Presidents Message: Overview of Podcast #260

Kim Fuller


Audio may be found at:

Below is a synopsis of this episode.


Good morning residents,

Here is a synopsis of yesterday’s podcast.

Outdoor Library Book Exchange: Some residents have asked about the outdoor library book exchange that a resident put in their front yard. The HOA contacted the resident to explain that this had to be removed because our current governing documents do not allow for such actions. A posting on Next Door felt this action should continue and requested residents write to the Board in support of the book exchange remaining in the front yard, so we have had many requests to leave the book exchange over the last few days.

Many times, our decisions are not based on what we like, but what is required by law. Our governing documents do not allow for such activity in front yards by residents. The Board is required by law to follow the governing documents. I understand some people do not like certain rules, but just because we have a COVID pandemic does not mean we can set aside those rules in our governing documents.

HOA must follow the current governing documents:

The second paragraph of Section 8.5 of the CC&Rs states that "except as provided for herein, no furniture, fixtures, appliances, or other goods and chattels not actively in use shall be stored in any building or open area or on any Lot in such a manner that such material is Visible from Neighboring Property . . . " See also Section 2.17 of the Rules which states in pertinent part: "All storage of items not in active use . . . are to be located in rear or side yards behind a solid wall and shall not be visible from any street, common area, golf course and/or neighboring properties."

There are some people that might not want to look at the display, nor have other displays as a result. The rules of our governing documents must prevail until such rules are changed.

We might not like certain rules, but unless they are changed, we are required to implement them according to the governing documents.

The outdoor library book exchange in question also violates the State and County Orders for cleaning protocols which might lead to the transmission of the virus.

We have also had some residents contact us that they don't like the library display and if that is acceptable what about other displays like furniture, clothes, or ongoing garage sales. So, one exception can lead to many problems, that is why we must follow our existing rules.

Frontier: Frontier has been installing the internet at homes except for 205 homes because they needed to connect the fiber optic cable. We will hopefully have the information next week as to when those 205 homes may make appointments for the install.

Wireless vs. cable connected computers. Many have asked about the speed of the internet because they are not getting 500/500 speed. The speed of Frontier internet of 500/500 is only available if your computer is connected to the router by a cable. Wireless speeds are not guaranteed because of so many variables. Even Cable connected computers might not get 500/500 if components in the computer will not go that fast. Frontier’s obligation is to make sure the 500/500 speed is at the router; it is the responsibility of the homeowner to make sure all equipment and cables are working correctly to insure the best speed possible. If you’re wireless device is doing 150 to 300 it is probably working correctly at the best speed possible for that device. But my old iPad doesn’t go faster than 30-40, it is just too old, but my computer is doing 500/500.

Montecito Paring Lot: This is a planned and scheduled repair and replacement project because of old asphalt and pavers. Some of the areas have become a safety issue. It is always a point of discussion to repair or replace items. It was decided that too many areas were going to need increased repairs in the future and since we have already saved enough money in the reserves to replace everything Board decided on replacement rather than a repair would be more cost effective long term. We have already had one trip and fall, and we don’t want more. This work is not coming from the operations budget, so it is not impacting the ongoing operations budget. Keep in mind we have an operations budget for the day to day operations and we have a separate replacement fund to save and pay for all these projects over time. This work is being paid for from that replacement fund and has already saved the cost for 100% payment.

Crack Repair: Crack repair work is going on in phase 1 and 2. Residents have asked why they can still see the crack repair when it is done. These repairs will be visible when done unless we repaint the entire street and that is not being done at this time. Painting of the street, called seal coating is not scheduled for another 1-2 years. We still want to do crack repairs now to protect the existing asphalt from premature failure as a result from water and/or blow sand. Asphalt is the most expensive item in the entire complex, so the more we do to protect it from premature failure the less future costs we will have to pay. Just like your home, if you repair a wall, after the repair you need to repaint the wall otherwise you will see the crack repair. We do have our hired inspector that will review all the work, and anything not completed correctly will be corrected. So, if you think a repair is not done right in front of your home let us know and it will be checked out before final payment.

COVID Information: I have attached some information about the County vaccine appointment plans. This information will be attached and on the website.

There has been issues with making an appointment. As a result, many residents have asked the Board to reconsider being a vaccine distribution site. At this time, we are not allowed to be a distribution site be we are investigating further. Given the problems with the existing sites it makes sense why they would not want to increase the sites at this time, but we will continue to monitor the situation. The Board will be meeting on Monday and will again discuss the possibility, if allowed, of being a distribution site. We will be talking with the insurance brokers at that time to realistically determine the legal exposure of any claim along with the benefit of waivers. Naturally if the County does not allow for us being a site these discussions become irrelevant; we will see. The Board is being careful trying not to put the HOA in a financially liable position because without insurance any claim would have to be paid for by residents.

It appears from the information it will take another 3-6 months for the vaccine to be distributed, but people 65 and over are able to make appointments now, once the system is working and space is available. During this time, please use caution, more and more cases are coming up every day. If you are high risk, please consider not participating in any events for the next few months or until you get the vaccine. If you play in the different sports you might even consider wearing a mask at all times, even while you are participating in the activity. State rules don’t require a mask as long as you are 6’ apart at all times. Gatherings of any kind are still not allowed on Common Property or in your homes. So please don’t gather before you play and leave immediately when you are done. Don’t gather to talk or eat after you play. Please leave the area for everyone’s protection.

The Board gets many requests on how to proceed and they seem to fall into one of three groups:

  1. Residents that always want masks even outdoors and everything closed down for now.
  2. Residents that want everything opened because Government should not do this, and the science doesn’t justify the closing of activities.
  3. Residents in between.

No decision is going to make everyone happy, so the Board has decided not to evaluate the right or wrong of the policy, but to implement what is allowed by law. We are required to follow the law.

Example, if most cases of COVID are coming from the family and friends’ gatherings over the holidays, there is no reason to close Shadows for use. There is merit in every opinion on how and when to do what. The Board’s position is we need to follow the law and the State and County Orders. That is our place, not to decide if the policy is good or bad. We have focused on what is allowed by the State Orders and allowing those activities to open per State and County instruction. It does not mean all instructions are consistent with another activity, some instructions conflict between one activity and another, so we do the best we can.

As a result, each resident needs to be responsible for their own safety. If you are high risk, you need to self-quarantine. Perhaps wear a mask at all time outdoors even if people are not around. The HOA will not be looking for violations on private property, but we will investigate any complaint. Guests are still not allowed for any activity, except golf, and according to the State Order guests are not allowed in your home. Given the increase number of cases and how fast it is spreading please be careful, extremely careful. We are in the last few months of this pandemic once everyone can be vaccinated. We all would hate to see anyone become sick and die when we are so close to the end.

I wish you all a safe and healthy weekend and I will be back next week as soon as we have more information. I think there could be much happening quickly in the next few weeks so we will keep you update as fast as possible. If you have any questions, please let us know and we will get you the answers you need.

Take care and thank you.

Kim Fuller