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June 2010 Board Meeting Notes

Rhondda Homeowners Association

Minutes of Board Meeting

June 21, 2010

The meeting was called to order at 7:03 p.m.

Present were SP, SB, SD, MC, AA, JF, FC. Property Manager and Maintenance were present. Absent: TMcC.

Resident request for a ramp to access the office/pool: The vote was unanimous that we should look into getting a ramp and installing it. Maintenance will check to see whether there is one available from another resident.

Resident request regarding painting his deck: The original request for a solid color stain in gray was denied because it was a solid color not a stain. The desire in the community is to work towards more uniform appearance, not away from it and gray is not a standard color. The Board will be discussing this issue later in the meeting, so the resident will be advised of the decision and/or he can bring another color before the Architectural Committee.

Resident protest of fine for a fence that was constructed by the owner and installed with Architectural Committee approval: While the pickets are closer together than what is shown on the approval diagram, resident did not specify the distance himself and the architectural guidelines do not specify the distance; the correct procedure for getting approval was followed. MC made a motion that the fence be approved. JF suggested that for future reference, the minimum space allowed should be recorded. SP suggested amending the Architectural Guidelines to specify no less than 1" between pickets. The motion was made to approve the fence and to specify in the Guidelines that the space between pickets on any type of fence must be no less than 1 inch apart. The motion carried with all in favor except FC who did not want to amend the fence specifications.

Architectural Committee request for the Board to rule on approval of installation of a white vinyl fence by a resident in a single family home: There was discussion and a suggestion that use of this product be approved for single and twin homes only, not townhouses. It is an improvement over previously used products which is supported in the Bylaws. JF made a motion that white vinyl fences be approved for singles and twins and all were in favor. MC made a motion that the fence request be approved and the Rules and Regulations be amended to allow its use for single and twin homes. The wicker color vinyl fence will be investigated for use in townhouses.

A resident made a request for posts by parking places on Talgrath Ct. be approved for replacement and with an allowance to move posts back 3-4 feet onto common ground. Since it is questionable whether the posts would be effective 3-4 feet back, the consensus was that the posts should continue to be installed 1 foot into the common ground. JF made a motion that the posts be replaced at the expense of the homeowner. All were in favor.

The same resident requested a time extension for converting her metal roof and cedar to the newly approved color and clear cedar; The Property Manager will work with her on that extension request.

The resident also voiced a request that the Association maintain (regularly clear) the common ground behind 114 to 126 Talgrath Ct. via Maintenance or contractor (Biddle) so that residents have a means of getting lawnmowers around to the front of the building. The Board agreed to have Maintenance clear the path with the Kubota while looking for a more permanent solution.

Approval of May Minutes: FC and SD approve the minutes now as they exist. All others had approved the minutes electronically. 

Maintenance Report:

Contracts: ADT, the Protection Bureau and Independent Security LLC have all submitted bids for a security camera system for the pool. All were in favor of allowing the demonstration system and checking on availability of a maintenance contract.

Tree Replacement: Biddle's bid from last month is still good. SB checked with another vendor, but they did not have trees as large as those Biddle could provide. Biddle will guarantee the trees for 1 year regardless of when they are planted. JF made a motion to accept Biddle's bid for tree replacement and all were in favor. Use of the Association's sprayer will be reactivated to water beds, trees, and hedges recently transplanted to Bausman Road.

Topsoil will be ordered this week. Sewer boxes were back filled this week; a board member or resident who has the ability to evaluate the situation should be designated to meet with someone from the Uwchlan Sewer Department to determine what interventions are needed and to start a contingency fund for that purpose.

Asphalt: now that other bid decisions have been made, work will be done to complete this bid.

The dead weeping cherry in the Ship Road entrance bed will be removed the next time Today's Tree is on the property.

Boulder adjustments: Complaints from residents at the quarterly meeting will be addressed by Maintenance by trying to move the boulders back a short distance.

Powering off of lawnmowers: Maintenance reviewed the history of Rhondda's mowing contracts in regard to time required to complete the mowing, reliability and cost; Biddle completes the mowing in one day and we do not want to make any complaints/requests that would jeopardize the contract.

Treasurer's Report:

General ground maintenance expenditures are extremely high because of the boulder project but the expense is being offset by the budget for vegetation spray that is not being used. The amount budgeted for the Kubota has been exceeded and needs to be increased for regular maintenance. It is time to find residents who are interested in serving on the Finance Committee; a notice will be put in the Roster.

Property Manager's Report:

A resident has volunteered to head up the Election Committee and received the unanimous approval of the Board. 

The waiving of late fees if a payment plan remains in place received unanimous approval.

There are issues with the inspection of paint colors on singles and twins due to fading. The problem is usually that painting is not done concurrently so there is a difference in appearance between homes.  The Board voted unanimously to have the subcommittee chairman who oversees the inspections handle these issues and to consult with the Board when she is unable to resolve an issue herself.

The 4th of July party will take place from 1 to 5 p.m.; there will be a DJ and games starting at 1 p.m. There is no charge for guests on July 4th or for Family Fun Night.

Request from painting contractor to use Sherwin Williams products instead of Benjamin Moore: The Board clearly asked that residents/contractors use the Benjamin Moore products because they are better quality products.

Regarding failures due to a "rippley" look of the wood; the texture is part of the wood and it will not be failed as long as the wood is not rotted or severely weathered. The use of a solid color stain is a stop gap measure because it  too will not last forever.

Landscape Committee: The hedges that were transplanted to the Bausman Rd. clearing are meant to provide a "screen" for noise. In the fall, other shrubs will be added in front of the hedges to present a more organized look that will require only minor maintenance.

Board positions: Per the President, who spoke with Vice President TMcC, it is likely that he will tender his resignation since he is unable to get to monthly meetings as required.

The Secretary will be moving at the end of August and will need to be replaced by another willing resident. Resident CT has volunteered to take the director position vacated by PM and was unanimously approved by the Board.

Website committee: The committee continues to meet to address website issues and planning and will go forward with the incentive for receiving the Roster electronically as discussed at the May meeting.
Old business:

Walk through follow up: letters were mailed for those items considered to be "clear cut issues".

2010 walk through: a new inspection will not begin until "gray areas" have been addressed;

it is most important now to follow up on the failures and then start the process in the spring.

There is concern that residents have been told that an annual inspection will be done so it needs to happen. The format needs to be clearly marked "singles" "twins", but one Board member doesn't believe that everything needs to be done at the same time - having a rolling schedule would prevent overburdening the Property Manager and the volunteers. It was also suggested that inspections occur in April through November when it makes sense weather-wise to do it. The chairman of the Walk through Subcommittee would like her committee to do the follow-up inspections since they will have done the original inspections. 

MC reported that he went through the four courts north of Worthington Rd. looking at the properties as a safety person; there were a number of houses that have very unsafe conditions and he would like to do a training of the volunteers on safety issues. The Board has hesitated to venture onto private property to correct safety issues despite having the legal right to do so. JF suggested hiring the inspector from Uwchlan Township to inspect all of the sidewalks and asked whether the Association is released from liability if a notice is sent to the resident telling them that they have a safety hazard. If the Association has sent a failure notice to a resident for issues such as misaligned/cracked sidewalks, broken glass, etc., the Association has shown a good faith effort to get the homeowner to address the problem. SP suggested that if it is unclear whether a failure is a safety issue or not, it should be checked out, but the fine letters should all be sent out. The Property Manager will work on issues identified as safety items to get letters sent out as soon as possible. She will also contact the township to see if their inspector will consult with us.

Cedar inspection: The Sikkens product that was approved looks darker than the other product approved for use. According to MC, some cedar faced homes have been treated and look good and others may have been treated but may not pass inspection; the final approval needs to be bumped back to the Walk Through Committee for a consistent evaluation and follow up.

Permanent products for replacing cedar on the gable ends:  Hardie plank is the best product to use per FC because vinyl siding blows down.  He asked why the Architectural Committee isn't looking into these products. The chairman of the committee has not wanted to do so.  Last year the Association was given a quotation for Hardie plank.

AM agreed to research products and get quotations. SB will provide her with the information secured last year. A range of solid and semi-transparent stain for decks and fences needs to be compiled for residents; BG will come up with choices.

The President asked if there were any other concerns to discuss. FC  was going to bring up the issue of going on private property during inspections, but he knows it will create a lot of discussion. Another issue for discussion is the approval of architectural shingles since the cost is coming down, they look better, they are a better product than 3-tab shingles, and many residents have them whether they were given permission or not; there should be a vote on this subject at the next meeting. 

July 19th is the date of the next Board meeting.  

The meeting was adjourned at 10:15 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted