Friday, September 16, 2011

Call to action real estate appraisers in California - Mary Cummins



SUBJECT: Call To Action


It’s BAD!  In fact it does not get any WORSE! Please, get mad, take action, write Governor Jerry Brown… RIGHT NOW!  This Bill is on his desk.

Governor Brown… please VETO SB706

Excerpt from SB 706:

SEC. 35. Section 11317.2 is added to the Business and Professions Code, to read:
11317.2. (a) In addition to publishing the summary required by Section 11317, the office shall provide on the Internet information regarding the status of every license and registration issued by the office in accordance with the California Public Records Act (Chapter 3.5 (commencing with Section 6250) of Division 7 of Title 1 of the Government Code) and the Information Practices Act of 1977 (Chapter 1 (commencing with Section 1798) of Title 1.8 of Part 4 of Division 3 of the Civil Code). The public information to be provided on the Internet shall include information on suspensions and revocations of licenses and registrations issued by the office and accusations filed pursuant to the Administrative Procedure Act (Chapter 3.5 (commencing with Section 11340) of Part 1 of Division 3 of Title 2 of the Government Code) relative to persons or businesses subject to licensure, registration, or regulation by the office.
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Below are some things you can say…  but please, don’t cut and paste the entire thing. Pick one of two or ideas or better yet, write you own comments. The facts are simple. If someone accused you of something and you had no chance to defend yourself, and no opportunity to confront your accuser, you would be smeared in PUBLIC.  How do you feel about that? Your reputation, all those years of hard work, down the drain
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·         The OREA website currently publishes information on suspensions and revocations (or surrenders) of licenses, following the direction and example of the federal Appraisal Subcommittee. The public is being protected now!

·         The National Registry of the Appraisal Subcommittee only lists revocations, voluntary surrenders, and suspensions of appraisal licensees, AFTER an adjudicative hearing has been completed in the jurisdiction where a violation has occurred.  This makes sense!

·         SB 706 adds “…accusations filed pursuant to the Administrative Procedures Act” to the items that must be listed by OREA. Very bad public policy. This is why we  “don’t yell Fire in a Theater." It destroys people.

·         The addition of accusations to the items to be listed fails to recognize the uniqueness of the appraisal profession, as compared to other professions regulated under the Department of Consumer Affairs.

·         Even the slightest hint of unfounded disciplinary action against an appraisal licensee can be the “kiss of death” to the appraiser’s business; it is equivalent to license revocation. So you destroy someone on a whim. Bad idea!

·         Publishing accusations against appraisers on the Internet prior to a hearing before an Administrative Law Judge may constitute a violation of  the appraisal licensee’s due process rights. Important in this country!

Take action now. Tell your appraiser friends. This is important.

Governor Brown VETO SB 706… please!

SB 760. Please take action immediately. Email, FAX or Call Governor Brown. Ask him to VETO SB760… this is the bill that requires “accusations” to be posted on the OREA website. So, if someone gets mad at you and accuses you of something – right or wrong – it goes public. This is bad public policy. Your reputation, the one you have spent years developing, is down the drain.
         Governor Jerry Brown    Tel: 916-445-2841
         Fax: 916-558-3160
    Email: http://gov.ca.gov/m_contact.php 


Mary Cummins of Animal Advocates is a wildlife rehabilitator licensed by the California Department of Fish and Game. Mary Cummins is also a licensed real estate appraiser in Los Angeles, California.


Saturday, September 10, 2011

9/11 remembered - Mary Cummins




As I soundly slept around 6:00 a.m. in Los Angeles, California the phone started ringing. My now ex-husband picked it up. A co-worker told him that a plane had crashed into the twin towers. My husband repeated this to me. I thought he meant that a small two seater plane had crashed into the empty Century City twin towers. Upset at being woken up for no real reason I said with great irritation "so?" The person on the phone then said "no, no, no! Turn on the TV!" We reluctantly got out of bed and turned on the TV. The first plane had just struck one of the New York twin towers. It was hard to believe what we were seeing.

While I was watching the news the second plane struck the other tower. It was surreal. It really felt like I was watching a movie of the attack and not the actual attack. I was still watching the news when the first tower collapsed around 7 a.m. right before my eyes. I could not believe it. How is that possible? Were there bombs on the planes? I started to think that this was probably the beginning of World War III.

I had scheduled to get four kittens neutered that morning at Animal Birth Control in West Los Angeles. Still in a daze I loaded up the kittens and headed off to the vet. No one was on the streets. LA was a ghost town for a few hours that day. Everyone was glued to their TV sets. In my car I heard on the news that the second tower had collapsed. Then I heard about the plane flying into the Pentagon. It really felt like the end of the world as I drove alone on the empty streets.

When I got to the vet's office it seemed no one knew what was happening in New York because there was no TV or radio. Everyone was sitting in the waiting room contentedly clueless and quiet. I didn't say a word. They would know soon enough.

I dropped the kittens off and headed back home. While I was driving home I was thinking "why am I getting kittens neutered when this may soon be the end of the world as we know it? Will cat overpopulation really be an issue after we all get nuked?" I really thought the US was going to instantly go to war.

By the time I got back home my husband was still watching the news while getting ready to go to work. I was having the bathrooms remodeled and the workmen had arrived. I kept thinking "why is he going to work? Why am I having my bathrooms remodeled if this could be the beginning of the end?" I really thought there would be more attacks on US soil and I thought Los Angeles was a prime target.

I went online and took a lap around the stock message boards. People were trying to find stock brokers who were in the twin towers. I found out that some people I knew had died in the twin towers. It was hard to believe that I'd never see them on the boards again telling everyone to buy, buy, buy some POS stock tout job. Even though I didn't like them because they were con artists I felt bad for their families.

The shorters and hedge fund managers I knew who normally would short on any bad news were telling people not to short the market. They said it'd be very un-American to short under these circumstances. They fortunately ended up closing the stock exchanges after share prices plummeted.

Later that night on the news I saw video of people in the middle east dancing and jumping for joy over the attacks. I had an intense desire to reach through the TV and beat the crap out of all of them even the little old ladies.

For the next few days I kept waiting for the other shoe to drop. I really thought they might fly a plane into LA City Hall or maybe into a fully packed sports arena. I actually stayed away from City Hall for a couple of weeks for that reason. People who worked at City Hall said they had the same fear.

Over the next few weeks they started investigating 9/11. There were some middle eastern people at my husband's BMW dealership in Beverly Hills who had gone to a party in New York a few weeks before 9/11. They were questioned. They of course had nothing to do with 9/11 but if you looked middle eastern, you were going to be questioned.  People were reporting just about any middle eastern person or person they just didn't like to the FBI. It was a very stressful time.

Time passed and things started to calm down. I no longer thought it would be the beginning of WWIII so I started remodeling my kitchen. Because of 9/11 I  could not order the appliances I wanted because trucks were not allowed to transport them across the country. I had to buy whatever was on the show room floor. I was now a little pissed at 9/11 because I couldn't get the exact model of appliances I wanted for my kitchen.

It's now almost the ten year anniversary of 9/11. Everyone's a little worried about a repeat performance. If the bad guys were to attack us, how and where would they attack us? Maybe a monument building on the West Coast? A crowded sporting event? I'm sure I'll be looking up every time I hear a plane overhead today and tomorrow. September 12th can't come soon enough.


Mary Cummins of Animal Advocates is a wildlife rehabilitator licensed by the California Department of Fish and Game. Mary Cummins is also a licensed real estate appraiser in Los Angeles, California.


Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Mary Cummins, my grandmother, Maria Rivera


Mary Cummins
My grandmother who raised me.

Mary Cummins, my grandmother. She's 88 here. This is Thanksgiving at my sister's apartment.
October 4, 1899 - June 4, 1991
90 Years

Born Maria Luisa Trinidad Rivera in Tacubaya in the Federal District of Mexico, Mexico City. Her parents were Manuel S. Rivera and Maria Trinidad Baz de Rivera. Her godparents were Manuel Rivera y Baz and Maria Enriqueta Rivera y Baz. Baptized by Sr. Cura Poro D. Rafael Favila Vargas July 15, 1901.

Mary Cummins' baptismal certificate
I have the full family tree and history from the family bible. Because everyone seems to have had 12 to 15 kids each the chart is too big to post. I may post the written history later. I just uploaded the family tree in dynamic html format here. It's interactive.

Her father was part of the Rivera family. The Rivera family is from Spain. It means "family by the river." The Rivera family moved to Mexico City to help build the City during the Spanish occupation. They were doctors and engineers. There were also a few lawyers and judges. Her mother was of German descent. My grandmother was the youngest of 14 children. Her mother died in childbirth with the 15th child who also died. Her older sisters helped raise her. She spoke German, English and Spanish. Back then everyone spoke a few languages.

Mary Cummins wedding announcement
She met and married Robert Clay Cummins (Cumming) of Amarilla, Texas, son of Mr. and Mrs. J. M. Cumming. He was born January 26, 1902 in Texas or Illinois. Ancestry.com says he was an orderly in a hospital? I was told they were cattle ranchers, also had a dairy farm. Cummins is of course Irish. The original name was O'Cummings but they kept dropping letters to sound more American. In another record his father is listed as C R Cummings born in Michigan, mother is listed as Gertrude Cummings born in Michigan. There is also a Hazel and Helen Cummings which I think may be his sisters.

I found a record of my grandmother arriving in the port of Laredo, Texas. Her name is listed as Maria Rivera de Cummitz which I'm sure is a misspelling of Cummins. She is listed as born around 1900 in Mexico City but listed as white. My grandmother did look white, so did the rest of her family

While my grandmother obviously had light olive Spanish skin and black eyes my grandfather was extremely white with very light blue eyes. That is why my mother, sister and I are lighter than the Mexican side of the family. My grandfather died in WWII. He was a Private First Class in the army. He is buried in Point Loma military cemetery in San Diego, California. He died September 9, 1943, was interred March 26, 1948.

They had one daughter, my mother Marie Juliette Cummins born in El Paso, Texas September 9, 1936. She has a Texas drawl on only a few words because she moved to San Diego, California when she was five. My mother had three girls. The first child she gave up for adoption. Her name on her birth certificate is Mary Julie Ruch born August 22, 1960, registration number 7053, birth certificate number 33868. My mother was at St. Anne's home for unwed mothers. The adoption worker was Ayleen Kodmur. We're all half sisters. We don't look or act anything alike. I'm the youngest. Here is my baptism certificate. I was baptized at St. Victor's church in what is now West Hollywood by Monsignor Devlin. I also attended St. Victor's catholic school.





My mother married Frank Anton Schott April 25, 1980 at St. Victor's church. My sister and I attended. Frank was born May 16, 1897 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He died January 15, 1984. He was a mechanical engineer who worked for Howard Hughes at Hughes Industry. He had a wife named Gertrude A. born in 1899 who died around 1978 I think. Frank took care of her at home until she died. They had a son named Franklin G. Schott born 1927 died 1997.  Frank's parents were George Charles Schott 1854 to 1934 and Elisabeth Hess 1856 to 1924. Frank registered for the draft in WW1 around 1917 or 1918.

Frank was a really nice guy. My grandmother met him at Good Shepherd Catholic Church in Beverly Hills. My grandmother helped him with his wife. He married my mother with the sole promise that she let him die at home and take care of him. As soon as she got the chance she threw him into a convalescent hospital. He hated it and killed himself by refusing to eat or drink. He'd pull the tubes out when they tried to force feed him. I offered to take care of him at home but my mother refused. I believe my mother basically killed him. Before he was even dead she was already hooking up with another wealthy old man.

Currently my mother is married to Clifford W. Sponsel in Santa Barbara, another half dead wealthy man. Clifford W. Sponsel was born June 27, 1910 in New York. His parents were William C. Sponsel, Laura E. Sponsel also both born in New York 1886 and 1887 respectively. Clifford was an engineer married to Helen Margaret Sponsel who was born April 8, 1907 and died January 14, 1991.

My grandmother was an amazing woman. She was a shrewd business woman who made her money in real estate. She started off with boarding homes in San Diego, California. She also invested in trust deeds and apartment buildings.

A deeply religious woman she went to church regularily. She insisted that we go to catholic school. She also donated money to the church, elderly, home for boys and orphanages. While she was a very hard worker she also loved to travel and attend charitable events. Often times she'd throw events at our house. My sister and I would act as hostesses.

I was very lucky to have had my grandmother in my life. She basically raised me and my sister. She was 65 years old when I was born so that was not an easy job. She instilled in me the value of working hard, treating others as you would want them to treat yourself and obeying the ten commandments. She always insisted that we help out the less fortunate, elderly, children, animals and stand up for what is right. Standing up for what is right has sometimes gotten me into trouble ;-)

I was by her side before she passed away holding her hand telling her that I loved her. I held her hand until she fell asleep. She died peacefully in her sleep soon after I left her hospital room. It's been 20 years since she died but I still miss her. Mother's Day is still sad.

I'm posting this because people seem to think I am my grandmother because we have the same name. If you see lawsuits, property, trusts in the name of Mary Cummins, be sure to check and see which Mary Cummins is involved. I am Mary Katherine Cummins. She is Mary Roberta Cummins. Just because you don't see a middle name doesn't mean we're the same person. Plus, check the dates. If a trust was formed before I was an adult, I did not make the trust. I have no trusts. I also did not buy any real estate until I was 19. At the moment I own no real estate. Real estate bought before then was my grandmother's. My mother also sometimes uses my name or my grandmother's name.


Mary Cummins of Animal Advocates is a wildlife rehabilitator licensed by the California Department of Fish and Game. Mary Cummins is also a licensed real estate appraiser in Los Angeles, California.