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Latest Legislative Updates:


Senate Bill 219 Updates


TEMPORARY RULES:
The Board of Examiners for Engineers and Surveyors intends to adopt temporary rules to amend existing rule 21 NCAC56 .0601 and to adopt a new rule 21 NCAC 56 .0608 in response to recent legislation by the General Assembly [S.L. 2022-1, ss.1.(a) - 1.(c)], effective July 1, 2022, that removed the Surveyor Intern certificate language from G.S. 89C and added an additional "apprenticeship" category for the path to licensure as a Professional Land Surveyor. The comment period begins April 5, 2022, and ends April 28, 2022.
Public Hearing Date: April 12, 2022; Time: 9:00 a.m.; Location: This public hearing will be held by Zoom viewing at 4601 Six Forks Road, Suite 310, Raleigh, NC 27609 & remotely by Zoom, Contact: djevans@ncbels.org for Zoom access. 
 
RULES:

Senate Bill 219 Update From President Jerry Nave

Dear NCSS Members,

As the new president of the North Carolina Society of Surveyors (NCSS) and as we move forward into the post-conference year, I wanted to reach out to all the members of NCSS to explain my goals for the coming year and to clarify for those who could not make the luncheon on Friday, February 25th in Pinehurst, the remarks made by members of the North Carolina Board of Examiners for Engineers and Surveyors (NCBEES) concerning Senate Bill 219 (SB 219). The goals that I am establishing for this year may seem lofty and broad, but I feel we must reach for the stars sometimes in order to move in a forward direction. 

In recent years we have had many legislative successes.  These successes were due to our being on the offense and being proactive in writing legislation, such as the NCGS 47-30 rewrite.  However, last year we were forced on the defense regarding SB 219, due in part to not having more allies in the General Assembly.  President Brennan and the NCSS staff did an excellent job in countering this attack and in countering with a proposal that prevented a complete watering down of the requirements for licensure in North Carolina.  This year is referred to as the short session for the General Assembly. With that in mind, I have asked Christy Davis and our staff to explore establishing ties with more state representatives and senators who we can educate on how surveyors protect the public. I hope to build new alliances that will benefit the Society in the future.   Of course, the staff alone cannot accomplish this task and that is why I am asking the membership to help.  If you personally know a lawmaker in your area or someone running for office that you feel would be a help to our profession, please send their name to either Ms. Davis or myself so that we can reach out to these individuals.

Another task that we must perform this year is recommending to Governor Cooper a replacement for Mike Benton on NCBEES.  This is a task that can and will affect every surveyor in the State of North Carolina.  Mr. Benton has reached the statutory limits of his service to the Board and I would like to thank Mr. Benton for his years of excellent service to the profession and the citizens of North Carolina.  North Carolina General Statute 89C-3 states “All of the members shall be appointed by the Governor. Appointments of the engineer and land surveyor members shall preferably, but not necessarily, be made from a list of nominees submitted by the professional societies for engineers and land surveyors in this State.” As you can see, it is one of the duties of NCSS to put forward a candidate to the Governor’s office.  My personal feelings are that this person should be an active member of NCSS for a number of years and should have demonstrated leadership skills in the past with high ethical and professional standards. 

The Policy Manual of NCSS states that “the North Carolina Society of Surveyors limits the issuance of congratulatory letters and recommendations as a benefit to active members of the organization.”  With this in mind, I have asked Chapter Presidents of NCSS to bring up the issue at their next chapter meetings and to report back during the Spring Board of Directors Meeting on May 14, 2022.  The Board of Directors will then extend an invitation to the qualified individuals to make a presentation to the Board and the general membership at the Summer Board of Directors meeting on August 6, 2022.  If you know someone who you feel would make an excellent candidate, or if you yourself wish to serve on the licensing board, contact your local Chapter and arrange a meeting with the members to present your candidate.  The Board of Directors will vote on a single candidate to recommend to the Governor at the Summer Board of Directors meeting. 

Membership in the local Chapters has been on the decline over the past few years and our isolation due to COVID-19 has not helped these numbers.  This is especially true amongst our younger demographics.  Membership is an important function of being a professional as it gives you a voice directing the Society’s leadership. In the coming year, I will be asking the staff to help me send out a questionnaire to all resident surveyors in North Carolina where we will explore questions on how to improve membership in the local chapters and at the state level.  We will evaluate all data received taking into account what the younger surveyors need and how local chapters can assist them.  I will also ask some of our newly licensed surveyors to serve on a committee that will review the data and present recommendations that may help the local chapters and the Society to understand how to reach out and bring this younger demographic into our meetings.

Lastly, I wish to address and explain the recent presentation by NCBEES to the general membership at the luncheon on Friday the 25th of February during the NCSS Conference at Pinehurst.  As many of you know, Senate Bill 219 (SB 219) was passed by the General Assembly and signed by the Governor on January 26, 2022.  This bill will become effective on July 1, 2022, changing the requirements for licensure as a surveyor in North Carolina.   This bill was not put forth by the Society.  However, it did require that we respond quickly and to work with our ally, Representative Dean Arp, in damage control.  As a result, the years of experience for licensure were changed in some categories and a new category of high school diploma with an apprenticeship was created.  On a positive note, we were able to change the requirement so that all experience must now be under a professional licensed surveyor. The chart below gives you a breakdown of the new requirements.  As a requirement of the new law, NCBEES must establish the apprenticeship requirements.  At the luncheon, Mike Benton, John Logsdon, and Executive Director, Andrew Ritter presented the recommendation for apprenticeship. They are asking the membership of NCSS to review this recommendation and to suggest other avenues to accomplish the requirements of the new category.  I will attempt to explain the new category and the current suggestions.

Senate Bill 219’s main goal was to lower the requirements of experience for a high school only candidate.  The original requirement was sixteen years and by working closely with Representative Arp, the Society was able to negotiate a reduction to nine years and to create a new category of apprenticeship with seven years.  The idea of the apprenticeship was to create an avenue whereby a candidate could obtain a certain amount of formal education without completing a degree or they may obtain certain certifications to reduce the experience from nine to seven years.  As defined in S219 by the NCGA a land surveyor apprenticeship is “a program of on-the-job learning that allows individuals to prepare for the land surveying profession through supervised experience combined with land surveyor related classroom instruction as approved by the Board.” To this end, a candidate can obtain the necessary requirements by one of three proposed methods.  The first method is by obtaining certification through the Certified Survey Technician program (CST) of the National Society of Surveyors (NSPS).  The candidate would be required to obtain levels I through IV of the CST.  The second method can be obtained by becoming a certified “Technologist” through the Certification Program of the American Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ASPRS).  The final proposed method to reduce your experience requirement from 9 to 7 years is by obtaining a certain amount of formal education.  As proposed by NCBEES, they would use the National Council of Examiners for Engineers and Surveyors (NCEES) recommendation of college courses and semester credit hours, to require the following 39 hours of college level courses.  These courses could be obtained without completing a formal degree.  The following is the recommended list:

  • 12 hours in mathematics beyond basic mathematics, but the credits include college algebra or higher mathematics. These courses must emphasize mathematical concepts and principles rather than computation. Mathematics courses may include college algebra, trigonometry, analytic geometry, differential and integral calculus, linear algebra, numerical analysis, probability and statistics, and advanced calculus.
  • 27 college semester credit hours of surveying science and surveying practice Courses shall be taught by qualified surveying faculty. Examples of surveying courses are: basic surveying, route surveying, geodesy, geographic information systems, land development design and planning, global positioning systems, photogrammetry, mapping, legal principles of land surveying, boundary law, professional surveying and mapping, and remote sensing. Graduate-level surveying courses can be included to fulfill curricular requirements in this area.

The Board (NCBEES) is asking the surveying community for additional ideas or comments on the proposed requirements for the apprenticeship.  Again, I have asked the Chapter Presidents to return to their respective chapters to present this information and discuss the requirements. As this must be completed before July 1st, 2022, this discussion needs to occur quickly.  Please address all recommendations and critiques to both me and Andrew Ritter at NCBEES. 

In closing, I would like to thank the membership for your trust in electing me President.  I hope to work hard on these goals and to accomplish the many tasks required of this office.  I believe that we must work together as professionals to protect our profession and by result, the public at large. Please feel free to contact me at any time with your concerns and issues in the coming year.

Sincerely,


Jerry W. Nave
NCSS President


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