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Washington Report

The Washington Report covers legislative and regulatory policy activities, and is compiled by NAR's Government Affairs policy staff. To receive this content via email, subscribe to NAR's Weekly Report newsletter and check the "legislative & regulatory issues" box.

June 19, 2015
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has begun to issue waivers for some drone operators to legally and commercially operate. There are over 200 companies with real estate related purposes that have the waivers and can operate legally.  Without a waiver from the FAA, commercial use of drones is prohibited. The waivers are issued through Section 333 of the FAA Modernization Act of 2012 and are known as Section 333 waivers. NAR has created a list of operators who offer photography, inspection, appraisal and other real estate services using drones. The list is not an endorsement of any operator, it is a restatement of information that is publicly available from the FAA.
June 19, 2015
The Department of Veteran’s Affairs (VA) provided LoanSafe Appraisal Manager (LSAM), a new automated appraisal review tool, to all VA lenders.  The VA expects the tool to help lenders quickly assess appraisal risk for VA policy compliance violations, over/under-valuations, and appraisal quality issues.  LSAM does not provide an estimate of value or make decisions for the lenders.  In addition, LSAM does not accept or reject appraisals or characterize them as good or bad.
June 19, 2015
FHA released its Single Family Loan Quality Assessment Methodology or “Defect Taxonomy.”  The Taxonomy explains how FHA plans to gather information about defects in FHA loans.  The Taxonomy is supposed to help FHA lenders identify underwriting issues and reduce errors that could lead to enforcement actions.  FHA hopes that the Taxonomy will give lenders more confidence in working with qualified FHA borrowers across the credit spectrum.  The nine-nine different codes that FHA currently uses to describe loan defects will be reduced to nine distinct defects.
FHA
June 12, 2015
House Judiciary Committee marked up and favorably reported H.R. 9, the Innovation Act. By making important reforms to the nation’s patent litigation system, the Innovation Act would address abusive practices by patent trolls that bully American businesses, including many REALTOR®s, with deceptive and often illegitimate claims of patent infringement.
June 12, 2015
On Wednesday, June 10, the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee voted 11-9 along party lines to advance a measure to kill the Obama administration's controversial water rule.

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