October 2015
Golf Tournament Next Friday, October 9
October 27th GMM :
Moving Housing from Recovery to Revival

Guest Speaker:
Michelle Thomas,
Interim Executive Director,
Louisiana Housing Corporation

Moving Housing from Recovery to Revival
A key goal of HBAGNO is to provide members with access to information & opportunity to succeed in a changing economic environment. The discussion at this meeting will cover available programs that provide gap financing to developers, loan products to homebuyers, weatherization assistance, and homeowner repair. Attendees will leave the session with ideas on how to spur new business opportunities in the acquisition, finance, construction, and rehabilitation of housing.

Tuesday, October 27
11am-11:30 : New Member Orientation
11:30-12pm : Networking & Lunch
12-1pm : Program
$25 Members ($30 @ Door)
$30 Guests 

Jefferson Parish President Housing Forum
As election season kicks off into full swing, the HBAGNO's executive board and staff have been busy monitoring the progress of all of the local and state races that affect our districts. On Wednesday, September 23, 2015, the HBA along with the Apartment Association and NOMAR (Realtors) hosted the Jefferson Parish President's housing forum. There are currently five candidates in this race: Mike Yenni, Elton Lagasse, Vincent De Salvo, Al Morella, and Robin Christiana. All five of the candidates attended and answered a variety of questions surrounding all aspects of the housing industry. Topics included: code and permitting, education, crime, housing development and construction. Although all of the candidates had great ideas about the future of Jefferson Parish, Mike Yenni stood out the most with his youthful and progressive ideas for the parish. As a result of the housing forum and information obtained from all candidates, the HBAGNO has decided to endorse Mike Yenni for Jefferson Parish President.

On behalf of the HBA of Greater New Orleans, we would like to encourage you to participate in our upcoming local, state elections. Remember to VOTE on Saturday, October 24th
Member Resources : Quick Links
Did you know that the HBAGNO monthly e-newsletter, sticks & bricks, contains a Quick Links section with information like statewide or parish-by-parish Building Permit Data?  Check out the right-hand column, scroll to the bottom. 
Safety Plus NOW FREE
Safety Plus has provided HBA members in Louisiana access to online training and safety documents for some time now. As of last Tuesday, September 22, the online training feature is now FREE to members. 

Additionally, for those companies who have not had the time to develop their own jobsite safety manuals, Safety Plus will now create a personalized safety plan, complete will all OSHA required documents, for $489. This service would cost a non-member $1,200. Utilizing this service alone pays for your membership!

Start utilizing your membership today! Check out Safety Plus
Advertise in the 2016 Membership Directory
Ad reservations are now open for the 2016 HBAGNO Membership Directory! Enhanced listings start as as low at $39, and ads start at just $229. 

Reserve your ad or enhanced listing online!
Jefferson Edge 2020
JEDCO has released Jefferson EDGE 2020, which outlines the Jefferson Parish Economic Development Strategy. View it HERE.
Jefferson Parish Online
MyGovernmentOnline.org's Customer Portal provides a customer with
access to most any information they would need about their project. The Portal makes inspection reports, original and revised plans, and ancillary documents available online. A user simply needs an internet browser (Internet Explorer 8+, Mozilla Firefox 3.6+, Safari, Goggle Chrome, etc...) to access all of the content on the portal. To create an account, the customer must have a valid email address and phone number. To view documents the user must have a PDF viewer such as Adobe Acrobat Reader.
Jefferson Parish offers a completely online application process through the Customer Portal. The system guides you through your application from start to finish. Each step gathers all of the necessary contact information, application questions, and files. Jefferson Parish permit technicians review your application, provide comments when necessary, and finally process your application and automatically add the newly created permit to your account.
Online applications may be submitted to the jurisdiction via the Customer Portal. The customer will provide an address, contact information for the application, and an appropriate permit type. This will determine the questions the customer must answer or the information they must provide. Customers will also have the option to upload copies of documents along with their application. Once all information is completed, the customer will send their application to the jurisdiction for review. A user or group of users will review the applications for completeness and accuracy.
From last month... 
Jefferson Parish, Department of Inspection & Code
The Parish of Jefferson, Department of Inspection and Code Enforcement, is offering two community outreach meetings to introduce and provide instruction on utilizing its
MyPermitNow software service.  All citizens, tradesmen and contractors who apply for permits, licenses, or trades filings from the Department of Inspection and Code Enforcement are encouraged to attend.  The first will be held on September 17, 2015 at 5:00 p.m. in the Eastbank Council chambers, 2nd Floor, Joseph S. Yenni Building, 1221 Elmwood Park Blvd. in Jefferson.  The second will be held on September 30, 2015 at 5:00 p.m. at the Westbank Regional Library at 2751 Manhattan Blvd. in Harvey.  Representatives of the Department as well as from South Central Planning and Development Commission will be on hand to demonstrate what the system has to offer, and to provide instruction and guidance for immediate use.
During the meeting we will cover the aspects of:
  •        Applying Online for permits
  •        Paying Online
  •        Requesting Inspections Online
  •        Contacting the technical support team at MyGovernmentOnline
Improving Immigration
Elliot Eisenberg
Elliot Eisenberg, Ph.D. is President of
GraphsandLaughs, LLC and can be reached at

[email protected].
His daily 70 word economics and policy blog can be seen at

 Improving Immigration
Elliot Eisenberg, Ph.D.,
GraphsandLaughs, LLC
September 1, 2015
The current US immigration system not only doesn't work but is not being fixed. That said, given that the race to the White House is on, immigration is sure to play a starring role in the unfolding presidential drama. Rather than rehash stale ideas, anchor babies, border patrols, and the like, below are several proposals that use market forces and not bureaucrats to solve several different immigration problems each with a different type of solution that not only improves our competiveness but also our balance sheet.     
At present the majority of legal immigrants who arrive do so on the basis of family reunification. Fewer than 20% of immigrants obtain green cards based on marketable skills. Instead, allocate immigration visas based primarily on occupational needs. Observe which occupations and industries are experiencing a combination of fast wage growth, lowest unemployment rates and high vacancy rates and allocate entry visas accordingly while keeping existing caps. In this way visas will go to those who skills are in shortest supply.
As for temporary H-2B non-agricultural worker visas and H-1B (high tech) visas, eliminate the quotas on them as is the case with H-2A agricultural visas. If American businesses need temporary workers, they should get them after showing that there are insufficient workers currently available. Depriving firms of workers benefits no one. As for concerns that these new workers will depress wages of existing workers, that concern is not born out by research. Moreover, by allocating visas based on employment shortages, unanticipated downward wage pressure should be reduced.
Next, create a new visa, a U-Visa, for those who are here but undocumented. The visa would allow the holder and their family to stay and work here. The catch, the visa would not lead to citizenship and would have an annual fee. I suspect that a fair price would be about $500 to $700/year. Assuming a few million were bought, this program would bring in $1 to $2 billion annually. Charging for the visa discourages those without jobs from staying. Moreover, this approach would be bundled with severe penalties for employers caught knowingly employing illegals. Absent a job, illegals will find it difficult to remain here.
Lastly, abolish the EB-5 program that allows foreigners to invest their way into the US. A present, depending upon the location of the investment, between $500,000 and $1 million must be invested and shown to create or maintain 10 jobs. After seven years, the investor may then apply to become a naturalized US citizen. This process is convoluted, requires bureaucracy and infrastructure, lends itself to substantial fraud and because the number of visas is capped at 10,000, the wait time is several years. Instead, simply sell citizenship via an auction, similar to the way Treasury securities are sold. The households that apply are necessarily wealthy and charging for a passport would allow us to allocate this scare resource to those who want it most. Given that Malta charges roughly $700,000 for a passport and St. Kitts and Nevis a $250,000, I bet the Treasury could net close to a million per applicant with the current quota intact and raise close to $10 billion/year.  
While you may or may not agree with these suggestions, the point is markets and market signals can solve difficult problems in somewhat different ways if only given a chance. It's not as if the bureaucrats are doing a gangbuster job.            
Member Rebate Program
The Member Rebate Program is a free member benefit of your State & Local Home Builders Association.

There are over 40 of the country's leading manufacturer brands participating in the Member Rebate Program.

Visit Member Benefits for more information, or CLICK HERE to view an online brochure with helpful information about the program.
NAHB Online Courses Logo
2015 Senior Officers of the Board

President, Roy Olsen
Vice President, Floyd Simeon
Treasurer, Mike LeCorgne
Secretary, Frank Morse
Immediate Past President, Brian Mills

2015 Board of Directors

Steve Albert
John Arms
Fernando Arriola
Nick Castjohn
Ric Darling
Charlie Fontenelle
Eddie Gandolfi
Phil Hoffman
Kevin Katner
Jo Ann Kostik
Michael Kraft
Peter Lanaux
Ben Laws
Bruce Layburn
Harold LeBlanc
Scott Morse
Helmut Mundt
Randy Noel
Lynda Nugent Smith
Rolf Parelius
Zach Tyson
Kirk Williamson
Steve Wobbema
Wes Wyman
Peter Young

Also Supported By: 




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October Calendar of Events
All Events held at HBA office unless otherwise noted 

See details below for 
"Featured Events"
9) Fall Golf Tournament @ 12noon
Cypress Lakes Country Club, 10 VIllere Drive, Destrehan

13) RC & ABP Councils Bowling Night @ 5:30-8pm
Rock n Bowl, 3016 S. Carrollton Ave., New Orleans

14) Education Committee Meeting @ 2:30pm

14) HBA Executive Committee Meeting @ 4pm

15) Parade of Homes Committee Meeting @ 1:30pm

16) Associates Breakfast @ 8:30am

20) Board of Directors Meeting @ 4pm

20) Builder Board Elections, Immediately Following Board Meeting

22) Education: Protecting your Assets

27) General Membership Meeting @ 12pm
Holiday Inn, 2261 N. Causeway Blvd, Metairie
Featured Events
Fall Golf Tournament
Friday, October 9
12pm Tee Time

Councils Bowling Night
Tuesday, October 13

$15 per person

Associates Training Breakfast: 
Time Management
Friday, October 16

This is the last session in our series of FREE sales training seminars for our members. 

CE Class: Are your Assets Protected?
Thursday, October 22
3-5 pm
Wine & Cheese Networking
5-6 pm

$10 per person

Jennifer Gerarve, CFP, of Wealth Solutions, LLC will review how to set up your business structure to shield you from potential liability, which assets are protected, and how to employ asset protection strategies.

Helmut Mundt of HBA Builder's Risk Program will go over some common gaps in insurance coverage, and how to safeguard your business through proper insurance coverage. 

October GMM
Tuesday, October 27

New Member Orientation

Networking & Lunch


$25 Members ($30 @ Door)
$30 Guests

Guest Speaker:
Michelle Thomas,
Interim Executive Director,
Louisiana Housing Corporation


Members: List your job opening here at no charge!
QuickLinksQuick Links & Resources

* Under Compliance, click on Employers' Workers' Compensation Coverage Verification
HBA Staff Contacts

Jon Luther, Executive Vice President
Philip Thomas, Education Director & NOEL Program Director  [email protected]
Lauren Galliano, Director of Membership & Industry Relations   [email protected]g
Rita Bautista, Governmental Affairs Representative    [email protected]
Shane Gray, Accountant  [email protected]

Did We Miss Something?
Please contact Lauren at the HBA office with any pertinent industry-related issues and/or professional achievements you'd like to share with your association members.

Feature Articles in upcoming issues of sticks & bricks or HBA's printed publication, the homebuilder quarterly(HQ), are FREE opportunities for HBA members to market themselves to 1,000+ industry professionals.

Click Here to Request Details and Submitter Deadlines