You can be a citizen reporter! You can make a difference in breaking the purple wall of MHI silence! You can get George Allen, Spencer Roane, federal and GSE officials, or others to answer questions that in many cases they’ve avoided for months.
Here are our suggestions and tips. Please read carefully, and book mark this page/post for quick reference.
I) Be polite.
II) Just ask one question that hasn’t already been asked. You don’t have to argue. Allow the person asked to answer, while you or a friend record the public answer.
III) Shy? Just record what’s said. MHProNews plans to publish those recorded replies that are provided by industry members.
IV) Here’s an easy way to do this:
- A) Turn on the recording feature on your smart phone.
- B) Be polite. Just ask the question and record the answer. Email that to us later at iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com.
- C) Have this article open on your smart phone as a reminder.
Last January, the Daily Business News on MHProNews published a list of 12 questions that we asked attendees in Louisville to ask Richard ‘Dick’ Jennison, MHI President and CEO. Jennison ducked out on his own presentation, as was reported at this link here. We hope that won’t happen, because the industry deserves to have these questions asked and answered.
For the next two days, MHProNews encourages the following from attendees at the George Allen roundtable in Indianapolis, IN.
Because it is a public meeting room, there is no expectation of privacy – save in restrooms or private hotel rooms – per numerous legal precedents and published research. While we are not attorneys, and aren’t providing legal advice, here’s what some of the legal research says. “In general, most video only recordings are legal whether you inform the persons you are recording them or not provided their privacy isn’t invaded,” per PalmVid’s legal page.
Audio recordings are also normally permitted, “Federal law permits recording telephone calls and in-person conversations with the consent of at least one of the parties. … This is called a “one-party consent” law. Under a one-party consent law, you can record a phone call or conversation so long as you are a party to the conversation,” per the DLMHP legal guide.
Allen or others may try to discourage recording. That’s your constitutional right. If there are signs that say, “don’t record,” please take photos of those signs. Per a contact at the ACLU, it would be a violation of your rights to stop you from recording in a public meeting place – vs. a private place, like a bathroom or private hotel room where someone sleeps.
Here are 8 suggested questions, these will suggest others.
- 1) To anyone associated with MHI, “If the MHI/GSE ‘new class of home’ plan is so good, why are the details hidden behind a fire wall on the MHI website?”
- 2) Joe Stegmayer used to be a Clayton Homes division president. Sources tell MHProNews that their early acquisitions could not be accomplished based solely upon Cavco’s balance sheet at the time, alleging that Berkshire Hathaway was involved in an oblique fashion. With that background ask Joe Stegmayer “is there any truth to the concern that Cavco needed outside help to do its initial acquisitions? If so, who helped and how much?”
- 3) Ask Stegmayer and everyone associated with MHI, “why have you declined public discussion/debate via video with MHARR and/or MHProNews?”
- 4) Ask George Allen, Spencer Roane, “Why haven’t you publicly condemned the alleged behavior of Tom Lackey, who per locale media and officials, ‘sold’ manufactured homes ‘rent to own’ without transferring title to buyers, who lost thousands of dollars?”
- 5) Howard Walker, the late MHI treasurer and ELS Vice Chairman, said that he believes in Transparency. “Why has MHI ducked questions from trade media like MHProNews in the last two years, when MHI routinely answered questions asked by MHProNews in the years prior to the last two years?”
- 6) Ask the GSEs, “Why have you ducked out on interviews with MHProNews about your ‘new class of homes’ program on select, not all, manufactured homes?”
- 7) Ask the FHFA, “Why have you allowed the GSEs to duck the clear Congressional mandate of the Duty to Serve (DTS) manufactured housing for so many years?”
- 8) Anyone associated with MHI, “With 8.3 million housing units needed, per the National Association of Realtors, why have hasn’t manufactured housing kept up with the RV industry in production and sales?”
- These will get you started.
Below is a link to the questions we asked attendees in Louisville to ask Dick Jennison. Jennison suddenly canceled, after that linked article was published. See the related reports, linked below. Again, our hope is not that speakers cancel, but rather that they will be faithfully, accurately recorded, and they will have to answer questions that in some cases they’ve ducked for over a year.
Working together, with industry professionals, the problematic performance and allegations surrounding MHI, George Allen, COBA7, SECO, and Spencer Roane can be addressed and remedied. “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)
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