Proposed changes in the Governor’s Budget call for “consolidating” some agencies. One of those would be the DRE (Department of Real Estate). It is all dressed up as a way to save money by eliminating duplicate expenses, thereby reducing the need for tax dollars.
We see it as a state level reiteration of the Social Security fiasco. By “combining” agencies they are combining money pools. Read that as taking money; money that is used strictly to regulate real estate practices and protect the general public. While we don’t enjoy regulation any more than the next guy, there is an absolute need for protection from the unscrupulous.
Could this protection be accomplished or even improved by joining forces with other agencies? Possibly; everything can be improved. But that is not the object here. This is a budget maneuver. This is being touted as a cost savings.
How can you save when the cost is already $0? You read the right; it’s not a typo. The DRE is funded not by tax dollars, but by the fees we pay for licenses and services. Part of the fines collected are also added to this pot. Operating costs and enforcement are taken from this pot.
This is where the comparison to Social Security comes in. The DRE has a positive account balance. This is required to operate without using credit, as we do. By “combining” DRE with tax supported agencies, our money gets added to their pool: you know, that pool that is not only dry but deeply in debt!
End result: Increased cost to tax payers AND less protection! This is such a disgrace that the California Association of Realtors® is once again stepping in to support the DRE in their defense of the measure. Once again government is asking you to pay more and accept less for it! Time to say “NO”!
$ To read the notice from CAR click HERE.
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