Viewpoints

Barry Kramer

PRESIDENT'S CORNER: Plenty of Opportunities Available for Service

January 2018

Happy New Year! I would like to thank the members of HGAR for their confidence in electing me as their 2018 President. It’s quite an honor and privilege to serve such a great association. I have some big footsteps to follow. My predecessor Dorothy Botsoe did an awesome job and had us all drinking tea…

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Philip Weiden

LEGISLATIVE AFFAIRS: Bold Thinking Required After the Passage of Tax Reform

January 2018

Now that federal “tax reform” has passed and been signed into law, it remains to be seen how the provisions of the bill will affect home values and taxes in the State of New York. It is an opportunity for New York State government to reimagine the way government works and functions. Several initiatives could…

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Richard Haggerty

GATEWAY PERSPECTIVES: It Ain’t Over Till It’s Over

December 2017

I entitled my December column last year, “Blink of an Eye,” and it certainly does feel like the years go by more and more quickly. However, I must confess that from a political stand point, it seems like about four years of politics were jammed into 2017 instead of just one. In many respects it’s…

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Dorothy Botsoe

PRESIDENT'S CORNER: We are the World: Closing Out the Year

December 2017

"All our dreams can come true if we have the courage to pursue them." Walt Disney It’s here, December, which means January will be knocking on our doors shortly. And 2017 was a year filled with the courage to accept change and make some new moves. From our Grand Gala top of the year kick-off,…

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Leon Cameron, Esq.

BARRISTER'S BRIEFING: What You Need to Know About ‘Amanda’s Law’

December 2017

In 2010, New York Gov. David Paterson signed “Amanda's Law,” which went into effect on February 22 of that year. The law is named for 16-year-old Amanda Hansen of West Seneca, NY, who died in early 2009 due to a carbon monoxide leak from a defective boiler while she was sleeping at the home of…

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Jennifer Maher

PUTNAM POSTING: Local Retailers Must Make the Shift to Online Sales to Survive

December 2017

On Small Business Saturday, Putnam County Executive MaryEllen Odell and I conducted our fifth annual tour of Putnam County small businesses. Stores were filled with great selections, beaming with community pride and the kind of service only small town retail can provide. We visited flower shops, gift shops, boutiques, liquor stores and more. It’s amazing…

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Philip Weiden

LEGISLATIVE AFFAIRS: Spending on the New York City Budget Surges 20%

December 2017

Depending on your outlook, New York City government either has a spending problem or a revenue problem. In the last four years the New York City budget has gone from around $72.7 billion to approximately $86 billion. A good economy has caused revenues to the city government to surge, but a downturn in the economy…

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Richard Haggerty

GATEWAY PERSPECTIVES: A Dangerous Game of Chess

November 2017

At this juncture you may be sick and tired of hearing about tax reform and how the current proposals from the Senate and the House will impact the housing market. Goodness knows it can seem like some type of board game the way the Congressional budget negotiators keep tweaking and modifying the various pieces of…

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Dorothy Botsoe

PRESIDENT'S CORNER: We Are the World: Gratitude is an Attitude

November 2017

Well, we are closing in on the end of 2017. It’s been a great year getting to know everyone and connecting and reconnecting. November kicks off the official holiday season with high expectations for a cozy and festive time of year. Thanksgiving is that special day full of good food and good memories for most…

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Jennifer Maher

PUTNAM POSTING: You Get What You Pay For

November 2017

In the 2018 budget, Legislators are getting a 13.9% raise, according to the Putnam County Budget Office, bringing their salary to $40,839, which amounts to 1.52% a year since the Legislature has not had a raise since 2007 (10 years). The County Executive's salary will rise to $155,209 from $151,600. A recent Facebook post was…

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Philip Weiden

LEGISLATIVE AFFAIRS: MID and SALT Deductions in Peril

November 2017

From the onset of the discussion on “tax reform,” the House Republican leadership has said the MID (Mortgage Interest Deduction) would not be touched. We heard in news report after news report that specifically MID would not be affected. We have also heard, year after year that home ownership is important to the Republican leadership.…

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Jennifer Maher

PUTNAM POSTING: Unsung Hero Helps Restore the Putnam County IDA

October 2017

Recently at the Putnam County Legislature’s Economic Development Committee meeting, the Putnam County Industrial Development Agency announced it is now in full compliance with the requirements of the New York State Comptroller’s Office and is open for business. The Legislature was instrumental in its support and assistance as well as the County Executive and her…

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Richard Haggerty

GATEWAY PERSPECTIVES: Global Markets Matter

October 2017

As reported in this edition of Real Estate In-Depth, the Hudson Gateway Association of Realtors and the Staten Island Board of Realtors co-hosted a Global Summit event on October 2nd. Hundreds of attendees congregated at the Marriott Marquis in Midtown Manhattan to hear from industry experts on the importance of having a global perspective and…

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Dorothy Botsoe

PRESIDENT'S CORNER: Go Global! Real Estate Abroad

October 2017

Being from Ghana, West Africa and having travelled to and lived in many countries, the idea of a Global Summit was exciting and a day to look forward to in New York City. The event featured panel discussions that addressed different perspectives of how real estate is handled both here and abroad. What an incredible…

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Richard Haggerty

GATEWAY PERSPECTIVES: Own It

September 2017

In mid-August President-Elect Barry Kramer and I made the trek to Chicago for NAR’s annual Leadership Summit for CEOs and President-Elects. The theme for this year’s conference was “Own It,” and many of the presentations flowed into that theme. Going into the program I thought “own it” referred to taking responsibility for one’s actions, but…

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Dorothy Botsoe

PRESIDENT'S CORNER: Safety First: It’s Realtor Safety Month

September 2017

Wow, it’s September! I hope we are all more relaxed, refreshed and rejuvenated from our summer and ready for our Fall/Winter real estate season. As we all know, not only is September “back to school” time, but it is also Realtor Safety month. As the weather changes, so does the pattern of crime and we…

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Philip Weiden

LEGISLATIVE AFFAIRS: Make Your Voices Heard at RPAC Members’ Day Luncheon

September 2017

October 30th is HGAR’s annual Members’ Day, which is an exciting and incredibly important day for all Realtors in our five-county service area. There is a lunch that day that many people do not know about—it is the RPAC luncheon. The luncheon program consists of an update from New York State Association of Realtors Government…

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