Date: February 27, 2013

 

Attendance

Board Members

Present: David Decker, Joe Nicoloff, Jason Hicks, Gary Kluckman, Michael Parker & Gerald Theodor.

††††††††††† Excused: Don Austin

Quorum Present: Yes

 

Others Present

††††††††††† Holishor Members Present 13

††††††††††† Glenn Dalton and Michelle Magos from Holishor Office

 

Proceedings

Meeting called to order at 7:30 PM

Pledge of Allegiance Recited

 

Board Meeting Minutes of February 13, 2013

Jason Hicks motions to approve, Michael Parker seconds.

Action: Motion carries.

 

Transfers of Property

1 Transfer. Informational Only

 

Old Business

 

Covenant Amendment Approval

David Decker: States that the covenant Amendment approval form will be in the March Holiday Times and on the website, based upon the response we get from those efforts we will be looking at sending out a letter to the membership for those who hadnít sent in a response and forms will also be available at future meetings.

Rich Hertel 679: Is there any way we can use the existing votes if we sent some sort of memo out to the people saying unless we hear from you weíll consider your vote from last year ok.

David Decker: We had discussions with a lawyer and based upon those discussions and board discussions weíve thought the best and safest approach was for the association was to start from the beginning.

 

Administrative Procedure Ballot #5

(Proposed)

CITATION ISSUANCE:

The Association Manager, Building Inspector or a Public Safety Staff member, employed by Holishor Association, Inc. (hereinafter Association), shall have the authority to issue citations for actions taken in violation of the Rules and Regulations established and approved by Holishor Association, Inc.

 

Joe Nicoloff motions to approve, Gerald Theodor seconds.

Action: Motion carries.

 

Open Floor

Pam Maibaum 2088: States that she has contacted Jason proposing the idea of going to a by lot assessment as opposed to a by member assessment for the purposes of offsetting the needs of the special assessment. Has the board had a chance to discuss that? Is the board willing to commit to exploring that over the next year for potential inclusion of that in the 2014 annual meeting? I would love the opportunity, I would love the boards help maybe thru the holiday times or however you see fit, to help educate our members as to how the voting works and how assessments are assessed.I would like to ask the board to potentially discuss deferring the special assessment until 2014 for essentially the same reasons you are giving me for me request, which is not enough time having it just have been proposed in the last 45-60 days, whatever itís been. People donít understand whatís happening. I posted that by lot issue as a Facebook page and it got 101 responses, not a 101 people but a 101 responses. And the 99th one was someone who didnít understand what I was saying so there is a huge learning curve and I donít think people really understand what a 5 year assessment means to them. I am not as a board member and I hate to say this because you guys are volunteers and you work very, very hard and I understand that but I donít feel like due diligence was done on here for a multitude of reasons. I understand that we have a Real Estate Committee and I am curious if the board consulted with that committee in the process of determining if this special assessment was necessary and what their recommendations were. As a member of the community that makes me a little bit nervous because the board is supposed to act on recommendation from their committees and I guess Iím wondering what information you based the need for this special assessment on. I know you guys said the markets bad, the lots havenít sold. I did a little bit of research about how many lots did sell. Itís very interesting and Iím sure youíre aware of it but for the record I would like to read what I discovered. I looked through the Multiple Listing Service which is the database that all realtors use and anybody who puts a lot or a home for sale in that MLS can see it anywhere. Go to realtor.com and anybody can see it. Last year in 2012 13 lots sold through the MLS in this neighborhood, 2 sold by the association without the use of a realtor and 2 more sold private owner to private owner. So what that says to me is you got a 6 times greater chance to sell a lot if itís in the MLS versus not. But I cannot find the last time the association owned lots were in the MLS, which to me is how one would go about showing good faith effort to sell a lot as opposed to just focusing on the Holiday Times or selling to people in our neighborhood and things of that nature. Itís hard for me to understand how the board can come and ask for more money from owners when I donít feel like the most basic effort hasnít been made in over a year to try to sell them. It just seems too soon to me. Thatís the basis of my request to defer it for another year. One so our membership can be more informed, another one is what you have to pay a realtor in order to list these lots and thatís not necessarily in your best interest, but to change that rule which says you have to pay a realtor $500 or 6% whichever is greater. Itís a very strangely worded rule and you canít wipe it off the books in two weeks. It takes what, 60 days or however long it takes to let everybody know your discussing it and all that. That works against you to be able to do the very thing that you should be doing before coming to us for a special assessment. What someone pays when they buy a house or a lot in this neighborhood is they pay $625 initiation fee which is a onetime fee, they pay $50 dues, and then they pay their proration of the annual assessments. So if I bought a house in December Iím going to owe another $625 so we are talking almost $1300 and then you add the special assessment on top of it, on top of what those people need to bring to the table for their down payment and their closing costs. Weíre pricing ourselves out of the market by doing that.The initiation fee is a discussion for another day, but to add another $50 onto it for a period of 5 years is very detrimental to having homes move into this neighborhood.

Discussion ensuesÖ..

David Decker: Weíve had some discussions about it and thereís no way we could put together a bylaw proposal for this meeting that would have any kind of quality to it. I will speak for me, because the board is fixing to have some changes after the annual meeting, so it will have to be a board meeting after that, I know there are some people who are interested in looking at that to entertain that idea so from my perspective, I am willing to do so. The Real Estate Committee has been a debunked committee for a while. At this point we are trying to find someone who could actively drive that committee on some new challenges. There has been a lot of discussion by the board and the Finance Committee in regards to this proposal. This proposal actually did come out of the Finance Committee so it was a recommendation from one of the committees. In addition to that the idea of this proposal being pushed off another year, to make another decision on whether or not we are going to post lots seems detrimental to the process of what we are trying to do which is to get that North property paid off. The current term of the loan expires in 5 years. This special assessment ties right into that. If we push it off then we have to be concerned about renegotiating the note, depending on what that term would be. A lot of variables get into it. Right now there is a very clean understandable process of whatís going to be done and in addition to that, as far as educating the members for them to vote on this, they need to be at the annual meeting and there will be plenty of opportunity at that meeting for those discussions.

Michael Colyott 40: Is there some way we can get some other additional information prior to the board putting this to a vote? What you just shared made a lot of sense.Iím wondering if there isnít more information we need to take in our heads and take a look at or is that all there is? Who would be assessed then? The people who donít pay assessments on their property, they would be paying it? Which if I owned 50 pieces of property I only pay one assessment, correct? I guess there is no way around that, yes? Thatís pretty much the way it is. Can that loan be paid off by some other means other than being attached to assessments? Is there something that has been discussed other than in this room that we as members can do to help this situation?

David Decker: The vote will be by the membership at the annual meeting. It would be tied into the same assessments that are paid today. Correct. Thatís the way the assessments are done here at Holiday Shores. You have to figure out how to get the money.

Jason Hicks: Thatís why we came to the Finance Committee Mike. Weíre working with a budget thatís been basically static for several years now. We had an increase that was basically tied to the reserves schedule and the roads. I believe that took effect last year. I think Glennís done a great job trying to keep overhead low and streamline existing processes that we have right now just to make sure we get the most bang for our buck. I think we have had several examples of successes that we have had in 2012 that illustrates that. Thatís why we spent so much time at the last meeting on the reserves schedule because we had other expenses that we had to account for but we didnít want to stick the membership with huge assessments to cover those things. The money has to come from somewhere. Right now weíre paying interest on the loan and thatís coming from membership dues and weíre trying to get the principle paid down by lots that are not selling and frankly a lot of times people are looking for lots that are lakefront. That was pretty evident when we had our open house. Weíve had a couple of different auctions that have gone through; weíve had these listed in the Holiday Times for quite a while up until last year in all fairness. That was a plan just to spark some interest. Personally I am in support of getting these back on the MLS to make sure they get as much exposure as possible. As its proposed, the more lots we sell, and we will continue to try and sell those, the less assessments that the membership ends up paying off the back end. The sooner we get them sold the better.

Pam Maibaum 2088: If someone owns a lot, buys another lot, they donít pay any additional dues. You get your lot sold but you get no ongoing assessments. Iím hoping the board is keeping a long term view of this when they are looking at how best to take care of this. I feel like weíve had this loan since 2007, weíre now in the 11th hour and I just donít accept the premise that this is our only option. We should have never been put in this position. This loan has been outstanding for 5 years, these lots havenít even been actively marketed, Iím not even sure they were actively marketed for that spring thing we did, they werenít in the MLS, you offered to work with agents but they werenít in the MLS and now weíre going back 2 years that they havenít been actively marketed and thatís the way it was promised to the association was that these weíre going to be paid for. Now we are in the 11th hour and weíre being told the only way they can be paid for is by a special assessment. I just donít accept that premise. It feels like it because we are on the agenda right before the annual meeting and thereís nothing we can do to come up with another solution. I appreciate that this has been discussed in the Finance Committee for I donít know how many months but the 1200 of the rest of us didnít know that. If they couldnít come up with a solution maybe we should have opened it up to discussion and we would have come up with some things. I think if the association members had more time we could have come up with something. Right now this is our only option? I personally donít like being put in that position. Multiple lot owners, their lots are appreciating just like my lot because of what Glenn did with the North property. The water is cleaner, itís a healthier lake, we all benefit from that but Iím going to pay for that loan and a multiple lot owner is not. That is why I started the discussion to change from by owner to by lot. There are over 270 owners in this neighborhood that own more than one lot. There are 77 that own 3 or more. Letís just multiply our assessments, you take 77 times 2 or 3, I know it doesnít make any sense but, what it comes out to is weíre missing over $100,000a year in assessments just with those 77. If we charged every lot owner $675 and even if we cut it in half weíre missing $50,000 a year. You would have your loan paid off in 4 years not 5 and it would be spread evenly and equitably among almost everyone in the neighborhood as opposed to what I feel as being in the 11th hour and being asked to step up because weíre out of time. So why not ask the very people who are paying to pay more? There is a solution and the solution is the fact that weíre not a by lot neighborhood. If I understand this also correctly we are a member of ILAC is that correct? How many are in that? Can we say at least 9? We are the only neighborhood that is not on a by lot vote. When was the last time it was brought up? I appreciate that and I know that. I know itís failed in the past but I also know we are in a new technology world, in a new communication world and the demographics are changing and people are in a different financial position then they used to be in. I think the time is right to try it again. I donít mean to criticize, I really donít. You know I would rather be another unofficial communication arm as to whatís going on and get people involved. I was the first one to try and put committees together to get the last covenant vote passed and I will be the first one to volunteer again if we donít get enough people to respond. Iím not typically a person who comes up here and complains without offering to be part of the solution. I fully intend to be a part in trying to get this information out to people so they can make an informed decision.

Jason Hicks: This isnít the 11th hour by any stretch. I canít speak for the rest of the board members but I donít think their willing to pull it off of the annual meeting. This is a membership vote. Iím trying to work forward for some solutions for the association. Yes. I donít know. 17. Thatís great for the next yearís conversation on by lots.

Gerald Theodor: Itís ok to criticize the fact that we are per member instead of per lot but it isnít like this has been an issue that has never been addressed. I know of 2 attempts, I think there was a 3rd one that I wasnít aware of, to change this back to a per lot payment. They failed and Iím talking when I say failed, they didnít fail by 1 or 2 votes, they failed miserably. Itís pretty easy to say thatís what we need but should we have brought it up every year for a vote? Itís probably been 10 years. It isnít like it hasnít been tried before and itís failed and the worst part about it is every time that was brought up and failed the board was criticized unbelievably for trying to gouge people out of their money. Most board members that were involved in that said I will never do that again and itís going to have to be someone doing it through a petition because Iím not going to sit here and be criticized for doing that. I know what youíre saying and I donít disagree with you but I do want you to know it has been tried. And the demographics are different too. My comments were not intended to you as criticism, just as fact.

Joe Roth 1030: I agree with what you said Gerry, because this board was raked over the coals and it broke my heart that we didnít get that thing passed. I thought surely these people out here would vote for that. But there are some people who own a lot of lots out here that got their people out here and voted big time. Maybe this is the time we need to address this again. Believe me, I remember the negative things that were said about the board and how crooked they were and there were a lot of things that were said that were not right. And unless you come to these meetings and know whatís going on and hear what the board is saying, youíre not going to get the truth because everything gets distorted and the truth wasnít put out there. Iím glad to see people here and maybe this is the time to readdress this, but then put yourselves in the boardís position right now. What are they going to do? They are responsible for this loan. They are the keepers of that. Iím glad to hear the comments and everything, but we need to let the people decide on this at this annual meeting.

Joe Nicoloff: You made a good point there Joe, let the people decide. Pam, I think your best approach to this is to go and get a petition signed instead. That way the people are the ones bringing it forward, not us. I think that is your best way if you want to get something going, to get it from the people themselves.

Discussion ensuesÖ..

Matt Ressler 2064: Right now if you own a piece of property and you rent it out to somebody, that other person pays another assessment, am I correct, because that is an investment for that person, just like it is with multiple lots, one lot or one house. Thatís my opinion. Iím ready for change. I think most other people are too. You guys say you looked into it, letís move forward with it. Lake St. Louis, itís a by lot over there.

Jason Hicks: With something like that it requires a membership vote. Itís been tried on several occasions and the people who would not benefit apparently are the ones who came in and stopped it. Thatís not to say itís not time to look at it again. I think most lakes are. I want to find out more, whatís best for everybody.

Glenn Dalton: There is an assessment due on every occupied property.

Dee Kuhlenberg 40: The way we do it now, if a person owned 50 lots they could have 50 votes for a change in the covenants? To get a change to pay for by lot no matter if you own one or more that has to come through the covenant correct? Then what do we need to do to take it off of you, as the members to get it started and get it put on. I and a lot of members feel like we are getting raked over the coals because we are picking up the slack for other people who arenít.

Jason Hicks: No thatís a bylaw.

David Decker: For a change in the covenants yes, but not at the annual meeting. There is an opportunity for the membership to propose a bylaw for the annual meeting. Within the bylaws it has those instructions.The only thing I would caution the membership from doing is if they plan on moving forward with that approach is they need to be very clear about what that bylaw is, what the rules are associated with it, and have that as part of that signature gathering process. Because if they donít itís going to run into issues.

Joe Roth 1030: Thereís no way we could get that on the ballot before this coming election, is that correct? When does it have to be submitted to be on the annual meeting? Thatís why I just wanted to bring up at this meeting, that it is possible. If weíre really serious about it we probably need some legal advice but we need to make a commitment to get it on for next year so weíve have enough time. This is going to be hard work because there are some powerful people out here that will not want this. Weíre going to have to go door to door and talk to people.

David Decker: I think if you tried to do it you would have a mess. I really do.

Joe Nicoloff: Forty days prior. April 8th is the final day that something in writing has to be in the office to be included in the meeting.

Jason Hicks: Any new business to be taken up at the annual meeting shall be stated in writing and filed with the secretary of the association on or before forty days before the annual meeting. Thatís new business but that doesnít necessarily mean a bylaw proposal I think.

David Decker: Once you get that submitted then you have to worry about certification of signatures. Thereís a whole lot of work that needs to go into that particular effort.

Gerald Theodor: Technically itís possible, but would it be a quality product?

Michael Colyott 40: The challenge this board has always had has been communication. This is a huge issue we are talking about and Iím in agreement. I would love to see it done this year but I donít think we have the time. I will make that commitment to you and the community to do everything I can to support the majority with the people wanting this. Personally I would like to see it go to a by lot.

Rich Hertel 679: 2013 Boat Registration has begun and I have two concerns I would like to share with you and to think about.

 

My first concern deals with boats that required a length variance approval by the Board last year because the memberís boat exceeded the 22í maximum that had been in existence for 30+ years.This variance process was decided by the Board because the boats were allowed to be registered for use on the Lake in prior years.

The variance approval allowed the member to operate the boat on the Lake and stipulated that once the boat is sold it basically must leave the lake.

I recommend going one step further regarding those boats that received a variance.I recommend that going forward the use of any installed options such as water ballast, wake blades and etc. specifically used to increase the size of its wake be prohibited.Per our rules and regs, these boats are too large for the Lake to begin with and the use of the said options only compounds the problem.

In my opinion, these owners knew full well that the $50,000 + boat they purchased exceeded the Lakeís size limit and accepted an immediate large risk that someday their boats could someday be denied access to our lake.

No one has ever obtained permission from the Association to purchase any boat that exceeded our length guidelines. To grant continued access to the lake without any restrictions regarding the use of large wake making options is not fair to the members of the Association who have followed the rules.

A privilege once given is not considered a right.You do not have to ask to exercise a right but you do have to ask to exercise a privilege.

A variance is a privilege to do some act contrary to the usual rule.The variance or privilege can be revoked at the will of the grantor.††

My second concern - As you all know the Lake was recently opened for normal use because lake levels have increased to our guidelines.The Lake was shut down since late July, almost 6 months, and was considered dangerously low with the possibility of excessive erosion due to wave action and the like.For the past 5-6 months our lake was lapping our sea walls bases.At this time we are unaware of any resulting damage and probably wonít know until the next lake draw down which I believe occurs in a couple of years.

With this in mind I suggest the Board consider prohibiting the further use of any optional devises (I.e., water ballast, wake blades and etc.) that are specifically used to substantially increase wave action on boats.

I am no erosion expert but common sense tells me that water lapping at the bottom of any foundation or fixed sea wall could be at risk of failure when lake levels rise.†† As a result, above normal wake action in my opinion could cause sea wall or foundation failure.

I donít expect any decisions; just think about it going forward.

Glenn Dalton: Where we ran into problems was the way the state of Illinois registers boats. They take all 21foot boats, they can be 21 foot 6 inches, they can be 21 foot 8 inches and they are going to say the boat is 21 feet. We accepted registrations, we didnít measure boats. We looked at that situation and we found out when we looked at the internet site or we measured the boat, yes, they were in excess of our limit and thatís why we came to the decision that we did. The board did take action to rectify that problem. Variances of those boats that were over those limits were requested and granted by the board of directors.

Jason Hicks: Under certain stipulations only. Itís has got to be the same owner and it has got to be the same boat. Anything that comes in as a new registration is going to be denied by the office and the lake manager.

Discussion ensuesÖ.

 

 

2013 Dues & Assessment Drawing

Jeffery Kline is announced the winner of the drawing.

 

Jason Hicks motions to adjourn to executive session, Gerald Theodor seconds.

Meeting Adjourns at 8:30 p.m.

Meeting minutes submitted by Joe Nicoloff.††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††