Opinion posts below are in rough chronological order (most recent at the top).
Whether an item is news or opinion, everyone can quibble.  We think it's all relevant to our vision and mission to
"Build CT's Economy, Communities and Better Lives, Using Effective Advocacy and New Knowledge to Solve our Member's Problems."

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2018 - Please Do No More Harm and Help Housing Recover

2017 State Legislative Session Wrap-Up - by Bill Ethier, CEO

Resolution for a Better Connecticut - HBRACT urges all state and local lawmakers to embrace this resolution.

Oppose Mandatory Sprinklers in New Townhomes - CT needs affordable homes; fire sprinklers should be consumer's choice.

Connecticut: Not So Bad for Business, Companies Doing Well - "The solid results go right across industries ... Only home builders on our client list are languishing."

Fair Housing Working Group holds initial meeting - HBRACT CEO, Bill Ethier,  lays out a way forward to increase affordable housing production. 38 things CT could do.

How Local Housing Regulations Smother the U.S. Economy - NY Times Op-Ed

How Did America's Richest State Become Such a Fiscal Mess? - Governing magazine

Mandate to install fire sprinklers in all new 1&2 family homes  - overwhelming defeat (7-18 vote) in Public Safety Committee should send strong message to proponents.  But, they're not listening and trying this time to mandate sprinklers be installed in every new townhome - a blow to a popular affordable housing option.

Millennial Home Buyers Send a Chill Through Rental Markets - WSJ

Connecticut is facing a corporate migration crisis -"It's not the cheapest place to do business ... but it's not that bad"

What on Earth is Wrong With Connecticut? - The Atlantic

Regulatory Hurdles in Connecticut - So many ways builders are beat down in CT; We all lose when that happens ...

Mortgage tax fight tests clout of home industry - The Hill reports on home builder's and realtor's view of President Trump's tax overhaul plan.

Experts: Governor's Budget Proposal Would Hurt Housing Market - "... a time when the lack of affordable housing is already a major economic development issue."

Arrogance, disdain and an unprecedented failure to lead - CT Viewpoints

Wall street agency warns CT budgets will be bleak for years - Fixed costs to blame; So, legislators, FIX the FIXED COSTS!

How the Mass. economy overtook Connecticut - Can Trump pull Connecticut out of its slump? Answer may be a new suburban oasis, but it depends on lower home prices.

Union concessions still key focal point in a time of hard tradeoffs - CT Mirror

How the Mass. economy overtook Connecticut - Can Trump pull Connecticut out of its slump? Answer may be a new suburban oasis, but it depends on lower home prices.

CBIA unhappy with steady job loss in CT - everyone should be unhappy with CT's dismal job performance

2016-2017 Resolution for a Better Connecticut -HBRACT urges all state and local candidates to embrace this resolution.

Regulatory Hurdles in Connecticut - So many ways builders are beat down in CT and, then, we all lose...

Real estate is vital to the economy - USA Today opinion piece

A Millennial Tells Why He Left CT Twice -"It's the economy, stupid."

Where Has All the Money Gone? 25th Anniversary of CT's Income Tax - Yankee Institute of Public Policy

New England's Suburban Decline - "Housing is brutally expensive in Connecticut," Francese said. "Millennials just say, 'This is a joke ... I can never get paid enough to pay for the house.'"

Discussing the Human City - watch Joel Kotkin challenge the dominant planning mantra that pushes for dense urban cores and its war on the suburbs.

How Anti-Growth Sentiment, Reflected in Zoning Laws, Thwarts Equality - NY Times

For first time in 6 years, legislature overrides Governor Malloy's vetoes of bills - Governor's veto of SB 302, a bill HBRA strongly supported, was fortunately overturned and is a victory for small businesses - will help change the regulatory mindset of state agencies.

2016 Legislative Session - HBRA Testimony, Find Your Legislators & More

HBRA testifies on crumbling concrete issue - Our 2-prong solution is logical and will solve current and future issues.  J.J. Mottes blames builders' installers - argument debunked by HBRA (see news story to left).

It's More than Just Smoke Alarms - HBRA responds to Nat'l Fire Sprinklers Assoc's despicable and hypocritical comments about home builders.

HBRA Fights Mandate to Install Fire Sprinklers in all new 1&2 Family Homes - On 7-18 vote, sprinkler mandate overwhelmingly defeated in committee.

It's More than Just Smoke Alarms - HBRA responds to Nat'l Fire Sprinklers Assoc's despicable and hypocritical comments about home builders

Bill closing deficit, cutting business taxes heads to Malloy - CT Mirror

HBRACT comments on CEQ's report, "Digging Connecticut" - see more info on storm water regulation here.

Sales tax exemption for weatherization products is repealed in legislature's special session - an unwelcome surprise. 
DRS Issued a Special Notice stating its interpretation of the new law - see SN 2015(11).

HBRA Files Comments with DEEP on its Municipal Stormwater Permit (aka MS4) - State's mandate on municipalities effectively breaches a settlement agreement the HBRA reached with DEEP just two years ago.

So Much for the Death of Sprawl: America's Exurbs are Booming - Joel Kotkin, in Forbes.com

HBRA Files Comments with DEEP on its Municipal Stormwater Permit (aka MS4) - State's mandate on municipalities effectively breaches a settlement agreement the HBRA reached with DEEP just two years ago.

HBRA Recommends Tax Changes to State Tax Panel - "Housing can lead the way to job growth and economic recovery."

Mandating Fire Sprinklers in all New Homes - the Significance of Perspective -  ... and why a mandate is a bad idea, Bill Ethier

HBRA Opposes Higher State Spending and More Taxes "We're headed in the wrong direction.  ...  We're not asking the state to do more with less.  We're demanding the state to do less with less."

HBRA's 2015 State Legislative Priorities  (as of 5-5-15; You won't believe the legislation we're opposing.)

Housing Affordability is Blue America's Greatest Failing

An Emerging Housing Crisis? - Bill Ethier

CT Housing Headed in Wrong Direction - Total housing permits and 1&2 family home permits in 2014 down from 2013 - official numbers released 5-4-2015.

Millenials Desire a Home in the Suburbs (NAHB)

Wrong Way Nation (NY Times) - It's not the South's and West's business-friendly pull that makes people leave the Northeast, it's the Northeast's over-regulation of housing that drives higher housing costs that forces people out.

Millenials Still Want to Own a Home - and more want to live in the suburbs than in urban settings; but since income growth is slow in this economy and student loan debt is a major burden, home ownership is a long-term goal.

Millenial Boomtowns: Where the Generation is Clustering (It's Not Downtown) - dispelling the myth of where young adults want to live.

State's Economic Growth Lackluster in 2013 - CBIA

Hopeful But Wary: Will Promising Signs For Home Construction Fizzle Once Again? - Courant.com

HBRA Joins the CT20x17 Campaign - HBRA's CEO, Bill Ethier, to serve on CT20x17 Steering Committee.  Working to make Connecticut a top 20 state for business by 2017.  See CBIA's "Kick Start Our Economy" for a quick summary of the campaign, or go to the CT20x17 web site.

Measures of Consumer Confidence Mixed - Again (Eye on Housing blog)

Connecticut 48th worst for state and local tax burden - as reported by CBIA.

Keep 50+ Marketing on the Right Side of Fair Housing Laws (NAHB 50+ Housing online magazine)

The Economy Is Expected To Grow, As Long As Lawmakers ‘Don’t Mess It Up’ (CT News Junkie)

CT's Structural Jobless Problem - "The state's 7.6 percent unemployment rate is a deeply misleading statistic that hides 'profound structural weakness' in the economy ...." (HartfordBusiness.com)  The lower rate is due to how unemployment is calculated, i.e., it does not count people who have given up looking for a job.  If everyone in CT who gave up since 2009 were still in the job market looking for work, the unemployment rate would be close to 11%.

Why It Takes So Long to Build a Bridge in America - "Regulatory review is supposed to serve a free society, not paralyze it." WSJ, Philip K. Howard.

How Long Does it Take to Build a House? - NAHB, Eye on Housing blog. National average from building permit to completion is 7 months, but longer in the Northeast. And, getting to the building permit stage (the last approval step a builder needs before home construction can begin) can take one to several years due to the many land use and other approval steps.

CT Housing Still Expensive, Still Scarce - CT News Junkie

Connecticut Needs a Better Value Proposition - by Douglas G. Fisher

How Did Rich Connecticut Morph Into One Of America's Worst Performing Economies? - by Jim Powell, Forbes.


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