The Friday morning buzz at NAR Expo 2014 on the commercial track included a legislative update from Erin Stackley, the Commercial Legislative Policy Representative from NAR’s Governmental Affairs.
NAR is always busy on Capitol Hill, and Erin let the commercial-track audience know what’s on the docket:
- Tax Reform Proposals: “Tax reform is not going to happen in the 113th Congress,” she said. “But [our] reform proposals, one in the Senate, one in the House, could easily be picked up […] in the 114th Congress”. She went on to mention the 179D Energy Efficiency Commercial Building Deduction, an existing deduction where she expects passage of an extension during this Congress. According to the IRS, the 179D deduction allows deductions of up to $1.80 per square foot for owners or lessees of commercial buildings to which property has been installed as part of internal lighting systems, heating, cooling, ventilation or hot water systems.
- 1031 Like-Kind Exchange: As this tax shelter approaches its 100th anniversary on the books, efforts of Congress to raise revenue by removing the tax protection are opposed by NAR every step of the way. “We’re working on getting together surveys and studies, more data and anecdotes on 1031 that we can bring to Congressional offices and say ‘this happened, this created this many jobs'”
- Legalization Of Marijuana: Given that federal law still opposes the use or possession of marijuana, the break in continuity between federal and state, state and state, state and county and county and county has created an enormous risk area for property managers and owners. Stackley said “23 states and the District of Columbia have passed various ordinances and laws that are decriminalizing marijuana, wether ofr medicinal use, or small amounts of recreational use. If [a property manager] has a non-smoking policy, does that cover marijuana use? […] What sort of liability are you opening yourself up to?” She then made reference to a white paper on the topic, a work of her colleague Megan Booth and IREM. You can find a copy of the IREM white paper “Marijuana Legalization Laws” after the jump.
To get a full recording of Erin’s Legislative Update, pick up a recording at Playback NAR of the session she appeared at, “Protect Yourselves from Mold, Bed Bug and Code Compliance Issues: Property Management Forum”