April 27, 2013 Monthly Board of Directors Open Meeting
Highlights of the April 27th Board Of Directors meeting included a spirited discussion between directors over the correct way to report on Emerald Bar and Grill revenue and expenses. During his Treasurer’s Report, Treasurer Earl Frank described the combined bar and grill as $10,000 over budget. Director Joe Miller objected to this characterization, arguing that his figures showed a ‘profit’ of about $146.00. It appears that both are correct. Director Frank’s numbers reflect a comparison to the 2012/2013 budget, basically a prediction of both cost and revenue, while Director Miller is simply subtracting cost from revenue. In any case, an amenity that was budgeted to cost $40,000 annually only five years ago is now costing less than a tenth of that. If the trend line continues, the bar and grill will, in the near future, see revenue exceed costs, providing a modest stream for association funds.
Director Frank also reported that overall, the association was $92,000 under budget year-to-date with a large portion being $28,000 under budget in snow removal.
Earlier in the meeting, President Alex Leslie thanked Director Daniel Glasgow for his work on the association’s official website (www.elainc.org) and the director’s promise to monitor the site and provide recommendations for improvements at the rate of one per week.
In the area of Finance and Planning a recommendation from the committee that quarterly payments be allowed only for members who pay on time. The recommendation called for any member who is 10 or more days late on a quarterly payment to immediately have due whatever balance remains. Thus, a member who does not pay the first quarter by May 10th of any given fiscal year would forfeit the right to quarterly payments and owe the full balance, currently $1,000, forthwith.
There was also a recommendation by Finance and Planning that the membership be offered a vote on a short term trial of a CPI increase, suggesting that it be tried for three years, with a cap of 3 or 4% to be determined by the board.
Paul Capozzoli, Appeals Committee chair, reported that two appeals had been denied and that each appellant requested a further appeal to the board of directors.
The manager reported that checks are currently underway to determine if warranty repair is needed on roads. Further, an estimate of $85,000 to pave the compactor area has been received. He also reported that a DEP approval of bog removal in East and West Emerald Lakes is in hand and we are now awaiting an okay from the Army Corps of Engineers.
It was announced that the Fishing and Conservation Club would be stocking East and West Emerald Lakes, Mountaintop Lake and Pine Tree Lake with bass. This year the bass will be fewer but larger. It seems that smaller bass are quickly taken by pickerel. The hope is that the larger fish will begin to build a sustainable population. It was also announced that a Fishing Rodeo for kids up to 14 years of age would be held on June 15th. For those wishing to join the Fishing and Conservation Club, the initial fee is $25, with subsequent annual fees of $15.
Director Carmen Broadnax reported that she currently has 5 individuals willing to sit on the reconstituted Real Estate Committee. Both she and President Alex Leslie said that its main initial goal would be to develop rental policies for the association. Director Broadnax cautioned that she was aiming for a balanced committee, one with those opposed to rentals and those who favor them. She is hoping for a balanced approach and a resulting policy that would be fair to all parties.
Director Broadnax also reported that results from a survey of members of the various committees will be used to formulate a Committee Procedures Manual and goals and objectives for each committee.
In somewhat pro forma actions, Zavada and Associates was named as the 2012/2013 fiscal year independent auditor at a fee of $6,300. The approval of the purchase of a much needed audio system for the Community Center was passed for a system costing $649.
Finally there was discussion on the cost of individual amenities. One suggestion was that each be broken out of the budget and reported separately. Another suggestion was to poll members on whether they supported the continuing of certain amenities, including the indoor pool, outdoor pool, bar and grill and Community Center as whole. Since no single amenity, excluding the compactor, attracts more than 50% of the members, it could be predicted that each amenity would fail to attract enough supporters to remain funded. This would result in a severely divided membership, with homeowners pitted against one another over each’s favorite amenity. One attendee asked the room, “How many of you use the Allegheny River bridges?” While all our taxes go to support them, as much as 90% of Pennsylvanians might vote against funding them in a referendum. Would it be wise to close them? “Taxes are the price we pay for civilization,” it was pointed out, “and dues are what we pay to have a community. Each of us pays a little for each amenity, though we might use only one. But isn’t it good that our choice is there?”
- March 16, 2013 Board of Directors Open Meeting (emeraldlakesfreepress.com)