Governor signs HB 2260 in Kansas

Kansas Home Inspectors Professional Competence and Financial Responsibility Act
House Bill 2260 revises several provisions of the Kansas Home Inspectors Professional Competence and Financial Responsibility Act. This legislation will become effective upon its publication in the Kansas Statute Book.

Signed by the governor on April 23, 2009.

As an inspector in Kansas, I have just lost several constitutional rights to help protect the public. I now have to abide by laws created by lawmakers who are real estate agents. I will have to abide by home inspection board rules and regulations. I will no longer be able to provide detailed inspections; I will be limited on what I can and cannot inspect “by law”. I will have to take tests, most of which have nothing to do with a home inspection and pay several fees and insurance requirements that will push prices of inspections higher, out of reach of most first time home buyers. Appraisers, insurance agents, and real estate agents are all gearing up to perform “home assessments”. It is a true travesty that governments are listening to special interest groups and passing laws for the benefit of the groups only. I thought the government works for me; I now work for the governement, under their rules, regulations, and have to pay taxes for their benefit. The freedoms of all Americans are dwindling, and at a record rate. I cannot understand how a Governor, who is going to work for the federal government, can sign into law these regulations, introduced by real estate agents, so that “these business people” can sell homes, to only fill their pockets with funds, and not have inspectors around to mess it all up. I tried. We lost. I have no choice but to join this new government society. My rights, as an American, are few.

I feel for you Gary, Although Im in MI, we might be in a similar boat here.

Your licensing board asked for, and was denied, the ability to prosecute home inspectors who chose not to comply with the law. They asked for, and the Attorney General denied them, the right to declare an unlicensed home inspector in violation of a state law and prescribed a penalty. Your Attorney General intervened and said that prosecution and penalties are up to the jurisdictions in which the activities are taking place (counties and cities who choose to prosecute).

I can only speak for myself but if my state ever had a realtor and trial attorney joining forces with ASHI to govern my home inspections by ruling over me on a licensing board, I would immediately resign from any association whose COE would prohibit me…and I would make my point through civil disobedience…and refuse to comply with the law. When and if I were ever prosecuted, I would then make my case as public as I could through all media…local and national…to alert the public of the endangergment that special interests have brought upon an already fraud ridden industry by tying the hands and gagging the only…the only…party to the real estate transaction not dependent upon the sale to be paid.

I have not had time to read the Kansas law so I will need some explanation.
Under this new law does the home inspection board have the power to enforce rules on a licensed home inspector?
Do they have the power to prosecute or fine an unlicensed home inspector for not being licensed under the new law?

The original law written by Barnes allowed him to turn violators over to the state for prosecution and prescribed a minimum fine. This was a part of the law that the Attorney General rejected and one of the reasons it was sent back to the legislature. The Attorney General informed the licensing board that the nature of any violation and the fine or other punishment would be up to the prosecutors and judges of the county or municipality enforcing it.

Accordingly, the Board’s authority to turn violators over to the state for prosectuion was omitted from the new House Bill.

It is on the same order of a state license plate violation on your car. Local authorities have the power to enforce it (or not) in their prescribed manner.

You see…Kansas only has the authority to control the home inspectors it registers under its new law. Any home inspector not registered is not subject to the authority of Licensing Board and it will be up to the local folks to decide if its important enough to them to do anything about.

I am not advocating for anyone else to ignore this law, of course. I am strictly speaking for myself as to what I would do if this same crime were committed in Missouri and we wound up with a similar law.

So the state passed a law that only local authorities, if they care to, can enforce?
How could a complaint be possibly filed and prosecuted? The state has no authority to enforce it and the local authorities will not want to spend the money enforcing this law, since it will be seen as a petty crime, so the consumer will have to hire a lawyer to bring action to local court against an inspector. Am I understanding this law right?

Possibly.

If Barnes gathers proof that someone is doing home inspections without being registered, he will have to call the jurisdiction (state or county) where the offense occurred and file a complaint. It will be up to that jurisdiction to determine if it is worth pursuing.

IMO, a local jurisdiction is more likely to respond to a home owner in that area filing the complaint and claiming that they were damaged by the unlicensed inspector or something on that order. Lots of unlicensed pooches in the city, too, but no one does anything until a local citizen files a barking complaint.

What happens to a complaint about a licensed inspector?

You need to get a Sancho Panza James, to make you quest complete. ;):smiley:

Investigated by Barnes.

How will his ruling be enforced?

Barnes and his gang can grant or deny licenses. For those who want them, this could be a big deal.

Right now, his greatest amount of power is over the carpetbaggers wanting his permission to sell the entry test (undoubtedly, the NHIE) and approved educational programs.

Can they take away a license?

Yes, but only if you get one. Those who do not won’t fall under their jurisdiction. I would argue that having a realtor on the board governing my license is a conflict of interest and would refuse to participate with such an unethical board, but that’s just me.

It gets better yet. Attached is the changes the Senate and House Conference Committee made and agreed on that the Legislature was to vote ON.

The roll call shows it was voted on and passed.

After several Senate Hearings it was agreed to ammend HB-2260 language so as to let the inspector use language in his MANDATORY Servive Agreement that allows him to state in his contract that HE COULD NOT LIMIT HIS LIABILITY TO UNDER $XX,000 per inspection. The Senate and House Conference Committee agreed to lower the Home Inspectors liability from $10,000 per job to $2,000.

Now look at the Bill posted on the KS Governments web site and you’ll see a few discrepencies. Such as some places the $10,000 liability for home inspectors was lowered to $2,000 as we had gotten done - BUT - in other spots in the Bill the language is still showing $10,000.

Whoops … I wonder which a Trial Attorney will want to go with.

It appears at 1st glance that somehow when recording the Bill

It gets better yet. Attached is the changes the Senate and House Conference Committee made and agreed on that the Legislature was to vote ON.

The roll call shows it was voted on and passed.

After several Senate Hearings it was agreed to ammend HB-2260 language so as to let the inspector use language in his MANDATORY Servive Agreement that allows him to state in his contract that HE COULD NOT LIMIT HIS LIABILITY TO UNDER $XX,000 per inspection. The Senate and House Conference Committee agreed to lower the Home Inspectors liability from $10,000 per job to $2,000.

Now look at the Bill posted on the KS Governments web site and you’ll see a few discrepencies. Such as some places the $10,000 liability for home inspectors was lowered to $2,000 as we had gotten done - BUT - in other spots in the Bill the language is still showing $10,000.

Whoops … I wonder which a Trial Attorney will want to go with.

Looks like they might have to send the law back again. Why does it not surprise me?

We caught it a several weeks ago, but wanted to let the Guv sign it before calling anyone’s attention to it. Think it will survive a thrid trip through the legislature?

LOL …

As stated in the “Conference Committee Report Brief” of April 1, 2009

“Add to the board’s duties and powers the ability to investigate allegations of misconduct against an applicant AND registrant. The Board would have access to and the right to examine and copy ANY document, report, record or other physcal evidence of ANY inspector who is being investigated, as well as access to ANY document, report, record or other evidence maintained by and in the possession of ANY registered home inspector. In addition, the Board would be able to require the attendance and testimony of any registered home inspector.”

If Mr. Barnes or any other board member shows up at my doorstep and demands any of my business records without a court subpena, I think I would have to show him what my boots can do. They, and he, are not a judge and jury.