2023 Government Affairs/RPAC Trustees Committee

Committee Type: Steering Committee
The Government Affairs Committee works year-round in the public policy and advocacy arena, making sure that REALTORS® and property owner’s interests are protected and promoted in the halls of local, state, and federal government by engaging in a variety of political, legislative and regulatory activities.

Chair: Barry Skalski


Committee Composition: The Committee consists of both REALTORS® and Affiliate members.


Mission Statement:  is responsible for the advocacy of public policy issues related to the real estate industry, home ownership, private property rights and economic development.  The goal of the Government Affairs Committee is to build positive working relationships with elected officials so that our interests and opinions are considered as decisions are made.  While monitoring the activities of local governmental agencies and building positive working relationships with public officials, the Committee will advise entities of issues related to the interests of the real estate professionals.  The Government Affairs Committee will report to the Board of Directors regarding the actions of government as it relates to the real estate industry. Will also partner with other organizations to influence legislation and regulation when in the interest of SBAR.

Strategic Objectives:

  1. Develop an annual public policy agenda that clearly demonstrates the issues of interest to the South Bend Area REALTORS®.
  2. Develop policy positions for board approval on specific legislation and issues within the scope of the mission of this body.
  3. Focus policy study of issues subcommittees on the areas of transportation & infrastructure, conservation & utilities, smart growth & development, local property issues, transportation issues, & water and conservation issues.
  4. Assist in the implementation of political affairs programs such as candidate interviews, meet & greet, and voter registration, etc.
  5. Assist in educating the membership on public policy and political issues with a goal of increasing member involvement in the areas of political programs and public policy.
  6. Focus policy study of issues subcommittees on the areas of transportation, local water issues, smart growth/development, local property issues, and housing initiatives.


  1. Become knowledgeable of local, regional, state, and national public policy issues impacting our industry, property owners, and SBAR.
  2. The committee shall make policy, candidate, and issue recommendations without personal bias or ulterior motives and represent the entire membership of SBAR in doing so.
  3. The committee shall comply with the applicable federal, state, and local laws regarding political activities of associations with a 501©6 designation.

Board committees, when used, will be assigned so as to minimally interfere with the wholeness of the board’s job and so as never to interfere with delegation from the board to CEO.

  1. Board committees are to help the board do its job, not to help the staff do its jobs. Committees ordinarily will assist the board by preparing policy alternatives and implications for board deliberation. Board committees are not to be created by the board to advise staff.
  2. Board committees may not speak or act for the board except when formally given such authority for specific and time‑limited purposes. Expectations and authority will be carefully stated in order not to conflict with authority delegated to the chief executive.
  3. Board committees cannot exercise authority over staff. Because the Chief Executive works for the full board, the CEO will not be required to obtain approval of a board committee before an executive action. In keeping with the board’s broader focus, board committees will normally not have direct dealings with current staff operations.
  4. Board committees are to avoid over‑identification with organizational parts rather than the whole. Therefore, a board committee which has helped the board create policy on some topic will not be used to monitor organizational performance on that same subject.

Committee Guidelines:

  1. The committee must follow the mission and values of the organization.
  2. The committee members must be REALTOR® and Affiliate members of the South Bend Area REALTORS®.
  3. Committee Chair may serve as Past Chair the following year for consistency.
  4. The committee cannot have a meeting without a quorum of committee members present.
  5. Members are encouraged to attend all meetings, to arrive on time and stay for the duration of meetings. If a situation requires their departure, the member will be recorded as absent if not in attendance for at least ½ of the meeting.
  6. All members subject to censure or removal at the direction of the Board of Directors.
  7. The Committee Chair has the authority to create a subcommittee or task force with approval by the Board of Directors
  8. The Committee Chair may dissolve the task force or Subcommittee once it is determined that the project is complete. This action must be approved by the BOD under the minutes of the Committee.
  9. The committee members will be appointed by SBAR Board of Directors.