Another Win for Appraisers – California

Another Win for Appraisers - CaliforniaCooperation between appraisers and multiple appraiser organizations wins the day in California!

When is the last time you heard of a State bill that was already passed by both State Houses (Assembly & Senate) in any state, being quashed short of a Governor’s veto? Especially a “consent calendar” item that legislators automatically vote to approve for each other as a legislative courtesy. In less than two months?

Let me share a quote from Rey Cano’s regular appraiser newsletter ( Rey, along with George St Johns, was an original co-founder of the California Coalition of Appraisal Professionals (CaCAP), where with full disclosure, I am also a member.

Sponsor’s affiliated with or hired by the Appraisal Institute were trying to get their own standards adopted in California Law for non-federal transactions. These standards also included contingent fees as being acceptable according to AI testimony at the June 26 TAF/ASB meeting in Redondo Beach, CA.

“AB 624 is off the agenda. It has been converted into a 2 year bill. This means we have won ½ of the battle. We do not have to deal with AB 624 until 2016…If then?

AB 624, which was in the Senate Appropriations Committee when CaCAP testified in opposition back in July, did not have the votes to get out of committee. Thank you to CaCAP, REAA, ASC, TAF, RICS, ASA, NAIFA, AGA (Mike Ford) and other organizations and individuals for their collective great work.”

Rey, and George St John’s (CaCAP) first raised the alarm on this one a few days before the Redondo Beach meeting. When I heard about, it I was able to get Peter Vidi at The American Guild of Appraisers (AGA) interested, and was given authorization to testify in person against this bill before The Appraisal Foundation.

While I was testifying before TAF, George was meeting with the bill’s author who he knew personally. The author declined at that point to withdraw his bill, but none of us gave up.

After testimony, a former Chapter President of ASA kindly hand carried a letter from AGA to the California Senate Finance Committee meeting the following week in Sacramento.

In the run up to the Senate Finance Committee meeting, 3 to 4 days – not weeks, Peter Vidi at AGA was able to get OPEIU involved. Jeff at OPEIU held a conference call to learn the details, and then put OPEIU into action.

Next I heard, merely days later, OPEIU had contacted the California Labor Federation and the bill had been ‘set aside’ “until August” in appropriations.

August 20th, California Federation in their follow up for OPEIU also wrote the Senate Appropriations Chairman, opposing the bill.

Rey Cano also put out the call, again, for all of us to write the same Senate Appropriations Chairman or our local State Senate members urging this bill not be funded.

I don’t know who specifically stopped this bill. A lot of groups were involved. Could any one of us have achieved this? Maybe, but I’d like to believe it was our cooperative effort that did it!

In this instance, I think I’d also have to say that the California Federation of Labor’s involvement along with whatever influence they may have in this labor ‘sensitive’ state was purely the result of Jeff over at OPEIU!

Many thanks to ALL, and special thanks to Pete Vidi, Leo Regensburger & Jan Bellas of AGA, Jeff at OPEIU and Sara Flocks, Public Policy Director California Federation of Labor, OPEIU (3), AFL-CIO (31).

Fellow appraisers, some have scoffed that “doing anything” or “something” for appraisers is just not possible because organizing us for any common effort is like herding cats. Well, take it from Professional State Cat Herder George St. Johns (CaCAP), and Professional National State Cat Herder Mike Ford (AGA), that it IS possible.

By the way, free enterprise loving, level playing field advocating, center-right Republican Union Organizers can ALSO help get things done in a Democrat dominated State Legislature. Something to think about.

Email we really could use YOUR support too!

Michael Ford
Latest posts by Michael Ford (see all)
Michael Ford

Michael Ford

Over 28 years appraising all property types and interests, in Southern California real estate. VP/Chairman National Appraiser Peer Review Committee, American Guild of Appraisers, #44OPEIU/AFL-CIO. - Michael Ford on e-AppraisersDirectory

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6 Responses

  1. Avatar Bill Smolen says:

    Great news. Thanks. We had sent out a letter to California legislators and Gov. Brown on behalf of our organization, its members, the appraisal profession, and consumers in general, stating our opposition to the bill and explaining why. Glad for the success.

    • Bill, Give your organization a shout out by name! Your members need to know they contributed to a successful effort; and the rest of us need to know who we can call on for future issues! Great work Bill!

      …but you re STILL allowed to join the American Guild of Appraisers (We’re a mixed family).

      • The Columbia Society of Real Estate Appraisers had sent out a letter to California legislators and Gov. Brown on behalf of our organization, its members, the appraisal profession, and consumers in general, stating our opposition to the bill and explaining why. Glad for the success.

        FYI, in answer to your inquiry: The Columbia Society of Real Estate Appraisers was founded on the campus of Columbia University in 1945. Its 1st President, DeWitt Van Buren, served for 17 years. I am the 48th President.

  2. Retired Appraiser Retired Appraiser says:

    Congratulations on your latest “cat herding” effort Mike.  While you have your appraisers in the corral I recommend threatening them with a taser until they sign off on boycotting AMCs.  Otherwise, you will NEVER see fair fees again.

    • Herding is not the same as corralling. Even I’m not THAT naïve! On the other hand getting disparate groups and individuals to even travel in the same direction can be a challenge.

      Tasers? What! ya’ll trying to start a stampede? Thousands of cats all stampeding at one time all over the place? Oh the humanity!

  3. Retired Appraiser Retired Appraiser says:



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Another Win for Appraisers – California

by Michael Ford time to read: 3 min