CAI’s Federal Legislative Action Committee (LAC) is the advocate for CAI member interests in Congress and with the Trump administration. While a divided government has slowed progress on significant legislation, the Federal LAC has been very active on key issues for community associations.
Key federal advocacy issues include:
- Flood insurance—Congress extended the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) through Sept. 30. The House Financial Services Committee approved a five-year extension, which CAI supports, but a bipartisan group of S. Senators has recently filed a competing NFIP extension bill. CAI is monitoring legislative negotiations and lobbying for legislators to reach agreement on an extension prior to Sept. 30.
- HAM radio—In January, U.S. Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.) introduced H.R. 466, the Amateur Radio Parity Act, which preempts community association architectural standards that apply to amateur radio towers and antennas. This legislation includes key association protections negotiated by the Federal LAC. The American Radio Relay League recently announced its opposition to the bill due to the association protections in the bill. There has been no movement on the bill, and there is not a Senate companion. CAI will continue monitoring it.
- Disaster assistance—CAI’s Federal LAC has aggressively lobbied for the Disaster Assistance Equity Act and expects the legislation to be introduced soon.
The Trump administration has sought to implement a number of policies by exercise of executive authority. CAI’s Federal LAC has filed numerous letters with the administration on proposals that impact community associations:
- Telecommunications infrastructure—The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has proposed to preempt community association architectural standards that apply to antennas used in 5G commercial mobile networks. CAI’s Federal LAC commented on the Commission’s proposal, urging that 5G commercial antennas not be exempted from association review by the Commission. Additionally, the FCC announced plans for future regulation of broadband internet service contracts in condominiums and housing cooperatives. CAI will monitor the release of proposed regulations and comment accordingly.
- Assistance animals—The Trump administration is considering new fair housing rules for reasonable accommodation of emotional support animals. CAI’s Federal LAC is urging the Trump administration to rein in the use of fraudulent assistance animal documentation. The Federal LAC has requested the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development allow reasonable efforts to verify that assistance animal documentation is valid.
- Housing finance policy—CAI’s Federal LAC lobbied the Trump administration for a flexible Federal Housing Administration (FHA) condominium project approval regulation. CAI expects FHA to announce new condominium project approval regulations in the immediate future. The Federal LAC has also written to the Trump Administration about the future of the housing finance companies Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.
These are only highlights of the issues tracked by the Federal LAC. For more information on CAI’s 2019 Federal Policy Priorities, click here.
If you are looking to engage with federal lawmakers, please consider inviting a member of Congress to a community event or attending CAI’s 2019 Advocacy Summit on Oct. 23, where CAI members will meet with policymakers in Washington, D.C., to discuss these and other key issues facing community associations.