OMA stands for Building Owners and Managers Association. It is an organization for real estate professionals. Members include property owners, developers, property managers, asset managers and vendors and contractors who provide products and services to the real estate industry.
BOMA acts as an advocacy and lobbying group that represents the interests of commercial properties. Some of the things BOMA has lobbied for are electricity deregulation, capital gains tax relief, tax deductions for energy efficiency, telecommunications, indoor air quality, private property rights, risk assessment, and codes and standards. For over 100 years BOMA has also set the standard for measuring the floor space of office buildings.
What Are Some of BOMA’s Positions?
BOMA is primarily a lobbying group that attempts to represent the best interests of the real estate industry, but like with any lobbying group, it is important to be aware of their positions on key issues.
- Tax Reform: BOMA believes that the current tax system is “cumbersome and in desperate need of updating.” The particular focus is on depreciation models that they feel do not accurately reflect reality.
- The Americans with Disabilities Act: The intent of the ADA is to protect the rights of disabled Americans. Unfortunately, the protections afforded by this act are sometimes exploited by less than scrupulous attorneys who bring about lawsuits concerning easily correctable issues with the intention of extorting building managers and property owners. BOMA is seeking to end this type of exploitation.
- Energy Efficiency: Increasing the energy efficiency of a building is good for the environment and for saving tenants and business owners money. BOMA is looking to provide incentives for property owners to increase the efficiency of their buildings by offering tax breaks and other rewards.
- Terrorism Insurance: BOMA believes that since terrorism remains a threat the federal terrorism insurance program must continue until insurers are able to assume the risk on their own.
- Federal Rules Affecting Local Zoning: The federal government will occasionally make rules that affect local zoning rules. BOMA believes that before any of these decisions are made all stakeholders, including property owners, should have the opportunity to comment and make their concerns known.
- Capital Gains Taxes: BOMA believes that capital gains taxes should either be reduced or eliminated. The organization feels that the elimination or reduction of these taxes would encourage investment in commercial real estate. This would, in turn, create jobs and stimulate the economy.