SU Negativity?

In a recent circulating email from a Country Club member (Bonnie Hughes), Somersett United (SU) has been accused of creating negativity at “every meeting and online”. Not sure what negativity she is referring to, but assume it relates to SU Posts and Comments regarding the Somersett Golf and Country Club (SGCC).

Well, if the so-called negativity relates to opinions and comments opposing any financial support to the SGCC from the Somersett Owners Association (SOA), then I guess we are guilty as charged. It is no secret that this Blog site, along with many of our Commenters, are opposed to any SOA financial support going to the SGCC. SGCC supporters like to quote that Somersett is a “Master Planned Golf Community”, alluding that it is so described in the Association’s Governing documents. Therefore, there is an implied doctrine that all Association members are obligated to insure the success of the SGCC. Nothing could be farther from the truth. Nowhere in the Somersett Planned Unit Development (PUD), the CCR’s or the Bylaws is the term “ Master Planned Golf Community” used. In fact the only reference to the private Somersett Country Club in the PUD is found on page 2.50-51 under the heading “Golf Courses” , which with regard to the Somersett Country Club simply states:

The golf courses will be a major component of the open space system. Vistas within the subdivisions will be opened to the golf courses and views will be provided to non-golf frontage residences. The 9-hole course will be privately owned and operated by the SOA. The SOA may determine that the 9-hole course can be open to the public. The 18-hole course is privately managed.”

In addition, the SOA CC&R’s under Article VII, Section 5 “Ownership and Operation of Somersett Country Club” states the following:

Declarant, Association and Somersett Country Club owner make no representation or warranties with regard to the continuing existance, ownership or operation of the Somersett Country Club, if any (including whether the Somersett Country Club will be public or private), and no purported representation or warranty in such regard by any person, either written or oral, shall be effective.”

Further under CC&R Article VII, Section 6 “No Right to Use”:

“Neither membership in the Association nor ownership or occupancy of a Unit shall confer any ownership interest in or right to use the Somersett Country Club”

Therefore, in SU’s, and many others, mind, it is clear that the SOA was to have no obligation in any way to provide financial or any other assistance to the SGCC. So why do some SGCC members get their feathers ruffled when owners object to any such arrangements and hence, become inappropriately labeled as being “Negative” or “Anti-SGCC”?   In reality, it has little to do with being Negative or Anti-SGCC, simply a belief that SGCC members need to recognize that they alone are responsible for their own destiny. This rather than adopting an entitlement attitude, quoting questionable property value impacts, and that, as owners, we are all in this together (read financially if it should come to that).

It is also clear that many Somersett owners fear that, due to continued financial stress, the SGCC may attempt to dip into the SOA’s “Financial Well” again with SOA Board support. True, there is no evidence that this is currently being considered (the Rockery Wall liability issue or future Water Facility maintenance activities not withstanding). However, the SGCC could alleviate these fears by publicly acknowledging their responsibilities and that they have no intentions of seeking any sort of financial relief from the SOA in carrying them out. This would go a long way in suppressing the so-called “Negativity” by others.

Perhaps the SOA Treasurer, Joe Strout, who is also the treasurer of the SGCC can speak on this issue at an upcoming open Board meeting.

As always, SU welcomes any opposing viewpoints, or challenges as to where we may have misstated the facts.

14 thoughts on “SU Negativity?

  1. First, I enjoy your blog and don’t find it negative at all.

    Second. I see your point.

    Third, I think what is missing here is that for most of us when we drive around to buy a house in Somersett what we see is the golf course and the Club.

    We don’t see all the legal documents, the agreements between the SOA and the SGCC, etc…

    So the perception is that the golf course, the pools, the gym, the tennis courts are an integral part of why living in Somersett is attractive.

    and you know the saying : “Perception is reality.”

    As I have said before, I believe we should go the other way and if need be modify the legal documents so that all SOA members also become SGCC members. The same shareholders (owners, members – I am not sure of right word) would be in charge of the both entities.

    As long as we have an internal division inside the Somersett community, it will be very hard to move forward.

    (FYI, I am not a SGCC member and I don’t golf.)

    1. Dont think so Bronco.We dont golf and we dont care to add additional costs to our budget by supporting the golf course and club.
      The course should become self sufficient by getting an outside company to run it. Enough is enough.

    2. Hi Bronco

      Like you I don’t play golf, I am not a member of the SGCC. I live in a sunny desert surrounded by beautiful mountains. A place for the aged to contemplate serenity. However, when I drive around, I rarely see grass, I look where I am going! All I can see when my eyes leave the road, are the foot-hills, the towering Sierra Nevada mountains and housing.

      Golf was invented far away in Scotland where there is rain, wind and lots of green grass! Somehow, when one has grass in the desert, any threat to its existence requires all to pay alms to keep it green. Defying nature? According to the documents easily accessible, thanks to SU, one can discern that we own enough water to keep it green without golf. We even own a golf course, the Canyon 9 which like the East Park is open to everyone, resident or not!

      As you say perception is reality. The reality for the 90%+ residents who don’t play golf and did not move here for that… They were not told that they would have to pay for a private golf course, which (according to SU’s recently published reading of the documents) is not a legal part of our community.

      The “internal” divisions could easily be solved by the Private golf course members (10% do not even live in the Somersett PUD) paying up. Their lease agreement clearly shows that they have leased land and water-rights on which they have built a golf course, which is their responsibility to maintain. Prompt payment of the ~$680K repair bill by the Private Golf Club would allow the Somersett Board to suspend the current proposed $13/month increase, which after the $1200 special assessment is more than many residents on fixed incomes can afford.

      Surely you can see why the private golf club members who reside in Somersett expecting everyone else to pay to maintain their golf course cause resentment. They should man up and pay for their golf, or close it down – with water the grass stays green.

      1. If we retirees living on Social Security and our 401s don’t pay up and support the country club, Somersett’s golfing elite would be required to fund their privileged life style out of their own pockets. We have the highest HOA dues in the Reno/Sparks area, we need to learn how to control our expenses and balance the budgets of the 2 major HOAs rather than raise our dues every year.

    3. Bronco, I can’t disagree with the perceptions you got by driving around the community, but I believe most home buyers also take the time to read and understand the private golf course is not an entity they will have to subsidize. As far as your saying “Perception is reality”, you seem to be confusing your perception with everybody else’s reality. They are not the same.
      As for as your assertion that “all SOA members should become SGCC members”, Do you honestly believe that could really ever happen ? You cannot force anyone to join SGCC.

  2. Thank you for publishing this..I would like to say the number of realtors serving on our board should be limited, as I now see that they have a conflict of interest. We need more non-realtors, non-golfers running for the board.. and if there are conflicted people elected, we need to watch them.. very, very carefully.

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