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October 14 NCAB meeting

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Tom Hildebrandt

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Ok Bob, here is my cut on the meeting.

All seven board members were present, the two newest appointees were not sworn in. The reasons I was given by two different individuals was that no judge could be found, that the new appointees had prior engagements and that the governor had not finalized the appointments. Take your pick, my money is that given the short time frame since the appointments (less than two weeks) the conflicting schedules were the issue since Monday was technically some sort of holiday for a lot of folks.

Audience attendees included Tom Taylor (MAI) and current president of the NCAI, a member of the NC Appraisers Coalition taking notes, Don Winters, who teaches a lot of CE classes in the Raleigh area, the representative from the NC Consumers Council, Coby Bryant an appraiser from the Raleigh area who has attended several meetings (and whose name I hope I got right) David Johnson and yours truly. David and I were the only one who stayed for the afternoon session only because we had some other business to attend to later in the afternoon. No one missed anything in the afternoon session except for the committee reports.

No one spoke at the Open forum, the next item was the proposed rule changes. The changes basically consisted of some wordsmithing and the following substantive items.

One change was to reflect the AQB requirements for AQB USPAP instructors teaching USPAP classes and 7 hours of CE every two years. I spoke against the NCAB incorporating the 15 hour national course into the R-3 curriculum. I argued that it would be better to have the 15 hours as a seperate educational segment outside of R-3 thereby allowing students and instructors more flexibility in scheduling. This would also allow the gained R-3 time to teach more on techniques etc.

One change was to require instructors to submit, on request of the board, sample appraisal reports. The NCAR Appraisal Section letter (the only written comments) said that this requirement was not needed and such documents should not be used for disciplinary action. I spoke on this saying that it was superfulous and gained nothing. That the NCAB already had the right to review work files and all instructors were already appraisers. Winters also spoke to this issue, rather well, basically saying that it was an increased burden on instructors that gained the board nothing in the way of a useful measure of an instructors skill. David Johnson spoke concurring with the NCARAS comments.

One change was the requirement for appraisers to respond within writing to any letter of inquiry from the NCAB within 14 days and to submit copies of any documents requested. The NCAR provided comments that suggested the requirement to reproduce workfiles which may be over 1,000 pages imposed an undue financial and time burden on an appraisers since the NCAB already has the right to review the work file at any time. I spoke echoing these sentiments but added that I felt 14 days was arbitrary and that the wording should be "a reasonable period of time." I also opposed the opposed the wording of "any documents" and that I wanted requirements "to produce any documents" stricken. David Johnson spoke concurring with the NCARAS.

The final proposed change was to allow the Chairman of the NCAB to grant any continuances of hearings at his whole discretion. The NCARAS spoke against this, arguing that the this was too broad a power for the Chairman. David and I both endorsed this comment.

The Board discussed at length the first issue, but missed the crux of the problem, that it gained them no insight into the qualifications of the instructor. Instead they changed the wording to read something in the order of "new instructors must supply sample reports when requested"

The board staff argued on the production of documents that they would ask only for specific documents, that the intent was not to ask for whole work files. The staff also said that the continuance was just for convienence of the board. Essentially the staff and board said we are worthy of your trust so just trust us on these issues. No changes were made to other portions of the rule change other than the issue of instructors.

The only formal hearing was for an appraiser Michael Busby regarding a request for reconsideration of a former board decision. Mr. Busby is an appraiser with about 20 years of experience, most recently for the past tten years or so doing commercial reviews for BB&T. Back in the mid 1990's, he had both a NC and SC license but had let his NC license lapse since he felt he was going to retire in SC. Now B&T had sent him back to NC and he wished to have the NC license reinstated but since his license had been lapsed for more than five years, he was requesting to be allowed to not take the r-1,2,3, g-1,2 3 classes and not take the exam. There were also some issues of experience credits since almost all of his work for the past five years was review work and the board rules require full appraisals, not just review work, to be part of the certification mix. The NCAB had waived the experience requirements but wanted him to retake the courses. No one really questioned Mr. Busby's credentials, but some board members seemed to believe that some how he was not current and up to speed and that he needed to take more education and then take the exam. The upshot was no real change, the decision was that he needed to take the equivalent of G-1, 2, 3 and take the exam, but the staff could work with him in approving some courses which would be productive and truly educational for this individual.

My case was postponed, again.

Only one consent order was heard, seemed pretty straight forward.

On probable causes, these are harder to follow now that the NCAB is not providing copies of the probable cause summaries. Maybe I have attended board meetings too long, none seemed particularly out of the ordinary. The board pretty much asks the staff a couple of benign questions, the staff expresses their opinions, often unsubstatiated but with plausible answers. The board has to accept these on face value because they have no information to go on except the one page summary. As I recall the board voted to adopt all staff recommendations in all cases.

The only committee report of interest was the building committee. For those who do not realize this, the NCAB is buying land, contracted for an architect and is building a building to ready for their occupancy in 2004.
I wish I knew how much this is going to cost us appraisers. According to the NCAB logic, it is too expensive for their investigators to comply with USPAP, but we have the funds to build an office building.

Regards

Tom Hildebrandt GAA
 
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