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“Accurate, but Misleading” MHI Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act Alert – ‘Weaponized New$,’ Fact Check$

December 7th, 2017 Comments off

ManufacturedHousingInstituteLogoMHILogoTradeAssocChargedWeaponizedNewsManufacturedHomeIndustryMHProNews“…the Senate Banking Committee passed legislation to clarify that a manufactured housing retailer or seller is not considered a “loan originator” simply because they provide a customer with some assistance in the mortgage loan process,” said a “Housing Alert” from Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) to their members, and through them, to others in the HUD Code manufactured home industry.

This is a key tenet of S. 1751, the Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act, which excludes manufactured housing retailers and sellers from the definition of a loan originator so long as they are only receiving compensation for the sale of a home,” said the MHI alert.  That is a reference to the so-called MLO rule.

The language was passed as a part of S. 2155, the “Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief and Consumer Protection Act,” which is a package of reforms intended to improve the national financial regulatory framework and promote economic growth. S. 2155 was passed by the Senate Banking Committee by a bipartisan vote of 16 to 7,” per MHI.

For many hard-working Hoosiers and Americans, manufactured housing provides the most affordable option available when they look to buy a home. I’m pleased the bipartisan regulatory relief legislation that I helped craft and that passed the Senate Banking Committee includes a provision based on my Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act. This measure would help prevent federal regulations from getting in the way of financing that families need as they step into homeownership,” said U.S. Senator Joe Donnelly, per MHI’s statement.

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Critical Fact Check, Analysis

LookAtTheFactsFactCheckMHProNewsLogoDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsAccepting all of the above at face value, what the MHI release completely fails to mention is that per sources within MHI – as well as from non-profits familiar with the matter – the MLO rule could have been changed by an agreement years ago.

Rephrasing,

  • without spending millions of dollars and years ‘fighting’ for their Preserving Access bill, which still isn’t and may never become law,
  • MHI could have had the final product that their now bragging about; and which is still not a done-deal.

While supporting the Preserving Access measure in principle, MHProNews and our parent company’s management believes that no deception or misleading statements are needed to pass that or any worthwhile bill, or to motivate the honest, hard-working members of the MH Industry to act.

The Daily Business News and MHLivingNews have historically held accountable the non-profit groups for their own errors – see the examples linked in the reports, below.

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CFED and CFPB – Confused, Conflicted “Friends” of Manufactured Home Owners and Prospective Buyers?

Sophie Quinton – Why Some Cities Are Buying “Trailer Parks,” [SIC] and “Mobile Home Parks” [SIC] – HuffPo

The truth matters. Manufactured housing has enough unjustified black-eyes, without having to give itself avoidable ones, at the hand of one of its own associations.

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One of a number of sources that have told MHProNews that MHI could have had the MLO rule rescinded by agreement years ago.

The Real Takeaway…?

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Part of the evidence is the Ishbel Dickens email, shown above this graphic as a screen capture.

Accurate, but Misleading

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L. A. Tony Kovach at the 2017 San Antonio MHI meeting, Dick Jennison and Lesli Gooch repeatedly made thinly veiled statements, aimed at MHProNews. But when these signs were first introduced, top MHI staff claimed it was aimed at ‘outside’ media, not ‘industry media.’ What caused this change toward a dues paying association member? What message does it send to others in the association? What message does it send to the industry at large? Is MHI trying to create a de facto industry trade media monopoly? Are they weaponizing news?

It can be understood as technically accurate, but misleading MHI Housing Alert. It’s arguably a half-truth that is deceptive, and manipulative of their own members,” alleged award-winning industry veteran L. A. “Tony” Kovach in a comment about the most recent controversial contentions regarding the Arlington, VA based trade association.

For a number of years, MHI’s current leadership have engaged in debatably deceptive messages sent to their own members. These messages have at times been like their most recent one. A half-truth, with the unstated facts MHI ought to be aware of not being mentioned in their allegedly weaponized ‘housing alerts’ at all,” Kovach said in comments about the most recent MHI housing alert.

Its tips from other [MHI] members, and/or information obtained directly from MHI staff, that has led to a periodic series of revelations that are arguably harmful to the industry, and is damaging to the reputation of MHI.  That in turn can be construed as harmful to the industry they claim to be acting for in Washington, D.C. They are solely responsible for the harm they are causing to the industry their members, and their own reputation when they engage in allegedly deceptive practices, that they have yet to formally address,” said Kovach, who is a managing member of Lifestyle Factory Homes, LLC – the parent company to MHProNews.

We’ve offered to publicly discuss or debate via video these concerns. We’ve given MHI numerous opportunities to respond in writing,” Kovach said. “They’ve routinely failed to take advantage of those opportunities. If they were correct in their methods, wouldn’t they want to defend their accuracy and reputation?”

Their Own VP Said It Preserving Access, Wasn’t Happening

MHI’s own vice-president said in writing in a prior on-the-record statement to MHProNews that the odds of passing Preserving Access where long ones under the Obama Administration.  See that Daily Business News report, linked below.

Manufactured Housing Institute VP Revealed Important Truths on MHI’s Lobbying, Agenda

 

Partially as a result over concerns that MHI is not properly representing their independent retail, community and other members, there are numerous voices and third-party efforts underway which aim to create a new association that will represent them.

Study Recommending New Manufactured Housing Association for Independent Retailers, Communities, Lenders, Others Released

As MHProNews first-reported to the industry, Maxine Waters and other congressional Democrats have recently characterized MHI as being a puppet for the benefit of Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway manufactured housing brands.

Maxine Waters Statement, Preserving Access Manufactured Housing Act 2017, Warren Buffett, Clayton Homes

In her official statement – found as a download, from the article linked above – to the House of Representatives, she named:

  • Warren Buffett,
  • Berkshire Hathaway,
  • Clayton Homes, and their sister production and retail operations,
  • Vanderbilt Mortgage, and
  • 21st Mortgage.

In a prior letter by Waters and some of her congressional colleagues to the Department of Justice (DoJ), and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), she called Buffett’s manufactured housing interests as a ‘near monopoly.’

That ‘near monopoly’ and related letter by Waters and others is a download from the Daily Business News report linked below.

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U.S. Representatives Maxine Waters (D-CA), Keith Ellison (D-MN), Emanuel Cleaver (D-MO), Mike Capuano (D-MA) – all four signed onto a letter damaging to MHI, and the Berkshire Hathaway led brands, calling for federal investigations. Image credit, Twitter, Wikipedia.  http://www.mhpronews.com/blogs/daily-business-news/post-charlottesville-cfas-hunts-evidence-of-racism-steering-predatory-lending-against-buffetts-clayton-homes-vanderbilt-mortgage-and-21st-mortgage/

A Question of Time?

It may only be a question of time before members begin to cancel their MHI membership, realizing – as one MHI award winner told MHProNews – that the largest companies have learned how to get the small-to-mid-sized companies to pay for what the ‘big boys’ want.

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The ‘fear’ over retaliation, or cutting members out of certain alleged ‘benefits’ of working with MHI and the industry’s largest companies, are reportedly keeping a number of companies on board with MHI.

Warren Buffett himself has reportedly said that

  • failing to learn the lessons of history, and
  • that chains of habit,

are hard to break. See that detailed report, linked below.

“Perverse”–Warren Buffett-Dodd-Frank, CFPB, Manufactured Housing, Loans, Independent Businesses Fact Check$

While failing for over 5 years to accomplish their own primary goal, the industry is continuing to consolidate.


Sam Zell, Frank Rolfe, and Kenny Lipschutz are among the MHI members who have publicly critiqued MHI, either pointedly, or politely.

ELS’ Sam Zell – Compliance Costs Destroys Smaller Businesses = Consolidation

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Frank Rolfe: Pressured into Silence? Manufactured Housing Industry, and Journalism

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Is the truth of an important element of what is holding hiding in plain sight?

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Critiques, properly understood, are a way of improving performance. Every business, every sports team which aims to win does evaluations, which are a critique. “We Provide, You Decide.”

What is hard to argue is that MHI has repeatedly failed to do what their affable, popular prior chairman, Nathan Smith, said that the association needed to be.  Pro-active, vs. reactive.

We Provide, You Decide.” ©.  ## (News, fact checks, analysis, commentary.)

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

Congressional House Voting Soon on Manufactured Home Issue, Says MHI Housing Alert

November 22nd, 2017 Comments off

ManufacturedHousingInsttituteMHIlogoHR1699PreservingAccessManufacturedHousingActAndyBarr115thCongressGovTracklogoThe U.S. House of Representatives is scheduled to vote next week on the Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act, said the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) in a release to members.

The [Preserving Access, HR 1699] bill addresses federal regulations implementing the Dodd-Frank Act that have jeopardized access to manufactured housing financing, and as a result disrupted the market,” stated their emailed message.

The Preserving Access bill is expected by third party experts to pass the House, but is unlikely to become law per those same observers. The odds of being enacted into law are more than 4 to 1 against it, per GovTrack.

See examples, below.

Facts, Fact Checks, and Questions Industry, MHI Should Answer 

The industry needs to see what the anti-Preserving Access forces have lined up. That opposition has already teed up allegations of racism, and predatory lending as the tools they will use in the U.S. Senate to stop Preserving Access.

 

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With a new pro-business President Trump era, the landscape changed in Washington, D.C. changed.  Why hasn’t MHI pivoted along with that changing D.C. landscape?  Is Preserving Access the best way for millions in members dues and PAC money to be spent today?

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Warren Buffett has said, as quoted in the report linked below, that chains of habit are hard to break.  Buffett has also warned that people fail to learn the lessons of history. Is over 5 years of failure to pass Preserving Access enough history to learn from?

“Perverse”–Warren Buffett-Dodd-Frank, CFPB, Manufactured Housing, Loans, Independent Businesses Fact Check$

Why doesn’t MHI pivot, becoming more pro-active as former chairman, Nathan Smith of SKK Communities said in the video below that he wanted for the industry’s ‘national umbrella association’…?

MHI award winner, Marty Lavin has urged the industry to “follow the money” – think see who benefits, why and where those dollars flow – and “pay more attention to what people do than what they say.”

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Lavin is an MHI award winner, and a success story in communities, retail and finance.

Are Lavin’s words good advice for MHI members?

We Provide, You Decide.”  © ## (News, tips, and commentary.)

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

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

Kinzler, Gallagher on Congressman Keith Ellison, the MH Industry, and Manufactured Home Communities

October 20th, 2017 Comments off

ProgressiveStarCongressmanUSRepDemocraticNationalViceChairKeithEllisonOfficialPhotoDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsCongressman Keith Ellison (D-MN-5) is a rising star in the Democratic Party.

Ellison’s not been without controversy among his peers.

While today’s focus is his proposal that will impact manufactured home communities and other elements of the industry, some background on Representative Ellison and his interest in manufactured housing is warranted.

Rising Democratic Star, Keith Ellison

Ellison is viewed provocatively by many within manufactured housing industry circles. The reason?

It’s because of his joint call with some fellow Democrats, who formally asked federal officials at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), and the Department of Justice (DoJ) to release their findings to-date on their investigation of charges of racism, steering, and predatory lending by units of Berkshire Hathaway. See that related, exclusive Daily Business News report, linked here.

But Ellison’s willingness to boldly push for his progressive, left-wing agenda were among the factors that landed him the vice-chairmanship of the influential Democratic National Committee (DNC).

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Beyond pushing to investigate what his Democratic colleague has referred to as the near monopoly” of Berkshire Hathaway‘s units in manufactured housing, Ellison is making his presence felt in other ways in the manufactured home industry.

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U.S. Representatives Maxine Waters (D-CA), Emanuel Cleaver (D-MO), Keith Ellison (D-MN), Mike Capuano (D-MA). Image credits, Twitter, Wikipedia.

While voices in Arlington, Omaha, Knoxville, and their allies want to ignore or brush off Ellison’s public moves, they do so at their own risk.

One need not look beyond the prior failure of the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) to pass their Preserving Access bill – and the reasons why it failed – in the last congressional session.  Disregarding Ellison and others he’s aligned with, is to do so at the peril of the millions spent to date lobbying for their proposed changes to Dodd-Frank.

‘Heads in the sand’ won’t make a painful truth go away.

Ellison vs. MHI backed Preserving Access

Ellison and Maxine Waters (D-CA) were the opposition leaders to the MHI backed Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act, which recently cleared the powerful Financial Services Committee, where Ellison is a member.

HR 1699, the Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act, by a bipartisan vote of 42 to 18,” stated NYHousing.

Of the 60 members on the [Financial Services] Committee, only two members spoke out against the bill. Ranking Member Maxine Waters (D-CA) and Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN) expressed concerns that the bill will remove consumer protections,” the association’s statement said.

However meritorious the HR 1699 bill may be, what’s often missing in discussions elsewhere in the industry is that Waters and Ellison have already teed up their knockout punch, referenced above and once again, linked here.

CampaignForAccountabiltyClaytonHomesLogoBerkshireHathawayVanderbiltMortgageRacismSteeringPredatoryLendingDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews720x403

See that in depth report on Ellison, Water’s efforts, linked here. 

It’s progressive political star Ellison who’s hunting for allegations of racism, steering, and predatory lending.  That, D.C. insiders say, will be the Waters/Ellison rallying cry.

Surprisingly, MHI and Berkshire Hathaway firms contacted have pointedly declined MHProNews invitation publicly condemn racism. Why not respond publicly via the industry’s most popular trade media, and denounce racism in a simple statement?

Expect Ellison, Waters and their allies to make that an issue in the mainstream media, per sources to the Daily Business News.

Against that context, this Daily Business News report now turns to Ellison’s own manufactured home industry focused legislation.

Cong. Ellison’s ShelterForce Op-Ed

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The photo used in Ellison’s ShelterForce op-ed, with logos, added under fair use guidelines.

As the Daily Business News has previously reported at this link here, Ellison introduced a bill that has significant support among members of the manufactured home industry.

The Frank Adelmann Manufactured Housing Community Sustainability Act (H.R. 3296)

In support of that legislation, DNC Vice Chair Ellison penned an Op-Ed for ShelterForce, which reads today as the download – linked here – reflects.

Quoting from that column, Ellison begins with an impassioned plea.

Frank Adelmann was bereft when he received an eviction notice from Lowry Grove mobile home park,” Ellison stated. “At 59, he had no resources to move and could not afford another home. The day before the park was to close, Frank ended his life. He was one of ninety-five families who lost their homes. Kids, parents, veterans, and even seniors, some in their eighties, were evicted. Parents struggled, and mostly failed, to find a home they could afford in the same St. Anthony’s school district. And dozens who thought Lowry Grove would be the last home they lived in, suddenly had nowhere to go.”

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Ross Kinzler, retired Executive Director of the Wisconsin Housing Alliance. Credits, MHProNews.

Regarding Ellison’s op-ed, award winning industry veteran, Ross Kinzler told MHProNews that, “The congressman acknowledges the problem right off the bat then promotes “cures” that ignore it.”

Brian Gallagher, Chief Operating and Financial Officer, of growing and respected Santefort Real Estate Group, LLC, took a more nuanced opening in his detailed reply to the Minnesota congressman.

After laying out their operation’s credentials, Gallagher wrote, “We share your concerns to ensure that the MH industry continues to provide quality affordable housing to over 22 (not 17) million Americans, all of them generally unsubsidized by government programs.”

Gallagher gives as an example of their manifest concern for their residents and prospective home owners.

Our company endeavors to be an example of best practices in responding to resident needs every day, including our offering of a 5% fixed financing rate to “Neighborhood Heroes” – Vets, nurses, teachers, and police/fire personnel,” Gallagher said in his letter to Ellison, that he then provided to MHProNews.

Ellison’s Stance

In Minnesota, ten mobile home communities have closed in the past twenty-five years, and no new ones have opened,” Ellison stated. “This uncertainty affects nearly 3 million Americans who are residents in the nation’s 50,000 [SIC] manufactured housing communities. While most of these people own their homes, they rent the land, which leaves them vulnerable to dramatic rent increases, arbitrary rules, and even eviction.

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Notice: that the SIC was editorially added by MHProNews, because the likely closer estimate
for the number of communities is around 44,000.
This article will have an updated link on that controversial topic, by Monday.

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Ellison’s point is that the problem is real, and he proposes to correct that through his H.R. 3296 legislation.

The Free Market Solution?

But Kinzler, who long lived in neighboring Wisconsin, believes Ellison’s proposed solution misses some key points.

Ten communities have closed in MN and no new ones built,” Kinzler tells MHProNews,What would the world look like if 25 to 100 new communities were built?  Supply and demand answers lots of questions.”

Kinzler added, “His [Ellison’s] “problems” are the creation of local government created shortages.”

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Credits are as shown, to see the latest story on the Lowry Grove saga, click the image above. Note: the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) and their National Communities Council were contacted for comments, and provided none. Click here for that report

The Lasting, Painful Legacy of Magar Magar, and Lowry Grove?

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Brian Gallagher. Credit: LinkedIn.

We acknowledge that bad actors exist in our industry, as they do in all, but they do not tell the whole story,” Gallagher’s letter and attachment – linked here at a download – to Ellison said.

From experience, professionals like Gallagher and other industry professionals know the impact that stories like Magar Magar – spotlighted by NPR – or Lowry Grove have on public officials and millions of Americans.

It was precisely the Lowry Grove community’s drama in Minnesota which sparked Ellison’s bill.

Gallagher, Kinzler and others are far from alone in saying that issues of image, misunderstandings, and “bad actors” need to be addressed by the industry and its members.

That may explain why Gallagher took pains to spell out in his letter to Ellison the good that they strive to do in their operation, and that most industry members strive to do the same.

 

That ‘there are good actors too’ theme is that ROC USA President and CEO, Paul Bradley sounds often.

SantefortNeighborhoodsManufacturedHomeCommunity

A Santefort Neighborhood.  While the history on this particular property is not known to MHProNews, many investors are buying older communities, and are improving them. That’s private capital – free enterprise – at work to provide appealing, affordable, and quality homes. That routinely happens in manufactured housing without taxpayer subsidies.  Santefort website photo above, is provided under fair use guidelines.

But there are other voices who share a different viewpoint, believing that bad news should be overlooked, or ignored.

For example, the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) President and CEO, Dick Jennison, told MHProNews in writing that those who responded to the PBS NewsHour – and by inference, similarly negative stories – ”are either misguided or have a self-serving agenda.”

Seriously? Don’t industry members have the right to defend their profession’s reputation?  The full context of Jennison’s remark is in the screen capture, below.

ManufacturedHousingInstitueMHIRichardDickJennisonFrankRolfeMHCommunitiesMHPFundsEmailMHProNewsLogos

Then MHI Chairman Tim Williams told MHProNews that, “We can also make a case to counter the segment addressing manufactured home site rent increase. No one from MHI was asked to comment on the segment and the allegation that consumers become trapped in their homes. The reporter did not make any effort to understand the cost of operating a manufactured home community and why those costs must be passed on to the tenants, even though MHI provided ample evidence and information to assist the reporter in his research.” Wouldn’t the insights Williams shared be useful for the media and public to know? The only reason the industry knows, is because MHProNews asked for and received William’s thoughtful comments. Those are linked, here

A related article to Jennison’s message are shown at this link here.

Gallagher Stresses Objective, vs. Emotional Response to MHC Issues

Any rental resident is subject to market and regulatory forces, as are the MHC operators. State laws generally govern rent increases, and very, very few, if any, MHC residents who are financially able to pay their rentfall asleep wondering if they’ll have a home in the morning.” wrote Gallagher; the italicized part was a quote from Ellison’s column, linked here.

Ironically,” Gallagher stated in his letter to Ellison, “as I trust you know, Lowry Grove appears to be on its way to become a modern MHC (see 10/14/17 Star Tribune article, attached).   Apparently, the town approved only 350 of the 700 units requested for the 15-acre site.  Time will tell how this ultimately turns out – but it is further support, in my opinion, for the proposition that “hard cases make bad law.”

Gallagher draws towards a conclusion by noting that Ellison is mistaken in opposing Preserving Access.

Finally, your column also mentioned your effort to oppose proposed legislation which would “exempt manufactured housing sales people from the CFPB licensing requirements’.  This proposal is intended to correct the misfit between the SAFE Act, designed for traditional single-family home/condo sales and financing, and the standard operating procedures of the manufactured housing industry, which, as you mention constitutes 50,000 communities housing 22 million residents,” Gallagher said.

The law does not relieve loan originators from compliance, or dilute borrower protections, but allows MH sales people the ability to discuss financing alternatives with applicants in the absence of brokers and third-party lender without fear of non-compliance with federal regulations.   This will facilitate transactions without sacrificing the protections of the CFPB,Gallagher noted.

Again, Ellison’s full column is linked here, and Gallagher’s response is linked here. “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, Analysis.)

Related: this video below debunks many of the stereotypes, through an interview with a now retired official who served at both the CFPB and HUD.


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

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

(Note: Soheyla Kovach is a co-founder of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC – the parent to MHProNews.com and MHLivingNews.com – and is a managing member.)

“Season of War” Against “Establishment,” Manufactured Housing, and You

October 16th, 2017 Comments off

ASeasonofWarPixabayDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsI am certainly not one of those who need to be prodded.
In fact, if anything, I am the prod
.” – Winston Churchill.

 

To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven…
a time of war, and a time of peace
.”
Ecclesiastes 3:1-8, and the lyrics for the pop song, Turn, Turn, Turn.

 

The manufactured housing industry in several ways tends to mirror the nation.  So, there are individuals working in the industry across the political and economic spectrum.

But as the pre-election surveys by the NYTimes MHLivingNews and MHProNews reflected, a clear majority of the industry’s professionals voted for Donald Trump – and for what Jim Clayton called the 45th president’s “disruptor” agenda.

Misunderstood…

It’s not a news flash, but it should be.  Manufactured housing is misunderstood, as are some of the causes for the industry not advancing more quickly.

But almost as misunderstood is clarity – or the lack thereof – of some pundits and media when it comes to Donald J. Trump and how he operates.  The same might be said of POTUS Trump’s former White House Chief Strategist, Steve Bannon.

Steve’s been a friend of mine for a long time,” said the president today, per a report by CNN.  Others in media spanning the left-right divide reported the same.  CNN’s narrative seemed to paint Bannon and Trump as being at odds after his departure from the West Wing.

But the president is apparently playing all sides, as part of his “art of the deal” to advance tax reform and other items in his agenda.

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Steve Bannon, President Donald Trump, Salon.

Many on the left – and right – appear to be confused.

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Many in the media, left and right, are seemingly misreading the Trump/Bannon relationship, and strategies.

But for those who’ve closely followed the unorthodox methods that now POTUS Trump launched some 27 months ago may have missed what the Daily Business News previously reported regarding Dr. Keith Ablow insights on the president.

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Ablow, a FOX News contributor, mentioned early in the Trump Administration that the president is playing the media, allowing some controversy to distract their attention, as he advances his agenda.

RC Williams observed with Ablow, that it was political and media chess,” like the “epic Ali-Foreman,” “Rope a Dope” – could President Trump be zigging, while everyone else is zagging?”

“A Season of War…”

Bannon told the Value Voters Summit just days ago that he would be backing insurgent candidates against every Republican Senate incumbent, save Texas Senator Ted Cruz.

Bannon made it plain there was plenty of time to later regroup and focus on Democrats.

But for now, it was time to defeat those who were failing the president and the agenda that moved voters to deliver the White House, Senate and House to the GOP.

It’s a takeover of the Republican Party that Bannon has in mind.

President Trump, just hours before saying how well he was getting along with Mitch McConnell, said that he understood Bannon’s objectives.  See Trump/McConnell in the report, linked here.

It was reminiscent of what MHProNews previously reported as the “head fake” that gave Trump a win-win in the Alabama primary last month, when Luther Strange was upended by Bannon-supported Judge Roy Moore.

SteveBannonOutNewsMaxGoingToWarForPresidentTrumpDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Bannon is leading his flagship web-publication Breitbart – which Harvard and others on the left have after analysis decided is “not alt right” – in his war to purify the GOP, to become more loyal to the president’s America First agenda.

Bannon was a key player in the strategy that helped craft a Reagan-like coalition of “working class” Democrats in states such as Wisconsin, Michigan, and Pennsylvania.

That delivered the White House to President Trump, and gave the GOP a surprising, if narrow, majority in the Senate.

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Part of their strategy has been a:

  • strong on borders,
  • tougher on trade,
  • policies that are good for labor,
  • the working class,
  • to foster rising wages,
  • and ending what economist Larry Kudlow called the governments “war on business.”
RegulationNationManufacturedHousingYouDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

An in depth look at the cost of regulations, how it harms smaller businesses more than larger ones, and how MH industry state and national associations compare. Some surprising facts await.

POTUS Trump’s and Bannon’s concerns over monopolies ought to raise eyebrows in the manufactured housing space.

So instead of chasing tweaks like Preserving Access, or the like, Trump/Bannon are serious about their bolder promises to roll back Dodd-Frank, ObamaCare, get tax reform, accomplish entitlement reform, and liberate the economy from other parts of the Obama/left agenda completely.

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For those objectively following developments, the president, Bannon, Kudlow and others are likely triangulating.  The president has himself stated his “never quit” attitude.

Will this effort to replace decades of GOP and Democratic policies that the Team Trump believe have harmed business, and millions of American workers succeed?

Only 9 months into this administration, much has already been accomplished. “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, commentary.)

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

Does CFPB’s Richard Cordray Have His Own Email Legal Issue Brewing? Report

October 7th, 2017 Comments off
GOPSenatorstoPresidentelectTrumpFireCFPBHeadRichardCordraycreditCNNMoney-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credit: CNN Money.

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s (CFPB) Richard Cordray was widely rumored to be preparing for a run as a Democratic candidate for Governor of Ohio.

Rick Robinson, Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) SVP and General Counsel, is among those who have recently said before a live audience in Deadwood, SD that those odds for Cordray’s rumored run are way down now.

But while Cordray may nor may not be pursing the governor’s mansion in the Buckeye State, what is brewing is a new controversy that Washington, D.C.’s Free Beacon is fueling about his possible violation of the Hatch Act.

HatchActProhibitsPoliticalActivityByAppointedFederalExecutiveOfficialWikipediaDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsThe evidence?  A partially redacted email.

RichardCordrayRunGovHatchActViolationOhioDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsCordray is widely known in manufactured housing industry circles for his firm stance against modifying two provisions of current CFPB regulations, the so-called MLO rule, and higher points and fees sought mainly by Berkshire Hathaway lenders, via the MHI backed Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act (HR 1699).

PreservingAccesstoManufacturedHousingActHR1699DailyBusinessNewsMHProNEws

The House Financial Services Committee tells MHProNews that HR 1699 is coming up for a hearing on Wednesday, Oct 11, 2017.

The Segue

MHProNews recently questioned Skopos Labs for its sudden increase in the odds of passage of Preserving Access.

HR1699PreservingAccessManufacturedHousingActSkoposLabsDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Given the politically charged allegations of “racism,” “near monopoly,” “steering,” and “predatory lending” by Democratic lawmakers, it seemed odd that Skopos reported the odds higher a few weeks before. After MHProNews’ inquiry, the odds of passage per Skopos were revised back down. MHProNews isn’t claiming we influenced the odds, rather, we journalistically questioned what should have been obvious to Skopos, the MH Industry and by implication, MHI.

When this updated report was checked today, Skopos now tells GovTrack that the odds for passage of MHI’s bill stands at a scant 7 percent.

ManufacturedHousingInstituteMHILogoChairmanHighlightsSo-CalledSucccess-DailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Doesn’t MHI owe its own dues paying members and the industry the full truth? Screen capture of the Preserving Access relevant parts of the latest MHI’s email to their members.

Those are among the facts that MHI fails to disclose to its members, focusing instead on their numbers of how many emails are being sent to legislators, or the various efforts they have in their 5 year plus odyssey for passing the prior versions of this bill.

The Questioned Cordray Email

Per the Free Beacon and Scribd, here below is the email in question that may be construed as a Hatch Act violation.

RichardCordrayPossibleHatchActViolationFreeBeaconScribdDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Will this get any further than Secretary Hillary Clinton’s far more numerous, problematic emails?  “We Provide, You Decide.” ©  ## (News, analysis.)

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

Prosperity Now Ramps Up Anti-Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing, HR 1699 Pressure

July 20th, 2017 Comments off

ProsperityNowFormerlyCFEDlogoAntiPreservingAccessManufacturedHousingActHR1699DailyBusinessNewsResearchDataReportsMHProNewsProsperity Now is the rebranded version of what was known for decades as CFED.  As many manufactured housing industry professionals know CFED opposed the Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act.

In a release, Prosperity Now claims that, “A bill recently introduced in Congress would roll back some basic consumer protections for buyers of manufactured homes. That’s right: the Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act, H.R. 1699, has been resurrected once again—putting vulnerable homebuyers at risk.”

Sources have speculated that the former CFED was part of the behind-the-scenes efforts with left-of-center media attacks on the manufactured home industry in the 2015-2016 congressional session.

DougRyanCFED-creditManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessMHProNews-

Doug Ryan, CFED, which is rebranding as Prosperity Now, photo credit, MHProNews.

The Daily Business News reached out to Doug Ryan – their point-person for affordable housing and manufactured home issues, and Andrea Levere, the organization’s president for comments and clarifications, but as of press time, they’ve not responded.

As the top link documented, the Washington, DC based ‘consumer group’ was clearly disappointed with the 2016 general election outcome.

Ryan Admitted Lack of Sufficient Knowledge

As part of an exclusive interview, Ryan admitted that he wasn’t as informed on the details of chattel financing as some of the industry’s professionals.

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Those CFPB policies in turn are harming consumers.

Even when CFED turned Prosperity Now has had those facts repeatedly presented – and will not try to debate or disprove them – they have stuck with their party line.


Amazingly, even Richard Cordray has said there never has been much high cost lending in manufactured housing.

AndreaLevereProsperityNowPresidentDailyBusinessNewsManufacturedHousingIndustryResearchReportsDataMHProNewsBut those admissions – along with the exclusive revelation that CFED was getting funding from the CFPB – did not cause them to alter their course.

As a disclosure, and as a matter of pro-consumer, free enterprise economic principle, MHProNews and MHLivingNews have opposed the CFPB’s onerous regulations and their harmful impact on consumers, plus the manufactured housing industry professionals and lenders.

Prosperity Now Calls on Their Supporters

Take action now!” – said the left-of-center organization.

RichardCordrayCFPB-ManufacturedHousingRegulationsCSPANstill-InsideMHvideoPostedMHProNews-com-

Richard Cordray quotes and those from the report and video on this page, linked here.

The screen capture below shows what they are pushing, and the links and graphics on this page demonstrate how their talking points have been debunked, including by the CFPB’s director, Richard Cordray.

TakeActionNowPreservingAccesstoManufacturedHousingHR1699ProsperityNowCFEDDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

The Need to Engage with Prosperity Now

While the bulk of the industry does not agree with the organization on these issues, professionals ought to be mindful that CFED has a long, overall pro-manufactured housing position.

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CFED created the report, linked above, that shows just how affordable manufactured homes are, and argues for their inclusion. To see the report with the graphic above, click here

On subjects like Duty To Serve, or other issues, there are many in manufactured housing who would hold a similar position to CFED/Prosperity Now.

My 80 percent friend is not my 20 percent enemy.”

– Ronald Reagan.

While CFED/Prosperity Now is off the mark on this issue, the industry should find ways to work with them as they can on the other issues where there is common ground belief that manufactured homes are good for millions of consumer. ## (News, analysis.)

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Financial Choice Act, with MHI Bill, Heading to Floor Vote, Outlook, Analysis

June 8th, 2017 Comments off

JebHensarlingGOPFinancialServicesTheHillDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsThe Financial Choice Act, what some are calling version 2.0, passed out of the House Financial Services Committee in May on a partisan line vote, 34-26.

Financial Choice is back in the news, as the full House takes up the measure.

A Google search on Financial Choice Act 2017 brings up tens of millions of results.  Depending on the media outlet you pick, the news or editorializing paints the bill to be either grand, or a horror, for businesses and consumers.

Partisan Politics, 2017

The Hill reports Maxine Waters, ranking Democrat from CA saying, “The ‘Wrong Choice’ Act is a vehicle for Donald Trump’s agenda to get rid of financial regulation and help out Wall Street. It’s a deeply misguided measure that would bring harm to consumers, investors and our whole economy. The bill is rotten to the core.

By contrast, House Speaker Paul Ryan, (R-WI) said at a press conference Wednesday, “This legislation comes to the rescue of Main Street America.”  Ryan called the bill “the crown jewel” of the GOP deregulatory agenda. “The Financial CHOICE Act makes it possible for small businesses across this country to stop struggling and to start hiring.”

MHI’s Attached Bill to Financial Choice

The Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) celebrated several weeks ago that their Preserving Access bill was attached to the act, and thus passage of the act would mean passing their bill.

Lesli_M_Gooch__MHI_senior_vice_president_forgovernment_affairs

Lesli Gooch. Credit: MHI.

MHI’s Lesli Gooch’s May 4 email to members said in part, “MHI’s efforts to pass the Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act are multi-pronged. The association is seeking opportunities to move the legislation through the regular legislative process and is also seeking opportunities to attach the language to other legislative vehicles that are moving. MHI’s goal is to ensure the needed changes contained in the bill to make financing available for manufactured housing are passed into law as soon as possible. Inclusion of the language in the Financial CHOICE Act is a critical milestone, and an example of MHI’s comprehensive strategy.”

What’s missing from their self-proclaimed “compressive strategy,” as regular Daily Business News readers know was the opportunity to sign onto the PHH vs. CFPB case with an amicus brief.  When MHProNews specifically raised the strategy for an amicus brief with MHI, how could that option have been overlooked?

The “10,000 grassroots contacts” MHI’s Gooch crows about, where is that heading?

The Preserving Access bill (version 4.0 – 2017’s version is dubbed HR 1699), is sponsored by Garland ‘Andy’ Barr, Republican from Kentucky’s 6th Congressional district.  Barr has spoken as a true believer in manufactured homes, and one of his speeches in favor of manufactured homes is covered in a video and article, linked here.

CapitolHillCongressmanAndyBarr-OfficialPhotoBarrWebsite-PostedManufacturedHomeLivingNewsMHLivingNews

Gooch notes in the message to MHI members that: “Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act, is bipartisan legislation introduced by Reps. Barr (R-KY), Sinema (D-AZ), Poliquin (R-ME), Sewell (D-AL), Kustoff (R-TN), and Rice (D-NY). The companion bill for the Senate is expected to be introduced soon.”

What is it that their allegedly weaponized messages to members fails to mention, again?

Uh, Oh…

The challenge with the Financial Choice Act – even from the perspective of supporters – remains the same as was previously reported on the Daily Business News about Preserving Access.  The odds of passage of the HR 1699 bill, per GovTrack is 1%, which today cites Skopos Labs as their source for their estimate.

GovTrackPresveringAccessManufacturedHousingActHR1699ManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

What about the Financial Choice Act’s odds of passage?

GovTrack reports those odds are better, but are still a weak 14% chance of being enacted, again per Skopos Labs.

Hr10FinancialChoiceAct2017ManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

So while the Financial Choice Act is expected to pass in the House, what are the odds in the Senate?

MHIGotCloutWheresTheBeefMHProNewsThe Collingswood Group, what sources tell us is a DC think tank and lobbying shop, state they expect the Financial Choice Act – and thus MHI’s rider attached to it – to pass the House.  But the bad news is that Collingswood likewise expects the bill to die in the Senate too, just as GovTrack reports.

Will MHI alert their dozens of industry members, getting ready to fly into Washington, DC to hear about all that MHI is doing on this front, about those facts?  Or will they instead send out a “Housing Alert,” once the bill passes the House – touting that “success” as they’ve done previously?

Do MHI members deserve the truth, the whole truth, or are they guilty of what they accused Ohio Governor John Kasich of, telling only half truths, or worse?  Do the principles MHI applied to the governor, apply to themselves?

By-Bye Baby…

While MHI has made their primary focus the passage of Preserving Access,  the $15 million dollars spent over the past 5 years – not counting PAC dollars – certainly went to places like salaries (of which Jennison, Gooch and her predecessor have made about $2.5 million in compensation over the past 5 years, per data MHI filed via form 990).

LanceIndermanManufacturedHousingDailyBusinessNewMHProNews

Lance Inderman, credit, MHProNews.

Industry success and veteran, Lance Inderman, prior chairman of the Texas Manufactured Housing Association (TMHA), told MHProNews that:

It’s my personal opinion that we have incrementally given up every bit of financial freedom we had. Dodd Frank was a big increment, along with ObamaCare. I’m of the opinion that giving up key parts of the reform to get a “win” for posterity makes no sense.”

Inderman elaborated by saying, “We need to keep educating the populace and Congress on the facts that we [in manufactured housing] compete on a different price point, and therefore a different finance scale with their multi million dollar ocean front homes, paid for by their donors.”

Bob Crawford, multiple award winning retailer of historic Dick Moore Housing, told MHProNews that, state associations “do a great job.” But Crawford told MHProNews that he gives MHI at best “a 5 out of 10“ in their effectiveness.

As one source with deep ties to MHI told MHProNews,MHI is acting like a secret society, with only the inner circle fully informed, and most other members trusting them, following in good faith, or unable to effectively protest or even question leadership.”

Award winning industry veteran, L.A . “Tony Kovach asks, “Why does MHI’s tight band at the top allegedly want only their side of the story told to the industry? Why have they threatened MHProNews with legal action for providing documents given to us – in many cases, by their members – or for reporting to the industry on issues such as DTS, Preserving Access, pending DOE energy standards, and others?”

A link to a comparison between MHI and MHARR their self-stated mission and budgets, per their 990s, is found here.

A link to an analysis of Richard “Dick” Jennison and Lesli Gooch’s compensation, is found here.

marty-lavin-jd-manufacturedhomefinanceexpert-DailyBusinessNews-mhpronews

Marty Lavin, JD.

As dozens of MHI members prepare to fly into Washington, D.C. to listen to lectures by MHI staff on all they are doing, consider the words of MHI award winner, Marty Lavin.

Lavin has often said, “follow the money,” and “pay more attention to what people do” …and accomplish… “than to what people say.” ##

Related topics:

 

Judgment Day for CFPB

Source – Manufactured Housing Institute Violated Law, Conflict of Interest?

Faked, Weaponized News Harms Manufactured Housing Homeowners, Professionals?

Richard Jennison, Lesli Gooch, Worth Millions to MHI Industry

Hot New, Different, Regulatory Topic that MHI is Missing a Key Point On (HUD, Pam Danner), linked here.

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