(a) The Secretary of State shall administer a land records management program for the purposes (i) of advising registers of deeds, local tax officials, and local planning officials about sound management practices, and (ii) of establishing greater uniformity in local land records systems. The management program shall consist of the activities provided for in subsections (b) through (e) of this section, and other related activities essential to the effective conduct of the management program.
(b) The Secretary of State, in cooperation with the Secretary of Cultural Resources and in accordance with G.S. 121‑5(c) and G.S. 132‑8.1, shall establish minimum standards and provide advice and technical assistance to local governments in implementing and maintaining minimum standards with regard to the following aspects of land records management:
(1) Uniform indexing of land records;
(2) Uniform recording and indexing procedures for maps, plats and condominiums; and
(3) Security and reproduction of land records.
(b1) The Department of Secretary of State, in cooperation with the North Carolina Association of Registers of Deeds, Inc., and the Real Property Section of the North Carolina Bar Association, shall adopt, pursuant to Chapter 150B of the General Statutes, rules specifying the minimum indexing standards established pursuant to subsection (b) of this section and procedures for complying with those minimum standards in land records management. A copy of the standards adopted shall be posted in the office of the register of deeds in each county of the State.
(c) The Secretary of State shall conduct a program for the preparation of county base maps pursuant to standards prepared by the Secretary.
(c1) The Secretary of State, shall, in cooperation with the Secretary of Revenue, conduct a program for the preparation of county cadastral maps pursuant to standards prepared by the Secretary of State.
(d) Upon the joint request of any board of county commissioners and the register of deeds and subject to available resources of personnel and funds, the Secretary shall make a management study of the office of register of deeds, using assistance from the Office of State Personnel. At the conclusion of the study, the Secretary shall make nonbinding recommendations to the board, the register of deeds, and to the General Assembly.
(d1) The Secretary of State shall make comparative salary studies periodically of all registers of deeds offices and at the conclusion of each study the Secretary of State shall present his written findings and shall make recommendations to the board of county commissioners and register of deeds of each county.
(e) The Secretary of State, in cooperation with the Secretary of Cultural Resources and in accordance with G.S. 121‑5(c) and G.S. 132‑8.1, shall undertake research and provide advice and technical assistance to local governments on the following aspects of land records management:
(1) Centralized recording systems;
(2) Filming, filing, and recording techniques and equipment;
(3) Computerized land records systems; and
(4) Storage and retrieval of land records.
(f) An advisory committee on land records is created to assist the Secretary in administering the land records management program. The Secretary of State shall appoint 12 members to the committee; one member shall be appointed from each of the organizations listed below from persons nominated by the organization:
(1) The North Carolina Association of Assessing Officers;
(2) The North Carolina Section of the American Society of Photogrammetry;
(3) The North Carolina Chapter of the American Institute of Planners;
(4) The North Carolina Section of the American Society of Civil Engineers;
(5) The North Carolina Property Mappers' Association;
(6) The North Carolina Association of Registers of Deeds;
(7) The North Carolina Bar Association;
(8) The North Carolina Society of Land Surveyors; and
(9) The North Carolina Association of County Commissioners.
In addition, three members from the public at large shall be appointed. The members of the committee shall be appointed for four‑year terms, except that the initial terms for members listed in positions (1) through (4) above and for two of the members‑at‑large shall be two years; thereafter all appointments shall be for four years. The Secretary of State shall appoint the chairman, and the committee shall meet at the call of the chairman. The Secretary of State in making the appointments shall try to achieve geographical and population balance on the advisory committee; one third of the appointments shall be persons from the most populous counties in the State containing approximately one third of the State's population, one third from the least populous counties containing approximately one third of the State's population, and one third shall be from the remaining moderately populous counties containing approximately one third of the State's population. Each organization shall nominate one nominee each from the more populous, moderately populous, and less populous counties of the State. The members of the committee shall receive per diem and subsistence and travel allowances as provided in G.S. 138‑5. (1977, c. 771, s. 4; c. 932, s. 1; 1985, c. 479, s. 165(d), (e); 1987, c. 738, s. 158(a); 1989, c. 523, s. 8, c. 727, ss. 169, 218(116a), c.751, s. 14; 1991, c. 689, ss. 181(b), 181(c), c. 697, s. 1; 1993, c. 258.)