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RISMEDIA, March 19,2007-Members of the New Jersey Association of Realtors® (NJAR) leadership team visited Capitol Hill in Washington D.C. last week to discuss key issues impacting the real estate industry.

In attendance were NJAR president Bill Hanley, president-elect Drew Fishman, first vice president Diane Dilzell, treasurer Frank Anthony, immediate past president Bonnie Fitzgerald, executive vice president Joyce Andreoli, and NJAR staff members vice president of government affairs Jarrod Grasso, RCE and director of political affairs & member services Teresa Tilton. Throughout the visit, the 2007 NJAR leadership team met New Jersey's congressional and senate delegation.

"It's extremely important that we take this trip each year on behalf of our 57,000 members and the real estate industry in New Jersey," said Hanley. "At any time, legislation can be introduced that could impact our housing market and homeowners in our state. Meeting with our national leaders to express our position on key issues such as private property rights and affordable housing is important when it comes time for them to make decisions."

NJAR leaders voiced their support for the Community Choice in Real Estate Act (H.R. 111/S. 413), legislation that would prohibit giving real estate brokerage, leasing and management powers to national banks and financial holding company subsidiaries. NJAR also asked New Jersey representatives to support allowing small businesses to band together to purchase health care at a lower cost. They also discussed ways to: promote affordable and fair housing, such as enhancing the effectiveness of the Federal Housing Authority (FHA) and strengthening the Government Sponsored Enterprises (GSE); create affordable and adequate flood insurance, including updating and digitizing the flood maps; and combat predatory lending.

"This has been a great opportunity to bring our issues to the national level," added Hanley. "It was a pleasure meeting with our representatives so that they understand the impact their actions have on our state and local communities. We thank them for taking the time to hear our needs and concerns."

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