Virginia State Bar

An agency of the Supreme Court of Virginia

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Real Property

A Section of the Virginia State Bar.

Meeting Minutes - April 4, 2003

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

Richmond, Virginia

The Spring Meeting of the Board of Governors of the Real Property Section of the Virginia State Bar was held on Friday, April 4, 2003, at the Virginia Crossings Resort in Richmond, Virginia.

The following persons were in attendance: Stephen R. Romine, Paula S. Caplinger, Deborah Merz, Craig Erdman, Karen Davis, Jean Mumm, Ray W. King, Randy Howard, Mark Williamson, Pia Trigiani, Cooper Youell, Lawrence Schonberger, Steve Wood, Courtland Traver, Susan Siegfried, Rick Chess, David Stroh, Larry McElwain, Cynthia Nahorney, Grice McMullan, Michael Barney, Joseph Cochran, Lee Hickok and Christina Meier. Larry J. McElwain, Secretary of the organization kept the minutes.

Mr. Romine called the meeting to order at 10:15 a.m. (See official Agenda attached.)

At the request of the chairman the attending members introduced themselves.

Mr. Romine presented the minutes of the January 31, 2003, meeting of the organization, and upon motion duly made and seconded, the minutes were unanimously approved as written by those who attended the January 31, 2003, meeting. Those not in attendance at the January 31, 2003, meeting abstained. Mr. Romine noted that the actions taken at the January 31, 2003, meeting including expansion of the duties of the Secretary which henceforth shall be those of a secretary/Treasurer. The Secretary/Treasurer shall deliver the financial report at future Board meetings.

Mr. Romine noted that this meeting was being held in conjunction with the 7th Annual Advanced Real Estate Seminar, and that attendance at the seminar was less than anticipated, and significantly less that at the 6th Annual Seminar which was held in Charlottesville_ A discussion regarding how to stimulate attendance at future seminars was had, however no motions were presented for consideration.

Mr. Romine gave the financial report. After reviewing the Section's financial Statement he noted that the highest portion of the budget was devoted to costs attendant with publication of the Fee Simple, followed by costs associated with meetings and seminars. It was noted that the Section had excess funds in the current budget and there was discussion about the possibility of funding a speaker at the mid-year State Bar Seminar, as part of the Section's mission is to reach out to other organizations, however no motion was made in this regard. Upon motion duly made and seconded the financial report was unanimously passed.

Paula Caplinger next gave a report on the Annual Seminar set for May 2003. She noted that this seminar, as opposed to the Advanced Seminar, was geared to a more basic level of practice with the hope of attracting a wider base of attendance. She noted that attorney staff members were welcome to attend. Once again the case portion of the program would be provided by the National Legal Research Group, and made a motion to cap the expenses for that group at $4,000.00. The motion was duly seconded and passed by unanimous vote. Lee Hickok noted that a reasonable number of attendees had already registered for that seminar.

Discussion turned to the summer program, and it was noted that Jean Mumm would be in charge of conducting that presentation which is set for Friday, June 20 at 11:00 a.m. The topic will be "Mold" and there will be a panel of three speakers. Immediately subsequent to the program the summer session of this group will be called to order, the anticipated time being 12:30.

The next matter of business that came under discussion was the expectations regarding active participation by the area representatives. It was noted that the September 25, 1999 minutes stated that if a Board member missed two consecutive meetings he/she would be subject to dismissal, while no mention of attendance requirements for area representatives was made. However each area representative was expected to serve on a sub-committee. The person who served as the conduit for membership should serve as a mentor to new representatives. Upon motion made by Ray King, duly seconded and unanimously passed it was resolved that no standard for attendance at meetings would be adopted in light of the laxity of enforcement in the past, and that once appointed such appointment would be in perpetuity. Discussion was had regarding formalization of the process of recruiting new members, and it was decided that there should be a formal offer and acceptance for representatives. Christina Meier agreed to draft proposed guidelines for area representatives.

Mr. Romine next suggested that the Fee Simple include photographs of all members. After discussion it was decided that Mr. Romine would contact Linda Butler to see if the idea was feasible.

The next item of business was the appointment of new Area Representatives. Upon motion duly made, seconded and unanimously adopted Cynthia Nahorney and Lisa Murphy were appointed as Area Representatives.

Mr. Romine then led a discussion regarding the realignment of committees. He proposed that the number of committees be reduced to six, and that each committee was responsible for generating at least one article each year for the Fee Simple. It was suggested that in order to enhance committee efforts that each committee should conduct a fifteen minute meeting in conjunction with the four board meetings. After discussion, no motion was made to put into effect the foregoing, and discussion evolved into the Section's Mission Statement. It was suggested that the Mission Statement be reviewed annually, and further that the committee chairs should meet as a group once each year, again in conjunction with one of the four scheduled Board meetings. It was suggested that the budget could sustain an annual retreat in an effort to invigorate enthusiasm and strengthen networking ties. Wintergreen resort outside Charlottesville was suggested as a possible location for such a retreat. It was acknowledged that the agenda for such a meeting would be important and that one should be developed and circulated in advance for input from the membership. Paula Caplinger and Larry McElwain were asked to undertake a study of this matter with an eye toward a fall meeting.

There next ensued a discussion regarding the interaction of the Virginia State Bar and the Virginia Bar Association. Grice McMullan, Pia Trigiani and Mike Barney led the discussion. It was acknowledged that the leadership of the two organizations needs to interact more often. It was noted that 4-5 years ago there were two joint meetings of the organizations. With this thought in mind it was suggested that the VBA leadership, and possibly the entire membership, be included in the proposed fall retreat with an eye toward honing the Mission Statement.

Court Traver implored those in attendance to submit article for the Fee Simple, suggesting that the U.S. Patriot Act was ripe for such an article, and that case articles were needed.

Ray King delivered a report on the activities of Bar Counsel.

Given the time, committee reports were waived, and upon motion duly made, seconded and unanimously passed the meeting was adjourned at 12:15 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted,
Larry J. McElwain, Secretary



10:00 a.m. April 4, 2003
Virginia Crossings Conference Resort
Glen Allen, Virginia

1. Welcome - Romine

2. Approval of minutes from the January 31, 2003 meeting - McElwain

3. Membership Report - Howard

4. Financial Report - Romine

5. Annual CLE Seminars

A. 21st Annual Real Estate Practice Seminar - Caplinger
B. Annual Summer CLE - Mumm

6. Area Representatives - Meier

7. Chair's Report - Discussion of Committee Reorganization - Romine

8 Subcommittee Assignments

A. Residential Real Estate (Open)
B. Commercial Real Estate (Open)
C. Creditor's Rights and Bankruptcy (Wood)
D. Land Use and Environmental (Blaine)
E. Title Insurance (Gregory)
F. Ethics (Pesner)
G. Technology (Dewing)

9. Cooperative Initiative with VBA - McMullen

10. USA Patriot Act - McCauley

11. Fee Simple - Butler

12. Liaison Reports

Bar Counsel - King
Old Dominion Bar Association - Holmes

13. Old Business

14. New Business

15. Adjourn