UPDATES ON LAWSUIT FILED BY SDAR AGAINST NSDCAR, PSAR, and SANDICORUpdated 12/21/16
On January 14, 2016, the San Diego Association of REALTORS® (SDAR or GSDAR) filed a lawsuit against NSDCAR, the Pacific Southwest Association of REALTORS® (PSAR), and Sandicor, the regional MLS serving all of San Diego County. This page is provided as a resource to inform NSDCAR members of issues, events and documents related to the suit. This is a living site, so as the suit moves forward, relevant documents will be added. Please check back from time to time.
The links and information below are from the public domain. NSDCAR does not agree with or disagree with the news and information reported here. We simply want to share what is in the public realm with our members and other interested parties. When fellow REALTORS® sue fellow REALTORS® we find it disheartening.
UPDATES12/20/16 CRMLS CEO posts: A Path Forward, an Open Letter to San Diego REALTORS® 12/20/16 SDAR releases press release and letter to members 12/19/16 Judge denies NSDCAR and PSAR's motion to dismiss and allows SDAR to go forward with its anti-trust claims. 12/12/16 Reply to Opposition to Motion to Dismiss filed by NSDCAR & PSAR 12/5/16 Opposition of Motion to Dismiss filed by GSDAR 11/29/16 NSDCAR files Memorandum of points and authorities in support of plaintiffs' demurrer to San Diego Association of REALTORS'S complaint in intervention. SDAR lacks the voting power to invoke a purchase of Sandicor shares. SDAR's interpretation of the corporate code is incorrect. Also Declaration of Frederick K. Taylor in support of Plaintiff's request for judicial notice in support of plaintiff's demurrer to SDAR's complaint in intervention. Includes Shareholder agreement and other documentation. 11/2/16 SDAR files Ex Parte, Declaration of M. Mercurio, Declaration of A. Gutierrez 10/30/16 RIS Media: Associations File to Dissolve San Diego MLS for Statewide System 10/26/16 The Real Daily Story 10/26/16 Inman write-up (Behind paywall) 10/26/16 SDAR statement: Sandicor Future and Future Service 10/26/16 NSDCAR FAQ 10/26/16 NSDCAR releases statement: NSDCAR & PSAR File to Dissolve Sandicor in Favor of Statewide System 10/25/16 NSDCAR and PSAR file complaint in Superior Court of California for the involuntary dissolution of Sandicor 9/22/16 Motion to Dismiss SDAR's Third Amended Complaint 9/5/16 SDAR Third Amended Complaint 8/22/16 8/19/16 Judge's Temporary Order on NSDCAR/PSAR Motion to Dismiss 8/15/16 NSDCAR and PSAR Support of its Motion to Dismiss SDAR's Second Amended Complaint 8/8/16 SDAR Opposition to Motion to Dismiss SDAR Second Amended Complaint 6/8/16 SDAR Second Amended Complaint 5/25/16 Court Order on Motions 5/12/16 Tentative Ruling by Judge 5/9/16 NSDCAR and PSAR Reply Supporting Motion for Attorney Fees Declaration of Attorney Supporting Motion for Attorney Fees Supplemental Declaration of Attorney Supporting Motion for Attorney Fees 5/9/16 NSDCAR and PSAR Reply Supporting Motion to Dismiss 5/9/16 Sandicor Reply to Supporting Motion to Dismiss 4/12/16 NSDCAR and PSAR motion to dismiss and motion for attorneys' fees for abandoned claims by SDAR.
Sandicor Motion to Dismiss SDAR First Amended ComplaintSandicor Motion to Dismiss SDAR First Amended Complaint Sandicor Points and Authorities on Motion to Dismiss SDAR First Amended Complaint Declaration of Sandicor Attorney
SDAR Opposition to Sandicor and NSDCAR/PSAR MotionsSDAR Opposition to Sandicor Motion to Dismiss SDAR 1st Amended Complaint SDAR Opposition to NSDCAR/PSAR Motion to Dismiss SDAR 1st Amended Complaint SDAR Opposition to NSDCAR/PSAR Motion for Attorney Fees
3/28/16 NSDCAR President's Message: MLS Update. 3/25/16 Sandicor Questions and Answers on Hardware Replacement. 3/25/16 SDAR amended complaint. 3/23/16 SDAR approves upgrade of Sandicor Servers. 3/22/16 SDAR President's response to "Your MLS is in Jeopardy." 3/18/16 NSDCAR and PSAR statement: "Your MLS is in Jeopardy." 3/4/16 Sandicor Motion to Dismiss SDAR lawsuit. 3/4/16 NSDCAR/PSAR Motion to Dismiss SDAR lawsuit. 2/10/16 WAV Group article: California Regionals Breaking Ranks. 1/28/16 San Diego Business Journal article: Listing Service Conflict Results in Lawsuit (paid subscription needed). 1/26/16 Sandicor Q&A: Answers questions about ownership and other issues. 1/21/16 San Diego Reader article: Realtor vs. Realtr. 1/20/16 Sandicor notice of lawsuit to its MLS participants and subscribers. 1/15/16 SDAR President statement about the lawsuit to SDAR members. 1/15/16 NSDCAR statement about the lawsuit. 1/15/16 Inman Select article: REALTOR® Association Sues its Own MLS, Accusing Unfair Business Practices. 1/14/16 Lawsuit filed by GSDAR against North San Diego County Association of REALTORS®, Pacific Southwest Association of REALTORS®, and Sandicor. 1/13/16 CRMLS and Sandicor announce a datashare agreement with CRMLS to provide Sandicor agents access to CRMLS listings.
NSDCAR and PSAR File a Complaint in Superior Court of California for the Involuntary Dissolution of Sandicor
October 25, 2016 (San Diego) – A dispute between the three largest real estate trade associations in San Diego County has resulted in new legal action intended to dissolve San Diego’s regional multiple listing service (MLS) that provides information on available homes for sale to more than 19,000 local real estate professionals. The local MLS, called Sandicor, Inc., is owned by three local real estate trade associations, including Pacific Southwest Association of REALTORS® (PSAR), the North San Diego County Association of REALTORS® (NSDCAR) and Greater San Diego Association of REALTORS® (SDAR). PSAR has about 2,500 members, NSDCAR has more than 5,300 members and GSDAR has about 12,000 members. Members are real estate professionals who pay dues to access the MLS through their association of choice. Attorneys for PSAR and NSDCAR recently filed a complaint in San Diego Superior Court to dissolve Sandicor as a legal entity. SDAR’s position on this filing is still unknown. As a replacement to the local MLS, leaders with PSAR and NSDCAR aim to provide their members with access to the statewide California Regional Multiple Listing Service (CRMLS), which is used by more than 80,000 real estate professionals and lists data on properties in most of southern California and other parts of the state. “Transitioning to a more robust Statewide MLS like CRMLS benefits all consumers, as well as agents and brokers who work in San Diego County’s real estate industry,” said Anthony Andaya, 2016 president, PSAR. “A move to an MLS that is controlled by brokers who own the data and endorsed by our state association provides our agents with an enhanced ability to serve the clients.” In January of this year, SDAR's board approved the filing of a federal lawsuit against Sandicor, an entity it partially owns, and against PSAR and NSDCAR. In the complaint, SDAR alleged that Sandicor had been used as an “anticompetitive weapon” by the other two REALTOR® associations. Since then, the court granted motions to dismiss two earlier versions of SDAR’s claim. “SDAR has previously attempted to block progress to improve Sandicor, and to investigate the benefits of a merger between Sandicor and CRMLS, despite our members’ requests,” stated Raylene Brundage, NSDCAR 2016 president. “For the future growth and stability of our industry in San Diego, it would be best to simply dissolve Sandicor and protect our members’ best interest through an enhanced partnership with CRMLS.” “About half of all MLS systems in California do not share data with each other, which means brokers and their agents that practice business across MLS boundary lines must pay extra fees to join multiple MLS databases,” added Andaya. “It is time to adjust and redefine how we do business so consumers will continue to have confidence in knowing their agents are the go-to, trusted resource for their real estate needs.” “We understand that consumers sometimes get more information from Internet portals than agents using an MLS,” said Brundage. “However, the information from these sites can be incorrect or outdated. Agents deserve access to the same amount of information as consumers. When we cooperate, then we all do better business. Standardized data and a single point of access is the best way we can truly serve the consumer. Clients want to trust that their sales agent has the best resources available on their behalf. It is critical for the health and vitality of our industry.” Click here to read the FAQ Questions? Please register to attend the FREE San Diego County MLS Forum. Click here for more information.
It’s with great pleasure that we announce the NSDCAR Board of Directors has endorsed the “It’s My Business” campaign that promotes a statewide MLS. Did you know that about half of all Multiple Listing Services (MLS) in California don’t share data with each other? Some MLSs share only partial feeds. Or, they use different systems that are hard to use, and listings are not presented in the same way, making it difficult for agents to do their jobs. The result is a patchwork of data coverage that costs the real estate industry time and money. A consolidated MLS makes sense in California because it reduces time, expense and frustration. Data sharing gives brokers and their agents a competitive edge because it allows real estate professionals to see all the proprietary listing data in a given market. It’s technically possible for every MLS in California to share data. However, politics and history have been the obstacles. “We live in the information age,” said Raylene Brundage, NSDCAR 2016 President. “Agents deserve access to the same amount of information as consumers. Consumers don’t have borders, why should we? When we cooperate, then we all do better business and no one loses. Standardized data and a single point of access is the best way we can truly serve the consumer. It’s critical for the health and vitality of our industry.” The “It’s My Business” campaign is sponsored by the California Regional MLS (CRMLS). While CRMLS holds the vision for a statewide MLS, CRMLS operates as a separate and independent entity from the California Association of REALTORS® (C.A.R.). Following its 2011 merger with SoCal MLS, CRMLS expanded its footprint and now serves more than 80,000 real estate professionals in California. It is the largest MLS in the United States. CRMLS’ vision is to form a statewide MLS, resulting in the elimination of duplicative efforts and resources and to provide seamless, consistent access to letter-perfect real estate data throughout California. CRMLS’ immediate objective is to facilitate data sharing between MLSs so that every broker and agent can see all MLS listing data throughout the state without having to join multiple associations and MLSs. CRMLS also understands that brokers own their listing data, and MLSs should not make decisions about broker access to, or syndication of, data. The “It’s My Business” campaign focuses on data sharing between MLSs, not data syndication. A viable and valuable solution for the interim is MLSs sharing data with each other. It would help the California real estate industry move forward and stay competitive. CRMLS has developed cost-effective data sharing technology it is willing to share with other MLSs throughout the state of California at a fraction of the cost of other data sharing techniques. In addition, CRMLS’ data sharing technology ensures a seamless technology experience for all who will view and use the shared data. CRMLS’ development of these data sharing tools and the “It’s My Business” campaign aligns with the purpose of an MLS, which is to foster and facilitate cooperation. On Friday morning, Sept. 9, at the Hilton Garden Inn Del Mar, The room filled with interested attendees, to hear several speakers discuss a statewide MLS. The program, called “MLS Symposium: What’s in Your Best Interest,” was jointly presented by NSDCAR and the Pacific Southwest Association of REALTORS. Art Carter, CEO of California Regional MLS (CRMLS) said, “Listing aggregation content is important because the consumer is empowered with a much greater breadth of information through third-party portals than real estate professionals. Agents deserve access to the same amount of information as consumers.” Chris Heller, CEO of Keller Williams International said, “These are very exciting times. With consolidation of MLSs, it would allow us to innovate more. And most importantly, it will put agents at the control of their data. We are excited, and we hope all the agents are too.” Jamie Duran, President of Coldwell Banker Orange County and San Diego Companies, said, “This symposium is a great venue for brokers, agents and members of the associations to get educated and absorb the information, the relationship, and the landscape of the MLSs. The future of the MLS and our industry is changing. Are we going to let somebody else decide what to do or are we going to do it?" Gregg Larson, President and CEO of Clareity Consulting, said, “There are a lot of advantages to having one common MLS database, one set of rules, one common rules enforcement and some economies of scale. I know a broker who belongs to 11 different MLSs. She has to deal with 11 different systems, data sets, forms, different MLS rules, it’s a mess. It’s a lot of extra work and expense.” Chris Hasvold, Broker/Owner of Coldwell Banker, Village Properties, said, “Our customers should not have access to more information than we do. They can see properties throughout the state, and we are limited because of restrictions on the MLS.” To learn more about the “It’s My Business” campaign, visit www.itsmybusiness.me.
On behalf of the North San Diego County Association of REALTORS® (NSDCAR) Board of Directors, we are proud to announce that Richard D’Ascoli is joining NSDCAR as our new Chief Executive Officer. We are very excited about this news for several reasons. You may recall that NSDCAR recently signed a shared-services agreement with the Pacific Southwest Association of REALTORS® (PSAR) that provides new member benefits to members of both Associations. The agreement gives access to many services, resources, and discounts offered by either Association to both PSAR and NSDCAR members irrespective of which association they have their primary membership. The announced retirement of Dianne McMillan presented the Board with the opportunity to expand our shared-services agreement with PSAR. Mr. D’Ascoli, who is currently CEO of PSAR, will serve as CEO of both NSDCAR and PSAR. Both NSDCAR and PSAR will benefit from professional executive support in a cost-effective manner, while maintaining superior service for our members. Both associations will continue to operate independently as two separate organizations governed by separate and independent boards of directors. Mr. D’Ascoli will report to each board separately. Mr. D’Ascoli will begin working for NSDCAR on Oct. 1, but will gain the CEO title effective Jan. 2, 2017, following Dianne’s end-of-year retirement. Dianne has worked with NSDCAR for the past 25 years. We are grateful for her dedication and service to NSDCAR. We wish her the best in her retirement. D’Ascoli has served PSAR for the past 10 years. He has more than 25 years of management experience and 10 years of REALTOR® association experience. He served in the U.S. Air Force and has earned the REALTOR® Association Certified Executive (RCE) professional designation from the National Association of REALTORS®. Rich has a proven track record and is well suited to help find creative solutions to the challenges we face in an industry that is changing quickly. The NSDCAR Board and I are excited to have Rich with our organization. The NSDCAR Board is looking to the future and is committed to the long-term growth and viability of our organization. Rich is local, plus he has experience engaging with members in the field to identify areas where the association can support our members, protect property rights and build professionalism. He is very accessible and understands the challenges that REALTORS® face every day. The Board and I are confident that he will invigorate and build on the strong foundation established by our current and past leaders of NSDCAR. In a statement, Rich said, “I’m very excited and looking forward to this opportunity to serve our industry. Shared services programs help REALTOR® associations expand services and streamline management through strategic partnerships. The focus of shared services is not about mergers, rather it’s about collaborations, partnerships, and other mutually beneficial relationships among REALTOR® associations that enhance the level of service to all members and increase the association’s efficiency and productivity.” If you are interested in having our new CEO visit your office or Marketing Session, please send an e-mail to Rich@nsdcar.com, and a meeting will be scheduled. The North San Diego County Association of REALTORS® protects private property rights and promotes professionals and high ethical standards of conduct in real estate practices. The Association provides its members with the tools needed to assist clients with buying and selling homes. For more information, visit www.NSDCAR.com.
Dear NSDCAR Members, TOGETHER, you as the members of NSDCAR, the staff, and I have worked 22 years building an organization for which we can be extremely and justifiably proud. We have been on the leading edge. We were the first association in San Diego County to have an association website, which we launched with a slogan of “From Bricks to Clicks” – at a time when company websites were all but unheard of. We were among the first associations in the nation to have a division dedicated to commercial real estate – and which was then in the very first group to receive commercial accreditation from the National Association of REALTORS®. We were among the first REALTOR® associations in the country to merge more than two organizations, as we united a total of seven with vastly different size, market, and unique personality. Our success made us the model for many years, sought out for advice on how to design a successful merger. We broke with the traditional design of a centralized organization and instead adopted a district system, a concept just now gaining momentum among REALTOR associations nationwide. We were one of only a handful of REALTOR® associations nationwide brave enough to break with tradition, moving from a conventional governance model to John Carver’s Policy Governance, a model adopted widely, nationally and internationally, among non-profit associations of many disciplines. We have been careful stewards of our members’ money - building a significant reserve that assured that we would be able to maintain a high level of member service when things get tough. That’s extraordinary for an organization of our size, and we did it while keeping our dues and fees low. We are survivors. During good times and bad, we always kept the benefit of the member as central in our decision making. We deliver friendly, fair, efficient and effective service that has become our hallmark and for which we are praised by visitors as well as by our own members. NSDCAR is recognized, respected, and held in high regard with a reputation for innovation and progressive thinking both in California and nationally. Yes, we have occasionally, but rarely, made a misstep along the way. But we have always had the wisdom to admit, correct, and learn from our mistakes, moving forward in a positive direction. Personally, my association with NSDCAR has brought an array of leadership opportunities and honors of which I am extremely proud and for which I am extremely grateful. I am tremendously proud to have served NSDCAR - from the point of its design and inception, through growing pains, and now as a mature organization uniquely capable of moving successfully into a bold new future. But now, after 25 years with the REALTOR® organization in North County and 33 years in REALTOR® association management, it is time for us to pursue our respective dreams on separate paths as we each enter into an exciting new phase of life. January 1, 2017, will be my final official day with NSDCAR. Thank you for sharing this exciting journey with me. Dianne McMillan, CEO
The Board of Directors of the CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® (C.A.R.) voted last Friday to support a $1.3 billion proposal by California Assembly members to create affordable housing programs. “With a historically low homeownership rate of 54 percent and record high rental costs, the dream of owning a home in California is evaporating. Our teachers, nurses, firefighters, police officers, and other middle-class workers should be able to afford to live in the communities they serve,” said C.A.R. President Pat “Ziggy” Zicarelli. “C.A.R. recognizes the urgency of California’s housing crisis and is fully supporting the proposal by the Assembly Housing and Community Development Committee to invest a portion of our state’s budget surplus to address this housing crisis.” C.A.R. formed an Affordable Workforce Housing Task Force in August 2015 to examine existing policies in California designed to expand the availability of “affordable housing” and to make recommendations to increase the availability of affordable work force housing in California. This budget proposal includes: • $400 million for homeownership and rental housing opportunities - $200 million for a new workforce housing grant program to provide funding for down payment assistance, homeownership assistance and rental housing for individuals making 120 percent of the area median income; $200 million for the CalHome Program which provides grants and loans to local governments and non-profit organizations for rehabilitation of existing homes, mortgage assistance, acquisition, site development, and pre-development/construction of homes. • $60 million for seismic retrofits of soft-story homes. Personal income tax credits for 30 percent of qualified cost incurred for a seismic retrofit. • $75 million for farmworker housing: $50 million to finance the construction, rehabilitation, and acquisition of owner-occupied and rental units for ag workers; $25 million for the construction, rehabilitation, and acquisition of rental housing for farmworkers and their families who make up to 60 percent of the area median income. • $500 million for the rental housing for lower income working families - $300 million in low-income housing tax credits to enable private developers to create more than 3,000 homes and leverage $300 million in federal tax credits and $600 million of federal tax-exempt bonds, which would otherwise go unclaimed; $200 million to fund the construction, rehabilitation, and acquisition of 5,700 multifamily rental homes, serving 62,500 families and individuals at 60 percent of the area median income or below. • $300 million for shelter programs - $200 million for multifamily supportive housing; $60 million for the Medi-Cal Housing Program to provide rental assistance for people who are homeless and enrolled in Medi-Cal; and, $40 million to assist persons at risk of becoming homeless with homeless prevention assistance and rapid rehousing. Leading the way...® in California real estate for more than 110 years, the CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® (www.car.org) is one of the largest state trade organizations in the United States with 185,000 members dedicated to the advancement of professionalism in real estate. C.A.R. is headquartered in Los Angeles.
NSDCAR Members from Tour 701, Carlsbad, Encinitas, Cardiff, donated $1,690.50 to Veterans 360, a non-profit organization. The mission of Veterans 360 is to eliminate the stigma of those struggling with post-traumatic stress, allowing victims of PTS to receive education and support instead of going it alone. This is a critical first step to reducing epidemic levels of suicide among PTS sufferers. For more information about Veterans 360, visit http://www.carrythechallenge.org/what-is-the-challenge/ Pictured above from left: Bill Richard, Evangelina Marshall, Rick Collins of Veterans 360, Rebecca Negard, and Bill Ims.
March 28, 2016
MLS UpdateWe are pleased to notify you that Sandicor has received the approval needed to move forward with the necessary computer equipment replacement, as reported to you in our message of 03/18/16 entitled “Your MLS is in Jeopardy.” The approved action will save Sandicor approximately 2.2 million over the next 3 years and allow Sandicor, our MLS provider and operator, to proceed with their recommended solution. Sandicor has now begun the process of replacing the equipment and will proceed as quickly as possible. Their estimate is that this will take 2 months to complete the process of replacing the equipment and data migration. If Sandicor's operating system incurs no software failures before the process is completed, you should not notice any difference in the functionality of the MLS. However, if Sandicor does incur a software failure before the replacement SAN is installed, Sandicor will attempt to minimize its effect, and will also post updates on its website and cause notices to be sent to all of its users. Sincerely, Raylene Brundage, President North San Diego County Association of REALTORS®
March 18, 2016 During the past week, many Sandicor users experienced and voiced complaints about our MLS system’s slow response time. These issues are related to computer hardware at Sandicor that needs to be replaced and delays in being able to do so, caused by the Greater San Diego Association of REALTORS® (GSDAR). The need for equipment replacement was identified well in advance in long term planning; however, Sandicor was notified only a few months ago that it would be losing its full software support effective May 1, of this year which is much sooner than originally anticipated. Once Sandicor was made aware of this, they immediately began researching the most viable solutions for the technical needs. Quickly thereafter they then submitted their recommendations and solutions to rectify this issue without causing any delay or issues to the end users. Unfortunately GSDAR has created delays by boycotting meetings and refusing to approve the recommended $500,000 equipment replacement. Sandicor has ample funds for this replacement; however, any single purchase over $25,000 requires a majority shareholder approval. With the lack of approval by GSDAR, the only option Sandicor is forced to adopt is to move our system to “The Cloud” which: • Is estimated to be $2.7 million over 3 years. This is more than 5 times the recommended $500,000 equipment replacement cost. • Will take 6 months to transition to the Cloud versus 2 months for the equipment replacement. • Will cause a user down time estimated to be 24 hours during the Cloud conversion versus 1 hour with the equipment change. In addition, Sandicor, along with other large MLSs, choose to host their own equipment on site with the advantages of better performance and lower costs. On-site equipment allows quicker diagnosis of issues and reduced down time in comparison to vendor-hosted MLS systems. It is our continued desire to ensure our members’ businesses are not negatively affected in any way and the MLS continues to provide the best possible service. We hope GSDAR will come to the same conclusion, that our MLS service is as critical to their members, as we believe it is for ours. Unless GSDAR agrees to an equipment purchase in the next few days we have no choice but to move to the Cloud at a much greater expense and disruption to our members’ service. Sincerely, Raylene Brundage, President North San Diego County Association of REALTORS® Anthony Andaya, President Pacific Southwest Association of REALTORS®
January 15, 2016