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Charlotte Amalie
Thursday, December 7, 2023


The V.I. government has failed to forward $5,300 in fees for local real estate appraisers to a federal regulatory agency, which has put appraisers' certifications in jeopardy. This, in turn, could jeopardize property buyers from getting mortgages.
Elissa Runyan, head of the V.I. Real Estate Appraisers Board, said the territorial government owes the Appraisal Subcommittee of the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council the V.I. appraisers' $25 annual fees since 1994, the Daily News reported Monday.
Louis Penn, acting commissioner of Licensing and Consumer Affairs, the local agency that collects the fees, said the check to the Washington, D.C., agency is in the mail.
The council wrote then-Licensing Commissioner Osbert Potter on Dec. 7, saying failure to pay the bill by Dec. 31 would result in certifications being rescinded.
The government didn't pay. The council cut off the certifications.
Without certification, appraisers can't do their jobs, Runyan said. Without appraisals, banks cannot approve mortgages.
In the Dec. 7 letter, Subcommittee Chairman Herbert S. Yolles outlined five earlier attempts to get the fees.
Penn told the Daily News he didn't know why the government hadn't paid the fees, but said a check was sent express mail to Washington, D.C. on Thursday.
As of Friday, the check had not arrived, the Daily News reported.

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