Multifamily industry leaders, who have complained that the federal government neglected their help in the post-hurricane Gulf Coast cleanup, are urging the government to adopt a more apartment-friendly approach.
While the long-term rebuilding of the region continues, “there is an extraordinary opportunity for partnerships,” said Reese Fayde, CEO of Living Cities, a national community development organization. “We’ll never have enough money to do everything that needs to be done unless we are really aggressively using partnerships and different methods for blending private and public interests.”
Meanwhile, apartment groups have blasted the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for spending almost $1 billion on 26,000 mobile homes that might never be used. FEMA initially called the mobile homes “an important part of a comprehensive housing strategy.” Unfortunately, the agency has since realized that its own regulations prohibit the use of the trailers in flood plains.
“The $1 billion wasted on those unoccupied trailers that sit in the Gulf Coast mud would shelter 200,000 evacuee families in an apartment for six months,” said Jim Arbury, senior vice president of government affairs for the National Multi-Housing Council and the National Apartment Association, which operate a joint legislative effort.
The groups also criticized the agency’s use of short-term cash payments instead of rental vouchers and its decision to house evacuees in hotels at up to three times the cost of apartments. FEMA has also failed to provide much help to evacuees looking for longer-term apartment housing, the groups complain.
Call for compensation survey participants
The National Multi Housing Council (NMHC) is expanding the reach of its annual apartment compensation and benefits survey and is looking for additional multifamily operators to participate. All apartment companies are invited to participate – not just NMHC members. Each firm that completes the survey will receive a 70% discount on the purchase price of the final report. (The nondiscounted 2005 report cost $2,500.)
The report covers detailed compensation and benefits information on 65 corporate and regional positions, as well as property management-specific jobs. It includes base salaries, variable pay, total compensation levels, health benefits, deductibles, co-payments, flexible spending accounts, domestic partner coverage, life insurance, disability insurance, leave policies, 401(k) programs, profit-sharing plans, and bonuses and other incentives. The information is presented for national, regional, sub-regional, state, consolidated metro area and metro area levels.
To participate in the survey, which can be filled out online, in a downloadable Excel file, or in paper format, go to www.wwds.com/surveys/NMHC2006/login.cfm. All responses are due May 5. The final report will likely be issued in August.
CharterMac names new CEO
CharterMac, a multifamily real estate finance company, promoted Marc Schnitzer to CEO. He had been president of the company since 2003. He is also a managing trustee.
Schnitzer replaced Stephen Ross, who had served as interim CEO since November 2005. Ross will continue to serve as chairman.
Easton named Lane EVP
Lane Investment & Development, LLC, the development subsidiary of Lane Co., a multifamily housing developer and manager, promoted Loretta Easton to executive vice president. She was formerly senior vice president and will continue to serve on the firm’s board of directors and investment committee.
Lane Investment & Development also promoted Joel Brockmann to vice president of development and Debbie Jackson to vice president of finance and disposition.
Dominium hires McAllister
Dominium Development & Acquisition, LLC, a large multifamily developer in the Midwest, named Tom McAllister chief financial officer. He will lead financial operations and help acquire and develop projects totaling anywhere from 1,000 to 1,300 new units annually. Previously, McAllister worked as an accounting and tax consultant to clients such as Lawson Software, Minnesota State Colleges and Universities, and Pricewater-houseCoopers.
Shelter promotes Robuck
National affordable and market-rate housing developer The Shelter Group promoted Scott Robuck to chief financial officer. Robuck joined the organization in 2004. Previously, he was controller and director of finance for Artifact Software, Inc.
CBRE promotes Anderson, Cunningham
CB Richard Ellis (CBRE) promoted both Tyler Anderson and Sean Cunningham to vice chairman. This top position is held by only 14 of CBRE’s 3,000 brokers across the nation. In 2005, the pair completed a total of 52 transactions involving 14,856 apartment units worth about $1.5 billion.
Enochs joins Alexander & Edwards
Liz Enochs joined Alexander & Edwards Publishing, Inc. as a senior editor, where she will take on editing duties for both Apartment Finance Today and Affordable Housing Finance magazines. She also will be responsible for the tax-exempt bond coverage. She was previously a senior editor at Red Herring magazine in Belmont, Calif.
Enochs has been a journalist for 15 years, with eight of those in financial journalism, including stints as a municipal finance reporter for a newsletter owned by The Bond Buyer, a municipal finance newspaper, and at Bloomberg News as an economics and Federal Reserve reporter. She began her career in Zimbabwe, where she worked as a staff reporter for Horizon, an independent newsmagazine.
The photograph on page S-2 of the Green Building supplement in the March 2006 issue of Apartment Finance Today was incorrectly identified. The project in the photo is High Point, a sustainably developed project in Seattle. Apartment Finance Today regrets the error.