UCBR Annual General Membership November 3, 2022



It was a packed house at yesterday’s Ulster County Board of REALTORS® Annual General Membership meeting. We started the meeting off with Richard Heese of Ulster Savings Bank (one of our wonderful sponsors) reading off the Pledge of Allegiance to the group.

We then moved on to our President, Faye Storms, reading off our amazing accomplishments we were able to achieve for the 2022 year. Some of the success’s included our Rain Mixer which had 125 members in attendance, our legislative meetings in Washington D.C., our Fair Housing Seminar, Lunch of Knowledge, and so many more!

The meeting then moved to our 2023 budget which looks healthy for the upcoming year. The two areas that is going to increase in the budget is more funding for membership as well as more events for our members. We are hoping that we can begin having more in-person events for the new year, as there were a number of events and trainings that were over Zoom. The education budget will remain the same, as the funds that were used for venues have now been allocated to more classes and increased availability in those classes.

Ryan Basten, our UCBR Board of Directors Treasurer, made an announcement that for the time being he is stepping down from his position on the board. We would like to thank Ryan for his time and dedication to his position. You will be greatly missed on the board, and we look forward to your eventual return.

Our meeting then moved to our voting for the new board members, which closed yesterday at 5pm. We will be announcing our new UCBR Board of Directors and MLS Board of Directors President Elect, Treasurer, Secretary, and Directors. Thank you to those whose terms have come to an end. Your leadership within the past year has helped us grow to where we are today, and we welcome the new leadership. We are excited to see what new ideas you bring to further help our organization. We will be announcing the new leaders with their positions on a future social media post.

There was some mention of the various political races going that may influence our local real estate industry. Some of these races include the Governor of New York, 18th, 19th, 41st, and 51st District races, and the Ulster County Executive Race. We will keep our members updated of any new legal and political changes that will happen after the new elects enter their terms. We will have future social media posts and blogs updating you on any new changes.

We then swiftly moved to the discussion of changes in the Kingston, NY area such as the city of Kingston had opted into rent control which only applies to rental buildings with six or more units and for buildings that were created after 1974. There is currently a second hearing that will be taking place this Saturday, November 15th, 2022, at the Kingston Library as the Hudson Valley Property Owners have filed a lawsuit alleging that the Vacancy Study that was funded by the City of Kingston was flawed. We will keep all of our members informed of the decision once it has been made.

Some legal changes that our Board of Directors will be keeping an eye on for the 2023 year is the Good Cause Eviction, telemarketing restrictions on the real estate industry, and all Electric Building and Implementation of Climate Action Council Recommendations. Conor Gillis than moved us into the RPAC, which is used to fund engagement with lawmakers to help our Board of Directors get in contact with local and state officials. As of October 31st, 2022 we raised $15,335 and our goal was $15,225 and our participation was 294 while our goal was 269.

Connor wanted to also update us that he and our other Board of Directors are working with Senator Kevin Smith on a bill that will remove REALTORS® from the current telemarketing restrictions as we do not believe realtors should be included in the law. We will have another Lobby Day, however, there is currently no date set yet for it.

Our meeting then went to our Community Service with Sheena Lepez. Sheena discussed the success of our many community service events such as our Berme on the Rail Trail, which had a great turnout and we will announce when the next Berme will be in 2023. We also collected backpacks for the Boys and Girls Club with our Operation Backpack event; we were able to collect over 200 backpacks and supplies for children and families in need. Some upcoming community projects that Sheena had announced is Thanksgiving Baskets as well as a coat drive to collect children’s coats. Please stay tuned for dates on those two projects and thank you to Sheena and the rest of the Community Council for all of their great events to give back to our local community.

Our MLS Board of Directors President, Tim Sweeny, gave us a great outlook on our membership, which sits at over 1,000 members as well as our hope to move forward with the current data share and for all three MLS’s to be on the same MLS platform by the end of2023.Our absorption rate as of June 1, 2022 was 161 active listings and November 1, 2022 has shown 419 active listings. Tim had warned that we are seeing a “correction in the market” as the demand of housing is still high and we are seeing increased open houses, though the high rates are impacting sales prices. Unfortunately, sellers have missed the top of the market as it seems the market is beginning to show signs of becoming a buyer’s market.

Our meeting carried on with new legal announcements. The biggest being the “Merle Case” that involves a class action lawsuit with sellers across the country joining in where they want to eliminate the current requirement where the seller pays the compensation of the buyer’s agent. The defendants claim that if this requirement is eliminated it will have a negative impact on the housing market. The buyer agency is currently under attack with the lawsuit, and it could have a huge effect on the housing market. We will continue to keep all of our members updated on the news regarding this lawsuit.

Two other major legal issues involving our REALTORS® are current fraud issues with scammers collecting your images and information. They pose as you to sell rentals, which they collect the money and then disappear, leaving you to be the suspect in the crime. We advise all of our REALTOR® members to have a fraud clause in their email signature. Please contact the Board of Directors if you need assistance coming up with a fraud clause in your email signature. Another issue is the change with the DOS, who used to send complaints with the information of who filed the complaint, however, now they no longer state who lodged the complaint and many REALTORS® will give out a lot of information to investigators that ends up accidently incriminating them. Please be sure to notify your manager or broker from your office before speaking with any investigators as they can help you with advice so you can keep from incriminating yourself.

The final piece of our meeting was the most exciting. John Murphy gladly announced or REALTOR® of the Year, Thomasine Helsmoortel! Thomasine is the owner broker of Helsmoortel Realty and Insurance. She is a long-time member of the Ulster County Board of REALTORS® as well as a past Board of Directors for the HVCRMLS. Thomasine is also a member of the Kingston Hospital Foundation Board and currently sits on the Executive Board. Thomasine has not only helped many local homeowners find their dream homes in Ulster County, NY but she has also assisted on many local charities to give back to the local community. Congratulations Thomasine, you deserve it!



We would like to thank our past, current, and upcoming UCBR Board of Directors and our MLS Board of Directors:



Faye Storms – President
Ruth Gale Realty
38 Main St
Phoenicia, NY 12464
P: 845-688-5610 (o)
E: Fayestormsrealtor@hotmail.com

Randy Spiesman – President Elect
Weichert REALTORS – The Spiesman Group
223 Boices Lane
Kingston, NY 12401
P: 845-336-2633 (o)
E: rspiesman@weichertspiesman.com

Dominick Martorana – Past President
Century 21 Alliance
203 Main St
New Paltz, NY 12561
P: 845-255-6163 (o)
E: Dominick.martorana@century21homes.com

Ryan Basten – Treasurer
BHHS Nutshell Realty
1029 Route 213
High Falls, NY 12440
P: 845-687-2200(o)
E: ryan@nutshellrealty.com

Donna Brooks – Secretary
BHHS Hudson Valley
134 Main St
New Paltz, NY 12561
P: 845-255-9400 (o)
E: dbrooks@bhhshudsonvalley.com 

Alfred Peavy – Director
Ruth Gale Realty
38 Main Street 469 Guilford Rd
Phoenicia, NY 12464
P: 845-688-5610 (o)
E: Apeavy@hvc.rr.com 

Dino Alexander – Director
Alexander Maxwell Realty
3109 Laurant Dr
Wappingers Falls, NY 12590
P: 845-518-275 (o)
E: dino@almaxrealty.com

Sheena Lepez – Director
Keller Williams Realty HV North
15 Taylor St
Kingston, NY 12401
P: 845-481-2700 (o)
E: Sheena.m.lepez@gmail.com

Rita Gildersleeve – Director
Keller Williams Realty HV North
15 Taylor St
Kingston, NY 12401
P: 8845-481-2700 (o)
E: ritam@kw.com


Tim Sweeney – President
Berkshire Hathaway Home Services Nutshell Rlty
1029 Route 213
High Falls, NY 12440
P: 845-687-2200 (o)
E: tim@nutshellrealty.com

Candida Ellis – President-Elect
CB Village Green Realty
11-13 Mill Hill Rd
Woodstock, NY 12498
P: 845-679-2255 (o)
E: candida.ellis@gmail.com

Patty Conti – Past President
Patty Conti Realty
70 Main Street
Kingston, NY 12401
P: 845-340-4480 (o); 845-340-4484
E: Pconti2@verizon.net

John Murphy – Treasurer
Murphy Realty Group
304 Wall Street
Kingston, NY 12401
P: 845-338-5252(o)
E: jm@murphyrealtygrp.com

Jennifer Mangione – Secretary
Grist Mill Real Estate
21 John Street
Saugerties, NY 12477
P: 845-246-3200
E: jenniferzmangione@yahoo.com

Keith Woodburn – Director
Church Street Realty
71 Main Street,
New Paltz, NY 12561
P: 845-594-2524
E: keith@churchstreetrealtyservices.com

Christine Chapman – Director
Chapman Realty of the Hudson Valley
PO Box 12
Rifton, NY 12471
P: 845-658-2340 (o)
E: Christine@chapmanrealtyhv.com

Gail Vesely – Director
Lucille Hand Real Estate
28 N. Main St
Ellenville, NY 12428
P: 845-647-8020(o)
E: Gailmv1954@aol.com

Nicole Friedman – Director
Windsor Realty Services
74 Webster Lock Road
Rosendale, NY 12472
P: 845-764-1710(o)
E: Realtor.nickie@gmail.com


We would also like to thank our amazing sponsors for all of their support and funding:

Ulster Savings Bank

Rondout Savings Bank

Wells Fargo Home Mortgage

Sawyer Savings Bank

Rhinebeck Bank

Wallkill Valley Federal Savings & Loan


Hudson Valley Credit Union

Farmers’ Insurance

Ryan & Ryan Insurance Brokers Inc.



Valley Bank


M&T Bank Mortgage Division


Thank you to all of our members for attending our Annual General Membership Meeting, we wish you all a wonderful, bountiful, and happy Thanksgiving!

The Ulster County Board of REALTORS® Community Services Committee Needs Your Help!
Ulster County Board of REALTORS®: Fall Open House Tips
No Comments

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.