Friday, September 27, 2013

What is considered good research?

I have been to countless seminars; classes, and lectures; that all said that the survey starts with research.  Going to the Recorders/Clerks office and pulling deeds and surveys.  With this in mind; how in the hell did the Assessor's Tax Parcel Identification Number become the replacement.  I will stipulate that the assessor's office can be a good place to start research.  HOWEVER, the assessor's office is not the only place to do the research.

I have been seeing a trend that where records of survey have been citing the assessors parcel number as the basis of their research.  Really?  What happens when the number changes?  There is no short cut to doing the research.  Do it write or don't do it at all.


Tuesday, September 10, 2013

More than Measurers Part 2

Here lately I have had the opportunity to speak with colleagues around the state.  There seems to be a fundamental lack of understanding in what the land surveyor is trying to accomplish.  I have met people who can measure to the Nth degree of accuracy.  Yet, their boundary conclusion is EXACTLY wrong.

How can a profession concentrate so heavily on the science of measurement and neglect the art of understanding evidence.  How did arbitrary numbers become more important than evidence of occupation and use?   Why do we hide behind measurements and ignore the true facts laying there before us?

As a for instance:

SurvA gets a call to locate the corners of lot 9 Nonya Acres.  The subdivision is the SE1/4NW1/4 and the SW1/4NE1/4 and the NW1/4SE1/4 and the NE1/4SW1/4 of Section 10 T1NR1E Yomama PM.  The County of Utopia has created a Coordinate data base of all section and 1/4 section monuments (that existed at the time of the survey) for the entire county.  SurvA goes the the County's website pulls the subdivision plat and the Coordinates for the Section Corners.  Then proceeds calculate his way into lot 9.  Having created this mathematically superior sketch; uploads the data to the data collector and hands it off to his technician and says "go forth and do great things"...  The PC arrives at the address; turns on the GPS and stakes out the coordinates setting new pins because there wasn't any at the stakeout and drives to the local park to grab some shade and enjoy a cold drink because he doesn't want to get back to office to early.

Upon returning to the office the technician downloads his Data collector and give the CAD guy his data.  CAD guy takes a hour to create a Record of Survey; showing the section corner ties to the lot perimeter.  Plots it to mylar and lays it on the RLS's desk.  RLS signs it and gives it to the office clerk who takes it to the county for recordation.  AHHHH, the field to finish survey.  Bodda Bing, its done and billed.

Next morning the phone rings...... Its the client; seems the pins on the east are in his yard and the pins on the west are in his neighbors yard...neighbors are mad and fighting and your client wants an explanation.  So the RLS says:  "Well the location of the lot is where we staked it.  If that isn't where you are occupying contact you title company and have them help you fix it because everyone in that block has the same problem."  The client hangs up and is now being threatened with a lawsuit.

Questions to Ponder:
1.  Was there any direct supervision of anybody by the RLS?
2.  Did the RLS evaluate the evidence of the boundary?
3.  Where is Lot 9?
4.  Was life better as a party chief or an RLS?