Following is a “Look-Back” at some of the more important issues/events encountered by Somersett Owners in 2019. However, what is more important now is to look forward to 2020 and bring closure to outstanding 2019 issues.
SOA Board of Directors:
The Club at Town Center:
Aesthetic Guidelines Committee (AGC):
Somersett Residential Developments:
ROCKERY WALL LAWSUIT APPEAL – Agenda Item 7.b
At the December 12th SOA Board Meeting, the SOA Attorney, Michael Schuman, was present to provide a Rockery Wall lawsuit update and to present and answer questions on the Decision to Appeal.
Decision to Appeal:
Mr. Schulman gave a lengthy dissertation, albeit not very understandable or persuasive to the average soul, on the Decision to Appeal. Bottom line is that he primarily gave the same reasons for success that he did at the March 2018 homeowner information meeting on the initial lawsuit.
It appears that they are hanging their hat on refuting the Court’s decision as to when “substantial completion” of the Rockery Walls occurred. Hence, falling within the Statue of Repose limitations. He offered up his opinion that the presiding Judge has not been consistent in his rulings on this issue and therefore, worth appealing. Also that the potential cost of Rockery Wall failures in the future justified the decision to proceed with the lawsuit.
In addressing cost questions, Mr. Schulman advised that the $15K fee to the Association for filing the appeal was very reasonable. He dodged the question as to what “discounted fees” would be afforded the Association should we win the appeal and continue the lawsuit, that this had not yet been established. Regarding the total estimated cost for continuing the lawsuit, should the appeal hold up, Mr. Schulman advised that this is difficult to estimate at this time, but would not rule out another $400K – $500K. He commented on the fact that “expert” testimonies and documents would not have to be repeated. Therefore, no additional costs in this area.
Mr. Schulman also advised that the March 13 Mediation Session will most likely not produce any closure and that the Appeal will then go to the Supreme Court for resolution.
SU’s main criticism of Mr. Schulman’s presence was that, rather than keeping his Decision to Appeal comments and question responses sweet and simple, he obfuscated them with too much lengthy and tangential dialog. Thereby losing his audience.
SGCC TOLLING AGREEMENT EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE – Agenda Item 7.r
At the December 12th SOA Board Meeting, the Board approved the formation of an “Executive Committee” to interface with the SGCC for payment of repairs made on SGCC leased land as a result of the Hole 5 Rockery Wall failures. Note that these walls were not replaced, rather a hillside modification was made encompassing both the SOA common area portion and the SGCC leased portion.
Litigation against the SGCC for payment of their share of the repair costs (estimated at $680K) was previously placed on hold via a Tolling Agreement, in effect until December 31, 2019 unless renewed by both parties. In discussing this item, the Board voted to not extend the Tolling Agreement. A benefit to the SOA in that they can now proceed with a lawsuit against the SGCC if so desired. A benefit to the SGCC in that they no longer are obligated to pay the SOA $500/month as stipulated in the Agreement.
The Committee will consist of five members. Three of which will be those Board members not associated with the SGCC (i.e., Fitzgerald, Hanson and Baker) and two homeowners appointed by the Board. Ostensibly owners with “unbiased opinions”.
The SOA General Manager will prepare a Charter for the Committee and submit it to the Board for approval. Per the GM, it will be simple, probably no more than one short paragraph (good luck with that!) with a stated purpose of resolving the payment issue with the SGCC.
SU suspects that the preceding will not alleviate homeowner fears that, due to the SGCC’s financial woes, a settlement will be reached at the expense of the SOA. Many will question the need for such a Committee, given that the SGCC’s obligations under the Purchase Agreement are quite clear. Therefore, either they pay-up or the SOA sues them for breach of contract and payment of the repair costs. If this results in defaut on the part of the SGCC and the land reverts back to the SOA, then so be it. – A very controversial issue at best!
Following is a recap of issues discussed and/or approved at the December 12th Somersett Owners Association (SOA) Board of Directors (BOD) Meeting (Note: Board Member Baker was not in attendance). Corresponding Agenda items are referenced. Also note that a recap of Agenda Items 7.b “Rockery Wall Lawsuit – Decision to Appeal” and 7.r “SGCC Tolling Agreement – Appointment of Executive Committee” will be covered in a subsequent Post. A copy of the BOD Meeting Agenda may be accessed via the following link:
Homeowner attendance at the meeting was minimal and disapointing, which was surprising given the previous announcement that an SOA Attorney would be in attendance to answer questions on the decision to appeal the Court’s decision on the Rockery Wall Lawsuit.
Prior to start of the Meeting, Board Member Retter isued an appoligy to homeowner Dean Nishimura for interrupting his comment at the last Board meeting, which led to an unfortunate confrontation. Mr. Retter acknowledged that his interruption was inappropriate as all owners have a right to be heard without interrruption.
Homeowner Comments On Agenda Items
Editor Comment: The requested easement involves a small section of SOA unused native land at the upper end of Painted River Trail, which essentially provides no usage benefit to the SOA. Easement will permit a Ventana Ridge road to connect to Peavine Creek Road in the residential area adjacent to Somersett. There will be no access to Somersett properties from Ventana Ridge.
Board Member Comments
Post Meeting Homeowner Comments
Note: Both of the above Homeowner Comment sections reflect what the writer remembers from attendance at the Meeting and listening to the audio tapes of such, which are not always clear. If any of the above characterizations are not entirely correct, corrections are welcome.
Back in June of 2019, the SOA filed a “NOTICE OF DELINQUENT ASSESSMENT AND CLAIM OF LIEN”, against the owner (Saemaul Investment LLC) of the Town Square Building housing the Sakana Sushi restaurant (also owned by Saemaul), claiming they were $19,976 in arrears of their SOA assessment payments. Per the Lien document, assessments for this property total $4,408.65/month consisting of a $1,561.25/month regular assessment and a $2,847.40/month master assessment. It is not clear to SU what the difference between these two assessments are, as the SOA’s 2019 operating budget only accounts for the master assessment revenue.
Apparently Saemaul Investment did not make good on the past due payments, because on November 27, 2019 the SOA filed a “NOTICE OF DEFAULT AND ELECTION TO SELL” stating the assessment obligation now totals an estimated $55,286.56. This notice states that: “Pursuant to NRS 116.3116-116.3166 (inclusive), the sale of the real property described below will be held if the deficiency and total amount due is not completely satisfied and paid within ninety (90) days from the date of the mailing of this Notice of Default and Election to Sell”. Not sure what has transpired since then, and why does the SOA want to force the sale of the property? Is there bad blood here, or only a money issue? Hopefully, the SOA will not end up owning it (there is no Deed of Trust encumbering the property) and the future liabilities associated with such ownership (occupancy has been a past problem), or is there an upside here?
Ownership of the Town Square Commercial Properties also has a clouded history, for the interested, a brief summary follows:
With regard to all the Town Square properties, beginning in 2018, a new cost center “Town Square Properties” for the SOA was established. This in addition to the existing General Common, The Club at Town Center and the Private Gates & Streets. Information related to this new cost center may be obtained by accessing the following SU Blog article dated December 5, 2017: Town Square Properties Cost Center
The 2019 operating budget for this cost center may be accessed via the following link: Town Square 2019 Operating Fund Budget
Given that the Town Square properties are now an integral part of the Somersett operating budget, perhaps the SOA Board could provide owners with an update as to what is transpiring with all of these properties.
What say you? Would it be in the SOA’s best interest to acquire ownership of the Saemual property?
Following is the Final Agenda for the December 12th Somersett Owners Association (SOA) Board of Directors (BOD) Meeting at The Club at Town Center (TCTC). No change from the draft agenda previously published except for inclusion of the October 2019 financials.
Information/comments on some of the agenda items (noted) as obtained from the Board Meeting Packet follow:
This is the first open Board Meeting that includes the two newly elected Board members Craig Hanson and Simon Baker. As always, owners are encouraged to attend the monthly SOA BOD Meetings. Especially this one, given the controversial decision to appeal the Rockery Wall lawsuit and the attendance of an SOA Attorney to answer questions in this regard..