As published in The View, January 2022:
By the time you read this, the chestnuts have been roasted on an open fire, Jack Frost has nipped at your nose, and yuletide carols were sung by a choir. New Year’s Eve has ushered in another year of promise, and the sun is starting to rise earlier in the eastern skies. The dark nights of winter are giving way to longer days. The morning sunrise is quickly becoming a sight to behold.
Because I am now in the second half of the second year of my Board service and, like the insurance commercial on TV, I have “learned a thing or two” as your Vice President, I would like to reflect a bit on what has transpired in the last year and a half and discuss the promise the future holds for all of us here at Sun City Shadow Hills.
I’ sure you all will recall the many difficulties presented to each of us individually and to your Board in managing our HOA during the COVID-19 lockdown. Despite the constant changes and adjustments, the volunteer homeowners on the various advisory committees as well as your Board continued to function and to do their best to manage the interests of all homeowners. Your fellow homeowners all deserve thanks for their efforts. Simply stated, this is how our community was designed to and must function if it is going to continue to be the place we want to live, or spend our vacation time.
I am very proud of the effort made by the residents, committees, and contractors of the HOA to keep COVID-19 to a minimum in our community, while still allowing as many of our activities to continue as possible. Unfortunately, we are not completely out of the woods, but we will continue to focus on what is best for the majority. As much as humanly possible, we will do so with good cheer and mutual respect for our individual homeowners and residents, and their rights in accordance with our governing documents.
I want to tell you that, during my Board service, I have concentrated on our financial health. And despite the difficulties of the past year and a half, I am pleased to report that our financial position is sound. Although there was a small increase in the monthly assessment, this was kept to an absolute minimum. As homeowners we should all be proud of our strong financial position and confident in our future fiscal health.
To name a few items, we have completed an update of our advisory committee charters; undertaken a reallocation of our reserve funds; and created a committee to study and advise about the best use of the five-acre parcel in Phase III obtained from Pulte with a view toward potential income opportunities. Should that prove possible, any future income would benefit all homeowners either by reducing HOA assessments or increasing and improving our amenities.
Also, I am pleased to say that, during our next election in April, your Board has included a ballot measure to allow future Boards, where appropriate, to enter into contracts for periods of up to five years. You will recall that our governing documents currently limit most contracts to one year. This has meant that, every year, the financial advisory committee and your Board must spend the time to review and determine whether to re‑approve our service contracts.
In the case of the Shadows Restaurant and other food service outlets, this unfortunately has limited the possibility of leasing out these outlets and their management to independent food service operators. Many have supported such a change to our documents in an effort to reduce our subsidy for Shadows.
The possibility of a longer contract term would also vastly increase the ability of the Board to negotiate more favorable service contracts. A minimum of 1,761 owners will need to approve this ballot measure. Whatever your individual view, I would urge each of you to take the time to educate yourself and vote on this ballot measure. This is your community; and voting is the best way to protect your investment and your future.
Personally, I wish to express my great hopes and wishes for the continued success of the Sun City Shadow Hills Community Association in the coming year. May you all enjoy and celebrate good health.
Contact the author at firstname.lastname@example.org.