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The Governor of Texas, Rick Perry moved to eliminate Land Surveying as a profession yesterday. This is being done on behalf of the Title Insurance lobby which wants to collect our fees through their product called "Express Map."

They argue that the Texas Board of Professional Land Surveying (TBPLS) costs the state of Texas 600 thousand dollars a year. The fact is the TBPLS nets the state of Texas more than 1/2 million dollars a year ... above and beyond it's operating costs. It has never cost the state anything to operate the TBPLS. The extra money generated by the TBPLS is put back in the school and general fund for the state of Texas.

Express maps are nothing more than complied data available for free on the web. This product does not define the boundaries of real property as many people seem to believe. I find errors in the real property descriptions provided by Title Insurance firms every day. A tax mosaic superimposed over a satellite image is not a Land Survey and can never serve as one. The private ownership of real property rests on a Land Survey in America. Without a Land Survey there can be no private ownership of real property.

This is something we should all be concerned about even if you are not a Land Surveyor. If you are in Texas I urge you to write, fax or email your local state senator and state Representative. If you are outside of Texas then I ask that you to support us in any way that you can. It will be you next who will face extinction if something is not done about this now.

This Content Originally Published by a land surveyor to Land Surveyors United Network

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I get the politics, but I don't understand the logic to any of this.


Just get me out of the sales tax collection business, and I'll take the deal...


(fat chance)

LOL Mr. Denson, I hear ya!

After careful consideration I have decided that the only way to effect change in my profession is from outside the state level Land Surveyor's society. I will concentrate on issuing Affidavits of Merit to bring the legal system to bear on those who have refused to listen and degrade this profession through personal attack.

I have attended every convention save one for the past 20 years. I have attended almost every meeting of my local society for 20 years now. I have contributed money, books, prizes and written articles all in an effort to strengthen our prof...essional society. I have written article after article and posted them where ever I could on the web to promote this profession and the society for 20 years now.

My reward has been to endure personal attacks regarding my character, professional opinion and contributions. I will now turn my full effort toward issuing Affidavits of Merit, filing complaints with the Texas Board of Professional Land Surveying and urging my friends who remain within the Society to do the right thing.

As of a few days ago I have issued some dozen Affidavits of Merit against other Land Surveyors. I have been involved in more than a half dozen complaints against other Land Surveyors. I have urged that ethical questions be ask of the appoin...tees to the Texas Board of Professional Land Surveying with the powers that be that have resulted in action against them. These have become the things that I am most proud of and have had the most success with regarding my fellow Land Surveyors. It is unfortunate that it has come to this and all I can say is that I hope that if you are a Land Surveyor that you do not face me in Court or before the Texas Board of Professional Land Surveying (if there is one in the future).



News and Current Events
Governor's Budget

The Governor has suggested to move the Board to presently an unknown location. Then, to suspend the Board. Then, to review the Board in 18 months. It is felt that "LAWS" relating to land surveying will not be affected.
The next Board meeting will be March 11 2011 at 9am at TBPLS.



I plan to attend. Be there are be square. I feel the Texas Society of Professional Land Surveyors no longer represents the interests of Texas Land Surveyors as a whole and I will no longer contribute to an organization that allows it's officers to mount personal attacks against other Land Surveyors on the web. I find it ironic that the forum on both the State society web page and their local and state level Facebook page is monitored and censored by individuals who opine that they will not tolerate personal attacks but then mount them themselves on other websites. It is a symptom of the sickness that now dominates our profession and society in general.

No news is good news?

I wanted to post a brief message to let everyone know that it’s a quiet week.  I don’t know if we should call this the lull before the storm but we do expect the action to pick up again soon.

We continue to monitor committee meetings and bills being referred to committees for any items that might impact the surveying profession.  Right now the legislature seems mainly focused on gathering the remainder of the budget reports and beginning conversations about redistricting.



This is the latest. Nobody knows anything at this point. There is no new activity and nothing to report says TSPS.

There have been two bills introduced that I am aware of at this point.

 HB2480 and HB2543.

Here is a link to HB 2480. It eliminates the Texas Board of Professional Land Surveying and places the Texas Board of Architects in charge of regulating Land Surveyors. There will be only two Land Surveyors on an eleven member Board. The Board would consist of four architects, one interior designer, one landscape architect, three public members and two Land Surveyors. The Board members would have six year terms!


Below is a link to HB2543.


It would eleminate the Texas Boards of Professional Land Surveying, Engineering and Architecture and combine them under a "Professional Services Board". This is from a Republican representative in Baytown who is a.....Engineer.


As you can guess the "new" Board would consist of eleven members with only one Land Surveyor. That board would consist of five engineers, two architects, one landscape architect, two members of the public and one Land Surveyor.


Needless to say I am against the idea presented in the either bill. Once again my opinion is that this is being driven by the Title Insurance firms who wish to be rid of Land Surveyors, just as they rid themselves of Abstractors. Unfortunately for the public what they buy from the Title Insurance firms is not worth the paper it is printed on any more.



The latest news is there is yet another bill (HB3166) proposed. This one is similar to one of the other bills already introduced in the sense that the new "Board" (Professional Services Board) will consist of 5 Engineers,  2 Architects, 1 Landscape Architect, 2 members of the public and 1 Land Surveyor.


Again this is completely unacceptable in my opinion.


I must note however that there is a certain individual who is an officer in the Texas Society of Professional Land Surveyors who continue to insist that this has nothing to do with eliminating Land Surveying as a profession. Either this individual is incompetent, incapable of examining facts and drawing a conclusion or is an agent for the Title Insurance industry, you can make your own determination. Here is a quote from this individual below in response to the move to eliminate Land Surveying as a profession in Florida.

"Florida moves to de-regulate Surveyors and Mappers

by jamesdredmon, Monday, March 14, 2011, 12:59 (43 minutes ago) @ Just Mapit

There is no push to deregulate surveying here. We are grappling with a trio of bills that would consolidate agencies. Two of them would combine the surveyors with engineers, architects, and landscape architects under a professional design board. The other bill would exclude the engineers but be called the Architect's board. I think there is some room to negotiate on the specifics of each of the"


Apparently Mr. Redmon believes that a single Land Surveyor will be able to regulate the entire profession of Land Surveying in the State of Texas sitting on a Board where that Land Surveyor can't make a move without convincing 10 other non surveyors that it is necessary. Further that a single Land Surveyor will be able to prevent 10 other non surveyor members of that board from not doing something harmful to this profession or the public who rely on Land Surveyors.


In addition Mr. Redmon has now posted the names of chapter representatives along with their attendance records on the TSPS website implying that these people are the reason for this crisis through their apathy. The fact of the matter however is that many of the individuals Mr. Redmon names have worked tirelessly for this profession and the society and have contributed more that he could ever hope to contribute in his entire life time.


This man is a menace and should step down from his office immediately. Land Surveyors in Texas and the public that relies on them can withstand glib and thoughtless antics from a Society officer but we can't tolerate his incompetence and the misinformation he is spreading at this point.



The latest is Mr. Redmon has posted this below at the TSPS website.

At our local chapter meeting yesterday Pat Smith presented this piece of information.

“SurPAC contributed 7300 dollars to politicians before the session started.  He recently received a notice from TLTA thanking their members for raising over 140,000 dollars in a ten day contribution drive.” 

When it comes to the legislature, we just don’t have the money or “Juice” that some other groups have.

Posted in James Redmon | Leave a comment "
Pat Smith has worked tirelessly for both our state and national society and has held about every office there is in both. I am friends with Pat and have talked with him many times at both state and national conventions. I find it ironic that Mr. Redmon would post something that implies that I have been right all along and reports information which I reported weeks ago. Mr. Redmon at that time called me a "nut" for posting that information. I suppose because he "heard it" from Pat Smith that somehow either Pat Smith is a "nut" or Mr. Redmon has forgotten all about his assertions regarding my character.
Mr. Redmon should resign, he continues to show that he is both ignorant and incompetent.
The TSPS state website is down this morning. If we are to believe what Mr. Redmon has said previously on national surveyor forums this is because only one individual was posting there (Mr. Redmon was talking about me). Mr. Redmon has said that this was the reason the website and forum were taken down the first time. I have been monitoring the website every day and it appears the only poster there in the last couple of weeks before the site was taken down was......Mr. Redmon. So according to Mr. Redmon, Mr. Redmon must be the reason the site has been taken down now.

On Saturday, March 19, 2011, the Texas Society of Professional Surveyors held a special called meeting of the Board of Directors to discuss the pending issue of State Agency Consolidation. At this meeting a position for TSPS was adopted, as follows:

As Professional Surveyors we are concerned that the Texas Board of Professional Land Surveying (TBPLS) is under consideration for consolidation with other professional licensing agencies because TBPLS has been, since its inception, a revenue positive agency for the State of Texas. But as Texas citizens we are very cognizant of the budget deficit facing the 82nd Legislature and are supportive of the initiative of both the Governor of Texas and the State Legislature to reduce the size and cost of government. We feel that this can be, in part, accomplished by consolidation of certain State Agency functions relative to professional licensing while maintaining the necessary oversight, regulation and enforcement required to protect the health, safety and welfare of the public.

Currently three bills have been filed relative to professional licensing agencies for Surveyors, Engineers, Architects and Geoscientists. They are HB 2480 (Rep. Geren), HB 2543 (Rep. Smith) and HB 3166 (Rep. Callegari) and create a variety of consolidated agency/board formats.

Review of the financial reports from the currently independent licensing agencies readily shows that the real cost of these agencies is in fixed operating costs and not the actual functions of the appointed boards. TSPS supports the position that the boards within these existing agencies are functional and vital in their duties of oversight, rule review/development, regulation and enforcement of the respective professions to maintain the necessary level of protection for the health, safety and welfare of the citizens of Texas.

TSPS believes that the necessity of the Legislature to reduce the size and cost of state government can be readily accomplished by consolidation of the functions of these individual agencies into the Texas Department of Professional Services with one administrative group providing support and operations to the independent Professional Boards in their current format and structure that has been proven successful over time. These independent Professional Boards will maintain the required regulation and enforcement of the individual professions by the proper combination of licensed professionals and public members.

At this time TSPS feels it is appropriate to make this position known to the Texas Legislature by sending this position to your Representative and Senator, along with the members of the House Licensing & Administrative Procedures Committee and the House Government Efficiency & Reform Committee.

Don’t know your legislators? Find them here:

Licensing & Administrative Procedures Committee
Chair Mike Hamilton [email protected]
Chente Quintanilla [email protected]
Joe Driver [email protected]
Charlie Geren [email protected]
Roland Gutierrez [email protected]
Patricia Harless [email protected]
John Kuempel [email protected]
Jose Menendez [email protected]
Senfronia Thompson [email protected]

Government Efficiency & Reform Committee
Chair William Callegari [email protected]
Eddie Lucio [email protected]
Erwin Cain [email protected]
John Frullo [email protected]
Linda Harper-Brown [email protected]
Sergio Munoz [email protected]
William Zedler [email protected]

It appears that the TBPLS has survived the Governor's attempt to wipe it out. There appears to be no movement in the legislature to carry out the Governor's threats. This should keep us alive for another 2 years. I must say however that this issue has caused me to become deeply disappointed with TSPS and currently I am refusing to participate. I attended the Board meeting last week and spoke to a number of heavy weight Land Surveyors who were there. I may change my opinion soon and begin participating again but I find it very hard to enable a system that relies on bribes in order to maintain basic protections for the public and such is the case when we talk about political contributions to Perry by TSPS. There will always be somebody coming along with more money who wishes to destroy the system of public protection in order to enrich themselves at the expense of everyone else and this is what the entire Perry administration has been about since the beginning.


I bought a house and the title company missed that the deck was 2 feet across the property line not real thrilled. Dealing with court with the prior owner not disclosing and the title company. The neighbors had signed a disclosure when they purchased their home and told me as I moved in. Title companies are pretty scandalous.


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