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NAMB's Voice Heard on the Hill: Brokers March for Change

Robert Ottone
Mar 12, 2014

Day One of the 2014 NAMB Legislative & Regulatory Conference in Washington, D.C. was met with the threat of horrific weather. Cancelled flights, cancelled programming and more led to many fearing poor attendance for this vital pilgrimage of mortgage professionals to D.C. As it turned out, plenty showed up for the Conference, many taking part in Jonathan Foxx and Lenders Compliance Group’s Compliance Symposium, the first programming block featured at the Conference. Lenders Compliance Group’s Directors of Legal and Regulatory Compliance Wendy Bernard and Michael Barone, and more took the podium to discuss the world of compliance, while also discussing the changes to the industry due to the enacting of the CFPB’s qualified mortgage (QM) rule and other mortgage industry issues. In the state of the current mortgage marketplace, this Symposium was a must-attend event for all on hand as the industry continues to deal with the onset of these new rules. While the primary discussion was centered around the ever-changing landscape of QM and compliance issues, Foxx and company took questions from the crowd, addressing concerns about the potential of refinement of the QM legislation. Day One concluded with the NAMB Delegate Council Meeting where the state affiliates of NAMB had a chance to sound off and discuss issues on a local level. Attendees took advantage of this rare opportunity to be in the same room with their peers from across the country and share an open forum to learn about the issues affecting their state affiliates on the local level. NAMB leadership provided tips and talking points on how to deal with certain issues in an effort to bring all together under a common banner. Day Two kicked off with NAMB President Don Frommeyer taking the podium to introduce the changes to the programming block (due to the snow that his the area), and to thank everyone in attendance for braving the weather and arriving to enjoy the Legislative Conference. Day two featured an appearance by Raj Date, CEO of Fenway Summer and the first-ever Director of the CFPB, who discussed issues facing the mortgage industry and also addressed concerns from the crowd about CFPB-mandated legislation and what it means regarding the industry and regulatory shifts. Though Date’s appearance was relatively brief, a great deal was taken away from it regarding the industry’s take on the inner-workings of the CFPB, and how the Bureau has begun to re-shape the mortgage industry. “One of the challenges we face involves adapting and approaching issues in the mortgage industry,” Date said during his panel, answering a question regarding broaching issues with both legislative branches and private firms. Day Two of the Conference was met with more difficult weather, as attendees were treated to a number of presentations, some live and some via conference call, to better prep them for the grand finale of the event, the opportunity to lobby on Capitol Hill. Speakers from both NAMB and other trade associations used the event as an open forum to discuss matters related to regulatory issues that impact everyone across the board. Most important though was the information that attendees were provided … information vital to their trips the following day when the met with their elected officials to discuss topics impacting them and their small businesses nationwide. The evening ended with the NAMB PAC Auction and Cocktail Party, where association members raised $25,000 for their PAC, auctioning off bottles of Napa Valley wine, as well as autographed sports and political memorabilia, and more. The efforts of NAMB’s PAC have provided the mortgage professional, not only the NAMB dues-paying members, but all mortgage professionals, with a lobbying presence in D.C. year-round. The goal of the PAC is to have the ability to maintain a lobbying presence in D.C. to be on the forefront of the battles fought by the industry on a more than regular basis. The grand finale of the Conference took place Tuesday morning, as groups of NAMB members gathered to receive their final talking points before embarking for their trips to Capitol Hill. The Legislative Conference represents a unique opportunity for NAMB members to meet face to face with their senators and representatives to open a dialogue on what issues impact them the most. NAMB members are not only backers of one of the industry’s top mortgage industry trade associations, but also constituents to their elected officials in D.C. They need votes come election season, and part of that process is having an open mind and getting educated on the needs of those electing them. NAMB provides its members with that chance via its Lobby Day … the chance to meet and engage with the decision-makers of D.C. to educate and voice their concerns about rules and mandates which may impact their local community and voting base.   “It’s definitely important for all of us, as individuals, to come together and show support for the industry as a whole,” said Wayne King, president of Encompass Lending Group on the night of the PAC auction. The NAMB Legislative Conference, with three days of panels, regulatory discussion and more, were regarded as a success by many in attendance. Frommeyer, while attending meetings on Capitol Hill, seemed pleased with the event, even amid the difficult weather. “We’re happy with the event this year, it’s been an interesting year for regulatory shifts, but overall, we’re getting our time with our officials and they’re receptive,” said Frommeyer. Mark your calendars for NAMB’s next big gathering, NAMB National, set for Sept. 13-15 at the Luxor Las Vegas.   Raj Date of Fenway Summer with Dave Luna and Don Frommeyer of NAMB in D.C.           Members of NAMB's Delegate Council discuss the QM rule and its impact on small broker business         Jonathan Foxx of Lenders Compliance Group addresses the Compliance Symposium             Members of the NAMB lobbying team gather prior to their appointments on Capitol Hill         NAMB President Don Frommeyer meets with John R. Hammond IV, Deputy Chief of Staff for Congressman Marlin A. Stutzman (R-IN)
Published
Mar 12, 2014
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