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Texas Residential Construction Commission (TRCC) Abolished
Houston Chronicle Commentary: TRCC and Builders Money
Monday, 25 August 2008

A builder, a commission, a lot of cash
It remains to be seen what will happen to the recommendation to abolish the Texas Residential Construction Commission, but it is no sure thing, thanks largely to the money with which Houston home builder Bob Perry continues to shower lawmakers. Although the proposal was applauded by consumers, who view the agency as little more than a protective haven for home builders, the first of several potential obstacles is the Sunset Advisory Commission itself, which must decide whether to endorse or reject its staff's work.

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Action Alert - Tell Commission to Abolish TRCC
Sunday, 24 August 2008

Tell the Sunset Commission to Abolish the Texas Residential Construction Commission (TRCC)
Texas homebuilders have been given free rein to take advantage of ordinary Texans for far too long. We now have a unique opportunity to demand real reforms that will improve protections and options for Texas homeowners.  Send message to Sunset Commission

 
News-Journal Editorial Recommends State Take Sunset Report Seriously
Sunday, 24 August 2008

Oversight: Legislators should take Sunset report seriously
The TRCC, created five years ago after strident lobbying by home builders, is failing at its job, the Sunset Commission concluded. The Sunset report says that rather than resolve conflicts between builders and buyers, the TRCC has often frustrated consumers who have complaints about new homes...Consumer watchdogs have been critical of the TRCC from its inception, especially after Gov. Rick Perry's first appointments to the five-member commission included John Krugh, the general counsel for Perry Homes and the industry representative credited with writing much of the legislation that established the commission...The Sunset Commission report concludes: "No other regulatory agency has a program with such a potentially devastating effect on consumers' ability to seek their own remedies." If Texas lawmakers don't recognize that as a call to step up and represent the interests of their constituents during the 2009 legislative session, we're not sure what will get their attention — unless it's a new surge of campaign contributions.

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Austin-Statesman Editorial: TRCC's Shoddy Design
Sunday, 24 August 2008

Shoddy design impairs agency for homeowner gripes
The staff of the Texas Sunset Advisory Commission has recommended that the state abolish an agency created just five years ago, supposedly to provide fair and timely resolutions to disputes... You might expect consumer groups to complain and builders to cheer, but in fact it's the opposite — and that says something about the effectiveness of the Texas Residential Construction Commission. According to the Sunset staff, the commission and the law it operates under are so badly designed, so ineffective that it is "easy for even problem builders to stay in business." ..."No other regulatory agency has a program with such a potentially devastating effect on consumers' ability to seek their own remedies," the Sunset staff said...And "only 12 percent of all closed state inspection cases have resulted in a satisfactory offer of repair or compensation" to the homeowner, the Sunset staff said, with the remaining 88 percent left to go to the courts, "the very outcome the (inspection) process was enacted to prevent."

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Austin KVUE Report: Scrap Agency for Reform that will Protect Homeowners and Taxpayers
Sunday, 24 August 2008

Review calls for state agency's abolition
After just five years, there are calls to abolish the state agency responsible for resolving disputes between homebuilders and homeowners. That's the recommendation of the Texas Sunset Advisory Commission, which routinely reviews all state agencies. In the Magnolia Creek Subdivision in Leander, homes sit unfinished and the community pool has long been abandoned... "So when you drive by here and you see of course the pool with weeds growing in it - nobody's going to want to buy a home here," said Curtis Almond, homeowner... "Unfortunately the TRCC has never been able to resolve any disputes between homeowners and homebuilders. That's why we need to scrap it and start over again so that we have a real reform that will protect homeowners and taxpayers in our state," said Alex Winslow of Texas Watch, a consumer advocacy group.

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Houston Chronicle Editorial: Shoddily Built
Friday, 22 August 2008

More reasons to raze the badly constructed agency set up to resolve homeowner disputes with builders
The advisory panel that reviews how well state agencies perform and whether they have outlived their usefulness has determined that the body set up to settle disputes between builders and homeowners is "fundamentally flawed" and should be abolished. The fact that consumers are agreeing heartily with the recommendation while the construction industry is lashing out against it speaks volumes about how poorly the agency has served homeowners...Texans indeed need an agency that will provide real protection to victims of dishonest or incompetent builders. But what they have today in the Texas Residential Construction Commission is an ineffective agency built on a shaky foundation too defective to save.

Read more...
 
Ft Worth Star-Telegram:The Watchdog - TRCC Shades of Lipstick
Friday, 22 August 2008

The Watchdog: You can put lipstick on a pig ...
Ever since the Texas Residential Construction Commission began five years ago, it has been criticized by consumer groups and some state officials as pro-builder and anti-homebuyer.  A 2007 state law that was supposed to toughen the commission hasn’t worked, the Sunset Advisory Commission concludes. And the pig is still a pig, says a pro-homeowners group that praised the report, when I asked its president about the old expression. "The so-called fixes last session were more lipstick, smoke and mirrors," said Janet Ahmad, president of HomeOwners for Better Building. "They can continue adding different shades of lipstick, but it’s still a builder protection agency run by the builders for the builders."

Read more...
 
Action Alert - Tell Commission to Abolish TRCC
Thursday, 21 August 2008

Tell the Sunset Commission to Abolish the Texas Residential Construction Commission (TRCC)
Texas homebuilders have been given free rein to take advantage of ordinary Texans for far too long. We now have a unique opportunity to demand real reforms that will improve protections and options for Texas homeowners.

Read more...
 
Austin Business Journal - A Scathing Sunset Advisory Commission TRCC Report
Thursday, 21 August 2008

Sunset review report calls for abolishing Texas Residential Construction Commission
In a scathing report released Tuesday, the Sunset commission, which regularly reviews state agencies, argued that the TRCC is ineffective and does not have the public's trust when it comes to protecting Texans from unscrupulous or unqualified builders. The report goes on to say the TRCC, which was created in 2003 to help regulate the homebuilding industry, should be abolished. "Current regulation of the residential construction industry is fundamentally flawed and does more harm than good," the report says.

Read more...
 
Express News: State recommend abolishing TRCC - HomeOwners for Better Building Agrees
Wednesday, 20 August 2008

HomeOwners for Better Building crowing about TRCC recommendation
HomeOwners for Better Building, the San Antonio-based group that has been in the news for fighting builders and its president's tactics, is celebrating because the state's Sunset Advisory Commission recommended that the Texas legislature abolish the Texas Residential Construction Commission...Janet Ahmad praised the recommendation in a press release. "The report is a consumer victory and goes a long way in restoring confidence in our state elected officials to do the right thing for genuine consumer protection this next session,” Ahmad said in the release.

Read more...
 
Houston Chronicle - Abolish TRCC - Agency Fundamentally Flawed
Wednesday, 20 August 2008

Abolish Texas home dispute agency, state group urges
An agency created to resolve disputes between homeowners and builders is "fundamentally flawed" and should be abolished, the Sunset Advisory Commission staff said Tuesday..."It's really doing more harm to homeowners than good," said Joey Longley, executive director of the sunset commission... But the staff report said that only 12 percent of cases where the state has sent in inspectors to review alleged defects have resulted in a "satisfactory offer or repair or compensation over the life of the program."...88 percent of reported cases are pursued by one party or the other using the legal system — the very outcome the process was enacted to prevent," the report said.

Read more...
 
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