ORCHARD KNOLLS HOMEOWNER’S ASSOCIATION (OK-HOA)
MONTHLY BOARD MEETING MINUTES
March 10, 2003
BOARD MEMBERS (BOD) PRESENT:
President Richard Schinner firstname.lastname@example.org Jan 06
VP S.F. Homes Lisa Goodman 301-963-3807 email@example.com Jan 06
VP Townhomes Eileen Solomon 301-330-2876 firstname.lastname@example.org Jan 04
Treasurer Mohammed Homaitabar 301-318-8446 email@example.com Jan 05
Secretary Jerry Way 301-977-0523 firstname.lastname@example.org Jan 06
ARCHITECTURAL REVIEW COMMITTEE (ARC) PRESENT:
Committee Member Kathy Wyatt
Committee Member Dennis Zepp
Townhome Owner Harris Leonard Chairperson, Playgrounds Upgrade Committee
I. CALL TO ORDER: Meeting at Eileen’s home. Called to order 7:40 Pm.
New Board: President welcomed Lisa Goodman to the Board. New board reviewed organizational requirements and needs of the community in context of perhaps changing officer appointments. Only need is a representative from Single Family Homes. Lisa Goodman agreed to accept that position. Other officers agreed to continue current position and responsibilities. A motion was made to accept board positions as noted above. Motion seconded and passed unanimously. No objections. Current tenure is added above.
Playgrounds Upgrade Project: Harris Leonard reviewed additional quotations and findings to-date. Kathy Wyatt presented graphics from three contractors for installation in various lots. All contractors have good credentials and are Montgomery County approved installers. One contractor installed in Lakelands. Another installed on Hillside Ave behind Pizza Hut. One contractor provided a graphic showing new equipment in our lots. Harris and Kathy reported that all analysis conclude that cost remains about $44,000. Separate costs from contractors are within $1000 of each other. Harris stressed that he and committee strongly recommend that community not reduce scope or quality as now proposed. He strongly recommends that all equipment should be upgraded to high quality (vs. average), and also be accomplished on a fast track. Harris suggested he planned to resign and disband the committee tonight, turning over materials and findings to the Board.
Grants No Longer Available: Committee’s research indicates that Montgomery County Playground Upgrade grants are no longer viable due to county budget constraints.
Community Fund-Raising Events may Split Community: The board feels that raising funds within by fund-raising events, or asking owners for cash donations may split our community; those that benefit from playgrounds, and those that have no vested interest. The board considers this approach least desirable.
Reserve Funds. Current project costs remains at about $44,000. Lisa asked for review of Reserve Funds. Jerry circulated a copy our Projected Reserves Forecast showing 2003. By-Laws restrict use of Townhome Reserves allocated for Streets and Roads. Rick compared forecast for both reserve funds to current monthly financial statement from ABS and noted the two are in agreement. General Reserve funds are available. Jerry again noted that only about $7000 is available in General Reserves for tot-lots. All other General Reserve funds are allocated to replace other aging community assets. The General Reserve Fund can be utilized if the community wishes to take fiscal risk. Rick will ask ABS to advise us of financial options.
1) Finding a source of funds to pay for upgrades within following constraints:
Without increasing quarterly assessments.
Without risking allocated general reserves funds for other aging assets.
2) Schedule (Phased installations over several years?).
3) Scope of work for this year.
4) Identify and Compare Pro/Cons for alternatives and contractors reviewed.
5) Reduction of cost.
Reduced Work Scope Could Cut Cost $20,000: Removing Contractor proposed new benches and new playground base materials could save about $10,000. Much discussion centered on reducing quantity of areas to upgrade by closing one or more tot-lots, or merging the two south lots. An overall option with some support seems to be to not add new benches or upgrade base materials, and convert the lot nearest Blackberry Drive to a grass knoll picnic area. This approach saves about $20,000, reducing total project to about $24,000. The board will examine this approach in more detail before next meeting.
Turnover Southwest Tot-Lot Ownership to Montgomery County - Committee reports that Montgomery County has a program wherein communities may donate a playground area to the county if the playground is within view of a county road. This may imply that the county would be responsible for equipment, maintenance and liability. However, use of the playground would be open to any Montgomery County resident. Blackberry Drive is a county road. Our southwest tot-lot is in view of the road. Harris agreed to find county contacts to investigate this approach before next meeting.
Relocate Marble Benches to outside Tot-Lots: All contractors recommended moving the marble benches out of the tot-lots for safety of children. However, some parents want benches in shade under trees to use while watching their children. Due to the controversy, Board decided to relocate the benches out of all Tot-Lot areas as a separate project. Jerry will identify the original installation contractor to request estimated cost to relocate. Playground Upgrade Committee will recommend new locations outside the lots.
Summary: Due to surprisingly high costs and few attractive funding alternatives, the board seems not in agreement with committee’s recommendation and zeal to upgrade all lots and all elements of the lots as one project this year. Since the board concludes that key questions for this project are not answered, it appears the committee’s work is not complete. The project cannot move forward at this time. Harris’ plan to resign tonight came as a surprise. Jerry suggested that unresolved funding and other key issues will no-doubt delay the project until the committee and community finds resolution. Since these issues will take time to resolve, board asked Harris to remain Chairperson-at-Large rather than resign at this point. Harris agreed.
II MINUTES (Board Meeting and Annual Meeting) Minutes are posted on web at least one week before meeting. Hard copy of last month minutes and minutes of the Annual Meeting were made available to all. President called for changes or amendments. No further changes or amendments. Motion made to accept. Seconded. Carried.
III. ARCHITECTURAL REVIEW COMMITTEE (ARC):
ARC Change Requests Processed:
15622 Blackberry Drive New Fence Approved by 3 signatures of the ARC committee.
2002 Single Family Fall Inspection Letters to be Prepared and Mailed: Letters did not get mailed due to a misplaced data-base-review summary sheet Jerry found the missing summary sheet. Eileen will prepare letters to owners for open items of concern.
IV. OLD BUSINESS
Screening Agreement, Potomac Garden Center – Rick and Mohammad will meet with PGC this month to confirm that this project is complete.
Playground (Tot-Lots) Upgrade Project - See tonight’s guest presentation (above).
SHA Rt. 28 Widening, Jughandle, Center Island, Tree Preservation, South Sidewalk to Kentlands -
Post Meeting Update: Rick and Jerry met with SHA. The widening project is about 2 months behind schedule due to the severe weather. Our jug handle lane and road remain on schedule. The portable toilet has been removed. A temporary Blackberry Drive sign has been erected. SHA will assure that our new conduits are accessible above grade in the center island. They will also work with us to provide as much grass area in the extension of the island as possible. They plan to add two more trees to our center island. SHA expects to remove the jersey barriers in front of our entrance by June. SHA explained that Rt. 28 center island trees were removed from the plans because our addition of a third lane for the jug handle narrowed the island. We do not accept that the island is too narrow for trees and will pursue this matter higher in SHA. SHA has no explanation why the original PEPCO intersection lighting poles were removed from the job, and cannot explain why they were left in the job (already installed) at our neighbor community near Riffleford Road. The sidewalk in front of our berm providing access to crossover into Kentlands is in the job and will be completed in next few months.
HOA 25-MPH Speed Signs – Deferred another month until we hear from county planning for 2003.
Split Rail Fencing Project Underway – Miss Utility was called for a third time, to re-mark all areas. The installation project has begun and expects to finish before next meeting. The project may be sporadic due to rains and mud.
Rule 2003-1; A Rule Pertaining to Usage of Common Areas – Attorney prepared draft of this rule to the board for review last fall. Rick forwarded a review copy to each board member. At the recent annual meeting, our community declared their desire to review and approve the final draft before the board executes the rule. Rick asked members to get all mark-ups and questions to him before next board meeting. More overview review will be accomplished and the final draft will be distributed to the community for review and approval.
V. NEW BUSINESS
Snow Removal – Our new Townhome Snow-Removal contractor accomplished a superb job during the recent blizzard. In addition to meeting his contract obligations, he assisted several homeowners with vehicles in distress. As a one-time emergency measure, he also plowed our entrance to assist our residents when the county became delayed several days.
Snow and Ice Damage to Homes – Board members observed many homes with storm damage such as broken deck rails, damaged gutters etc. These items must be repaired to restore community aesthetic. Board decided to wait for spring inspection in April to notify owners that have not repaired the damages.
2003 Landscape RFP Results Disappointing– Only 2 of 6 responded again this year - both with significant cost increases over last year. Facilities Services submitted their response to our RFP with an $8,000 increase including new work scope. Mohammad and Rick will detail the proposal to identify potential compromise cost reductions. Another contractor is interested and will respond by Thursday 20th.
Senior Housing Center Will Be Rentals – Rick reports that owner has changed his business plan from sale to rental of units in this new neighborhood development.
Newsletter – Rick requested articles for another newsletter.
VI. TREASURER’S REPORT
Review of ABS’ Monthly Financial Report – Board reviewed January Financial Report provided by Treasurer. 15715 Cherry Blossom Lane has sold leaving a balance due ABS. 1 Cherry Blossom Court is in legal collection process. Mohammad will obtain a collections progress status for next meeting. Board should be reviewing February data. Mohammad will ask ABS to provide a more timely report.
No Hard-Copy Proof of HOA Insurance: Jerry again requested a copy of our current policy and terms and conditions. Mohammad will follow up with State Farm.
2001-2002 Storm Damage Insurance Reimbursement
Vandalism Damage Repairs - Painted Profanity on streets, sidewalks and signs.
Attorney Workload Meeting – Conducted in October, Board has not reviewed results.
Poison Ivy & Trash between Non-Garaged Townhomes and Senior Living Center
Arc Guidelines Need Addition of Latest Current Standards:
Multiple Owner Addresses at ABS – Should ABS mail to "alternate" addresses for owners?
Poor quality community-owned lawn areas at end-unit Townhomes
Rt. 28 Berm Noise Attenuation / Hide Traffic, Fencing Project
Upgrade Orchard Knolls Web Site
Declaration of Covenants to be linked to Web Page
Dead Trees on Berm
HOC Has No Funding Methods for Proposed New Capital Asset Projects
BOD Liability Bond Re-instated – Need Terms and Conditions Document
Townhome Curb Parking Space Efficiency - "T" Boundary Painting
Current HOA Financial Procedures do not provide a method to save or allocate funds to future community projects which become capitalized assets. The following proposals are not funded:
Upgrade Townhome Underground Circuits for Adding Street lights - Power cable operating at capacity.
Restore East Entrance Zone 1 Sprinkler System after Rt. 28 Construction - SHA will pay.
Consolidate East and West Sprinkler Systems - Spring of 2003.
Install 2 Streetlights in Entrance Center Island - Spring 2003.
Install Colonial Lamps at Townhome Entrance - Lamps to match front entrance. Quoted in 2001.
Permanent Entrance Flagpoles Like Kentlands - Project quoted in 2001.
Duplicate East Side Entrance Marquee - After Rt. 28/Jughandle construction – Needs Quote
Increase East Berm Height at Senior Housing Boundary – SHA and Owner may provide.
Install Security Lighting along Creek and Bike Path – $11K Quote in August - Review at Annual Meeting
Pressure Wash and Seal Rotting and Unsightly Community Retaining Walls – Quoted in 2001.
Install Erosion Control at Pedestrian Bridge – Summer 2003
Add 2 Mature Missing Red Maples at Entrance on each end of North-East Blackberry Drive
IX. LEGAL REVIEW - OUR ATTORNEY(S) ARE ADDRESSING THE FOLLOWING ISSUES:
Senior Housing Center Property Boundary Issues
Townhomes – HOA Vs Personal Property Trees; 15726 Cherry Blossom Lane – Delinquent Tree Cost
1999 Maintenance Rule – Community Property Inspection and Maintenance Enforcement Plan.
Delinquent Collections - 1 Cherry Blossom Court 3 Qtrs. Assessment; Suit Filed.
X. ADJOURNMENT The monthly meeting of BOD of OK HOA was adjourned at 9:30Pm.
XI. NEXT MEETING - Monday, April 14, 7:30 Pm, location to be determined. Call any board member for location. All Orchard Knolls property owners welcome. Input by letter, email, or webpage is welcome.