Posted September 22, 2022
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Dear AIME Community,

As we reflect on the excitement and incredible progress made in DC last week, we can confidently report that our efforts were nothing short of a success. Since launching our BACPAC initiative, our focus has been on connecting with members of Congress and the Senate who are receptive to our solutions to the problems that impact Independent Mortgage Brokers and their borrowers. Last week, AIME and our team at Forbes Tate Partners met with 3 Members of Congress and 2 US Senators. These meetings were crucial to the overall mission of the BACPAC and were focused solely on the issues that the BACPAC donors identified as crucial.

On Tuesday, we met with the FTP team for a strategic planning session to identify and describe the issues most important to our channel. We explained the issues, as well as solutions, in-depth so that our Lobbying Team could have a deeper understanding and begin providing a path forward. The meeting was incredibly productive and will be the roadmap for our short, medium, and long-term goals. 

We hit the ground running on Wednesday morning and met with Representative Nydia Velazquez (D-NY). Rep Velazquez was particularly interested in advocating for our Hispanic homeownership efforts, specifically in institutionalizing Spanish Application and Disclosure documents. Broker Access to DPA Programs was also a topic that she was incredibly interested in. And as is the case with many politicians, she loved SPARK. All of them love that we are creating business owners who are either in or from Underserved Communities, and some love it because we’ve done it without Government Grants or Subsidies. Proof of Concept. 

Next, we met with Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-MS), who was interested in our initiatives surrounding disabled veterans. Our meeting with Senator Hyde-Smith can be directly linked to our grassroots letter writing through the BACPAC and is tangible proof that our community can make a ruffle in Capitol Hill all on its own. The meeting went incredibly well and led to a meeting two days later with Mississippi Mortgage Broker Michelle Dugan, and her State Representative, who will introduce legislation this session that mirrors HB809 passed in Maryland earlier this year. Huge win for Disabled Veterans. 

Our next meeting was with GOP Texas Candidate Wesley Hunt, an African American Airforce veteran, and previous Mortgage Broker. Obviously, his direct connection to some of the most critical issues in our community makes him an excellent advocate in our corner.

We then met with Rep. Patrick McHenry (R-NC), the Ranking Member and Projected 2023 Chair of the Financial Services Committee. He was very interested in our Freddie/Fannie topics surrounding data privacy and Dodd-Frank. 

Our next meeting was with Representative Joyce Beatty (D-OH), who heads the Black Congressional Caucus and sits on the  Financial Services Committee. She loved the mission behind AIME’s SPARK Grant Program and was shocked to learn that Mortgage Brokers cannot provide DPA Programs to their borrowers. “Big banks are not in these communities, but Mortgage Brokers are” is how we summarize the importance of this issue. Rep. Beatty also sponsored HR 2948, which allowed Bank Loan Officers to originate for Lenders under a temporary authority while their license changes were transferred. She is willing to clarify whether this applies to Mortgage Brokers and, if not, is open to making changes to improve her bill. This is a huge deal for any Mortgage Brokerage that is recruiting originators.

Our final meeting was with Senator Mike Crapo (D-ID), a ranking member of the Senate finance committee. The meeting was brief, but Senator Crapo has personal experience working with Mortgage Brokers and understands the value that our channel provides to consumers. We are looking forward to working with Senator Crapo in the future.

Each conversation was intentionally tailored to the specific member of Congress we had the pleasure of speaking with. This allowed us to have purposeful and authentic discussions regarding the issues impacting our community. We must be thoughtful and succinct with our message to ensure our incredibly busy audience has the tools necessary to leverage their influence and become open to working with us to create real change. We want to build relationships that will continue to grow over time. A big part of this was not only showing up with problems but also solutions to those problems. Furthermore, we felt it was important that our immediate issues be ones that do not simply benefit Mortgage Brokers in a vacuum. Rather, we focused on problems that impact our Members and, more importantly, the customers (constituents). The size of the BACPAC and the money we have raised in such a short time is tangible. 

Want to know the best part of these meetings? Almost every Member of Congress and Senator wished to stay longer to discuss, listen, and learn how they can help. We cannot wait to deliver more updates as we continue to shake up Capitol Hill and prove that our Members have a voice in Congress worth listening to. We couldn’t do any of this without your support – from the bottom of our hearts, thank you for helping us stand up for the broker channel!

– Katie & Brendan

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