MARYLAND REAL ESTATE COMMISSION
500 North Calvert Street
Baltimore, MD 21202
Mission: Protecting the health, safety, and welfare of the public
through examination, licensing, and regulatory activities regarding real estate
BUSINESS MEETING MINUTES
JUNE 17, 2009, 10:30 a.m.
Highlights from the meeting:
Current license count 49,328
GF balance $2,302,338.47
D’Ambrosia elected Chair; Cooke, Vice Chair
Delegate Doyle L. Niemann explains PHIFA/MFPA
Business meeting dates change in September, October
Commissioner J. Nicholas D’Ambrosia, Chair (Industry)
Commissioner Nancy R. Simpers, Vice Chair (Industry)
Commissioner Anne S. Cooke (Industry)
Commissioner Marla S. Johnson (Industry)
Commissioner Surina Jordan (Consumer)
Commissioner Robin L. Pirtle (Consumer)
Commissioner Georgiana S. Tyler (Industry)
Commissioner Colette P. Youngblood (Consumer)
Stanley J. Botts, Commissioner, O&P
Harry Loleas, Deputy Commissioner, O & P
Elizabeth Trimble, AAG, Counsel
Katherine F. Connelly, Executive Director
J. Steven Long, Assistant Executive Director
Patricia Hannon, Education Administrator, Session Recorder
PUBLIC IN ATTENDANCE:
Donald White, MREEA and PG Comm Coll
Mark Feinroth, MAR
Lindsay Eastwood, DLS
Bob Johnston, AACAR
The Honorable Doyle L. Niemann, Maryland House of Delegates
CALL TO ORDER:
J. Nicholas D’Ambrosia, Chair, called the meeting to order at 10:30 a.m.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES:
Motion (made by Nancy R. Simpers, seconded by Marla S. Johnson) To approve the minutes of
the May 20, 2009 business meeting. Unanimous approval.
REPORT OF COMPLAINTS/ADMINISTRATIVE DISMISSALS:
Motion (made by Nancy R. Simpers, seconded by Anne S. Cooke) To approve the
Administrative Dismissals for the month of June 2009. Motion carried.
1. Education – Georgiana S. Tyler, Education Chair, read the exam statistics report from PSI, the testing
vendor. For the month of May 2009, 355 salesperson exams and 31 broker exams were administered.
2. Legislative – Anne S. Cooke, Legislative Chair and Harry Loleas, O&P Deputy Commissioner –
Preliminary approval received on re-submitting last year’s bills.
COMMENTS FROM EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR: Katherine F. Connelly
1. Current license count is 49,328. Of this total, 4,923 are brokers, 3,237 are associate brokers, 40,103
are salespersons, 782 branch offices, 3 timeshares, 58 reciprocal brokers, 18 reciprocal associate
brokers, and 204 reciprocal salespersons. Of the total, 4,973 are inactive.
2. The Guaranty Fund balance as of April 30, 2009 is $2,302,338.47.
3. The review of the bids for the new exam contract is completed. The details of the results will be
announced at the July business meeting.
4. The Maryland Department of Legislative Services has begun its Sunset review of MREC. Ms.
Lindsay Eastwood, DLS auditor, was introduced.
5. Technology requests have been sent to the Fiscal Unit to reserve funds from MREC’s IT budget.
6. Recent travel/outreach – On May 27, Ms. Connelly attended the Greater Baltimore Board of Realtors’
“Get Connected” event, a time to meet with many local and state legislators.
7. The South Dakota Real Estate Commission changed the terms of its reciprocal agreements to require
reciprocal applicants to pass their state portion, effective July 1, 2009. MREC was notified even
though Maryland does not have a reciprocal agreement with South Dakota. From discussions at
recent ARELLO conferences, other states are making similar changes.
8. Mileage reimbursement remains at 55 cents for FY 2010. The meal reimbursement increased by $1
for dinner when in state or non-high cost areas.
9. New Commissioners have been issued forms to move forward to obtain their State ID badge.
Commissioners needing a renewal form can contact Pat Hannon.
10. As a reminder, the business meeting dates were changed to Wednesday, September 30 and Thursday,
October 29 because of previously scheduled industry conferences those months.
11. The 2008 Continuing Education Audit continues. With each yearly audit, the compliance rate
12. There is a good report from the school offering principles and practices for salespersons by internet
delivery. Four students have finished the online program; one passed the proctored exam, received
the completion certificate, and passed the licensing exam. The three remaining students are scheduled
to take the proctored exam soon. These four students each spent between 64 to 66 hours to complete
the online portion. Over 30 other students are in various stages of the program. Several other
schools are working with Maryland Higher Education Commission to gain approval for their online
salesperson pre-licensing program.
COMMENTS FROM COUNSEL: Elizabeth Trimble
1. Counsel thanked Commissioners for their comments to her recent email on ideas for a Do’s and
Don’ts list on property foreclosure/short sales. More discussion will be needed after Delegate
2. Counsel has continued to work with the Education Committee to draft proposed continuing education
regulations. Her latest draft will be emailed to the Education Commissioners for further discussion.
When finalized, the recommendations will be presented to the full Commission.
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COMMENTS FROM CHAIR: J. Nicholas D’Ambrosia
1. Recently the Chairman met with the Education Committee and with Ms. Eastwood from Legislative
2. The Chairman received training today in accessing cases in the secure file server; Mr. Long will hold
a training session for Commissioners following today’s meeting.
1. Nominations and Election of Officers –
Motion (made by Georgiana S. Tyler, seconded by Colette P. Youngblood) To nominate Anne S.
Cooke as Vice Chair. Commissioner Cooke accepted the nomination. Unanimous approval;
Motion (made by Georgiana S. Tyler, seconded by Colette P. Youngblood) To nominate J.
Nicholas D’Ambrosia to continue as Chair for the next year. Commissioner D’Ambrosia
accepted the nomination. Motion (made by Marla S. Johnson, seconded by Nancy R. Simpers)
To close the nominations. Unanimous approval; Motions passed.
2. Chairman D’Ambrosia will review Committee assignments for next month’s meeting.
Commissioners with interest in a committee can contact him before then.
1. Special Presentation by Delegate Doyle L. Niemann, a member of the Maryland House of Delegates
since 2003 and its Environmental Matters Committee. A prime author of the Protection of
Homeowners in Foreclosure Act (PHIFA), the PHIFA Enhancement, and the Mortgage Fraud
Protection Act (MFPA), Delegate Niemann’s interest in doing so grew out of his experiences as a
prosecutor with the Prince George’s County State’s Attorney in the economic crimes unit. He spoke
about equity stripping, the need to put constraints on that, activities of individuals offering to assist
consumers in default/foreclosure, requirements of these laws, exemptions under certain circumstances,
actions allowed/prohibited under a real estate license, limitations on commissions, 5-day recission
notice, and so much more. We learned that PHIFA empowers victims by giving a private right of
action and triple damage awards; MFPA gives a private right of action as well as criminal penalties.
There was a question and answer time following the Delegate’s presentation. Commissioners
thanked Delegate Niemann for answering their questions and clarifying how and when these laws
apply to real estate licensees.
2. After the presentation, Commissioners discussed the best way to inform licensees. Rather than Do’s
and Don’ts, Counsel suggested the format of Frequently Asked Questions might be more helpful.
Commissioners wanted to include strengthening broker supervision and helping licensees recognize
earlier on the status of the mortgage.
Chairman D’Ambrosia had one further item to report. A letter of commendation was received
from former Counsel to the Department, Francis X. Pugh, relating his positive experience with a real
estate licensee. There being no further business, the meeting adjourned at 12:10 p.m. on motion by Nancy
R. Simpers, seconded by Anne S. Cooke, and agreed by all. The next monthly business meeting is
Wednesday, July 15, 2009.
APPROVED AS PRESENTED ____________________________________________________
J. Nicholas D’Ambrosia, Chairperson
APPROVED AS AMENDED ______________________________________________________
J. Nicholas D’Ambrosia, Chairperson
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