Government Affairs

Your safety net for your business and the industry at large is engagement in public policy activities.

Government Affairs

Your safety net for your business and the industry at large is engagement in public policy activities. At the federal level, we partner with NMHC to advocate for a supportive legislative and regulatory climate to protect your business. At the state and local levels, we analyze legislation, conduct research and provide resources to help build your and your fellow members' strength and influence.

Recent News

Register Now for a July 30 Disparate Impact Webinar - NAA/NMHC have scheduled a webinar on disparate impact liability for Thursday, July 30 from 4 to 5:15 p.m. The webinar will include an in-depth discussion on the implications for the apartment housing industry and practices and steps to consider in response.

Supreme Court Upholds Disparate Impact Liability, With Note of Caution - The U.S. Supreme Court has decided to uphold disparate impact liability under the Fair Housing Act, a legal theory that prohibits neutrally-applied practices with a disproportionate impact on minority groups protected by the law, even without proving an intent to discriminate. Learn more by reading analyses about the decision.

NAA/NMHC Release Groundbreaking Like-Kind Exchange Study - NAA/NMHC, joined by a broad real estate coalition, have released groundbreaking research highlighting the critical role like-kind exchanges play in helping the multifamily industry provide housing to America’s workforce.

Labor Department: Are Your Workers Employees or Contractors? The Labor Department's Wage and Hour Division has issued guidance on how to determine whether workers should be classified as employees or independent contractors. The delineation has crucial implications for a worker's eligibility for protections.

NAA Seeks Your Input on Overtime Rules - The Department of Labor has issued a notice of proposed rule-making and request for comments on changes to the regulations issued under the Fair Labor Standards Act that cover who is exempt from overtime pay. NAA needs to determine the scale and scope of impact of this proposed rule on the apartment housing industry so we can appropriately comment.

Highway Bill Is Chock-Full of Multifamily Items - The House on July 15 passed legislation to fund highway spending through December 18. The bill includes several tax compliance offsets that modify tax return filing dates for multifamily partnerships and estate tax reporting requirements.

EPA Miscalculates Availability of Lead Paint Test Kit - The Lead Renovation, Repair and Painting rule requires that any activities in pre-1978 housing be performed by certified firms and workers using federal lead-safe work practices. EPA relied on the market availability of a low-cost, rapid and accurate chemical spot test for guiding lead paint repairs. But a test kit that meets the Agency's criteria is not available.

Audit Partnership Bill Is Bad News for Multifamily Investment - Legislation to streamline the audits of partnerships is currently being considered as a potential offset for future tax legislation. The “Partnership Audit Simplification Act of 2015” would leave real estate partners jointly and severally liable for a partnership’s tax deficiencies.

Industry Asks DoE to Take Its Foot Off Gas Furnaces - A recent Department of Energy (DoE) proposal would require non-weatherized gas furnaces to be at 92 percent annual fuel usage efficiency (AFUE) by 2021. This one-size fits all approach would require horizontal venting of the combustion gases because of the associated condensation.

Energy Savings on the Horizon for HUD - HUD spends nearly $7 billion annually on utility costs for subsidized housing nationwide. To help combat the soaring costs, the House has passed the Private Investment in Housing Act of 2015.

HUD Provides Guidance on the LGBT Community and Fair Housing - HUD has released specific guidance to help avoid discrimination of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) Americans in multifamily insured and assisted housing. The guidance helps clarify HUD’s 2012 Equal Access Rule as it relates to the LGBT community.

Why Patent Reform Matters to the Multifamily Industry - Congress is under pressure to pass patent reform legislation that could help the multifamily industry and its service providers that are targeted by abusive “patent trolls.” Trolls threaten legal action and demand licensing fees for everyday business products and technology applications.

Obama Administration Unveils Plan to Combat Housing Segregation - The Obama Administration has unveiled a comprehensive plan focused on combating housing segregation nationwide. Specifically, the plan clarifies fair housing obligations for local governments, states and public housing agencies that receive HUD funding.

NAA Board Adopts Policy on Emotional Support Animals - The NAA Board has approved a statement of policy on the issue of reasonable accommodation for requests for emotional support animals.

Industry Responds to HUD Fair Market Rents Set by ZIP Code - The multifamily industry has responded to a HUD proposed rule that would change how Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Program Fair Market Rents are set in many areas nationwide. The proposal calls for certain areas to set FMRs by ZIP code – what HUD calls Small Area Fair Market Rents – instead of at the metro level. 

Patent Reform Takes a Step Forward – Apartment companies and their service providers have been targeted by abusive “patent trolls” who threaten legal action and demand fees for alleged infringement without evidence to back them up. NAA/NMHC are urging Congress to pass legislation that brings greater transparency and efficiency to patent regulation and enforcement.

Policy Resources:

Apartment Industry's 2015 Policy Agenda - NAA and NMHC's top priorities for Capitol Hill in 2015 include reforming the nation's tax code and fixing the housing finance system. View our complete list of legislative and regulatory issues.

Webinars and Webcasts:

New E-Verify Webinar Available On-Demand – USCIS now offers a webinar for employers about E-Verify and Form I-9, E-Verify enrollment, how to run a case and more.

House Financial Services Committee Hearing - “The Future of Housing in America: Oversight of the Department of Housing and Urban Development” (webcast)

Apartment Industry News:

For the latest in apartment industry policy and advocacy news, read the Apartment Advocate, NAA Government Affairs' flagship publication.