Letter from the Vice President, Jim Greatorex: May 2021

Published in Home Modifications on May 26, 2021

Home Access Legislation Starting to Move Forward

The month of May has seen much activity on the home accessibility federal legislation front! The HomesRenewed Coalition has been working very hard to get a bill introduced that would provide tax incentives for homeowners on defined home modifications and safety upgrades. Rep. Tom Swuozzi from NY has agreed to draft a bill that would allow people to use retirement funds on home modifications. HomesRenewed will allow members of its coalition to weigh in on language edits once the draft is complete. When drafted, Congressman Richard Neal from MA, who is chair of the very influential Ways and Means Committee, has voiced support for the bill and committed to helping it get pushed through for a Congressional Budget Office (CBO) score. The CBO takes all proposed bills and estimates the cost to the federal government if the bill was passed into law. No legislation gets passed without a CBO score. Many times, getting a CBO score can take months and can hold up passage, so having the most powerful Congressman support pushing it through is meaningful. The industry feels that the bill should come back with little to no cost, and many think it would bring substantial savings. If the score comes back neutral, it’s considered non-controversial and is easily added to other, bigger bill packages for passage.

On the Senate side, we have received some great commitments from Senator Sherrod Brown from OH and Sen. Bob Casey from PA, who is very key because he serves on the Aging, Health, and Finance committees. VGM will be in communication with Sen. Grassley, a key Republican, to help move this legislation forward.

As we get farther along and get the bill introduced, we will ask LAH members in key districts to voice support and provide you with key talking points and instruction on how to talk to your elected officials in D.C. This is great progress, and we are seeing the efforts of our lobbying group paying off. Speaking of which, we are in vital need of financial support. Good lobbyists require funds, and we are at the point where we need some more donors to step forward. If you could give $25 - $100 a month for the rest of the year, it could make the difference in the success of this venture. Consider it an investment in your future success with the potential for a significant return on investment with a bill passage.

For more information, visit the HomesRenewed website.

Installer Summit Update

If you were thinking of sending any staff to our Installer Summit on June 14-17, the time to act is now! Available slots are filling up fast and registration for most classes will be cut off by May 28. Participating manufacturers are ETAC- formally Molift, EZ Access, Span/Savaria Overhead Lifts, Harmar, Best Bath, and Entrematic – our new Automatic Door Opener Company.

We have some exciting new services and relationships that we are working on that we will be sharing in the coming months, so stay tuned!

Thank you very much for your membership. We appreciate the great work that you do!

Jim Greatorex   


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