July 24, 2019

In This Issue:

  • TLTA Releases 2019 Legislative Report
  • Congressman Cuellar Urges Secretary of the Treasury to Act on Wire Fraud Report Mandate
  • TLTA Webinars Address TDI's New Rate Rule Changes and Title Agent Data Call
  • ALTA Says Compliance Clarity Needed for Businesses Providing Services to Cannabis Industry
  • Leslie Midgley and Aaron Day Provide Advocacy/Regulatory Update to FLTA

TLTA Releases 2019 Legislative Report

TLTA | July 23, 2019
While the 86th Session of the Texas Legislature was predominately defined by lawmakers' decisions to reform our state's school finance system and allocate additional resources to disaster planning, response and recovery, the top stories for our industry this session were the breakthrough in our ongoing re-regulation battle and the passage of 100 percent of our association's legislative priorities. 
 
TLTA's 2019 Legislative Report details our industry's 86th Session successes, provides title-specific insights into lawmakers' actions, and more:
  • Summary of the 86th Session of the Texas Legislature
  • Analysis of bills passed by the Legislature that will impact our industry
  • Review of other bills we monitored
  • Recognition of the legislators, professional advocates and industry volunteers who made this session a success for our industry.
If you have any questions about this report or our work during the legislative session, please contact Aaron Day, TLTA Director of Government Affairs and Counsel, at 512.879.2881 or aaron@tlta.com.
 
Thank you for supporting TLTA. Let's continue our good work now and into the future by nurturing relationships with lawmakers via our local legislative liaisons, supporting legislators through contributions to TLTAPAC, and through continued engagement and service within the TLTA community.
 
Read the Report »
 

Congressman Cuellar Urges Secretary of the Treasury to Act on Wire Fraud Report Mandate

James E. Hyland, TLTA Federal Legislative Counsel | July 22, 2019
On July 17, 2019, Congressman Henry Cuellar (D-TX) wrote to the Secretary of the Treasury urging the Secretary to act on a wire fraud report mandate in the legislation that funds the Treasury Department. In late June, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Financial Services Appropriations bill.
 
In language as part of that legislation, the Appropriations Committee directed the Department of Treasury to "provide a report to the Committee, within 90 days of enactment of this Act, detailing ongoing activities to both combat and raise awareness of wire fraud in real estate."
 
Congressman Cuellar took the extra step of bringing this directly to the attention of the Secretary of the Treasury, Steven T. Mnuchin, through his letter. In his letter, he said that  "many constituents in South Texas, particularly those in real estate, state that wire fraud is on the rise." TLTA and its board members are among those that have brought this important issue to his attention. We thank him for his responsiveness to our concerns. 
 
The Congressman noted that "recent statistics are validating their concerns" referring to the business community in South Texas. He cited recent FBI statistics that this has become a very significant problem, with criminal activity jumping off the charts in just the past few years. He concluded the letter by stating that "this is a serious issue and can impact potential homeowners and small businesses who may lose all or most of their savings when purchasing real estate." 
 
TLTA will continue to work with Congressman Cuellar on this issue. 

Read the Letter »


TLTA Webinars Address TDI's New Rate Rule Changes and Title Agent Data Call

TLTA | July 23, 2019
The Texas Department of Insurance recently adopted an order that revises the basic premium rate and amends our industry's rate rules. The changes enacted by this order will be effective Sept. 1, 2019. A compliance webinar detailing the changes enacted by TDI's order and how to implement them will be presented July 25.
Read TDI's Order »
 
Webinar: New Rate and Rate Rule Changes to the Basic Manual 
Thursday, July 25 
10:30 – 11:30 a.m. 
Presenter: John P. Bruce, CTIP, NTP 
CE Credit: 1 hr Escrow 
 
Register Now »
 
TDI has also issued its call for agent statistical data. Texas Insurance Code §2703.153 requires each title insurance company and title insurance agent engaged in the business of title insurance in Texas to annually submit business data to TDI. TDI uses this data to set title insurance premium rates. This report should be completed with data generated during calendar year 2018. You must respond to this data call using the provided instructions and forms no later than Aug. 27, 2019. 
 
Webinar: On-Time and Error Free TDI Experience Reporting Webinar 
Monday, July 29 
1:30 – 3 p.m. 
Presenters: Nancy Waggoner, Nancy Waggoner, CPA, CFE and Sylvia Freyling, Fidelity National Title Insurance Company 
CE Credit: 1.5 hrs Escrow 
 
Register Now »
 
Please note: These webinars will also be presented on demand.
 


ALTA Says Compliance Clarity Needed for Businesses Providing Services to Cannabis Industry

ALTA | July 23, 2019
ALTA has issued a statement on the need to clarify compliance for businesses that provide services to the growing cannabis industry.
 
“Senator Robert Menendez’s insurance bill—along with the SAFE Banking Act—provide some needed relief to the tension between federal and state laws regarding the legality of cannabis,” said Diane Tomb, ALTA’s chief executive officer. “However, more needs to be done to make sure legitimate businesses like title and escrow companies are not violating the law when providing services to this burgeoning industry when real estate is purchased. ALTA members support efforts to clarify compliance under state and federal laws for businesses that facilitate transfer and sale of real estate that could be used in growing, storing or selling of marijuana.” 
 
In addition Sens. Menendez, Paul, Merkley and Cramer introduced the Clarifying Law Around Insurance of Marijuana (CLAIM) Act on July 23. Sen. Menendez issued a statement about the act.


Leslie Midgley and Aaron Day Provide Advocacy/Regulatory Update to FLTA

TLTA | July 23, 2019

On July 18, Leslie Midgley and Aaron Day attended the Florida Land Title Association's Summer Board Retreat to provide an in-depth review of TLTA's recent advocacy, legislative and rate rule challenges and successes. "It was both an honor and a pleasure to be part of the program," said Leslie. "We are looking forward to our continued collaboration and friendship."

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