The Florida Inspectors Council asks for our financial support by contributing to defend the profession and your livelihood. Politics today is a battle between special interest groups. Now that licensing is in effect, the battle is just beginning. The Council has been established to represent licensed home inspectors, mold assessors and remediators.
SUSTAINING AND PROTECTING OUR PROFESSION
Politics is an ugly business, now that we are licensed, it’s critical that we are engaged in the process each year proactively and defensively.
Many of us thought that the politicians would do the right thing and act in the best interest of the public. We were naïve. Politicians are heavily influenced by special interest groups and their lobbyists. If we don’t have a lobbyist fighting for our interests, we’ll be trampled by other interest groups who do, such as realtors, home builders and the insurance industry.
While the profession was split on supporting licensing, the legislature was lobbied by realtor, home builder and national home inspection interests to pass legislation setting up licensing and regulation which became effective on July 1, 2011. Our hand has been dealt and now we must defend our profession from those that might take it from us. If we don’t, we only have ourselves to blame.
GETTING IN THE GAME, CLAIMING OUR GROUND
Politicians respond to campaign contributions and listen to the groups that help them get elected. One of our goals is to be able to fund contributions to key legislators that sit on committees that oversee regulation. Many of you hate the idea of contributing to politicians, but understand that real estate agents, home builders and the insurance industries all contribute heavily to legislators’ reelection campaigns. If we don’t participate, who do you think they will listen to?
This past year alone, contractors and code inspectors lobbied for a lifetime exemption from home inspector licensing. Through the hiring of our own lobbyist, we were able to limit the grandfathering period to one year. While that’s not the perfect outcome, it’s far better than what we would have ended up with if we didn’t have a lobbyist working on our behalf. And this is a battle we’ll probably fight for years to come.
The Council lobbied to defeat legislation that would have loosened the education requirements for mold assessors and mold remediators, and that will surely be attempted again.
The Florida home inspection associations organized and formed the Florida Inspectors Council with representatives from ASHI, FABI, FL ASHI, InterNACHI and NAHI. The sole purpose is to speak (via our lobbyist) with one voice. Politicians are confused when they hear conflicting viewpoints, they respond much better to one voice. The Council represents your profession and needs your support.
SUPPORTING THE COUNCIL, ADVOCATING OUR POSITION
It’s not only politicians; our interests also need to be represented in front of the bureaucrats that write the rules that affect our profession. That process is just starting. It’s critical we are represented in Tallahassee at the Department of Business and Professional Regulation.
The home inspector associations have funded the council and our lobbying efforts in the past, but they can’t fully fund our expanding efforts in the future. This is where you come in. If you care about your business and livelihood, then we ask that you join us in the fight to defend our turf and promote our interests.
We need to raise more than $75,000.00 each year to fund our efforts. Here’s how that breaks down:
· Membership updates and Action Alerts
· Campaign contributions
· Administrative costs
These costs are yearly. We’ll need to sustain the Council each and every year hereafter. The Florida associations have contributed $14,000 this past year, which wasn’t even enough to pay our lobbyist. We need you to step up to the plate and contribute to help sustain and protect your profession.
This upcoming year and 2012 Session we face several critical issues:
· Rulemaking for home inspectors, mold assessors and mold remediators.
· Standards of Practice for home inspectors.
· Wind Mitigation Issues.
· Strengthening licensing requirements.
· Creating a Board of Inspectors to oversee home and mold inspectors.
We’ll also be working on the unfair provision that allows employees of contractors to perform Wind Mitigation inspections, but prohibits employees of home inspectors to do the same. We’d like to level that playing field. We’ll need to interact with the insurance industry and the Office of Insurance Regulation to accomplish that. We can’t do that as individuals, it’s critical we have one voice.
If we don’t band together, the results could be dire. Can you imagine the real estate industry writing rules that control home inspectors? How about contractors creeping into the scope of mold assessors and remediators?
You only need to look at other states to see what can happen when home inspectors fail to band together and defend themselves. In North Carolina, inspectors have to report using a state mandated uniform form. In Texas, inspectors face ridiculous reporting requirements that make little or no sense. If we don’t join together now, we could face a similar disaster in Florida.
CONTRIBUTE TODAY, GET INVOLVED
The choice is yours, control your destiny or have it controlled by real estate agents, home builders and insurance companies. Don’t sit by and let your profession be controlled by others, contribute today.
On behalf of the volunteer directors, thank you in advance for your time and favorable consideration.
Florida Inspectors Council
101 S. Monroe Street
Tallahassee, Fl 32301