Meetings began this morning in hundreds of conference rooms, jobsites and legislative offices all over the country, as members of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) hold a week-long legislative event to underscore the importance of maintaining the American Dream of homeownership.
"Because so many members of Congress have returned home for district visits this week, it's a great opportunity to sit down and talk to them about home building's importance to our continued economic recovery," said NAHB Chairman Kevin Kelly, a builder and developer from Wilmington, Del.
"We will talk about sensible housing finance reform. We'll press for cost-effective regulatory changes so the price of a new home stays within reach of American families. We'll discuss the need for immigration reform so we can maintain a strong workforce," Kelly said. "And while we're there, we'll also thank our legislators for heeding our call to fix the federal flood insurance program so premium costs don't skyrocket out of control."
In Ohio, congressmen will meet more than 50 builders over coffee and doughnuts for a roundtable discussion. In Vermont, home builders will combine their legislative meetings with a seminar on energy-efficient construction. In North Carolina, builders are inviting local building-trade students to meet their congressional representative and talk about the future of their industry. Washington and Oregon builders will take their representatives on jobsite tours.
"We've always looked forward to our annual visits to Capitol Hill so members can talk to their senators and representatives," Kelly said. "But since they are not in Washington this week, these home visits offer our members a chance to come up with more creative ways to get our messages across. A healthy home building industry is essential to a strong economy, and we need to make sure that Congress doesn't forget that."