Commissioner Comments - November 2017
October has just concluded and November is here. This is always an exciting time with the World Series (How about those Astros!?), Halloween and Dia de Los Muertos, and the beginning of deer hunting season in Texas. October 31 also closes our State Employee Charitable Campaign month, with new highs reached each year for generosity by our team members.
One area of sensitivity and generosity includes the Hurricane Harvey deadline extension plan for license holders and applicants. All deadlines after August 21 received an extension to October 31, 2017. With Governor Abbott’s approval, and the full concurrence of the federal Appraisal Subcommittee (ASC), license holders and applicants in the 60 county disaster area as declared by the Governor who need assistance will have deadlines extended up to four additional months, but not later than February 28, 2018. This allows all those who need it to focus on recovery efforts. Education and renewals must be complete before March 1, 2018 when all effective dates will be restored. For details, read the article in this newsletter and also online at our website. We are pleased to be able to assist in this small way all those whose lives have been seriously impacted by the storm and flooding.
At our regular quarterly Board meeting on November 17, we have some interesting rules under consideration for adoption or proposal. First, the long-delayed rules regarding collection of fees from Appraisal Management Companies (AMCs) on behalf of the Appraisal Subcommittee for its operation of the AMC National Registry are up for adoption. These rules simply implement the federal requirements. Proposed are potential rules allowing Supervisory Appraisers to sponsor more than three trainees at one time under specific conditions, and possible changes to expand the qualifications for agency Mentors. These reflect a constant attempt on behalf of the agency to make requirements balanced and effective.
We are shortly expecting some new appointments to the AMC Advisory Committee. However, there is still a need for qualified representatives of Appraisal Management Companies to serve on this important committee. If you are an AMC manager and are interested, please go to the Governor’s Appointments website at https://gov.texas.gov/organization/appointments for forms and details. We will need strong policy advisors as we embark in FY18 upon our upcoming biennial visit by the ASC, Biennial Strategic Planning, Quadrennial Rule Review and a once every 12 years Sunset Commission Review. Add the regular internal and external audit requirements we anticipate, and our plate is full to overflowing! And we accept these challenges because we know that enhanced scrutiny makes us more effective.
November 11 is Veterans’ Day. The agency always hosts a special display to celebrate our veterans, so make sure to say thank you to those you know who are currently serving or have served. One other occasion for gratitude is our American celebration of Thanksgiving Day. The agency will be closing at noon on Wednesday the 22nd to give the team some extra time to spend time with our families.
As always, we welcome your input and feedback in all we do. Stop by and see us sometime. Thanks.