At lunch, the group was joined by Daniel Hall, Legislative Director for Governor Jay Nixon. Hall talked with leading members about the Association’s legislative priorities in 2010.
After a meeting with fellow HBA members from throughout the state, our members split into smaller groups to call on individual legislators representing our area. (Pictured above, our meeting with Rep. Bob Dixon in the House Chamber.) We also had an opportunity to meet with Speaker of the House Ron Richard and Rep. Jay Wasson regarding concerns about legislation which has been filed to mandate statewide adoption of the International Residential Energy Code. Members had the opportunity to educate them regarding the problems with this legislation:
Building codes and standards should assure a consistent minimum standard for the safety and health of building occupants using the most cost effective requirements and guidelines. Mandating that the code and code officials deviate from that objective to also become the “energy police”, undermines the overall focus on safety and creates yet another unfunded mandate for local jurisdictions to absorb at a time when they certainly do not have the resources to add additional manpower. It also usurps local control and instead of allowing builders to incorporate energy efficient features in the most cost effective way based on the home being built, this “one size fits all” mandate would drive the cost of new homes far beyond reach of many families.
To wrap up the day, the HBA of Greater Springfield members hosted a reception for our area legislative delegation and key leadership of both houses. “I feel very confident that legislation which could have potentially sidelined housing’s recovery in Missouri is now being closely monitored by those who represent us in the state legislature,” said HBA President Rusty MacLachlan. “They understand that our small businesses, and housing specifically, are the engines that must be firing to create jobs and truly improve the economy.”