Department Of Interior
|OFFICE OF THE SECRETARY||
|For Immediate Release: July 15, 2003||
WASHINGTON - Assistant Secretary of the Interior Lynn Scarlett today welcomed members of a new team charged with providing direction for implementing historic land appraisal reforms - reforms that Interior Secretary Gale Norton said are "long overdue."
Meeting here for the first time today, the Appraisal Reform Implementation Team will devise an action plan and schedule for consolidating real estate appraisal functions now performed by various agencies within the Department of the Interior - a major reform recommended for several decades.
"We have provided the broad parameters for reform, but we are depending on you - the experts in realty, appraisals, human resources, and other critical areas - to suggest how to make it happen, " Scarlett told the new team, composed of 15 appraisal, realty, human resources and field management experts from the Interior Department, its component bureaus, and the Department of Justice (see list at end).
Secretary of the Interior
Norton announced on June 19 that the department's appraisals will be
consolidated, a decision called "a real victory for appraisers"
by the American Society of Appraisers (ASA). "The action responds
to long-standing concerns about the management of appraisal functions
as documented for several decades in reports issued by Interior's Inspector
General, the General Accounting Office, an Appraisal Foundation study.
. . and an interagency team under the auspices of the Bureau of Land
Management," ASA noted in a June 27 release.
The plan will be designed
to avoid extensive disruption to employees, to minimize budget impacts
and to address the needs and priorities of agency land acquisition and
exchange programs. The department expects to formally establish the
new organization by September 30.
Assistant Secretary Scarlett announced that the team coordinator is Larry Finfer, Deputy Director of the DOI Office of Policy Analysis. The Appraisal Reform Implementation Team that convened for an all-day meeting at DOI today includes:
Appraisal Reform Implementation
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