Maintenance Responsibility Somersett Trail System

somersett UnitedThere is a controversy brewing over just who is responsible for maintaining the sections of the Somersett Trail System located within the Sierra Canyon Villages. At issue is the approximately $100K in Sierra Canyon reserve funds that its Board has targeted for trail maintenance in 2016 and 2017.

Note: The Somersett Trail System is made up of various concrete, asphalt, and native dirt trails (aka paths or sidewalks) located throughout the community.  All of which, per the Somersett PUD, require accessibility by the general public.  Trail system maps are available at TCTC, Aspen Lodge, and under the SU Blog “References” tab by clicking on the following link: Somersett Trail Map

Aware Sierra Canyon owners contend that, per published documents, the Somersett Owners Association (SOA) is responsible for all trail maintenance wherever located. Therefore, the Sierra Canyon accumulation over the years of reserve funds for trial maintenance was done in error and should now be budgeted for other purposes or refunded to owners. However, this position has apparently been refuted by the SOA Board who contend that maintenance of trails located within the Sierra Canyon boundaries are the responsibility of the Sierra Canyon sub-association.

Among evidence the Sierra Canyon Association has offered in support of SOA responsibility are quotes from the following two documents:

The “MASTER DEVELOPER GENERAL BUYER DISCLOSURE” received by both Somersett and Sierra Canyon buyers states: “Trails are part of the City and County Trail program, providing access to greenbelts, open space and public lands for the community. The Association is solely responsible for construction and maintenance of these public trails within Somersett.”

The “GENERAL BUYER DISCLOSURE SIERRA CANYON BY DEL WEBB AT SOMERSETT” received only by Sierra Canyon buyers states: “Trails are part of the city and county trail program, providing access to greenbelts, open space and public lands for the community. The Master Association is solely responsible for construction and maintenance of these public trails within Somersett.”

Note that the only difference between the two is the inclusion of the term “Master Association” in the Sierra Canyon buyer’s document. However, per the Somersett CC&R’s, the term “Association” means the SOA, which is synonymous with the term Master Association.

Obviously, the two Boards need to get together and pinpoint trail maintenance responsibility.  That potentially puts any SOA Board members who are also Sierra Canyon owners in a conflict of interest position of having to recuse themselves.

Anyone with strong concerns about this issue is encouraged to make them known to your respective Board members. Comments are also welcomed on the SU Blog.

SU thanks Joe Bower, Sierra Canyon owner, for his contributions to this article.