And So It Begins!

Somersett United
Somersett United

The proposed Country Club property purchase agreement has not yet been finalized and there are those intent on circulating a letter urging owners to vote for the agreement while attacking those who may oppose it. We are referring to the letter being circulated by Bob and Peggy Ulrich.  Of course the Ulrich’s have the right to send whatever they wish to whomever they want.  However, some of their statements therein cannot go unchallenged.  For example the Ulrich’s letter states:

“You may not realize there is a negative faction within Somersett that is anxious to force policy changes that will stymie the growth of our community and greatly change the aesthetic appeal of Sommersett” and further in conclusion: “In case you are not aware, there is a very negative faction that would love to be elected to the Board and significantly change the appearance of our community and stifle its growth.  We cannot let this happen, but we cannot prevent this without your help”

What ridiculousness and paranoia!  Just because one may disagree with the terms of the proposed purchase agreement or believe there are other alternatives the Country Club or the SOA should consider, does not equate to the Ulrich’s implication that they represent a negative faction intent on destroying our community.   Rather than focusing on the content of the proposed agreement, they choose to denigrate those who may have opposing viewpoints. These are the same baseless attacks made against those who questioned the benefits and legality of the current SGCC Lease Agreement, which was essentially validated by the Nevada AG’s office and brought us to where we are today.

The letter also states:

“This proposal GUARANTEES the golf course land will remain green whether the golf course succeeds or fails” and “Your SOA dues will not increase”.

We would contend the finalized agreement will not “Guarantee” anything in this regard.  In the event the SOA does acquire the 400 acres of Country Club land, will the SOA indeed keep it all “green”?  If so, what would the cost be to unit owners to maintain as such, or in any other configuration for that matter?  Whatever the cost to acquire and maintain the land, it must be paid for somehow, obviously through homeowner assessments. Many may feel this cost is justified, while many others may not. What is required is financial due diligence by the BOD as to the costs associated with such eventualities.

Whatever the case, the proposed purchase agreement is a huge step for the SOA with significant downstream ramifications.  It should not be taken lightly. Therefore, we would urge all owners to keep an open mind, consider both the pros and cons of the finalized agreement, engage in civil debates, reach an informed decision and vote your conscience.

11 thoughts on “And So It Begins!

  1. All association members should “see” the New Agreement” at the same time once finalized. Only the two SOA board members and the Golf Club board members involved in its negotiation should be privileged as to the status and content of this Agreement before its formal announcement. Who is the leaker????

    Whether dues increase, decrease, or stay the same is part of the annual budget process. No one can know from year to year what will happen to dues (monthly assessments). Of course, if dues are not enough the Board can always declare a Special Assessment.

  2. I find it interesting that you chose to post here anonymously, yet you point out the Ulrich’s name several times. I’m sure you are one of the few activists Bob refers to in his letter that have continually posted exaggerated and misleading information on this one sided blog that has historically opposed anything positive for the Country Club and the resulting community as a whole, which the Country Club remains the center piece of.

    One thing worth noting about the Ulrich’s in particular, is that they lived through a very similar situation at D’Andrea where there was a small group of residents hell bent on opposing anything positive that had to do with their golf course. The result of course was that they were able to convince the community to vote down a proposal to save the golf course, which ultimately resulted in the course going brown and the property values plummeting. For those of you who don’t know, a friend of mine is a Real Estate agent who had a house in escrow there for $350k during the vote to save the golf course with a ~$25/month assessment per homeowner. When the vote came down against it, the buyer pulled out of the deal. The home sold a few months later for $300k. At $25/month it will take that homeowner ~167 years to recoup that $50k. I hope he started saving his $25/month in a good 1% interest bearing savings account. The Ulrich’s also lost property value when they too sold their home in D’Andrea, so their perspective is quite real.

    Also, you imply in your statements about the SOA acquiring the land that they will be responsible for the costs to maintain the land and/or country club. Nothing is further from the truth. The land and golf course will be leased back to the equity members who will be responsible for running the country club (financing and all). ONLY, in the event that the country club fails, which is HIGHLY unlikely, will the responsibility for the costs of maintaining the land be reverted back to the SOA. The Country Club is doing quite well, now with over 400 dues paying members, profitable and growing every quarter. It’s not going anywhere with or without a sale to the SOA, which BTW does make sense for the community.

    1. Barry,

      I know of no one who has “historically opposed anything positive for the country club and the resulting community as a whole” – so lets put that talking point aside and proceed in deference to the last paragraph of the blog post.

      Your premise that property values will decrease if the Country Club goes “brown” is a worthwhile debate. However, a moot point if your statement that: “The Country Club is doing quite well, now with over 400 dues paying members, profitable and growing every quarter. It’s not going anywhere with or without a sale to the SOA”, is indeed true. If true then why would the SGCC even entertain selling the land, or the SOA consider encumbering homeowners to the tune of $2.75M ?

      Personally speaking, if the SGCC’s financial stability is as strong as you infer, then I see no need for any type of agreement at this time. Those who may want to enjoy what the SGCC has to offer can join any one of its membership or social plans. However, I suspect this is not the case and some honest dialog is in order.

  3. Somersett board elections are held in November of every year. No declared candidates yet. This November 3 seats will be up. Maybe 4 or 5 if those members have gotten their pet project passed and so back to “normal” life. BTW I believe all five current board members are pro The Purchase. At open session board meetings none of them has said anything negative about the Club nor any proposed Purchase nor what their fellow board members are trying to do. At least two of the board members are conflicted.

  4. What has come to light during this whole process is that as far as Somersett Country Club Members and the belief that Golf is a “Gentlemans Sport” does not apply to this group.

    It is a proven fact that the Country Club Members can not have civilized discussions with Somersett Home Owners that have a different view without resorting to profanity, threats and telling people to shut up when voicing their opinion in a public Board Meeting.

    How many of the Members have actually attended a Board Meeting but have lots to say about Home Owners that don’t agree on every issue, my suggestion is learn all the facts before making hostile remarks.

    One issue to consider, which is a fact stated in the present Lease Agreement, if the Board had allowed for the Golf Course to fold they had the right to turn around and then buy it back for $1.00 rather then obligating every Somersett Home Owner for 2.7 million dollars.

    The rumor that all supporters of Somersett United want the Golf Course to go under is just that “a Rumor” started by some narrow minded people, unfortunately it is used to create a lot of hostility and support for the Country Club.

    What is a known fact is that the 2000 some Home Owners in Somersett don’t have any input when it comes to matters concerning the Country Club but we are expected to support it, in return we are told “this is what we will give you in return” never mind finding out what the Home Owners (Non Golf Players) would like to see.

    As far as I am concerned, Somersett United is fighting for the right for ever Home Owner to have a voice in the Boards decision making especially when it affects all of us but really benefits mostly one Group. It is a reality that most Community owned Golf Courses have folded.

    If the course is able to survive because of the financial support of all Home Owners then it should be made available to those Home Owners who play golf and not just a couple times a year. The Country Club should not have the right to dictate how may times a year these people will be allowed to play.

    It is time to come of your high horses and get real !!!!!

    1. Any deal between the SOA and The Country Club will be voted on by the entire community. They will have a voice in this decision and in no way is the board trying to take that right away from the homeowners.

  5. In the April meeting, the Sommersett BOD stated that the proposed agreement between SOA and SGCC (Golf club) was close to being finalized, with some minor matters to tidy up.
    Well, it is now mid-June and nothing is heard from the SOA Board.
    Can anyone shed some light on this matter? Is the SOA/SGCC agreement dependent on the adoption of the new CC&R? Why the silence?

    Has the NRED/ Nevada AG office been so patient when the SOA Board has failed to rectify the previous invalid SOA/SGCC agreement within the time limit of 12 months?

    1. Cato,

      In response to an email to the Community Manager (Lauren Stemmler) regarding the dependency of the SGCC Purchase Agreement vote on the CC&R Amendment vote, and the current status of the Purchase Agreement, the following was provided by Ms. Stemmler:

      “To my knowledge there has been no discussion that there will be no SGCC vote unless the CCR passes. All has been communicated that they are two separate issues. It is my understanding that the final documents regarding the SGCC proposal have not been reached which is why they haven’t been posted or more on the vote announced. Once they are reached, I am also under the impression that they will be posted for homeowner view and another info session will be planned for homeowner questions, etc.”

      Also in a legal opinion from the SOA attorney regarding what impact non-approval of the CC&R vpte would have on the SGCC Purchase Agreement vote, I quote:

      “In such case, the Association would send out an additional proposed amendment to the CC&R’s which would allow only for the country club deal to be approved”.

      Given the extended length of time it has taken to get an Agreement, I personally do not understand why the BOD cannot provide some sort of definitive update to association members.

  6. Yes LovesSomersett and Others, all unit /parcel owners will be able to vote by written ballot on the New Agreement with the Golf Club. The catch, if the CC&R Amendments pass, is that the number of owners making quorum (20% of all owners) will be applied to the write-in vote whereas now it only applies to owners physically at the meeting or represented there by proxy.

    Since there are many reasons why the majority (50% + 1 or even 51% – as defined) of all owners seldom vote for/against anything, the new lesser mail-in quorum number will allow a smaller number of owners actually sending in their Yes/For ballot to pass the Agreement.

    That is, the majority (10% +1) of the write-in quorum could pass the Agreement even though 80% of owners didn’t vote at all (most believing a non sent-in ballot is the same as a No/Against vote – even though it isn’t. It is a non-vote).

    I suspect the mail-in quorum number is easily reached by the developers voting the lots they own (but not yet closed to a private owner) along with Golf Club members and sympathetic non-members voting their lot For the Agreement.

    In other words, even if the traditional “majority” of all owners don’t vote Yes/For the Agreement it still could be passed by the smaller “majority of the quorum” voting Yes/For.

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