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The meeting was called to order by Michael Kaney, President at 10:00 A.M.
Directors in attendance: McKnight, Beneke, Freeman, and McCaghren. Present via telephone: Potts. Absent: Pieper, Faliero, and Johnson.]
Staff in attendance: Brown, Gwozdo, Wyatt, and Banks (via phone).
President Kaney announced to audience members that there would be no discussion of the Road Study at the meeting. He invited all to attend the Town Hall discussions on June 22 at 7:00 P.M. at the Village Pavilion and June 25 at 1:00 P.M. at the WLCC.
Upon motion made by Freeman and seconded by McKnight, minutes of May 2015 were approved.
Board received May 31, 2015, financial report from L. Wyatt.
Wyatt was asked about the office rent. She explained that this was the contract with WL POA and the rental contract ends December 2015.
Wyatt reported that the Madison County Mapping Department has approximately 800 properties within Wolf Laurel designated as a subdivision of Scenic Wolf Ridge. The Tax Office has the properties designated correctly. After 2 years attempting to have officials correct the error, there has been a change of personnel within the Mapping Department. She has given Wolf Laurel maps to the Mapping Department personnel and demonstrated to them that the Tax Office has the correct designation. She was assured that the changes would be made. She will check with them again the third week of July.
Kaney said these corrections are important as potential property buyers may be disinclined to purchase property designated as Scenic Wolf Ridge considering that community’s reputation.
Ad Hoc Road Study: R. McKnight
The Town Hall in May was well attended. We have made a few changes to the power point presentation in preparation for the June 22nd and 25th meetings.
We have offered to seasonal Property Owners the option of holding their ballots at the office rather than mailing. Property Owners are required to make a written request that their ballots be held for pick up at office by June 26, 2015.
President Kaney has appointed the Voting Committee (Becky McKnight, Marlene Parks, Amelia Woolf, Debbie Romero, Carol Krueger and Nancy Landry) who will tally the ballots on August 3rd.
Voting documents will be mailed July 1 and ballots are due back to the WL RMS office by 4:00 P.M. August 3, 2015.
Roads: J. Brown
- Equipment Repair & Maintenance: The pin fell out of the bed of the dump truck and the bed fell off, soon after repair there were problems with the transmission. This truck has an automatic transmission and only hauls 6 ton of gravel. The repair costs each year are great. It should be replaced. The transmission blew on the motor grader and was hauled to Caterpillar for repair. Estimate cost of repair is $5,000.00. Purchased new tires for skid steer at $800.00. Shopping for tires for back hoe which will run approximately $1500.00 and tractor at $1000.00.
- We installed new culverts at English Ridge and Gardenside Lane and Phacellia Lane below the old stables.
- Road crew is cutting down the berm along the edge of Big Bald Road so water will drain off the road. The material removed is being stock piled at the Big Bald parking lot and will be used for phase 4 of the Big Bald project.
- Weed eating and mowing continues its normal cycle.
- On May 11 we had all roads graded only to start over again after a significate rain storm.
- The estimate for paving repair on lower El Miner Dr. came in at $38,000.00. The budget for paving is $30,000.00. Brown recommended that the worst sections be repaired this year and the remainder next year. This will allow some money in the budget for emergency repair.
- Roads are already $1,000.00 below the allocated budget for the year. This is due to the deep freeze of the winter and spring thaw. Most of the gravel was used early to repair the muddy roads. The matching gravel program remains in effect.
Security: S. Gwozdo
- Wolf Laurel Property Owners and Security survived almost two weeks without the Bar Code Reader, this resulted in an even greater appreciation of the technology. The repairs, installation, and computer realignment cost $1500.00.
- Numerous complaints of speeding trucks on Wolf Laurel Road and Big Bald Road resulted in Security Patrol stopping and warning a number of drivers. Calls were made to Summit, Lowes, and Blossmans when their drivers were stopped a second time. A few property owners were also given a warning. Security Patrol will continue to monitor.
- More property owners are installing alarm services. The alarm company calls the sheriff’s department, who in turn calls our Security Gate. I received my first call last evening from Yancey County. I checked the property, all door and windows, and found no reason for the alarm. I reported same to property owner. Should the number of such calls increase, I believe that Security should be reimbursed for their time since the security company is getting paid; and we are the ones checking the home.Gwozdo was directed to monitor the number of calls. Should it increase, we could adopt a policy similar to other communities, which allows one free call and charges a fee for any subsequent false alarms.
ARB: P. Banks
- 1) We have processed 7 tree applications, 3 minor renovations, and continue to monitor 4 ongoing construction projects. Two road deposits have been released. There are 3 applications pending, a tree application, a retaining wall, and a fireplace requiring variance.
- Freeman, Chairman of the ARB mentioned complaints of light pollution and possible communication to Property Owners regarding the Covenants rules on lighting.
Kaney asked Banks the status of the WLCC fitness center. Banks replied that he had received no application, only artist rendering of the center. Kaney stated that under the 2015 Covenants, the WLCC need not apply for approval of building but would need to comply with road usage fee and a road deposit. Freeman said that he would meet with the WLCC, and that an application would be filed and both impact fee and deposit determined.
- Adoption of Revised By LawsPieper had provided revision of By Laws in early June to all Board Members. The Revision brings the By Laws into alignment with the 2015 Covenants, eliminates the category 2 lot owners, adds a few definitions, and changes the vote by Board from a 2/3 affirmative vote to a majority vote in order to amend or adopt the By Laws.Kaney asked for a straw vote from all present to determine whether a vote by Property Owners should be weighted or a majority. All present responded weighted.
There being no further discussion or questions, Kaney said he would entertain a motion to approve the Revision of the By Laws. This was moved by McCaghren and seconded by Freeman.
Kaney called for a vote by name as follows:
McKnight: I approve
Beneke: I approve
Potts: I approve
McCaghren: I approve
Freeman: I approve
Kaney: I approve
Revision of By Laws was adopted under the 2/3 majority vote of current By Laws.
- McCaghren moved that the Board authorize Mike Kaney to act on behalf of Wolf Laurel RMS at the nonbinding mediation with the Ridges Home Owners Association in July. This meeting is to address issues of payment from the Ridges Home Owners Association to Wolf Laurel RMS. The motion was seconded by McKnight and approved by all present.
- Brown announced that French Broad EMC would be clearing their right of way next week. Heritage Tree Service has been contracted to do the work.
Tony Martin stated that he had visited the office to inspect a list of lot owners as per the By Laws and was told permission from the Board would be required. He phoned twice to check status of his request. Then he received a letter from Kaney stating that his request would be discussed at the June 19th meeting.
Kaney stated that the old By Laws have just been revised and that clause was no longer in the By Laws.
Martin then read a letter from his attorney and gave the letter to the Board. The letter demanded the information within 10 days under NC statues.
Kaney thanked Mr. Martin. McCaghren suggested that the letter be forwarded to our attorney and receive an opinion regarding the NC statues and if they are applicable to the Wolf Laurel RMS.
Martin asked if the weighted vote would apply to the vote on the road proposal.
McCaghren answered in the affirmative and explained that the weighted vote means Lot Owners with a residence on the lot would have two (2) votes and Lot Owners with no residence would have one (1) vote. This applies only to lot owners whose accounts are current.
Martin said there was a report that a committee comprised of Wolf Laurel personnel and some non-personnel would be tabulating the votes. Is that correct?
McKnight replied that the Committee was compromised of 3 community members tabulating the ballots in her presence. There has also been two 2 alternates named. The Committee would open the return envelope as well as the Ballot envelope, and no RMS employees would be involved in the process.
Martin asked if a CPA firm with a lock box would be more prudent or considered.
Kaney stated that for the last two years election of Board Members was held in the same manner and felt that the process was adequate.
Martin asked if a property owner could observe the counting of ballots and if the ballots would be made available for inspection after the tabulation.
McCaghren and Kaney both replied: yes, the tabulation may be observed and yes the ballots may be inspected.
Martin asked if there was a process by which at large or petition nominations can have a name on ballot for the election of Board Member.
McCaghren replied that the By Laws contain the process. There are nine members of the Board elected for a three (3) year term.
Martin asked if 3 property owners petitioned for nomination and received the majority of votes would three of them be elected to the board.
The Board answered yes. The three nominees with the greatest number of votes would be elected, regardless of whether they came from the nominating committee or petition.
Next meeting scheduled for July 17, 2015, at 10:00 A.M.