  Those loans, which provide consumers with the most affordable access to the nation’s most affordable non-subsidized homes, comprise nearly 80% of the manufactured consumer lending market.  Nearly 11 years after the enactment of DTS as part of the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008 (HERA), however, neither Fannie Mae nor Freddie Mac have purchased any manufactured housing personal property loans pursuant to that mandate – which expressly includes such personal property loans – let alone provided the type of market significant securitization and secondary market support that Congress envisioned.  Indeed, even an extremely limited and highly restricted “pilot program” for such loans has yet to materialize after nearly two years of empty promises, and is referred to by Fannie Mae as only a “potential” pilot program. 

Instead of providing such crucial support for the largest single segment of the manufactured housing consumer lending market and mainstream, inherently affordable manufactured homes, as MHARR’s communication notes, both Fannie and Freddie have instead prioritized pilot programs for much higher-cost manufactured homes, as well as a supposed “new class” of manufactured homes with retail purchase prices as high as $220,000.00 – as contrasted with an average purchase of $71,900.00 for all types of existing, mainstream, HUD Code manufactured homes. Consequently, instead of expanding access to the industry’s most affordable mainstream homes, as DTS was designed to do, both Fannie and Freddie continue to discriminate against mainstream manufactured housing and mainstream manufactured housing purchasers, effectively forcing them into higher-interest loans offered by the finance subsidiaries of the industry’s largest corporate conglomerates, while stifling the recovery and market growth of the manufactured housing industry during a prolonged affordable housing crisis.  Indeed, this type of sustained institutional resistance to the full and proper implementation of DTS and the resulting ongoing discrimination against lower and moderate-income consumers of manufactured housing is, in substantial part, an outgrowth of the continuing failure of the industry’s post-production sector – dominated by the industry’s largest corporate conglomerates – to demand full compliance with DTS for manufactured housing.

Based, therefore, on the lack of any significant progress toward the market-significant implementation of DTS with respect to the vast bulk of the manufactured housing consumer financing market and apparent diversion of DTS activity into new, higher-cost types of hybrid manufactured homes, MHARR has called for a congressional investigation of Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and their federal regulator, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), with respect to unconscionable and unnecessary delays in the implementation of DTS for mainstream, HUD Code manufactured housing.

The Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform is a Washington, D.C.-based
national trade association representing the views and interests of independent producers of federally-regulated manufactured housing.

 

Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR)

1331 Pennsylvania Ave N.W., Suite 512

Washington D.C. 20004

Phone: 202/783-4087

Fax: 202/783-4075

Email: MHARR@MHARRPUBLICATIONS.COM

— 30 —

 

Think about what these MHI past and present members have said, and ask yourself, who side is MHI on?

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What Haney’s statement reflects is the lack of credibility and effectiveness of MHI in their claims.

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Marty Lavin advises, “Follow the Money” and “Pay More Attention to What People Do Than What They Say.” The GSEs are praising manufactured home quality, but then created a special class of manufactured homes, with key MHI member input, that is aimed at funneling that lending, per informed sources.

SoTheAssociationMHIIsNotThereFortheIndustryUnlesstheinterestsoftheBigBoysJointheIndustry'sMartyLavinMHIAwardWinnerQuoteMHProNews

 

FollowThe MoneyPayMoreAttentionToWhatPeopleDothanwhatTheySaySpySea72MartyLavinYachtManufacturedHousingINdustryProMHProNews

Then, ask yourself, why hasn’t MHI done what MHARR is doing?

That’s tonight’s final installment of manufactured housing “Industry News, Tips, and Views Pros Can Use,” © here “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, commentary, and analysis.) ##

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MHARRCallsHUDSecretaryCarsonEndDiscriminatoryZoningHUDRegulatedManufacturedHomesCommodoreHomesCorpMHARR

Photo of Commodore Homes model, MHARR logo, are provided under fair use guidelines. See article and letter to Secretary Carson, linked here. https://manufacturedhousingassociationregulatoryreform.org/mharr-calls-on-hud-secretary-to-end-discriminatory-and-exclusionary-zoning-of-hud-regulated-manufactured-homes/

 

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“Disastrous,” “Uncompetitive” “Takeover” of “Government Sanctioned Monopoly” Blasted in Congress as Bi-Partisan Fix Unveiled

September 6th, 2018 Comments off

 

DisasterousUncompettiveTakeoverGovernmentsanctionedMonopolyblastedCongJebHensarlingBarryNoffsingerCreditHumanDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsIn a video statement today announcing a bipartisan measure, Financial Services Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-TX) raised the alarms about the dangerous “monopoly” that is increasingly placing housing finance “at systematic risk.”

 

Hensarling said that today 9.6.2018, marks the 10th anniversary of the housing finance takeover by the Federal Housing Finance Administration. (FHFA). He uses strong language, including “disastrous,” “uncompetitive,” and “monopoly.”

The FHFA and the GSEs have been periodically in the spotlight for years in MHVille, as the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) – most recently in their latest emailed ‘news,’ postures doing something.

An MHI member in the community sector of MHI told MHProNews yesterday that the MHI letter read much like their bland statements did 10 years ago.

Indeed. 21st Mortgage President and CEO Tim Williams, in a letter shown below, encouraged near the end of the document customers to ask Congress to get the GSEs involved.

But doesn’t that beg the question?  Because Congress had already spoken. That’s what HERA 2008 was supposed to fix, with the “Duty to Serve” (DTS) manufactured housing and underserved markets. The point of frustration by the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) is precisely that laws on the books, like DTS, are not being applied.

The 21st letter with the reference to the GSEs is below.

21stMortgageCorpTimWillamsJune112009LetterBerkshireHathawayWarrenBuffettClaytonHomesManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

This document supports the claim of our source that said that 21st and VMF turned over data to the GSEs, and were shocked at how poorly their manufactured home loan portfolios preformed. See the last paragraph. 

 

GSEs Shocked

But what another MHI member told MHProNews just over a week ago is this. What 21st and the Berkshire Hathaway manufactured housing lenders accomplished about 9 years ago was to shock the GSEs into inaction.

Unlike more recently – when Clayton Homes’ Vanderbilt Mortgage and Finance (VMF) and 21st reportedly declined turning over data to the GSEs – circa 2008-2009, the Berkshire brand MH lenders DID turn over data to the GSEs. The reaction of the GSEs was one of “shock,” said our source, at “how high” the default rates were on Berkshire’s manufactured home loan portfolios.

In fairness, it should be noted that back then, some of those loans were purchased by Berkshire from other lenders, most if not all of whom had existed the MH lending business. Nevertheless, their portfolio of loans and the total performance is what it is.

So, the GSEs declined getting involved in manufactured housing lending at that time, after seeing the Berkshire brands lending performance.

More recently, because the GSEs didn’t get Berkshire data, this time, the GSEs did get involved, but only with a toe in the water.  MHARR has pointed out what a sliver of the market the GSEs promised commitment represents.

FannieMaeFreddieMacLogosPostedManufacturedHousingProfessionalMHProNews

The Government Sponsored Enterprises (GSEs) of Fannie Mae, and Freddie Mac.

They [the GSEs] don’t want to loan on manufactured homes, period,” per our informed source. “That’s why they’ve created programs like MH Select [some years ago], that clearly failed [to gain traction in the market].” 

Now, the GSEs are promoting lending that parallels MHI’s so-called new class of homes, that is backed by Clayton and the ‘big boys.’

That new program is also expected to have problems, and fail, our source with MHI and GSE connections said. The source said that once these new MH program fail, the GSEs will have deniability. “Look, we tried,” is what the MHProNews source said the GSEs will likely say when that happens.

Another source with ties to the GSEs and MHI has said similarly.

 

Barry Noffsinger, Credit Human, and GSE Reminders

BarryNoffsingerCreditHumanManufacturedHomeLoansNotMObileHOmesDailyBusinessNewsMHproNewsOur Daily Business News sources cited above echo a public statement made by Credit Human Credit Human manufactured home lending manager, Barry Noffsinger, has said.

Noffsinger has said in association meetings that he’s personally told representatives of Fannie Mae that MH Select was an insult to intelligent manufactured home shoppers. It was saying to them, ‘look, we don’t give the same terms for manufactured homes as we do for conventional housing.’

That’s an insightful statement by Noffsinger. Because doesn’t it apply equally to the new plans by the GSEs that only apply to MHI’s controversial new class of homes? Doesn’t it diminish the vast majority of “standard” manufactured homes, by implication?

 

Common Denominators

The common denominator in what Hensarling said, and these other incidents could be boiled down to the words “disastrous,” “monopoly,” and “uncompetitive.”

The full statement by the Financial Services Committee, followed by closing thoughts, are found below.

 

HouseFinancialServicesCommitteePressReleaseDailyBusinessNewsMHproNews598

Official statement from the U.S. House of Representatives to MHProNews.

Chairman Hensarling Delivers Opening Statement, Unveils Bipartisan GSE Reform Bill

WASHINGTON – Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-TX) delivered the following opening statement at today’s full committee hearing on the 10th anniversary of the federal government’s takeover of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the failed government-sponsored housing enterprises (GSEs). During his remarks, Hensarling detailed his bipartisan plan to reform our broken housing finance system.

September 6th, 2008 is a day that will live on in economic infamy. For today marks a not-so-happy anniversary of one of the most frustrating and costly moments in recent financial history: namely, the 10 year anniversary of the federal takeover of the failed housing government sponsored enterprises, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (the GSEs).

The GSEs’ anti-competitive government charters and ever-increasing “affordable housing” mandates created a toxic mess of systemic risk. Their collapse directly led to the second worst financial crisis in our history, causing more than $190 billion of taxpayer bailouts and forcing them into a government-run conservatorship.

Embarrassingly, ten years later, the GSEs remain in conservatorship, very much alive and very much unreformed as they quietly return to their pre-crisis market dominance. That’s bad news for competition, innovation, and, most of all, taxpayers, since the Congressional Budget Office has said their $5.1 trillion of mortgage obligations are “effectively guaranteed by the federal government.”

Meanwhile, as several of our witnesses will testify, systemic risk is building yet again. The cost and risk of continuing to do nothing is rising and rising at an alarming rate. Reform, while critical, has proven elusive. For almost 20 years, I along with a handful of reformers like Congressman Ed Royce have labored in vein to replace the GSEs’ government-sanctioned monopoly with a new system based on competitive private capital, innovation, consumer choice, and market discipline.

We passed the PATH Act in the 113th Congress to do just that. I am reintroducing the PATH Act this week, and for no other reason it is the right thing to do and it will let me sleep better at night. Regrettably, its chances for passage remain slim. So as an alternative, I’ve decided to partner with Mr. Delaney on the other side of the aisle to propose a bipartisan compromise housing reform plan that preserves the government guarantee in the secondary mortgage market.

In the time I have remaining in Congress, this is the plan I will pursue.

Our discussion draft, which we will unveil later today, will repeal the GSEs’ charters, permanently ending their monopoly, and transition to a system that allows qualified mortgages backed by an approved private credit enhancer with regulated, diversified capital resources to access the explicit, full government securitization guarantee provided by Ginnie Mae. I believe the plan will preserve much of what is demanded in the current system: liquidity, the TBA market, and the 30-year pre-payable fixed mortgage. And it will do so while dispersing risk and leveling the playing field for all entrants into mortgage finance. Additional details on our proposal will be released later today.

While by no means perfect, we offer this proposal as a grand bargain on how to move past an increasingly dangerous status quo: codify an explicit government MBS guarantee into law, coupled with an accountable and effective affordability program in exchange for placing the taxpayer in a catastrophic loss position only diffusing the credit risk beyond two GSEs, and creating market competition.

If the political will to enact such reform stalls in this Congress or the next, the Administration can and should effectuate change. The President will appoint a new Federal Housing Finance Agency Director in January. The Director has broad, unilateral power as conservator of Fannie and Freddie to dramatically reduce their size, scope, and function. If Congress fails to act by early next year, I call upon the new Director to institute these reforms administratively. The grand bargain I have described does not necessarily represent my preferred policy or optimal policy, but I believe it represents an achievable policy and a good faith effort at bipartisan compromise. A decade without GSE reform has once again put homeowners, taxpayers, and the economy at risk. The time to act is now. With apologies to the rolling stones, “you can’t always get what you want, but if you try some time, you just might find, you get what you need” to avert the next housing crisis.

###

See related reports, linked further below. That’s “News through the lens of manufactured homes, and factory-built housing,” where “We Provide, You Decide.” ©  ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

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Sexual Harassment, Workplace Poll, Congress, President Sound Off – MH Industry Impact?

November 22nd, 2017 Comments off

SexualHarrasmentManHandsWomanShoulderMarianUDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsQuinnipiac University has released the results of a new poll that looks into the issue of sexual harassment in the workplace, Congress and the presidency.

Sixty percent of American women voters say they’ve experienced sexual harassment, according to a Quinnipiac University national poll released today,” states the poll’s media release to the Daily Business News.

If the poll is presumed to be reliable, it reflects troubling data for businesses, which would include manufactured housing.

A deeper dive into the sexual harassment and workplace issues, and how it may specifically impact manufactured housing industry professionals, is planned after Thanksgiving.

The poll could signal problems for the GOP’s reform agenda, again if the survey is presumed to be reliable.

Senator Al Franken Should Resign Immediately, Says Slate’s Mark Stern, Roy Moore Update

A look at elements of the poll will embedded in and following the president’s remarks on related topics, below. Rephrasing, the polls results being shown were not part of the president’s remarks, but some of the charts from are sprinkled in that presidential Q&A below, and then following it as well.

The White House Press Office to MHProNews,
other Media on President Trump and
Sexual Harassment Allegations in the News

Until yesterday, the president has been silent for days on the issues of sexual harassment, Congressional payoffs to accusers, GOP Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore, Senator Al Franken (D-MN), and senior Democratic Congressman John Conyers, among other topics.

BelieveInYourselvesBelieveInYourFutureBelieveOnceMoreinAmericaPresidentDonaldJTrumpWhiteHouseDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

That Q&A from yesterday is being shared verbatim, per the White House pressroom release to the Daily Business News.

Remarks by President Trump Before Marine One Departure

South Lawn – 3:16 P.M. EST

PresidentTrumpQuestionsMarineOnePittsburgPressDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsQ Mr. President, are you ready to talk about Roy Moore at all?

THE PRESIDENT: Yeah, I’ll be talking about him. I can tell you one thing for sure: We don’t need a liberal person in there, a Democrat — Jones. I’ve looked at his record. It’s terrible on crime. It’s terrible on the border. It’s terrible on the military. I can tell you for a fact, we do not need somebody that’s going to be bad on crime, bad on borders, bad with the military, bad for the Second Amendment.

Q Is Roy Moore, a child molester, better than a Democrat? He’s an accused —

THE PRESIDENT: Well, he denies it. Look, he denies it. I mean, if you look at what is really going on, and you look at all the things that have happened over the last 48 hours, he totally denies it. He says it didn’t happen. And, you know, you have to listen to him also. You’re talking about, he said 40 years ago this did not happen. So, you know —

Q Are you going to campaign for Roy Moore?

THE PRESIDENT: I’ll be letting you know next week. But I can tell you, you don’t need somebody who’s soft on crime, like Jones.

QuinnipiaceUniversityPresidentialJobAPproval112017PollDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Note, while most polls are showing the president’s job approval under 50 percent, the typical pollster predicted that candidate Trump wouldn’t win – just a little over a year ago. There does seem to be either an underground Trump supporter, and/or the internals of the poll, to see what percentage of Democrats, Republicans and independents are being polled, and adjusted for if/as needed, as MHProNews did last year pre-election to properly project the Trump upset win. Showing a poll doesn’t mean MHProNews endorses the poll.

Q Mr. President, what is your message to women, sir, during this pivotal moment in our country where we’re talking about sexual misconduct? You’ve had your own allegations against you. What do you say to women?

THE PRESIDENT: Let me just tell you, Roy Moore denies it. That’s all I can say. He denies it. And, by the way, he totally denies it.

Q Mr. President, what is your message to women? This is a pivotal moment in our nation’s history.

THE PRESIDENT: Women are very special. I think it’s a very special time because a lot of things are coming out, and I think that’s good for our society, and I think it’s very, very good for women. And I’m very happy a lot of these things are coming out, and I’m very happy it’s being exposed.

QuinnipiaceUniversityPresidentialJobApprovalGraphPoll112017DailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Q Should Al Franken resign now?

THE PRESIDENT: I don’t know — look, I don’t want to speak for Al Franken. I don’t know what happened.

Q What about John Conyers?

THE PRESIDENT: I just heard about Conyers two minutes ago.

As far as Franken is concerned, he’s going to have to speak for himself. I’d rather have him speak for himself.

QuinnipiaceUniversityVoteForSomeoneAccusedSexualHarrasmentl112017PollDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

This poll should be revisited after the Alabama Senate special election. Why? Because state polling indicates some show Roy Moore’s opponents up by a few, points, another shows Judge Roy Moore slightly ahead. The Access Hollywood/Bill Bush video of then candidate Trump was released shortly before the election; and as you know, Donald Trump is the president. Similarly, in spite of accusations against Bill Clinton, and he still won his race too.

Q What did you say to Vladimir Putin, sir?

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THE PRESIDENT: We had a great call with President Putin. We’re talking about peace in Syria — very important. We’re talking about North Korea. We had a call that lasted almost an hour and a half. We’ve just put out a release on the call. But we’re talking very strongly about bringing peace for Syria. We’re talking about very strongly about North Korea and Ukraine.

Q The AT&T-Time Warner merger, sir — what do you think about it?

THE PRESIDENT: Well, I’m not going to get involved in litigation. But, personally, I’ve always felt that that was a deal that’s not good for the country. I think your pricing is going to go up. I don’t think it’s a good deal for the country. But I’m not going to get involved. It’s litigation.

Thank you, everybody. Have a very great Thanksgiving.

Q Do you believe Roy Moore’s denials? Do you believe him?

THE PRESIDENT: Well, he denies. I mean, Roy Moore denies it. And, by the way, he gives a total denial. And I do have to say, 40 years is a long time. He’s run eight races, and this has never comes up. So 40 years is a long time. The women are Trump voters; most of them are Trump voters. All you can do is, you have to do what you have to do. He totally denies it.

Q Mr. President, do you believe Congress should release the names of lawmakers who have settled on sexual harassment claims?

THE PRESIDENT: I do. I really do. I think they should. Thank you. Have a good Thanksgiving, everybody.

END

TrumpCallsLawmakersNamesChargedWithSexualHarrasmentTobeReleasedDailyBusinessNEwsMHProNews

QuinnipiaceUniversityNational-PollDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

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Quinnipiac University National Poll

Wikipedia says that Quinnipiac University does not disclose their polling arm’s operating budget, and the poll does not accept clients or outside funding.

QuinnipiaceUniversityKnowSomeoneSexuallyHarrasedDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

That said, the Daily Kos, Akdart and The Conservative Treehouse are among those in media that note that Quinnipiac’s polling has historically had a left leaning, or pro-Democratic tilt.  For the left-right media tilt analysis by award winning journalist, Sharyl Attkisson, click here.

QuinnipiaceUniversityWhereYouSexuallyHarrasedDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Some of the questions Quinnipiac used are what pollsters call “push polling” style. What that  means is that the question tends to push respondents in a certain direction, which may influence their responses.

QuinnipiaceUniversityWhereSexuallyHarrasedDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsThen, news media picks up those polls, often without qualifiers like those noted above, and thus those skewed responses are in turn a tool that attempts to influence the public at large.

Spotlight – Weinstein’s Weiner Scandal Rocks, Hollywood, Politics, Business – MH Market UPdate$

While virtually all polls show President Trump overall job approval numbers under 50 percent, what many in media fail to mention is what the Drudge Report recently pointed out.  Namely, that President Trump is polling better than other democratic world leaders, such as Britain’s May, Germany’s Merkle and France’s Macron.

The president also out-polls Congress, and trust in the mainstream news media.

KaylaMooreJudgeRoyMooreWifeHusbandFightingPeopleALwhoUnderstandWaPoScamDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

http://www.mhpronews.com/blogs/daily-business-news/people-of-alabama-understand-women-for-moore-wife-kayla-say-wont-step-down-mh-market-update/

The Daily Business News will do a post-Thanksgiving review of sexual harassment insights as it relates to manufactured housing. Stay tuned.  “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, tips, and commentary.)

Related:

Beyond Thanksgiving, Reflections on Scandals, Fears, Reform, Prayer, Conversion

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Pew Research Facts Don’t Lie, How Productive has the Trump Administration Really Been?

August 31st, 2017 Comments off
TrumpAdministrationProductivityCreditProjectManagementHacksDailyBusinessNews

Featured image credit, Project Management Hacks.

With a lack of resolve on issues such as a “repeal and replace” of ObamaCare, much of the mainstream media makes it appear that the Trump Administration hasn’t done much of anything since January.

However, a new study from Pew Research Center tells a different story all together.

To date, Congress has passed 55 measures that have been signed into law, 46 of which we consider substantive by our deliberately generous criteria – that is, any legislation other than renaming buildings, awarding medals, commemorating historic events or taking other purely ceremonial actions.”

For this study, Pew Research Center counted all bills that received final legislative approval prior to the August recess, even if they were signed into law after the break.

30YearsCongressionalProductivityCreditPewResearchDailyBusinessNews

Image credit, Pew Research Center.

Of the 46 laws which were considered “substantive” there were “14 whose sole purpose was to overturn various rules adopted by the Obama administration, under the 1996 Congressional Review Act.”

The Trump Administration is the first to utilize the Congressional Review Act in this way. Previously, only one law had ever been undone through this procedure since the Act itself became law.

Those 14 resolutions of disapproval account for about 30% of the substantive laws, and a quarter of all the laws, enacted so far by this Congress.”

The chart to the right shows that over the years the number of laws enacted by Congress has fluctuated. However, it hit an all-time low since 1987 during the years of the 112th Congress (2011-12) with only 20 laws enacted in total.

The current Congress turns out to be the fifth most productive when it comes to enacting substantive laws – tied with the 110th Congress (2007-08).

While the Pew Research study found that while the Trump Administration might be light on signature legislation – such as repealing and replacing ObamaCare or tax reform – nevertheless, there are things happening in Congress.

TrumponomicsFirst6Months9ChartsDailyBusinessNewsManufacturedHousingIndustryMHProNews

The Daily Business News has previously reported on how the economy is responding to the new administration in the first six months.

While Congress continues to debate over key issues like healthcare and tax reform, it’s untrue to say that they haven’t accomplished anything. Rather, this year Congress has been more productive than it has been in nearly a decade. Still, public polling shows Congressional approval just a fraction of what the president’s is. ## (News, analysis.)

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JuliaGranowiczManufacturedHomeLivingNewsMHProNews-comSubmitted by Julia Granowicz to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.

 

 

 

 

 

POTUS Speech: Public, Media, Markets Applaud

March 2nd, 2017 Comments off
POTUSSpeechPublicMediaMarketsApplaudcreditNewYorkPost-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credit: NY Post.

Leading up to his speech to a joint session of Congress Tuesday evening, many were curious as to exactly how President Donald Trump would approach the moment and what his message would be.

Post speech, the responses, and where they came from, were quite interesting.

This will be a very well-received speech for Donald Trump,said MSNBC commentator Rachel Maddow.

I think it’s fair to say it’s a product of expectations that he’s not seen as somebody who necessarily gives a good formal speech.”

According to The Hill, media analysts estimate 40 million to 45 million people watched the address Tuesday night.

POTUSSpeechPublicMediaMarketsApplaudcreditTheHill-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credits: The Hill, CBS This Morning.

He said from the beginning he was going to speak from his heart, and I certainly think he did that,said Gayle King of CBS This Morning.

I thought it was by far the best speech I’ve ever heard Donald Trump give,” said Chris Wallace of FOX News.

It was one of the best speeches in that setting I’ve ever heard any president give.

 

Polling from CBS News showed that viewers nationwide strongly approved of the President’s speech, with many Democrats joining Republicans in calling it “presidential” and positive in tone.

The polls also showed Republicans and Independents found the speech “unifying,” and the President gained support for his policy plans among viewers on the economy, immigration, terrorism, crime and Obamacare.

POTUSSpeechPublicMediaMarketsApplaudcreditCBSNews-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credit: CBS News.

While half of Democrats reportedly found the speech “divisive,” about one-third of them also said President Trump was “specific” and “knowledgeable” in his speech, and there is agreement across party lines that he is trying to do what he said he’d do during the campaign.

POTUSSpeechPublicMediaMarketsApplaudcreditNewYorkTimes-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credit: NY Times.

During the speech, commentators, along with the Daily Business News, noticed the divide amongst the Democratic and Republic sides of the chamber. While this is usually standard fare, it should be noted that even in the moments where the President spoke about unity across party lines, that only a handful of Democratic representatives acknowledged the need.

 

 

The Markets Respond 

According to CNBC, President Trump’s speech hit a cord with the markets, as U.S. equities surged to all-time highs yesterday, with the Dow, S&P 500 and NASDAQ all posting their best days of the year.

POTUSSpeechPublicMediaMarketsApplaudcreditGettyImages-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credit: Getty Images.

The major positive from the speech is he delivered on his ‘America first’ message, but he did so in a positive and uniting way,” said Zhiwei Ren, portfolio manager at Penn Mutual Asset Management.

If his message of ‘America first’ can succeed, this could be positive for the economy” in the near term.

The Dow finished the day up 303 points, with the NASDAQ, S&P 500 and Russell 2K index, and indicator of small and mid cap stocks, all gaining over one percent.

The speech’s tone has gone a long way for the market,” said Quincy Krosby, market strategist at Prudential Financial.

It assuaged fears that his agenda was not going to be able to be passed.

 

The MH Industry

DonaldTrumpBenCarsonOpenLetterMastheadBlogMHProNews-

Credit: MHProNews. Click here for Kovach’s full letter.

As Daily Business News readers are aware, a growing economy and more jobs, less regulations, and proposed changes to Dodd-Frank and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), are all reasons for Industry Optimism with respect to President Trump.

The Trump Administration has made it absolutely clear that one of its key priorities will be to reduce baseless regulatory burdens on American businesses that needlessly increase the cost of American products and undermine job creation,said MHARR President and CEO M. Mark Weiss.

Dr. Ben Carson, whose up/down vote as HUD Secretary is expected within the next few days, has been warmly greeted by MHARR, MHI and MHProNews, as a leader who grasps the manufactured housing industry’s importance to the realization of the American Dream.

I do see manufactured housing playing an important role in providing affordable housing in rural areas. I think it’s important to ensure HUD’s policies promote access to this valuable resource,” said Carson.

MHProNews and MHLivingNews publisher L.A. “Tony” Kovach penned an open letter to Dr. Carson, which is linked here.

For more responses from MH industry professionals on the election of President Trump, click here. ##

 

(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.

Congress Demands Answers from FEMA

February 27th, 2017 Comments off
CongressDemandsAnswersfromFEMAcreditTimesPicayune1-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

A home being demolished after the Louisiana floods. Credit: NOLA.

The Louisiana floods of 2016 devastated Baton Rouge, and left many without homes.

It also left more questions than answers in the response from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

And now, one member of Congress is demanding answers, including why 84-year-old Baton Rouge resident Everett Wilson died in his temporary FEMA home on October 25th from overheating.

According to the Daily Caller, House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform (HOGR) chairman Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) demanded those answers after discovering a slew of problems with FEMA’s use of post-disaster temporary housing.

In a formal letter to FEMA Acting Administrator Robert Fenton, Chaffetz asked Fenton to provide records explaining how the agency botched its deployment of manufactured housing units (MHUs) in the wake of August 2016 floods.

CongressDemandsAnswersfromFEMAcreditOfficialPhoto-JasonChaffetzpostedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Rep. Jason Chaffetz. Official Photo.

The committee continues to learn of high levels of dissatisfaction from survivors and local officials regarding FEMA’s recovery efforts,” wrote Chaffetz.

In the death of Wilson, Chaffetz clearly defines what he sees as a significant issue with the FEMA units.

When authorities inspected the (unit), they discovered temperatures over 137.5 degrees Fahrenheit with the air conditioning and heating control unit reading 50 degrees Fahrenheit,wrote Chaffetz.

In addition to the death of Wilson, the letter also points out other issues, including FEMA sending a housing unit to a dead person’s address, delivery of a housing unit to the wrong address, and temporary housing units that were unused and cost as much as $340,000.

The cap for assistance under federal law is $33,000.

FEMA failed to fix many of the problems discussed at a September, 2016, HOGR hearing, such as the agency’s poor communication and failure to properly distribute assistance funds to survivors,wrote Chaffetz.

On Friday, FEMA responded.

CongressDemandsAnswersfromFEMAcreditTimesPicayune3-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

A family looks at the remains of their home after the Louisiana floods. Credit: NOLA.

FEMA received the Chairman’s letter, and the Agency will respond, as requested, directly to the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform,” said FEMA deputy affairs director Eileen Lainez.

While we did not know if the thermostat led to overheating in the unit, and while a review of our maintenance records of occupied units did not identify any systemic issues, FEMA took the precautionary step of replacing the thermostats in other occupied units manufactured before 2016.

The Daily Business News will continue to monitor this story and responses from FEMA.

Rep. Chaffetz letter is linked here.

For more on the Louisiana floods, and questions related to FEMA’s response, click here. ##

 

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

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

MHARR Submits Comments on SAA Funding Rule, Seeks Accountability for HUD Program Expenditures

February 22nd, 2017 Comments off
MHARRCallforCongressionalReviewandRejectionofDOERulecreditWikipediaMHARR-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credit: MHARR, Wikipedia.

Washington, D.C., February 21, 2017 – The Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) tells MHProNews that it has filed written comments on a December 16, 2016 rule proposed by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to modify minimum payments provided to State Administrative Agencies (SAA) within the HUD manufactured housing program.

 

MHARR says that, as an integral part of the unique federal-state partnership established by the National Manufactured Housing Construction and Safety Standards Act of 1974 and amended by the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of 2000, SAAs are the first line of protection for consumers residing in manufactured homes subject to federal standards established by HUD.

According to the written comments, SAAs, operating under outdated rules, have been deprived of funding by the HUD program, while budgeted payments to revenue-driven program contractors have ballooned, despite significantly reduced production levels of new homes over the same period.

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Credit: HUD.

MHARR states that this fundamental distortion of the federal program, which is in direct conflict with the federal-state partnership mandated by Congress and the letter of the 2000 law, would have been worse by a modification to the SAA payment rule proffered by the current career Administrator of the HUD program in July, 2015.

This would have severely reduced funding for a number of the SAAs, potentially leading them to consider exiting the HUD program. With objections by MHARR and various states, the Administrator was eventually forced to reverse course.

The full written comments submitted by MHARR are linked here. ##

 

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

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

Trump/Congress Call on Federal Agencies to Defer Action on all Pending Regulations

November 17th, 2016 Comments off
Manufactured Housing production. Credit: MHI

Manufactured Housing production. Credit: MHI

The Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) has made a major announcement regarding a request from President-elect Donald Trump and Congress.

MHARR tells the Daily Business News that, as was predicted and outlined in MHARR’s November 9, 2016 Washington Update, President-Elect Trump’s promise to “impose a… moratorium order on new agency regulations,” pending the review and elimination of regulations that “kill jobs” and “do not improve public safety,” has taken an important first step forward with a November 15, 2016 congressional communication – signed by the House majority leader and the chairmen of all standing House Committees — to the secretaries, directors and administrators of all federal agencies.

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MHARR president and CEO M. Mark Weiss. Credit: MHProNews.

MHARR says that this action by Congress sends a proverbial “shot across the bow” of each of the federal agencies in the waning days of the Obama Administration, against seeking to force “midnight regulations” through the administrative process in an attempt to tie the hands of the incoming Trump Administration.

MHProNews has more on the story here, and you can find the full MHARR November Washington update with a full analysis here. ##

MHARR November Briefing

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

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

 

Illinois Senator to Push FEMA Reform During Lame Duck Session

October 18th, 2016 Comments off
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Washington, IL tornado damage. Credit: Indy Star.

Senator Mark Kirk (R-IL) is ready to tackle a huge task: reforming the Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA) during the post-election session of Congress.

Last week I met with tornado survivors from Washington, Illinois to discuss efforts to rebuild their community after the 2013 tornado that destroyed thousands of homes and caused more than $25 million in damage,” Senator Kirk told MHProNews.

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Senator Mark Kirk. Credit: Twitter.

Communities, like Washington, should be eligible for FEMA aid, instead of being denied assistance when it is needed the most. That’s why I will continue to work to pass legislation I introduced with Senator Dick Durbin, S. 870, the Fairness in Federal Disaster Declarations Act, to bring fairness and consistency to FEMA’s declaration process and ensure communities in our state get the assistance they need to rebuild and recover from natural disasters.

Kirk also shared that “a disaster is a disaster, regardless of what state or community it happens in, and thattime and again the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has denied disaster assistance to Illinois communities and families when they need it the most because the formula for determining aid is broken.

The Senator said that Illinois almost always comes up short on disaster assistance because of the large population in his state, especially when the disasters happen in small communities like Washington, Harrisburg or Ridgeway.

I’ll try to stick this (bill) in in any way we can,” Kirk said to the Daily Business News.

NaturalDisaster-credit-TheAdvocate-LAFlooding-ManufacturedHomeCanHelp-postedDailyBusinessNews-MHProNews

Photo credit, TheAdvocate, text added by, MHProNews.com

According to the Peoria Journal Star, Kirk did not say what the likelihood of passage was in the Senate, but argued that since he is “now a member of the Senate majority and now a chairman of an appropriations subcommittee” he would hope to attach it to an omnibus bill funding the federal government.

I can go to (Senate Majority Leader) Mitch McConnell and say we need to do this,” he said.

MH Industry Implications

 

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Credit: The Atlantic, Floodlist, CBS News.

As readers of the Daily Business News are aware, the actions proposed by Senator Kirk could have a significant impact on the manufactured housing industry.

Often thought of as “housing of last resort” by FEMA, manufactured housing has recently taken center stage in Louisiana with the August floods. We have provided extensive coverage of the storm, the fallout from it and the MH industry response.

The Daily Business News reported last week that FEMA issued a formal solicitation for “off the lot” manufactured homes. These actions came on the heels of FEMA’s concerns about contractors not being able to meet demand in time. ##

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

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