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What would you do? Reject a whole township line?  

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LRDay
(@lrday)
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June 13, 2018 9:20 am  

Working on a survey and need section corners that are in highway ROW (not defined). County section corners have been put in about 15 years ago by a “dependent resurvey”. A plat was filed by a private surveyor paid for by the county. It's mostly proportion but doesn't actually cite finding any hard evidence, they decided to use a few points and proportioned from there, maybe a third of the township.

So I'm working in the township to the west side of the township line which was resurveyed and finished in 1914 by GLO. Tracted all along the township line (east tier of sections). So I find lots of tract corners which are steel post with brass caps. This leads me back to the township line and so far I've found three hard corners along the township line and now that I'm tuned in will probably find more and probably all the corners could be put back using the proper procedures from real corner evidence.

Yesterday I dug up one of the original township corners – 3 inch post and cap under a gravel road intersection. So basically my evidence will show that ever section corner along the township line in the highway ROW is set in error. Since lots of other corners were set by proportion from these corners, probably the corners in a third of the township can be shown to be improperly placed.

Welcome to my world, I been telling the county for 15 years they needed to do things different and put a real licensed and qualified surveyor back into the county surveyor position.  All I ever get back is there is no money for that, not since 1957. The corners were set from grant money from the state and feds. My county is a welfare county, its either money from elsewhere or none at all. They wasted it on the lowest bidder and contracting by a non qualified person to even know if they would get what they were supposed to. It still goes on like this to this very day.

What would you do? Maybe just file a survey with my findings and let it roll from there. Sort of a reject every section corner along a township line survey. This won't get me any more work. County will probably stop even talking to me. If they see real professional work they think you are from Mars or something because its so different from what they are accustomed to.

Whatever!

Edited: 1 week  ago

Bill93
(@bill93)
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June 13, 2018 9:41 am  

How much reliance by landowners on the flaky corners?


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LRDay
(@lrday)
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June 13, 2018 9:49 am  

Most landowners in the county are wise to flaky surveying and don't bother to move their fences.  Some build new fences to new survey lines.  It takes 20 years under Utah law to establish a boundary unless an agreement before then can be shown.

Property lines get fixed by reliance of landowners.  Section corners never move if they can be shown where they were originally placed.

 

Edited: 1 week  ago

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Paul in PA
(@paul-in-pa)
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June 13, 2018 9:50 am  

You are not rejecting a Township Line, you are in fact finding and perpetuating the actual/original Township Line, which by reason of what you have uncovered has never been lost. I would indicate "found Original(or dated) Township monuments and "Found monuments erroneously set by said County at later date". 

You have a certain obligation as a registered surveyor, getting future county work is not listed as an obligation to anyone.

Paul in PA


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aliquot
(@aliquot)
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June 13, 2018 10:02 am  

You need to reject the corners as control for the boundaries between any two land owners that you can't make a very strong case of reliance or agreement for. Stick to you guns and do it right. Recognize that some boundaries may use the county positions because of agreements, but that does not make them the PLSS corners. 

If you are surveying against any federal boundaries it probably is a good idea to talk to BLM.  

Edited: 1 week  ago

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thebionicman
(@thebionicman)
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June 13, 2018 10:28 am  

Leon,

Paul nailed the core issue. would caution you on a few finer points.

Those erroneous monuments are not PLSS Corners but they are evidence for other purposes. Work with the County Surveyor to educate them on the difference. 

Also be careful setting any newly proportioned corners. Minor problems in the original proportion are not cause to reject them. The courts are loathe to accept one proportion over another...

CFedS, PLS ID-OR-WA-UT-NV


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Nate The Surveyor
(@nate-the-surveyor)
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June 13, 2018 10:36 am  

@Mr. LRDay

First off, I respect you.

Doing the right thing, means the same thing as the oath that the glo made chainmen swear to.

Look up that oath.

You are in good company.

Nate

Surveying is more than a Job----it is a passion to provide a foundation for future generation, that is beyond reproach.

Nate


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Jitterboogie
(@jitterboogie)
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June 13, 2018 10:37 am  

Ugh.  Sounds like where I currently live.  "Can't afford it.... Too Much Money......Blah Blah...."  They just built a new $8.7M building they didn't need, and yet the surveying and recording continues to stay in the "way we've always done it BS....

At least I can claim Cartoon Status.  Park County and South Park get memorialized weekly with the Cartoon, "South Park" with all the value of the real life  circumstances that spawned the whole idea in the first place.

Take the higher road, in the end it's always worth it.

 

Good Luck.


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Nate The Surveyor
(@nate-the-surveyor)
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June 13, 2018 10:47 am  

Make. HUGE standing bill to the county, maybe 1.2 million.

Publish it everywhere.

"For fixing county's mess".

Ya never know... You may eventually collect it.

N

Surveying is more than a Job----it is a passion to provide a foundation for future generation, that is beyond reproach.

Nate


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Williwaw
(@williwaw)
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June 13, 2018 10:55 am  

Sounds like a text book case of when to record a Record of Survey detailing what was found and how you interpreted those facts on the ground. That will at least put other surveyors on notice down the road. If you don't it's likely the situation will continue to unravel and become more and more convoluted as time rolls on.

Just my .02'

Just because I'm paranoid doesn't mean they're not out to get me.


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Jim in AZ
(@jamesf1)
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June 13, 2018 10:59 am  

"What would you do?"

 

Mr. Day,

The first thing I would do is contact the other surveyor and explain the issue. What I would do after that depends on what he does...


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LRDay
(@lrday)
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June 13, 2018 11:00 am  

I thought the rule for proportioning was between the nearest original corners.  Don't have that here.  Proportioning from the nearest guessed corners.  Looks to me the county corners are from about 10 to 25 feet from where they should be.  This is SOP here.


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Dave Karoly
(@dave-karoly)
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June 13, 2018 11:09 am  

If you find an original monument and the "new" monument is over there then the original absolutely controls.

On missing original monuments set by the GLO then you have better evidence of where it probably was originally located than the "new" monument over there BUT property owners can expect finality in boundary location.  So this situation is a little more difficult.  If no one has used the "new" monument then you can reject it.  Otherwise be careful.

On corners not set by the GLO and set for the first time by the "questionable" survey, if they were accepted in good faith by the affected property owner I would think long and hard before rejecting them.  On the other hand if they fly in the face of older evidence such as ancient fence corners then they are more reject-able.

Property owners do have the right to reject a questionable survey as long as they do it in a timely manner and there is no substantial detrimental reliance.

My way of looking at it is the monument is either the corner or it isn't.  There is no other class of corners that aren't the corner but they are the corner.  The point of acquiescence is that it identifies (or not) the corner you are looking for.  So if the questionable monument was set for a 1/16th corner and it has been established as such then my personal feelings on the reprobateness of the monument don't matter.

While we are on the subject of hard work, I just wanted to tell you that I am a man who likes hard work.
I was born working and I worked my way up by hard work.
I ain't ever got no where, but I got there by hard work.
Work of the hardest kind.
I been down and I been out
I been disgusted I been busted and I couldn't be trusted.
-Talking Hard Work, Woody Guthrie


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holy cow
(@holy-cow)
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June 13, 2018 1:28 pm  

Leon,

It is great to know there  are still some "real" surveyors on the job.  What I keep running into are people who email Hub Tack or the equivalent State agency to locate section corner data they have on file and then incorrectly assume they have applied adequate due diligence.  One must research all local survey files or they are not applying due diligence.  There are far too many corners filed, and then relied upon by others, that are simply the result of slipshod procedures by untrained button pushers who look like heroes when they reduce costs on a specific job.  I can think of an example of that not far from here where the true corner is in the center of a county road but requires digging through about 15 inches of very hard material.  The most recent corner record available suggests a bar set by a "never met a proration I didn't like" button pusher that used to be about 60 feet away in a corn field (set level with surface).  "Used to be" referring to a bent piece of rebar found more or less horizontal about 20 feet away from the location cited on the "toilet paper-worthy" corner record.  One must do thorough research in order to do professional work.  It also helps if the poorly trained technician understands that different surveying standards and practices were used for the Government surveys on opposite sides of certain lines.  For example, some center corners were set at the crossing of quarter section lines while others had the center set at the midpoint of a quarter section line that was to be run parallel to the east section line.  It depends on the official instructions in the year of the Government survey for that particular section.  One size does not fit all.


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MightyMoe
(@mightymoe)
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June 13, 2018 2:43 pm  

Sounds like a mess, good luck Leon.

This doesn't happen to be a standard line does it?


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