Golf Course Maintenance Update

As we enter the summer season, we wanted to make you aware of some of the items our Golf Course Maintenance department will be working on over the next few months leading up to course overseed closure. These standard maintenance processes are necessary in order to recover from a very busy golf season.

Additionally, these maintenance processes will allow for a better summer transition and overall turf health, which will aid the golf course for a successful fall overseed. These processes will be performed during the day typically on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays when we have full crew. The Golf Course Maintenance team will be mindful that there will be players on the golf course. However, your patience during these processes will be much appreciated, as they will be done during play.

  1. Verticut and top dress greens.
  2. Aerify and top dress tee boxes.
  3. Aerify and top dress fairways.
  4. Aerify and top dress high-traffic rough areas.

Thank you in advance for your patience and support.

Phil Vigil, PGA
General Manager
Shadow Hills Golf Club

Emergency Preparedness Tip of the Week: Tips for Living in a Desert Community

Living in a desert community can present some unique weather-related challenges. Here are some tips to ensure your safety and comfort.

  • Stay hydrated: A desert’s hot, dry climate can cause dehydration, so drink plenty of water and avoid alcohol and caffeine.
  • Protect your skin: Wear protective clothing and use sunscreen to prevent sunburn and skin damage.
  • Plan ahead for extreme weather: Desert communities can experience extreme temperature fluctuations and storms, so be prepared with emergency supplies and a plan for staying cool or staying warm.
  • Respect wildlife: The desert is home to various wildlife, including venomous snakes and insects. Respect wildlife and avoid interfering with their habitat.
  • Conserve water: Desert communities often face water scarcity, so conserve water by using drought-tolerant plants, fixing leaks, and taking short showers.
  • Be prepared for power outages: Desert communities can experience power outages due to high winds and dust storms, so have backup power supplies and emergency supplies on hand.
  • Learn about local plants and animals: The desert is home to a diverse range of plant and animal species, to learn about the unique ecosystem and ways to protect it.

By following these tips and being prepared for the unique challenges of living in a desert community, you can enjoy all that this unique environment has to offer.

Montecito Pool Maintenance


General maintenance will be conducted at both the Montecito Outdoor Pool and Montecito Indoor Pool. The schedule is as follows:

Montecito Outdoor Pool

  • Closed: Monday, June 5 and Tuesday, June 6
  • Re-opens: Wednesday, June 7

Montecito Indoor Pool

  • Closed Wednesday, June 7 and Thursday, June 8
  • Re-opens: Friday, June 9

We apologize for the inconvenience and thank you for your understanding.

For more information, please contact the Facilities Maintenance Department, at 760-345-4349 ext. 2401.

President’s Report – June 2023

As published in The View, June 2023:

Jerry Conrad

Hello, neighbors.

I started writing this article and thought to myself, do I want this to be more social in content or more about Sun City Shadow Hills business? Business won out.

What is happening at the Big Ditch at Avenue 40 and Jefferson? What I can tell you is the Association is in negotiations with CVWD on a disputed issue over agreements made when our community was built. The Board is working towards a positive outcome.

Last month CVWD discovered utility lines running under Jefferson during initial digging. The City of Indio directed CVWD to halt the digging in that area until a new plan is created. There will be no work on our side of the street until approximately the end of August. The goal is to get this work finished as soon as possible.

Next on the agenda is the proposed 1,500-home Pulte project set to be built across the street from Shadows Restaurant. This project is in its early stages. The City has not received an Environmental Impact Report (EIR) to date. Your Board will be communicating with both the City of Indio and Pulte through our City Development Coordinating Committee. This project is particularly important to the Association as there are several issues which need to be resolved.

First, Pulte wants to put either a light or a roundabout at the entrance to Shadows. We oppose both. Second, Pulte proposes putting an unsightly electric substation on Jefferson. We oppose that. And most important, there is a proposal to run a sewer line south through our community to allow for a larger diameter pipe for the new community. Obviously, we will defend our rights aggressively. The Board will keep you informed as this project moves forward. Visit our website,, for the latest updates regarding the proposed Pulte project.

These are the highlights, but I can assure you all that there is much more going on that has our attention:

  • How much do we water our golf courses? Too wet, too dry? What course conditions would our golfers like to see improved?
  • Reviewing the DRC rules. This is a very touchy subject as it affects every homeowner living in SCSH.
  • Will we have a charity golf tournament this year, or can we find another way to support charitable organizations? I’ve asked Troon to consider ways to generate money for charity without having to close the golf course and Shadows for a day. It appears that this may be possible so, again, stay tuned.
  • Do we spend money on new projects or strive to keep the current infrastructure working and beautiful?
  • How do we attract new staff and retain those we have?
  • How do we keep a dues increase within reason? One good piece of news is that our insurance costs for the Association dropped $175,000, which will help to keep dues under control.

I want to thank the staff and volunteers who make Sun City Shadow Hills the finest place to live in the valley. Without all of you working together, our community would just be homes with a wall around them. Please remember to say hi to all those who make our community both beautiful and remarkably efficient.

I want to mention that our community has a new Security Director. I am pleased to announce that Scott Bewley has come on board to help keep SCSH one of the safest communities in this valley.

Please contact me with suggestions, ideas and, yes, kind criticism that will help improve our community.

Contact the author at

Finance Advisory Committee – June 2023

By Ronn Williamson
Vice Chair for Reserve and Replacement Studies

As published in The View, June 2023:

Question of the Month: Is our Replacement Fund adequate to cover future needs?

If you prefer a one-word answer to this question, it is a definite YES – and you can stop reading here. But if you’d like to learn why I’m so confident, keep reading to see what I am learning in this new volunteer role.

In the February issue of The View, Mike Whelan, FAC Vice Chair for Investments, talked about where the Association’s cash is held and included a summary of our Replacement Fund and its purpose.

I joined the FAC shortly afterward with a personal goal to better understand our Replacement Fund monthly assessment and the Reserve Studies that guide the HOA Board in maintaining the fund.

What I have found is a simple concept: An HOA should maintain a separate account with sufficient funds to keep its community in good repair for 30 years into the future. The difficulty that arises is with making financial predictions about the next 30 years when few of us have a crystal ball. How long will each community asset last before a major repair or replacement is needed? What are realistic replacement costs today? What will they be in the future? How do we plan for inflation (a hot topic these days)? What investment return can we expect on the significant amount of funds held? What items should be included for replacement? Will our funds be sufficient to cover unexpected breakdowns or premature failures each year without the need for a special assessment? Fortunately, these questions are addressed each year with a “Reserve Study” done by a professional firm that works with many HOAs for just this purpose.

In November, the annual budget mailer includes the summary pages of the SCSH Reserve Study. Did you know the entire report is available to all residents at, in the “Documents” section of our website in a folder labeled “Reserve Study”? I think it provides a fascinating detailed plan for our community as it ages. In the report for 2023, you will find every component listed for eventual replacement, including its full useful life, remaining useful life, estimated current replacement cost, and possible future replacement cost.

In all, there are 1,218 components listed in the “Component Identification Report” section that include such disparate things as asphalt resurfacing, restaurant equipment, HVAC units, and our golf course sand traps. For 2023, the report indicates we will spend about $2.7 million for replacement items with zero remaining useful life. While this study guides our replacement decisions, actual approval to spend money is made by the HOA Board on a case-by-case basis based on staff and committee input throughout the year.

In California, the Davis-Stirling Act (Civil Code 5550) requires HOAs to have a reserve study completed, with a “visual inspection” of all components at least every three years (our consultants call it a “Level II” site study). SCSH’s last Level II site study was done in 2020, and we are scheduling the next one for this June. Once the site inspection is completed, the consultant will work with staff, the FAC, and our Board to finalize the Reserve Study Report for use in the fall during the budgeting process for 2024. When that process is finalized in November, we can be assured that our replacement fund will continues to be in great shape!
Contact the author at

Contact the author at

Phase 3 Dog Park

The Phase 3 small dog park will reopen on Friday, May 26, 2023.

The Phase 3 large dog park will remain closed as planned, and is tentatively scheduled to reopen on Friday, June 30, 2023.

If you have any questions, please contact the Association’s Facilities Maintenance Department, at 760-345-4349 ext. 2401.

Emergency Preparedness Tip of the Week: Wild Animals

Dealing with wild animals in urban settings can be a challenging and potentially dangerous situation. Here are some steps you can take to protect yourself:

  • Remain calm: Don’t panic and avoid making sudden movements or loud noises that could startle the animal.
  • Give the animal space: Give the animal a clear escape route and keep your distance. In most cases, wild animals will avoid contact with humans if given the opportunity.
  • Do not feed the animal: Feeding wild animals can lead to habituation, where the animal becomes too comfortable around people and may become a threat.
  • Know the species: Learn about the species of animal you are encountering and understand its behavior, habitat, and diet. This information can help you determine the best course of action.
  • Contact local authorities: If you feel threatened by a wild animal, contact local wildlife officials or animal control for assistance. Do not attempt to capture or handle the animal yourself.
  • Secure your property: To prevent wild animals from coming into contact with people, secure your trash and food, and keep pet food indoors.

It is important to remember that wild animals are just that – wild – and they can be unpredictable and potentially dangerous. If you encounter a wild animal in an urban setting, take steps to protect yourself and seek assistance from local authorities if necessary.

Emergency Preparedness Tip of the Week: Active Shooter Situation

If you find yourself in an active shooter situation, it is important to follow these steps to ensure your safety:

  • Run: If you can escape the area, do so immediately. Leave your belongings behind and help others escape if possible.
  • Hide: If you can’t escape, find a secure place to hide. Lock or block doors, turn off lights, and remain quiet. Silence your phone and other devices.
  • Fight: As a last resort, if the shooter is entering your hiding place and there is no way to escape, you may have to act aggressively to defend yourself. Use anything at your disposal as a weapon.
  • It is also important to call 911 and provide as much information as possible about the shooter, including physical description, location, and any other relevant details.

It is important to note that every situation is unique, and what may work in one scenario may not work in another. When in doubt, it is always better to err on the side of caution and prioritize your safety.

President’s Message: Desert Retreat Development

Hello fellow homeowners,

Your Board is proactively working with the City of Indio and Pulte concerning the Desert Retreat Development. To that end, your new Board is forming a new Advisory Committee solely for the purpose of working on this project as well as other development issues.

Pulte has addressed a few of our issues to date as described in their updated preliminary proposal; but the Board recognizes that Pulte has yet to address the most serious issues, including the upgrade to the sewer system.

The Board has consistently made it clear that we continue to find the sewer system upgrade Pulte has proposed, unacceptable and proposed alternatives.

The attached flyer is for your informational purposes. It does not represent the final approved plan in any way. That being said, Pulte plans to break ground at the end of 2024.

Pulte Desert Retreat Update Flyer

We will be holding another SCSH Townhall soon to report on the progress. In the meantime, please email me your questions and comments.

We are specifically looking for a homeowner with an executive-level background in real estate development to join this newly formed committee as a volunteer. There is a great deal of work your Board needs to do and will require the coordination of several of our standing advisory committees.

Thank you to the 86 homeowners who sent comments to the City of Indio Planning Commission. They were received.

Kindest Regards,

Jerry Conrad
Board President

UPDATE: Spectrum Outage

Spectrum has restored service. All internet and phone services are now operational.

Shadows Restaurant reopened at 11:00 am.

Thank you for your patience.

UPDATE: Phase 3 North Gate Outage

Phase 3 North Gate power has been restored and all gates are back to full operation.

We apologize for any inconvenience you may had endured and thank you for your patience and understanding.

Emergency Preparedness Tip of the Week: How To Deal With a Natural Gas Leak

A natural gas leak can be dangerous and pose a risk of fire or explosion. It’s important to take immediate action to address the leak and ensure your safety. Here are the steps to follow:

  • Evacuate the area: Leave the building or area immediately, and do not use any electrical switches, appliances, or cell phones, as they may create sparks that could ignite the gas.
  • Call for help: From a safe location, call the local gas company or the emergency services (such as 911 in the US) to report the leak.
  • Turn off the gas supply: If you know how to do so safely, turn off the main gas valve.
  • Avoid sources of ignition: Do not smoke; use lighters, candles, or any other ignition sources, as they could ignite the gas.
  • Ventilate the area: Open windows and doors to allow the gas to escape. Do not re-enter the building until the gas company has declared it safe.
  • Follow instructions from the authorities: Wait for the gas company or emergency services to arrive and follow their instructions.
  • It’s important to note that natural gas has a distinct odor that is added to it to help detect leaks.

If you smell gas, follow these steps immediately to ensure your safety. Do not hesitate to call for help and evacuate the area if you suspect a gas leak.

Desert Living Tip of the Month: Double Safe Driving

While driving through our vibrant community, we should strive to make sure we protect our neighbors from harm. Our desert lifestyle allows us to walk, jog, bicycle, and drive golf carts around SCSH throughout the year. As thoughtful and courteous drivers, you should slow down for golf cart paths that cross the road, then make a full stop at the Stop Sign that follows.

Golf Cart Basic Information:

  • In CA, a golf cart is considered a motor vehicle designed to carry golf equipment, not more than two persons, including the driver, and constructed to operate at no more than 15 miles per hour.
  • The California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) considers golf carts exempt from registration. Golf carts don’t have to be registered, but they can be.
  • While SCSHCA is a private subdivision, California vehicle laws apply to drivers while driving on the streets. Only a person having a valid vehicle operator’s license as defined by the California Vehicle Code shall operate motor vehicles, including golf carts.
  • To operate a golf cart, you must use an appropriately sized vehicle and show no difficulty in safely reaching the controls and pedals.
  • Unregistered golf carts must operate on golf courses or within one mile of golf courses, driving only on roads and paths with speed limits under 25 mph.

Golf Cart Crossings:

  • SCSH has established golf cart crossings when golf carts must cross a street to get to the next hole.
  • As per CA Vehicle Code 10.70. 030 - Right-of-way: The driver of any vehicle on the street with a marked golf cart crossing zone must yield the right-of-way to a golf cart.

Stop Signs Following Golf Cart Crossings:

  • Many streets in SCSH have a Stop Sign several feet following a golf cart crossing.
  • Drivers must make a full stop at the stop sign after passing the golf cart crossing.

Follow These Rules to be a Safe and Courteous Driver:

  • Always allow a safe distance between your vehicle and the one in front.
  • Drive at a safe speed based on the speed limit, flow of traffic, and weather.
  • The speed limits are 35 mph on SC Boulevard and 25 mph on all other streets.
  • Signal in advance before turning or changing lanes.
  • Make a complete stop at a stop sign, and never run a red light.
  • Never tailgate or drive recklessly.
  • Never succumb to road rage; be patient if you get cut off.
  • Do not get distracted by phone calls, texts, the radio, or other passengers.
  • Follow all these rules when driving a golf cart as well.
  • Inform your guests and vendors that they must follow these rules, too.

Thanks for your cooperation and respect for your neighbors while driving inside and outside our community gates.

Santa Rosa Pool Closure

The Santa Rosa pool will be closed for routine maintenance and the planting of (2) large palm trees, beginning Thursday, May 11, 2023 – Friday, May 12, 2023. The Santa Rosa pool will re-open on Saturday, May 13, 2023.

We apologize for the inconvenience and thank you for your understanding.

For more information, please contact the Facilities Maintenance Department, at 760-345-4349 ext. 2401.

Emergency Preparedness Tip of the Week: Snakes

It’s summertime and for those living in the Coachella Valley, it’s time to be aware and stay safe if we encounter snakes.

  1. Be aware of your surroundings: Snakes can be found in a variety of habitats, so it’s important to be alert and aware of your surroundings. Keep an eye out for any signs of snakes, such as tracks or shed skin, and listen for any rustling in the bushes or grass.
  2. Wear protective clothing: If you’re planning on hiking or spending time outdoors, wear long pants and closed-toe shoes. This can help protect you from any potential snake bites.
  3. Stay on designated trails: Stick to designated trails and avoid wandering off into areas with tall grass or thick brush. Snakes can hide in these areas, and it can be difficult to spot them.
  4. Use a flashlight: If you’re out at night, use a flashlight to help you see any potential snakes in your path.
  5. Do not approach or attempt to handle snakes: If you see a snake, do not approach it or try to handle it. Even non-venomous snakes can bite if they feel threatened.
  6. Keep your distance: If you do encounter a snake, give it plenty of space and back away slowly. Snakes will usually try to avoid humans if given the opportunity.
  7. Seek medical attention if bitten: If you are bitten by a snake, seek medical attention immediately. Call 911 or your local emergency number and try to keep the affected limb immobilized until help arrives.

By following these tips and staying alert, you can help minimize your risk of encountering snakes in the Coachella Valley.

Photos: Volunteer Reception 2023

Friday, April 25, 2023
Montecito Clubhouse
Photos and Video by Lifestyle Media Team

President’s Report – May 2023

As published in The View, May 2023:

Jerry Conrad

Hello fellow homeowners.

I want to thank the outgoing Board members for their volunteer service to our community during the last two years. Unless a person has walked in their shoes, they will not know how many sleepless nights and countless hours are required to fulfill the role of a Board member. Please remember that we are a community with divergent views, but we all have the same goal of making Sun City Shadow Hills a great place to live. Once again, thank you.

Let me tell you a little bit about myself. I was raised in El Centro, CA, just 90 miles southeast of here. I grew up playing sports and somehow managed to parlay that into a career teaching tennis. I went to UC Berkeley and studied Physical Anthropology with the expectation of teaching someday. Little did I know that tennis would become my specialty. I met my wife (Lin) while teaching, and after a quick 40 years, we decided to move to Sun City Shadow Hills where I have made a home that I truly love. I have met people from all walks of life and experiences, and as a result, am a much better person.

I imagine this is a good time to give you an idea of my goals for our Association, which I hope will meet with your approval. The issues that face the Association are numerous. First, we have an ongoing project with CVWD concerning the runoff into our community. We are engaged in negotiations with CVWD at this time so I cannot relate a lot about that right now. I can say that there have been some missteps along the way in communication with the Association, and they are being addressed as I write this.

The Pulte project to build 1,500 homes immediately adjacent to our property is very much a sooner rather than later issue. There are several potential problems ranging from where Pulte will be allowed to put either a stop light or roundabout entrance, to sewage work that may encroach severely into our property south of Avenue 40. Where a new electrical substation will be located is another issue to be determined. The Board will be fully engaged in working on all these topics, and I hope the homeowners will also make their views known to the Indio City Council.

Finally, I want to give you an idea of my feelings about how we might address our needs as a community. With the difficulties that may face us because of a potential recession, the large increase in this year’s dues, and the issues I described above, I think a belt tightening is in order. Keeping what we have in good order and trying to find ways to answer our immediate needs should be our priority. I am not saying that I don’t want additional venues to be developed (like the Montecito Café), but perhaps a short step back from new spending is reasonable.

Contact the author at

Finance Advisory Committee – May 2023

By Robert O. Jester
Finance Advisory Committee Chair

As published in The View, May 2023:

This has been a very busy month for Sun City Shadow Hills and the Nation. We will be considering two questions this month that we are sure are of interest to you.

1. Who is the new legal counsel for the Association?

We began March having received a resignation of the Epstein Law Firm as counsel for the Association. The General Manager and the Board immediately started a search for qualified law firms that principally represented California homeowner’s associations. We were very pleased that two of the premier law firms in this field were available to this Association. The Board conducted intensive interviews of these law firms and then made a unanimous decision on a new firm.

The new firm is the Tinnelly Law Group of Mission Viejo, California. This firm even has three seasoned attorneys in residence in Riverside County which is a real advantage for the Association. The Tinnelly Law Group has represented California HOAs exclusively for over 30 years and possesses the depth and expertise that the Board sought for our community. The firm has a deep understanding of the unique legal landscape faced by associations and their boards. This firm represents almost 1400 associations of various sizes so it knows the issues that confront an association from large to small. In addition, they are no strangers to litigation or the appellate courts and have numerous reported appellate decisions.

The other special asset that they bring to our Association is that they participate in the various California Community Associations on a state level and serve on various statewide boards that are in regular contact with the California legislature. Plus, they have created a comprehensive library of HOA law and legal information known as, and regularly publish a newsletter of current matters of concern to HOAs. During the interview process, they presented each Board member with their publication, Board Member Basics. This community should be very pleased that we have a law firm with HOA expertise, a depth of qualified legal professionals, and local access for our Board.

2. Is this Association protected from a bank failure?

The other hot topic of the month in the nation has been recent bank failures, with one of the largest here in California. As we all know the FDIC protects our bank balances up to $250,000.00, but what about protection for our Association that has funds on deposit each month that are much more than that coverage limit? Thankfully, this Association and its managing entity are aware of this exposure and have protected the Association’s funds for years from a possible bank failure.

I am sure your question is then, “How is it protected?” Desert Resort Management (DRM), our management entity, purchases a Private Depositor’s Bond that protects all moneys over which it has oversight above the FDIC coverage limit of $250,000.00. The FAC reviews that bond quarterly to be sure it is providing adequate coverage for the Association’s funds. The bond currently has a coverage limit of $300,000,000.00, and combining all accounts controlled by DRM in all associations that it manages, those accounts have a monthly average of 250 million dollars, so this Association’s funds are well protected from the adverse consequences of a bank failure. We certainly hope that this Association is never a victim of a bank failure, but rest assured the Association funds will not be lost.

Contact the author at

Emergency Preparedness Tip of the Week: Water Conservation

There are many ways in which individual homeowners can help with water conservation, some of which include:

  1. Fix leaks: Even small leaks in faucets, toilets, and pipes can waste a significant amount of water over time. Regularly check for leaks and fix them as soon as possible.
  2. Install low-flow fixtures: Install low-flow showerheads, faucets, and toilets to reduce the amount of water you use without sacrificing performance.
  3. Use water-efficient appliances: Choose appliances that have a high water efficiency rating, such as Energy Star certified washing machines and dishwashers.
  4. Water your lawn and garden efficiently: Use a watering can or a drip irrigation system to water your lawn and garden, and avoid watering during the hottest part of the day to prevent evaporation.
  5. Collect rainwater: Install a rain barrel or cistern to collect rainwater and use it for watering your garden and lawn.
  6. Use native plants: Plant native plants in your garden, as they are better adapted to the local climate and require less water than non-native plants.
  7. Mulch your garden: Apply a layer of organic mulch to your garden to retain moisture and reduce water evaporation.
  8. Use a broom instead of a hose: Sweep your driveway and sidewalks instead of using a hose to clean them.
  9. Take shorter showers: Reduce the amount of time you spend in the shower to conserve water.

By implementing these water conservation practices in your home, you can help reduce your water consumption and contribute to a more sustainable future.