Virginia State Bar

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Real Property

A Section of the Virginia State Bar.

Meeting Minutes - November 2, 2009

Minutes of the Virginia State Bar
Real Property Section
Board of Governors

Conference Call

The meeting of the Board of Governors of the Real Property Section of the Virginia State Bar, was held by conference call on November 2,2009, commencing at 10:00 a.m.

The following persons were in attendance: Joe Cochran (Chair), Paul Bellegarde (Vice Chair), Paul Melnick (Sec/Treas), Ken Dickinson, Philip Hart, Randy Howard, Cooper Youell, Bill Nusbaum, Barbara Goshorn, Susan Walker.

The meeting began with the participants letting the others know how their practices were going and what real estate trends they are seeing in their practices.

Future Seminars
A. 14th Annual Advanced Real Estate Seminar

Joe Cochran noted that the dates will be February 26th (1 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.) and February 27th (8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.). There will be lunch on Friday, and dinner that evening. The plans are being set on these items. Joe reported that there was a recent meeting involving Nancy Kern and Larry McElwain at which the topics for the seminar were discussed. So far the sessions include: 1. A session on LEED and "green" buildings; 2. Commercial lending; 3. Wind farms; 4. Insurance certificates (commercial); and 5. Residential short sales;

Bill Nusbaum noted that Howard Gordon was working hard on the LEED program. Giving 2 hours of ethics on Saturday morning as an incentive was discussed.

Joe Cochran noted that attendance at the seminar will be limited to 75 or 80 people because we will be meeting in a smaller room.

Barbara Goshorn inquired as to whether there can be comments covering the present status of the estate tax and how family farms etc. will be impacted-an update on the subject? Joe Cochran stated that he will bring that up with the committee. He stated that maybe this could be discussed in the Annual seminar, too.

B. Annual Real Estate Seminar

Joe Cochran noted that this seminar will be held in May. It will be in three locations, Fairfax, Williamsburg and Lexington. He noted that the seminar is in the early stages of planning.

C. Virginia State Bar 2010 Annual Meeting at Virginia Beach

Joe Cochran noted that Paul Melnick is trying to make contact with the Chair of the Domestic Relations Section to organize a joint seminar. Joe noted that he had talked with the Chair of the Domestic Relations Section in August about putting on a joint program with our section.

Real Property Section Committee Discussion

Joe Cochran expressed that he would like to have a discussion about the Committees of our section including expectations for the committees and what they should be doing. Joe inquired as to what the substantive law committees should do.


Phil Hart stated that he thought it would be helpful if there was a list of expectations from the Board to the committee chairs.

It was discussed that such expectations could include quarterly meetings and at least 1 article for the Fee Simple. The committees could come up with one well defined topic for one of the two seminars-assist with well thought out proposals. Also committees could be available to handle questions concerning committee expertise (example: email).

A discussion was had concerning email list serves within the RP Section. Barbara Goshorn inquired as to whether the Area Representatives were on the email tree. Joe stated that they were on the main list serve (email list). Joe stated that the email lists were broken out by region and that there was a separate list serve for the Board. Joe noted that we need a contact for the general list serve and he stated that he can be the first contact for questions from the section. He will then send out the question to the general list serve. It was noted that a reminder should be sent to the Area Reps about the general list serve-perhaps an advertisement in the Fee Simple about it. Joe stated that this would be a good topic for the technology committee. Barbara Goshorn also noted that this list serve could generate topics for Fee Simple Articles. Joe said that he would bring this back to the Board after further discussion.

Barbara Goshorn stated that an updated committee list would be good. Randy Howard stated that Felicia Burton usually makes an inquiry as to the names of the committee members and their contact information. This usually happens in the Fall.

Bill Nusbaum of the Commercial Real Estate Committee, stated that he has maintained an email list of committee members. He recruited Whitney Levin recently. Felicia was contacted to add her to the AR list.

Joe inquired as to whether there was time to send in an updated committee list and Area Rep list before the next issue of the Fee Simple. He said we can try to do this. Barbara Goshorn noted that the list is different from the one prepared in May to which Joe noted that this list has been changed-that Felicia received this information and corrections. He stated that this changed list can be sent out.


Joe Cochran stated that he likes the committee ideas that have been mentioned: meetings, articles for the Fee Simple, list serves etc.

A discussion was had about the list serve and questions from the list serve. It was discussed how specific the list serves should be.

Joe Cochran stated that he will go with the four items from the committees to perform [quarterly meetings, at least 1 article for the Fee Simple, coming up with one well defined topic for one of the two seminars, being available to handle questions concerning committee expertise (via list serve/email)], and this was OK with all Board members on the conference call. He will send out a reminder to committee chairs. He will ask for the minutes of quarterly meetings, and he will send it to the Board of Governors. He will follow up on the list serve subject.

A general discussion was had concerning the home buyer credit and its possibilities.

Joe Cochran noted that we need to set a regular meeting schedule for the Board. Can the Board come up with a regular meeting schedule? Joe said that he will send an email about the Board meeting in April.

The meeting was adjourned at 12:14 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted,

Paul H. Menick

Meeting Minutes (.pdf) - November 2, 2009