REALTORS® can still influence tax reform by taking action now

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By participating in the second Call for Action on tax reform, Illinois REALTORS® may be able to reduce the negative impacts of the negotiated final tax reform bill on middle class homeowners, home buyers and the economy.

Respond to the Cal for Action now.

As of 4 p.m. Friday, 18.8 percent of Illinois REALTORS® had responded to the Call for Action, “It is not too late to influence Congress on tax reform.” Check our progress.

Watch for more information in the coming days.

In separate bills passed earlier this month, the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate proposed a decrease to the corporate tax rate but changes to taxes for  homeowners and home buyers. As a result, NAR has voiced opposition to the following features of the previous proposals:

  • limits to the mortgage interest deduction,
  • changes to the capital gains exclusion on the sale of a principal residence,
  • a cap for property tax deductions and
  • elimination of state and local tax deductions.

If the NAR’s concerns aren’t addressed in the final version of the tax reform bill, the NAR predicts:

  • increases in interest rates;
  • decreases of as much as 10 percent in home values; and
  • a reduction in the nation’s economic growth.

The NAR has identified several positives in the House and Senate proposals, including: lower tax rates for partnerships, limited liability companies and S corporations; the preservation of 1031 like-kind exchanges; and positive provisions on business expensing and property depreciation.

Pippion-McGriff was named to state real estate board

As we recap the achievements of Illinois REALTORS® during the last year, let’s put today’s spotlight on Chicago-area REALTOR® Nykea Pippion McGriff, who was appointed to the Real Estate Administration and Disciplinary Board for 2017.

Pippion McGriff, a broker for DreamTown Realty in Chicago, is a familiar name to REALTORS® across the state, having served on numerous committees for Illinois REALTORS®, including chair of the State Legislative Contacts Working Group in 2017. In 2018, she’ll be vice chair for the REALTORS® Political Action Committee and for the RPAC Trustees. She also serves as the Federal Political Contact for U.S. Representative Bobby Rush of District 1.

She is the president of the Women’s Council of REALTORS® Chicago, too.

Pippion McGriff, GRI, ABR, ADPR, BPOR, SFR is a licensed managing broker.

As a part of the Illinois Real Estate Administration and Disciplinary Board, she meets monthly with nine other board members.

(This is the third in a series of blog posts about Illinois REALTORS® who were recognized for their achievements in 2017. Watch this blog daily through the end of the year for more success stories.) 

Community focus brings REALTORS® and 8 Metro-East mayors together

(l to r) RASI President Angie Zahn, Breese Mayor Charlie Hilmes and REALTOR® Chris Dixon agree that community growth is important for residents and REALTORS®.

Mayors from Belleville, Breese, Columbia, Fairview Heights, Mascoutah, O’Fallon, Shiloh, and Swansea joined more than 130 members of the REALTOR® Association of Southwestern Illinois (RASI) last week in Fairview Heights for a discussion about their communities.

“Mitch Albom once said, ‘Devote yourself to your community around you and devote yourself to creating something that gives you purpose and meaning,’” said Angie Zahn, RASI President. “The sentiment behind this quote was felt at ‘Breakfast with the Mayors’ last week.

“We, as the REALTOR® Association, feel it’s so important to have an active role in our communities. We strive to continually be partners in community development, making sure that the communities in the Metro-East are thriving.

“Whether it’s being an advocate for the rights of private property owners or giving back to those who need it, we feel that it’s essential to work together with our community leaders. We are incredibly grateful for the reciprocal feelings of the mayors who joined us. We sincerely appreciate their time and all they do for our communities.”

The gathering was held at the Four Points by Sheraton in Fairview Heights.

RASI will continue the working relationships with these mayors and mayors from all the communities in the Metro-East to protect the rights of private property owners. RASI is the voice for real estate in Southwestern Illinois with more than 950 members.

Illini Valley REALTORS® donates money to help needy in Ottawa and LaSalle-Peru area

The Illini Valley REALTORS® collected more than $800 to help the needy at its annual holiday party at the Seneca Oak Ridge Golf Course in December.

For the third consecutive year, the local association agreed to give the donation to the Illinois Valley Public Auction to Deliver Shelter (PADS). Illinois Valley PADS provides shelter, food and services to people in need in LaSalle, Bureau and Putnam counties. It has locations in Ottawa and Peru.

Karen Yade, Illini Valley REALTORS® PADS Coordinator presented a check for $822 to Carol Alcorn, Illinois Valley PADS Executive Director, for gift cards and supplies.

Illini Valley officers are: President Linda Hamer, President-elect Deborah Spangler and Treasurer Andy Cassidy. Gail Pyszka is the Association Executive.

(This is the ninth in a series of blog posts about local associations giving back to their communities during the holiday season. See the previous stories about the: Three Rivers Association of REALTORS®, Heartland REALTOR® Organization, Logan County Board of REALTORS®, Illinois REALTORS® staff in Springfield, Egyptian Board of REALTORS®, Belvidere Board of REALTORS®, Champaign County Association of REALTORS® and a second story about the Heartland REALTOR® Organization.)


Ruggieri and Sampah helped lead Global Business Council to platinum

Let’s recap the recognition some Illinois REALTORS® received during the year because of the significant ways they impacted their colleagues, their communities and the marketplace. And because we couldn’t fit everyone in one blog post, today’s story focuses on November news about the Global Business Council.

REALTORS® Alex Ruggieri and Vicky Sampah served as chair and vice chair of the 2017 Global Business Council as the group was recognized with the Platinum Global Achievement Program Award for its work on behalf of the industry. Sharon Gorrell is the staff liaison for Illinois REALTORS®.


Ruggieri, CCIM, CIPS, CRE, GRI, is the senior investment advisor with SVN-Ramshaw Real Estate in Champaign. He is the chair of NAR’s Commercial Leadership Forum. He serves on multiple committees for Illinois REALTORS®.


Sampah, ABR, GRI, CIPS, TRC, e-PRO, is broker-owner of ABRI Group LLC, located in Plainfield, serving the Naperville, Plainfield, Bolingbrook, Aurora, Joliet, Romeoville and surrounding areas. She serves on multiple committees for the Illinois REALTORS® and is its consulate general liaison for the country of Rwanda. She is vice-chair of the Global Council for the Mainstreet Organization of REALTORS®.

In 2018, Sampah will serve as the chair of the Illinois REALTORS® Global Business Council.

(This is the second in a series of blog posts about Illinois REALTORS® who were recognized for their achievements in 2017. Watch this blog daily through the end of the year for more success stories.)