What is happening with appraisals!?

I am getting so frustrated as over the past 4 to 6 weeks we have a seen a major negative shift in appraisals.  This isn’t just happening in Winters, but all over our area from the people I have talked to.    We have a buyer and seller agree to a price and the appraisal may come in $30k to $50 less than the agreed price.  When you look at the appraisals the appraiser has made an adjustment for a declining market rather than a neutral or appreciating market which is what we have seen here since at least February.    They say they are seeing this in the sold sales but if a house sales for more than it was listed for then how is that a declining market?  I have talked to other appraisers who agree with me.   The unfortunate thing is that when an appraisal comes in low, then it effects the  entire market for 3 to 6 months as other appraisers will use that sold as a comparable.  So, when an appraisal comes in $50k less than it should then everyone in town has just lost $50k of equity in their home.  It just doesn’t seem right that one person on the planet ,who hasn’t been in all the homes they are using for comps has that kind of power.   Times are hard enough as it is without someone being able to strip  us of what little equity we may have left.   Something needs to be done about this very soon or we are going to be in a whole lot more trouble than we are right now.   Any suggestions?