PROPOSED LOS ANGELES COUNTY PARCEL TAX

On Tuesday July 5th, The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted  to put a measure on the November ballot that would levy a one-and-a-half cent per square foot parcel tax on properties countywide to fund parks development and maintenance.

If approved by voters, the parcel tax is estimated to raise roughly $95 million annually. The annual tax bill for a 1,500-square-foot house would be $22.50.

The board’s vote was 3-1. Supervisor Don Knabe voted against the measure because a sunset clause that would end the tax in 35 years was eliminated. Supervisor Michael Antonovich was absent for the vote.

The Safe, Clean Neighborhood Parks, Open Space, Beaches, Rivers and Water Conservation Measure would replace funding under Proposition A, first passed more than 20 years ago. The last of that Proposition A funding is set to expire in 2019.

Supporters noted that the measure seeks to raise $10 million more than the original Proposition A.

In 2014, the board tried to replace Proposition A funding with Measure P, which fell short of the two-thirds majority needed for passage, with 62.8 percent in favor.

The new measure has a greater needs-based component, though 50 percent of dollars raised will go back to the communities where they were raised.

Advocates said parks are about more than play, citing studies that green space can boost health and help keep neighborhoods safe.

The parks assessment found that about 51 percent of county residents do not live within a 10-minute walk of a park.

The Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce and other business organizations opposed the measure.

A representative for the Motion Picture Association of America warned that the tax could impact future production decisions, saying it would amount to a five-fold increase over what its members currently pay.

Priorities for spending the money — should the measure pass — have been set based on meetings with residents from 188 study areas aimed at identifying each community’s top 10 parks projects. Thirty-five percent of funds will be tagged to pay for those projects.

Another 15 percent will be used to fund parks maintenance in the communities where taxes were levied. Thirteen percent will go to high-needs communities.

Another 13 percent will be used for environmentally-oriented projects, including beach and waterway clean-up; with 13 percent more for regional trail and accessibility projects that connect urban areas to nature.

The balance will go to related job training for youth and veterans and to administrative costs.

Should the  measure pass, the county will only have a fraction of the money needed to complete the $8.8 billion in priority projects identified by the area study groups and another $12 billion in deferred maintenance.

A two-thirds majority of November voters is required for passage.

NAR Goes After Patent Trolls Targeting REALTORS®

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The NAR has filed a petition with the U.S. Patent Office challenging patent infringement claims by companies that demand payment from real estate companies for “old and widely available” technology.

The action was taken to protect real estate professionals who are allegedly being victimized by “patent trolls,” according to the NAR. One company singled out is Data Distribution Technologies (DDT), which has sent letters to real estate companies demanding payment for infringing on its patent. But DDT is considered a “patent troll,” NAR reports, because its “business” is buying over-broad patents and sending “license letters” to users of the products.

“With this action, we’re telling the company and other patent trolls that our industry won’t tolerate these kinds of tactics against innocent real estate professionals who use well-known, ordinary technologies and business methods,” said NAR Associate General Counsel Ralph Holmen. “We intend to help protect members from being forced into cost-of-litigation settlements based on over-broad, invalid patents.”

NAR filed what is known as an Inter Partes Review (IPR) petition with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.  While the IPR is pending, most courts will stay any related litigation under the same patent. A win for NAR will make it difficult for the company to proceed against other real estate companies with similar over-broad patent claims.

“We’re sending a message to this company, and more broadly to any company that relies on over-broad, invalid patents coupled with illegitimate ‘troll’ patent litigation tactics to make money, that the real estate industry is prepared to fight back,” Holmen said.

The Patent Office’s Patent Trial and Appeal Board is expected to respond to the Petition in about four months.

A few of our accomplishments

Realtor Party: Vote Act Invest

At the local level CVAR:

1) Defeated two costly parcel taxes in local communities

2) Defeated the Eminent Domain of Mortgages in 3 CVAR communities

3) Elected Pro-REALTOR® candidates in local communities

 

At the State Level CVAR and CAR:

1). Halted an expensive $75 per-document housing fee

2). Prevented the passage of a Professional Services Tax

3). Halted a costly Point of Sale environmental retro-fit

 

At the Federal Level CVAR and NAR:

1). Maintained the Mortgage Interest Deduction

2). Retained the 1099 Exchange

3). Stopped a tax on Mortgages for Roads and Highways

Get Involved

Realtor Party: Vote Act Invest
Support Your Business
The Citrus Valley Association of REALTORS® is dedicated to advocating for real estate professionals and their clients in the political arena. We want to make it easy for you to get involved and support your business!

Get the Call for Action From Anywhere!

The new REALTOR® Action Center mobile app contains a host of features to help you VOTE, ACT and INVEST while on the go.

Receive a notification alerting you to a Call for Action. The new mobile alert format will make participation a snap. No forms to fill out. Short, fast and easy!

  • Mobile Investing: Make your annual investment to support the Realtor Party Action Committee via your phone!
  • Action Profiles: The app contains a summary of your REALTOR® Party engagement, including a list of open action items and actions you have already taken.
  • Advocacy Reports: Track your state and local associations’ advocacy efforts to help us reach our annual 15% goal.
  • REALTOR® Party Tracker: Learn how your state and local associations are using NAR programs to build political strength in your own backyard. Find out what tools and programs NAR is providing our association, and how much money those programs cost.
What RPAC Does and Why We Urge You to Support It

Since 1969, the REALTORS® Political Action Committee (RPAC) has promoted the election of pro-REALTOR® candidates across the United States. The purpose of RPAC is clear: REALTORS® raise and spend money to elect candidates who understand and support their interests. The money to accomplish this comes from voluntary contributions made by REALTORS®. These are not members’ dues; this is money given freely by REALTORS® in recognition of how important campaign fundraising is to the political process. RPAC doesn’t buy votes. RPAC enables REALTORS® to support candidates that support the issues that are important to their profession and livelihood.

When Congress is considering legislation that affects the real estate industry, NARcalls on its members to act. Simply by contacting your Member of Congress through an e-mail, Tweet, or a phone call, you can ensure that your business remains strong. NAR members join together and speak with one loud, powerful voice.  It does make a difference!

What’s Happening on Capital Hill?

One of the most important services organized real estate provides is representation in the halls of government. Stay up to date with what is going on and visit our Government Affairs section of the website to read the most current political news.

National Government Affairs News

The Washington Report is a weekly publication compiled by the Government Affairs division of the National Association of REALTORS®, covering legislative and regulatory policy activities affecting all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries.
Click to Read the Washington Report

Receive Government Affairs News via Email

To receive government affairs news via email, Subscribe to NAR’s Weekly Report newsletter and check Legislative & Regulatory Issues.

 California Government Affairs News

The Citrus Valley Association of REALTORS® encourages its members to be familiar with issues that directly impact their business and to support state and federal initiatives to ensure a viable real estate market.
Read California Government Affairs News

RPAC: Your Best Investment in Real Estate

Realtor Party: Vote Act Invest

Why Political Involvement?
Since 1969 RPAC has been promoting the election of pro-REALTOR® candidates across the United States. During the last federal election cycle alone, RPAC contributed over $12 million to pro-REALTOR® candidates to Congress, making it the number one trade association political action committee in the nation.

Why has RPAC been successful?
In America the exercise of good government has its foundation in the participation of its citizens in politics. By definition of the work you do, REALTORS® are contributors to the American dream- home ownership. REALTORS® make it possible for people to bring value to their communities, their lives, to schools and to the future. Increasingly REALTORS® are facing forces from many directions that threaten their ability to help bring about the American dream for more people. Increasing health care premiums, the economy, property tax burdens, rent controls, impact fees and the taking of private property for the public domain are only a quick handful of issues that somewhere, everyday REALTORS® confront.

If Not You, Who?
That is why it is vitally important that REALTORS® be politically active: to take on the responsibility of protecting the values and rights we hold dear. If not REALTORS®, then who? No one knows a community better than a REALTOR®. It would be difficult to believe that a local no-growth group would represent your real estate business interests, or that those employed by the local government know best how much and where to spend the tax dollar better than you do. REALTORS® are the experts on their communities. REALTORS® know the lay of the land, the families, the best schools, the neighborhoods, and the leaders. With REALTORS® in virtually every community in the nation, you are in a strong position to be on the front line as either a proponent or a defender.

Failure to be involved politically can and likely will result in someone else filling the vacuum left by you. That may sound okay at first; because we are sure someone else will do the job and see things as we do. That is until one discovers that the voices being heard may be contrary to wise business planning and a threat to property owners and their rights. If you as a REALTOR® do not speak out, get involved, and help shape your community, someone else will. It is a good bet that they won’t be supportive of your position.

On the national level, we give our money to those in Congress who both understand and support REALTOR® issues. We look to build the future by putting RPAC dollars in places that will help advance the interests of Real Estate professionals. RPAC is the only political group in the country organized for REALTORS®, run by REALTORS® and exists solely to further issues important to REALTORS®.