Agendas / Minutes

 

ASHFORD PARK NEWSLETTER - June 2015

 

  • The Architectural Committee will begin “from the street” inspections in early June to check for potential covenant violations.  Potential violations per each address will be presented to the Voting Members of the Architectural Committee on the second Saturday of each month at 10:00 AM.  If a property has a Covenant violation, owners will be contacted by Dave Roffman (Committee Chair) or his designee, in person or by letter if the owner is not at home.  The goal of the Committee is to avoid giving fines by working with owners to establish compliance.  Suggestions: (1) Read the Covenants and determine what needs to be addressed at your home to be in compliance with all Covenants.  (2) Address all issues on your property that violate a Covenant.  We have included a copy of the checklist that the inspection teams will use to determine potential violations (page 2). Please use it to inspect your property to be proactive.

 

PLEASE UNDERSTAND OWNERS WILL RECEIVE ONLY WARNING PERIOD (30 DAYS IN MOST CASES-7 DAYS FOR LAWN ISSUES) TO REMEDY COVENANT VIOLATIONS BEFORE A FINE IS LEVIED. SHOULD THE SAME VIOLATION OCCUR AGAIN, THERE WILL NOT BE A SECOND WARNING!  The Committee goal is zero fines in 2015, but ongoing owner cooperation will be necessary to remedy problems should they exist to maintain compliance thereafter

 

  • This will be the last “paper” communication you will receive.  From this point forward ALL information will be communicated to owners via the website www.ashfordparkowner.com.   We simply cannot afford to mail letters without a complete database update. Should you need computer assistance or need access to a computer, call Deb Peterson at 251-233-9608.

  • The 2016 HOA Dues amount will be posted on the website no later than November 15, 2015. No paper invoice will be mailed.  You will be able to print an invoice from the website if needed. Dues will be due on or before January 1, 2016 and considered late if received February 16 or after.  There will be a 15% per month late fee (15% of the HOA Fee Amount) for HOA fees received on or after February 16, 2016.  Example:  Fees received between Feb 16 and March 15 would have a 15% late fee and those received between March 16 and April 15 would be subject to a 30% late fee.  All unpaid accounts will be handed over to the collection attorney on March 17, 2016. As of today, May 30, 2015, 11% of the Ashford Owners have not paid their 2015 HOA fee and 4 owners have not paid their 2014 or 2013 HOA dues.  These delinquent accounts (total of $5,835) have been handed over to a collection attorney. The lack of on-time payment of HOA fees is causing a cash-flow issue and is likely to cause an increase in HOA fees to cover the cash-flow shortage since we have little reserves.

  • Please take  a moment to read pages 3-6 to learn what the Ashford Park HOA Board and Board Committees have accomplished as of May 31, as well as what must be accomplished by the final Board Meeting of the Year (November 10).

  • The 2016 Ashford Park Annual Meeting will be held on Tuesday January 12, 2016 (location will be announced at a later date on the website).

  • Thanks to Bobbie Gale and Ron Winterstein for hand-delivering this Newsletter to all residences. A copy will be mailed to owners who rent their property if they have completed the database update form, but we want renters to understand the Covenants and By-Laws as well.

 

Ashford Park Architectural Committee

Inspection Worksheet

 

                                                               

_______ Multiple Out-Buildings; no metal buildings; 1 story max          2

_______ House, garage, carport, servant’s quarters, out-building,         3      

fence, wall, mailbox, swimming pool, sidewalk, walkway, driveway, lawn ornaments, playground equipment, basketball goals WITHOUT SUBMITTED PLAN TO ARCHITECTURAL COMMITTEE

(Circle all items in question and check official file of owner before submitting to voting committee)

_______Junk in Yard                                                                                         4

_______Inoperable Motor Vehicle in Yard, Driveway, or Street              4 

_______ Garbage Cans visible from Street                                                   4

_______Unsightly Personal Property in Yard, Driveway, or Street          4  

_______ No metal roofing or bright metal windows                                  7    

_______Fence Height less than 4 feet or greater than 6 feet                   8

_______Fence not constructed with wood, vinyl, or wrought iron          8

_______Clothes Line (not permitted)                                                            9

_______Vehicles in the Yard (other than for moving day)                       10   

_______House/Truck/Horse /Motorcycle trailers parked overnight     10

                (Without HOA Approval)

_______ Commercial vehicles, campers, boats, ATVs, mobile homes   10

                (Without HOA Approval)

_______ All Buildings & mailboxes not in good repair                              11

_______ Lawns not mowed or trimmed (6 in. grass/8 in. weeds)          11

_______ Sidewalk or Curb not edged or cleaned/swept                          11    

_______ Weeds uncontrolled                                                                        11

_______ Sign, billboard, banner, or flying paraphernalia (4 Sale-OK)    12

                (Without Board Permission)

_______ Pets and other domesticated animal issues (2 max)                  13

 

Note: Owners will receive 30 days to remedy all Covenant violations except lawn maintenance issues in which owners shall receive only 7 days to remedy the infraction per Covenant 15.

 

 

Board Accomplishments

  • Board Meeting Schedule was set for 2015. Six meetings scheduled in odd months (see website for schedule). Three meetings have been held to date counting the Annual Meeting.

  • Five (5) Committees have been established (total of 41 people volunteered): Finance/Legal; Architectural (per By-Laws); Maintenance; Tech/Communications; and Nomination (per By-Laws). The 2015 Committee meeting schedule is set for even months - the months the Board does not meet (see website for meeting schedule). Two meetings have been held to-date.

  • All Board Meetings have been conducted in public with meeting notices provided on the website.

  • 2015 Budget was passed at March Meeting (can be found on the website).

  • 2015 Spending to date is well-within 2015 budget (the latest budget analysis report-through April can be found on the website.

  • 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020 Financial Forecasting has begun.

  • A new website has been created (free due to the procurement of 2 Sponsors-Realtor Matt Demers and Ron Frith-our current Mower/Landscaper).

  • Legal Opinions have been procured to establish legality of 1) Sign in Yards and 2) Changes made to Covenants in the past and how they can be changed in the future.

  • An attorney-based collections process has been put in place (at no cost to our HOA) to collect HOA dues that are more than 60 days late with liens placed on properties that have failed to pay their dues. There will be legal fees and lien fees included as well as monthly accumulated late fees included.

  • Personnel-Tom Owen, Architectural Chair resigned in February. Dave Roffman was appointed to Board as the Vice-President and Mark Wolcott was moved from Vice President to Architectural Chair. Kevin Welsh was appointed to the Board to replace Clara Woods as Treasurer when Clara resigned in February.  Dave Roffman and Mark Wolcott switched Board positions in April. Dave Roffman is now the Architectural Chair and Mark Wolcott resigned from the Board in late May.

  • The HOA Board has created a working relationship with Hampton Park.  Hampton Park has inquired as to whether Ashford Park would consider merging with Hampton Park.  President Bob Webb told Bob Schroeder, Hampton Park Board Member, it would not be considered until such time as both developments clean-up their retention ponds and all other liabilities.  As an act of good faith, Ashford Park has included Hampton Park in the Mowing/Landscaping RFP to determine the value of working together.  Insurance quotes have also been procured to determine potential savings if a merger should take place.  The Board will discuss this matter for the first time at the July Board meeting.

  • The HOA Board has continued the working relationship with the City Engineer.

  • Newsletter (you are reading it right now) was hand-delivered (thanks to Bobbie Gale and Ron Winterstein) in early June to update owners as to the progress the Board and Committees are making as well as reporting what still needs to be accomplished by November 10, 2015 (last meeting of 2015).

  • The HOA Board has created a sealed bid method of procuring bids for services costing $1000 or more using a formal RFP Request for Proposal Process that specifies work required, dates the work is to be done, and payment process.  Bids are opened at public meetings.  This process eliminates any potential for bid-rigging, dishonesty, or collusion and promotes the Board’s position to conduct business in a fully transparent manner.

  • The HOA Board has procured the legal measurement of ownership of the jointly-owned retention pond from the company that provided the 2014 survey of the pond.  It is been legally established Hampton Park owns 76% and Ashford Park owns 24% of the jointly-owned retention pond.

  • The HOA Board wishes to thank Dan and Ginni Cronin for volunteering to place our U.S. Flags at our three entrances.  The job they did for Memorial Day was outstanding.  It is never too late to volunteer. Use the contact us menu tab on our website to send the Board an e-mail if you would like to volunteer and help your HOA.

 

Work to be completed by November 10, 2015 Board Meeting

  • Complete a 3-5 year financial forecasting plan.

  • Determine amount of the 2016 HOA Dues.

  • Determine the timeline for needed capital improvements (retention ponds and fences).

  • Establish a maintenance plan for the Hickory and Jointly-owned retention ponds.

  • Award a Mowing/Landscape bid for 2016 and possibly 2017.

  • Approve a recommended Fence Repair/Replacement procedure.

  • Approve a position statement regarding how the Signs in Yards will be enforced or place it on the ballot at the annual meeting for a survey vote or official vote.

  • Protect the financial future of our HOA by creating a financial plan that includes the appropriate amount of reserves.

  • Determine the value if any to an Ashford Park-Hampton Park Merger.

 

Finance/Legal Committee Accomplishments

  • 2013 Late 501 3 c (non-profit) Taxes Filed.

  • 2014 501 c 3 (non-profit) Taxes Filed.

  • 2013 Late Audit Completed.

  • 2014 Audit Completed.

  • By-Laws/Covenants Subcommittee working to produce recommended changes for 2016 Annual Meeting.

  • Worked with President Bob Webb to procure the legal opinions for past and future Covenant changes.

Work to be completed by November 10, 2015 Board

  • Work with Board to create 2016 budget.

  • Work with Board to create 2016 HOA Dues Amount.

  • Prepare document package for 2015 Audit.

  • Prepare document package for 2015 501 c 3 (non-profit) tax filing.

  • Provide end-of-year budget analysis.

  • Work on a position statement regarding the mandated enforcement of the restriction of signs in yards without Board approval.

  • Present recommended By-Law changes (requires Board Vote) and Covenant changes (requires majority vote of all owners).

 

Maintenance Committee Accomplishments

  • Created RFPs (Requests for Proposal) for the completion of the work at the Hickory Retention Pond and Jointly Owned Retention Pond.

  • Recommended a $1000 bid award to Lee Steiner to perform final grading services around the perimeter of the Hickory Retention Pond-Board voted to award the bid as recommended.

  • The work to place rip-rap (rocks) at the mouths of each culvert (5) to minimize erosion in the Hickory Retention Pond was tabled due to lack of money in the budget-bid was $5000.

  • Created an RFP for Mowing/Landscape services for 2016 and 2017.  Our current contract expires December 31, 2015.  We are currently paying approximately $15,000 per year of our $25,000 budget for mowing/landscaping services.  The RFP that has been created is weather-centric and specific regarding the number of cuts per month and will hopefully reduce the amount of the existing expenditure.

  • Received bids (two bids to-date) for the removal of Cattails (mandated by the City of Foley) in Jointly-Owned Retention Pond. Bid one was $53,228 and bid 2 was $117,500 of which we are responsible for 24%.

  • Removed worn out/damaged fence board after storms.

 

Work to be completed by November 10, 2015 Board Meeting

 

  • Create RFP for work to remove debris and trees from the High School area retention pond.

  • Receive Mowing/Landscaping RFPs and make recommendation to Board.

  • Create Strategic plan with costs to replace or repair common area fences.

  • Request funding amount for 2016 budget to effectively manage maintenance issues.

 

Architectural Committee Accomplishments

  • A Protocol has been implemented to inspect from the street, and work with owners, should they have any Covenant Violations with the goal of owners becoming compliant and avoiding set fines. This is a tremendous amount of work for the members of this committee and we ask all owners to work with committee members, as our shared goal is to make our neighborhood as nice and safe as possible.  These rules have been established by the developer to ensure our property values remain competitive.  If you have a “Grandfather” letter, please have it available.

  • Provided approvals for 5 owners to make improvements to their property.

 

Work to be completed by the November 10, 2015 Board Meeting

  • Create and publish on website a recommended procedure to 1) establish who owns which fences around the perimeter of your yard, and 2) establish a mutually agreeable method to go on to your neighbor’s property to repair or replace fences or individual fence boards as needed. The overriding theme of this procedure will be to work with your neighbor to create harmony as well as improve fences.

Tech/Communications Committee Accomplishments

  • Spent countless hours updating the AP HOA database (only 56% of the owners have responded).

  • Provided proofreading assistance during the development of the new website.

  • Has begun the development of the “Remind” program which provides informational alerts to Owners and Renters via texts.

  • Recommended to the Board to invest in reminder signs for Board Meetings, Annual Meeting, Committee Meetings and the Payment of HOA Dues which was approved at May meeting.

  • Procured volunteers to place U.S. Flags at our 3 entrances for Memorial Day, Flag Day, July 4th, and Labor Day.

  • Introduced a computer assistance program.

 

Work to be completed by November 10, 2015 Board Meeting

 

  • Continue database update work with a goal of 100%.

  • Continue to invite people to register owners and renters for the “Remind” texting program.

  • Work with Title Companies to gather information regarding new AP owners.

  • Create a “Welcome to Ashford Park” Program.

  • Create a paperless “Green” method for yearly billing and communications.

  • Expand the computer assistance program.

 

Nomination Committee Accomplishments

  • None to date-Entire Board will be involved in the Nomination/Election Process as will the Tech/Communications Committee.

 

Work to be completed by the November 10, 2015 Board Meeting

  • Use Website announcements to recruit those owners who would like to run for the 2016 HOA Board starting November 15, 2015.

  • Require all owners who choose to run for the Board to create a short Bio that will be published on the Home- Page of the website and placed on the paper election ballot.

  • Engage Tech/Communications Committee to register owners in an efficient manner at the Annual Meeting and hand out one paper ballot per property.

  • Handle Proxy votes in an efficient manner.

  • Add referendum items on the paper ballot such as Potential Covenant changes, etc.

  • Add survey items to paper ballot to learn how owners feel about certain issues.

  • Enlist volunteers to count ballots-with 2 people making separate counts per ballot box (spouses of people on ballot will not be eligible to count votes).