ORCHARD KNOLLS HOMEOWNER’S ASSOCIATION
BOARD MEETING MINUTES
JULY 8, 2002
BOARD MEMBERS PRESENT:
PRESIDENT Richard Schinner 301-977-5196 firstname.lastname@example.org
SECRETARY Jerry Way email@example.com
AT-LARGE Mohammed Homaitabar firstname.lastname@example.org
TREASURER Ali Rad email@example.com
VP TOWNHOMES Eileen Solomon firstname.lastname@example.org
President also serves as Acting VP, Detached Homes
Kathy Wyatt (ARC), Neal & Rita Becker, Wen-Neg Lee & Chin-Feng Lo (Lee), and David Tang
Meeting held in Eileen’s home, called to order at 7:30 Pm. President invited guests to speak first, then feel free to leave whenever they wished. Mr. & Mrs. Lee requested to speak on their siding issue and positions on the Board of Directors. Mr. Tang said he was there only to observe and left after about 10 minutes.
Lee: (Siding Issue): Dutch Lap siding larger than 4-1/2+4-1/2 is not a standard in Orchard Knolls. The Lees recently installed Dutch Lap 5+5 siding on their home (15628 Blackberry Drive) without approval from ARC. Apparently they had early on discussions with Kathy Wyatt (ARC) where all parties concluded that there was no color change and Dutch Lap had already been approved, so no further approvals were necessary. However, all present parties also agree that no discussion took place regarding the larger dimension of the siding. This constitutes a style change to the home and would normally require submission to ARC for evaluation. It is now too late. (A related complication is that President Rick Schinner had also earlier informed the Oakcrest contractor, contractor for the Lee’s, that the 5+5-inch siding was not approved for the neighborhood). Board agreed that the Lees should immediately submit a request for approval of the existing 5 + 5 siding. The ARC and the BOD will have to wrestle with the issue. The Board’s recommends that ARC continue to limit Dutch Lap to no more than 4-1/2 + 4-1/2, but make this home an exception to the standard. However the board will be open to recommendations from ARC.
Lee: (Position on Board): The Lee’s requested information on how to become elected to the Board of Directors. They were informed that one position would be come available at the end-of-year annual meeting. The floor will be open for nominations at that time.
II APPROVAL OF MINUTES
President reminded all of new minutes review procedure; Minutes are posted on HOA web-site for review at least one week ahead of each board meeting. President called for any changes or amendments. There were none. Motion made to accept as-is. Seconded. Carried. No objections or comments. A hard copy of the minutes was made available to guests.
III OLD BUSINESS
ARC VACANCY WILL NOT BE REPLACED: President noted that Jackie Pearlman has moved away reducing ARC by one member to a total of three. The committee should have been an odd number, so the vacancy will not be filled.
ARCHITECTURAL REVIEW COMMITTEE CHANGE REQUESTS – Paul Hughes, ARC Chairperson was not present. ARC did not submit any change requests.
BLACKBERRY TERRACE STORM DAMAGED REPLACEMENT TREES – Neighbors at both cul-de-sac’s provided revised variety preferences. Mature, Crape Myrtle trees have been purchased and stored at Johnson’s Nursery for Blackberry Terrace Cul de Sac(s). Norway Spruce is cancelled. Lee’s Tree Service to install.
OTHER DEAD REPLACEMENT TREES - A large dead pine on west berm was removed and will be replaced with a Blue Spruce. Another large dead pine at west Blackberry Drive creek area was removed and will be replaced with two Leyland Cyprus to screen the creek. The Blue Spruce and Leyland Cyprus are also in storage at Johnsons. A 3rd large dead tree was removed behind the guard rail end of Citrus Grove Road.
A written work scope was sent to Lee Tree Service for installation. The work should complete this week.
CHERRY BLOSOM PLACE STORM DAMAGED TREE – A large limb and branches broke off a tree and fell on the sidewalk behind 15715 Cherry Blossom Lane. Lees Tree Service quickly responded and removed it.
12011 CHERRY BLOSSOM PLACE Behavior and Relationship Problems. Neighbors attending tonight’s meeting reported continuing loud vulgarities and screaming, outside late into the night, between women in a green Ford Explorer and women inside the house. President will expedite delivering neighbor’s complaints document with cover letter to our attorney.
15718 CHERRY BLOSSOM LANE "RED" DECK - Jerry met with owner in late June and advised him that the board was going to intervene if the deck was not restored to natural within 60 days. A certified letter stating boards intent was mailed to owner this week.
Editorial Comment: As of this writing, deck is being stripped.
PLAYGROUND EQUIPMENT – Kathy Wyatt reports that new replacement merry-go-round will be installed within 2 weeks.
DOG WASTE PICKUP AND LEASH REQUIREMENT SIGNS – Jerry obtained artwork for 3 typical signs used by other communities in Montgomery County. Orchard Knoll’s Sign store provided prices and recommended aluminum signs with dark green background, white lettering. Board reviewed and selected one sign with some adjusted artwork. Board reviewed 16 needed locations. Board approved one in each cul-de-sac, and at least one in each Tot-Lot area as well as other high-traffic dog-walk locations. Board agreed to procure all 16 signs. Discussions evolved about posts; decorative top, pressure treated, or green channel iron steel. Majority of Board desires to use dark green steel signposts "like Kentlands" uses. Secretary recalled that many years ago, community decided to avoid steel signs in favor of more natural wood posts with decorative tops. President will investigate cost and advantages/disadvantages of steel posts as well as expected contractor costs to furnish and install the new posts.
Editorial Comment: Wherever new posts are added, "Miss Utility" will have to be called in advance. Also, our community has a standard to install all posts in concrete to avoid "leaning" over time.
RT 28 CONSTRUCTION/JUGHANDLE – Richard visited the SHA field office last week. He provided a favorable report on SHA’s construction schedule. Construction, backfill of the Jughandle lot is well underway. Area has been raised several feet. Several commented on increase in pavement height of Kentlands entrance across from Jughandle. Lighthearted comments made that Jughandle is going to be a "tight" (radius). Richard noted that Orchard Knolls exit will be one-inch lower than today.
POTOMAC GARDEN CENTER AGREEMENT LETTER: Mohammed reports that Bob Angell called, eager to begin implementing terms of the draft agreement. Mohammed was instrumental in bringing the two parties to a mutually agreeable position on the matter. Our attorney Dave Gardner sent final letter of agreement to PGC this week.
POTOMAC GARDEN CENTER FIRE: President reported that PGC had a large fire about 9:30pm July 3rd. Neighbors heard two explosions and observed flames 20-30 feet high for 10 minutes or more, before fire department arrived. The PGC wood dividing fence between Sullivan’s home and the creek area was totally in flames as well as other unknown materials in PGC. Sparks from the flames threatened shake roofs of nearby Orchard Knolls homes. President has requested copy of official report from Montgomery County.
Editorial Comment: This fire event elevates concern of larger fire risk from PGC’s abandoned house on their property. The abandoned house is within a few yards of the July 3 fire. The house has been abandoned over ten years with open doors, broken windows. It is adjacent to Orchard Knolls property, within a few yards of several Orchard Knolls homes.
ORCHARD KNOLLS WEB SITE: MHIC ADDED: Ali has updated and added several features to the site including contact info for owners to check on contractor’s MHIC license and history before signing agreements.
SPRING TOWNHOMES WALK-THROUGH INSPECTION LETTERS – Our general information letter regarding the inspection has apparently been well received. President noted he has received many calls with questions in regard to how to properly resolve problems. The following maintenance specific letters were also mailed:
Non Standard door color: Non Standard white trim: Other:
15736 CBL 15726 CBL 15715 CBL Non Standard Post Light
15728 CBL 15750 CBL 15715 CBL Front Yard Trash
15718 CBL 15760 CBL 15718 CBL Red Deck
15704 CBL 15713 CBL
15703 CBL 15706 CBL
15752 CBL 5 CBCT
NEWSLETTER – Some discussion centered on a name for the newsletter and soliciting more articles to be published. Project deferred to next Board Meeting.
SPEED SIGNS: President advised that project is on schedule.
BLACKBERRY EAST SIDE CREEK AREA ILLUMINATION – Jerry reported that contractor reviewed the scope of work, and accomplished a site review this week. Good news is that an existing source of Orchard Knolls power (without having to install a new service entrance) was found. Contractor does not recommend any approach close to the ground due to vandalism potential. Contractor initial response was to illuminate all ground area along both sides of bike path with streetlighting Posts and fixtures would match existing townhome streetlights but set along the bike path from Blackberry Drive to behind 12014 Cherry Blossom Place. A second set could also be installed along the bike path that crosses the 2nd creek bridge into highly dense common areas behind Pineapple Grove Drive homes. Some on the board feel illumination may be inviting more troublemakers to the area. Board will wait for final contractor proposal. Deferred further discussion to next board meeting.
POISON IVY & TRASH BETWEEN NON-GARAGED TOWNHOMES AND PROPOSED ASSISTED LIVING CENTER – Not addressed.
HAILSTORM DAMAGE – No further discussion.
12014 CHERRY BLOSSOM PLACE – SHED, DECK & RAILS COLOR DISPUTE –Beiters signed the mediation agreement. Shed and concrete pad are gone. Deck and rails will be allowed to weather. If painted, rails must be off white to match community standards. Deck cannot be painted or stained and must be eventually be restored to natural to meet community standards. Attorney will cancel further mediation hearings.
V. NEW BUSINESS:
UNAPPROVED EXTERIOR CHANGES: Board mailed ARC correction letters to ten owners identified by John and Leslie Beiter in their June 6 letter to our attorney. Letters requested correction of the items noted, or submission of Architectural Change Requests for evaluation by Architectural Review Committee. A copy went to our attorney to close out that overall item.
15715 CHERRY BLOSSOM LANE, LACK OF MAINTENANCE: BOARD INTERVENTION: This is a rental town home, vacant nearly 8 months. Non resident owner has been asked 3 years ago to replace the non standard post light fixture. The front door color is pink, apparently from lack of red color maintenance over years. The front yard is full of weeds and trash. Decorative shrubs are overgrown beyond reason. A motion was made to send a certified letter to owner to resolve items within 60 days. If not corrected, Board will contract to have items corrected. Motion Seconded, Carried. No objections.
CHERRY BLOSSOM PLACE, ILLEGALOR NUISANCE VEHICLES: BOARD INTERVENTION: ARC identified 4 illegally registered, abandoned, or automobiles without tags (2 at 12005, 1 at 12004, 1 at 12018). A motion was made to send a certified letter to owner to resolve the alleged violations within 15 days. If not corrected, Board will have vehicles towed. Motion Seconded, Carried. No objections.
PRESERVE TREES BETWEEN NON-GARAGED TOWNHOMES AND PROPOSED ASSISTED LIVING CENTER – Jerry and Eileen noted there are valuable hardwood shade trees that may soon be demolished but should be preserved. The trees are along our boundary land between non-garaged townhomes and the proposed center. We do not know who owns the trees - Orchard Knolls or new assisted living center. Eileen will draft a letter for President to sign to send to Mr. Koch, the new owner – offering our concern and cooperation in a joint effort to preserve the trees.
HOA STATIONARY/ENVELOPES ORDERED – Secretary noted that ABS, and President Schinner are completely out of HOA stationary. Secretary ordered 1000 sheets and 500 envelopes. FYI, our template and contractor are: Rockville Printing Company.
FINANCIAL STATEMENT THROUGH MAY 31, 2002 - Ali distributed ABS financial statement to all BOD members
LEGAL ACTION ON DELINQUENCIES: ## Cherry Blossom Court is 3 quarters behind: Motion made to initiate legal collection process. Seconded and carried without objection. Ali will contact ABS.
ABS CONTRACT RENEWAL: Motion made to renew for 1 year, seconded carried without objection.
CORPORATE CHARTER FORFEITURE ISSUE – ABS has been repeatedly advising BOD in their cover letter to the monthly financial statements to resolve this issue. Secretary will contact ABS to determine what steps are needed to resolve.
ORCHARD KNOLLS RULES, COVENANTS – ABS recently expressed concern that they may not have the most current resale package. Our "blue" covered, spiral bound 1998 edition of all Orchard Knolls Rules and Regulations is current except for the 2nd Rule regarding Satellite Dishes. In 1998, under orders from the board, the package was mailed by ABS with a cover letter to every owner of record November 13, 1998 and contains all Orchard Knolls rules and regulations to that date. Only the new (2nd) satellite dish rule has been approved since.
ARCHITECTURAL GUIDELINE REVISIONS "NULL" After exhaustive research of board minutes, it has been determined that the 1999 revised guidelines circulated to the community in draft form in August 1999, were never subsequently approved by the community or board of directors. A final approved form was never communicated or provided to ABS, or the community. 1999 and 2000 Minutes state that several board vote attempts were deferred month after month. Apparently due to ongoing editing changes and draft reviews, poor response from the community, and several key board resignations, the revisions were never voted on by the board. A one-page chronology of specific board minutes was read. Because the board of directors did not vote on them they are "null" and not valid.
NOVEMBER 13, 1998 ARE CURRENT ARCHITECTURAL GUIDELINES - The following motion was made: "Because there is no evidence that 1999-2000 Architectural Guideline revisions were ever approved by the Board of Directors, the Architectural Guidelines published in the November 13 1998 distribution to all owners through ABS, were, and still are, current official guidelines". The motion was seconded. Motion passed unanimously. Secretary will contact ABS with this information.
2ND SATELLITE DISH RULE: The board will locate and review the 2nd Rule regarding Satellite Dishes to determine it’s history, and validity. If previously approved by the board of directors, they will be forwarded to ABS as the first upgrade to the 1998 package. Secretary will contact ABS with this information
UNKNOWN 1999 MAINTENANCE RULE: Secretary noted that during Beiter’s mediation hearing attended by Jerry and Eileen, the Beiters asked the status of an alleged "1999 Maintenance rule". Attorney Dave Gardner told the Beiters he would look into his files for status. Secretary reported that a search of the minutes from 1999 to present does not show approval of any rule of that nature.
BOD LIABILITY BOND? Secretary asked if names of the current board have been updated with the insurance company. No one knew. President will contact insurance company.
RECORDS TURNED OVER, SOME MISSING: Secretary noted that Ken Frank and Maria Siravo have returned all their known records to the Association. Those records have been merged into our permanent record keeping systems. Among the records from Ken and Maria were several original tax records which Jerry turned over to Ali, in the event some required permanent financial files were missing. Jerry noted that several functional files, some home address files, and all copies of our C-Size, MNPP Development’s Construction drawings are missing. President noted that he had the Landscape functional file. Secretary will continue to contact members and ex-members to locate missing files.
CERTAIN PERMANENT RECORDS ARE REQUIRED: Secretary identified Permanent Records required to be kept and maintained by Orchard Knolls Articles of Incorporation, and explained how they are kept by Orchard Knolls Board of Directors. Permanent Records must be in hard copy and available to all members. Items 1,2 3 are required:
BENCH IN TOT-LOT REQUIRES RELOCATION? Maria Siravo has requested that the board look into a possible unsafe condition for one tot-lot marble seating bench directly under a branch that appears unsafe. Mohammed agreed to go to the site and make a recommendation to the board.
TOWNHOME SIDING ISSUES: Secretary reports that some townhomes will soon be replacing siding damaged during spring hailstorms. The townhome’s siding is now all the same color, and all the same 8-inch aluminum siding. The 8-inch aluminum siding is no longer available. Owners that replace will likely use vinyl with a 6-1/2 inch dimension. However contractors will offer other options. Any replacements will constitute a style change requiring an Architectural Change Request. Unless the board takes unilateral action, some owners could inadvertently install a different color or different dimension without submitting a change request. This could have a magnitude affect on the appearance of single townhomes in a multiple townhome building as we have at Orchard Knolls.
SPEC FOR TOWHNOHME SIDING: Secretary also reported that he has a sample of a near perfect match for the color. The sample is "Carolina Beaded" 6-1/2 inch Vinyl by "CertainTeed". The color is "Desert Tan". The surface is "Brushed". Board agreed that a draft letter should be sent to all townhomes noting that siding color, style, or dimension changes require prior submission to ARC - however selections that precisely meet this "equivalent specification" would be considered automatically approved including products from other manufacturers. President will solicit an email vote from all members of the board after a draft is circulated to board members.
ARC CHAIR APPARENTLY OUT OF STEP WITH RULES, UNWARRENTED ACCUSATIONS; Our current ARC Chairperson, has unilaterally approved an Architectural Change Request from 4 Citrus Grove Court (Baratz) with only his own signature. All ACR(s) require a committee review and vote of the majority of the Architectural Review Committee. (This is the same rules violation that led to the unapproved shed at 12014 CBP). As a result, two adjacent single family homes may have siding the same color – a violation of our community standards. Further, upon being questioned, Paul became upset and has made unwarranted accusations against our Treasurer via email. Board decided to turn the issue over to our attorney.
Next meeting of the Board of Directors will be held Monday August 12, at 7:30 Pm, location to be determined. Call any board member for location. All property owners are welcome. Input by letter or email is welcome.
There being no further business, the monthly meeting of BOD of OKHOA was adjourned at 9:45 Pm.