Policy Makers Honored for Pro-Housing Initiatives
In conjunction with the recent NAHB Legislative Conference in Washington, D.C., Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) was among four local, state and federal officials honored on May 1 by NAHB for policy initiatives that seek to rally the economy by strengthening the housing sector.
"From city halls to the halls of the U.S. Capitol, you'll find government officials who understand the importance of housing to the economy," said NAHB Chief Lobbyist Joseph Stanton. "We're proud to honor these leaders for their efforts in support of housing."
NAHB's Government Affairs Recognition Program honors public officials whose efforts contribute to expanding housing opportunities and strengthening the building industry.
Also honored were state representatives Johnny Hoyt and Lance Reynolds of Arkansas, and Curt Pringle, the mayor of Anaheim, Calif.
Frank was named the 2008 Federal Official of the Year in recognition of his policy initiatives in the 110th Congress to rally the nation’s economy by addressing the housing downturn.
As chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, Frank has worked to provide reasonably-priced, affordable mortgage solutions to millions of potential home owners and to greatly enhancing liquidity in the mortgage credit markets.
Frank has also led efforts to modernize the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) and reform the regulatory structure for the Government Sponsored Enterprises (GSEs) — Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the Federal Home Loan Banks.
"Housing is a central element to driving the American economy," Frank said upon receiving the award. "We will do everything we can to promote homeownership and we will also help those who can't afford a home."
"With the U.S. housing market now in the most pronounced downswing since the Great Depression, Chairman Frank's strong leadership has brought a keen focus to the problems our industry is currently experiencing, while providing much needed legislative solutions to help consumers, housing and the economy," Stanton said.
NAHB recognized Hoyt and Reynolds for their efforts to discourage construction site theft.
Reynolds was instrumental in the passage of legislation (HR 2361) that classifies the theft of building materials worth $500 or more from a permitted site a Class B felony. Hoyt was responsible for passage of legislation (HR 1456) that allows builders in Arkansas to use PEX piping under slab in residential construction, reducing materials costs and, more importantly, reducing copper theft and repair costs resulting from the thefts.
“Every time someone steals copper or equipment from a construction site, that is money out of the builder’s pocket and money out of the home buyer’s pocket,” Stanton said. “Arkansas’ new anti-theft policies, championed by Representative Hoyt and Representative Reynolds, will make a difference, and we’d like to see more states enact similar laws.”
NAHB recognized Pringle for his initiative in developing an economic stimulus package that was unanimously approved by the Anaheim City Council in a recent council meeting. The new policy includes several amendments to the city's current fee ordinance and administrative codes.
“This stimulus packages will have a profound effect in reinvigorating new home construction in the City of Anaheim and will set a precedent for other cities in Southern California,” Stanton said.
For more information, e-mail Elizabeth Ambrose at NAHB, or call her at 800-368-5242 x8253.