October 16th SOA BOD Meeting Agenda Update

Following is the Final Agenda for tomorrow’s Somersett Owners Association (SOA) Board of Directors (BOD) Meeting at The Club at Town Center (TCTC). The only significant change from that previously published is the addition of a Strategic Planning Committee Report.

October 16th BOD Meeting Agenda – Final

Agenda items that address topics that have been, and still are, the subject of controversy within the community are summarized below:

6.a. Legal Updates – Actually, is not what is to be discussed here, but what apparently will not be. The BOD Meeting Packet does not address the recent Court ruling for a Summary Judgement in favor of the Defendants in the SOA’s Rockery Wall lawsuit. This ruling basically states that the SOA’s lawsuit has no merit under the six-year statute of repose. This raises the following questions: 1) Will the SOA pursue any other legal proceedings? 2) What Defendant legal fees will the SOA be liable for? and 3) Will the SOA now terminate the Tolling Agreement with the SGCC and take legal action to recover the $700K in Rockery Wall repair the SOA believes they are liable for under the Land and Water Rights Purchase Agreement?

7.b. Boulders Landscape Improvements for Entrance & Roundabouts from Brightview  –  A $16.6K extra work proposal from Brightview for landscape improvements at the entrance to the Boulders and along Circle Stone, Standing Stone and Boulder Ridge Courts consisting of 103 plants, 5 trees, and 23 tons of DG and cobble.  Has this work been previously budgeted, or is it an unsolicited proposal from Brightview?

7.c.  Fall Tree Replacement Proposal from Brightview – A $24.3K extra work proposal from Brightview for installation of one hundred 15 gallon trees, primarily along the Somersett and Del Webb Parkways, plus an extra $21.5K for a 24″ boxed tree size. Same question as for item 7.c., has this work been previously budgeted or is it an unsolicited proposal from Brightview?  Also, how does this relate to the previous $20.5K Brightview proposal approved at the June BOD meeting for the replacement of 100 trees (200 trees total)?  Are items 7.b. and 7.c. really necessary at this time given the strained resources within the Common Area Budget?

7.g. Proposed String/Bare Bulb Lighting Policy – The issue here addresses the controversial use of String/Bistro lighting by some owners in their backyards that apparently other owners (as well as the SOA compliance officers) find annoying and/or in violation of some nebulous dark skies requirements. The proposed policy under discussion may be accessed via the following link:

Proposed String Lighting Policy

7.h. Various Canyon Nine Pump Repairs – The issue here stems from SOA and SGCC responsibilities under the Water Facilities Agreement, and whether or not the SGCC is living up to its responsibilities as the “Water Facilities Operating Manager” and funding their share of maintenance costs in a timely manner. Although the $45.7K repair estimate deals primarily with repairs to pump equipment within the SOA area of responsibility, some of the identified repair costs deal with SOA and SGCC “shared costs” equipment. Also, is the SGCC proceeding with needed repairs to their pump equipment as well?

7.j. & 7.k. 2020 General Common, TCTC, Town Square & Gates Budgets & Reserves. – The proposed SOA Operating and Reserve Budgets will most likely be approved under these Agenda items. The $13/month increase in the SOA Common Area monthly assessment has certainly elicited some negative response within the Community. Especially within Sierra Canyon, who owners are also looking at an additional increase in their own common area assessment. This meeting represents one’s last chance to address the Board (pro or con) in this regard.

7.m. Revised Compliance (Penalty and Fine Schedule) Policy – No changes in penalties or fines. Revision simply eliminates references to the Community Standards Committee, which was, amid some controversy, recently dissolved by the Board.

And Then There Were Four!

Per Mr. Leto’s comment, and in light of Mr. Orsburn’s Candidate Form being withdrawn from the SOA Website, apparently, Mr. Orsburn has removed his name as a candidate for the SOA Board of Directors. Mr. Orsburn was the only candidate not to submit the supplementary one-page write-up supporting his candidacy, and the letter designations he used on his Candidate Form were most likely unknown to most, therefore, his qualifications the most unrevealing. Although it is not our place to question his motives, which are likely well placed, one can question the veracity of those who place their hat in the ring only to withdraw it at the last minute (this has happened before).

2019 SOA BOD Candidates & Candidate Night

All Somersett Owners will soon be in receipt of mailed Ballots for the Somersett Owners Association (SOA) 2019 Board of Director (BOD) elections. Two two-year Director positions are open with five declared candidates. In addition to the actual Ballots, the Ballot Package will also contain Candidate Statements for each of the five, which may also be accessed via the following links:

 

Of the five Candidates, Mr. Leto is a current BOD member seeking re-election.

While the Candidate Statements provide some insight as to candidate qualifications, they should not provide the sole basis for deciding who to vote for. Therefore, talk to others in the community for their knowledge, experience and/or opinions on the declared candidates. Perhaps more importantly, plan to attend one or both of the Candidate Night Sessions, which are currently scheduled for Wednesday October 23rd from 6-8 PM at The Club at Town Center, and on Monday October 28th from 6-8 PM at the Aspen Lodge. These are moderated sessions wherein: 1) Candidates will be given the opportunity to address the audience with opening and closing statements, 2) Specific questions regarding qualifications and community issues will be asked of each candidate, and 3) Given time constraints, Somersett owners will be given the opportunity to ask questions directed to individual or all candidates.

It is interesting to note that four of the five candidates (i.e., Hanson, Leto, Orsburn and Wild) are Sierra Canyon Owners. It is unfortunate that we do not have more candidates from the other half of Somersett.

Any Candidate who wishes to post any additional statement on behalf of their candidacy are welcome to do so, just email it to somersettunited@gmail.com.

October 16th SOA BOD Meeting Agenda

The Somersett Owners Association (SOA) Board of Directors (BOD) open meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, October 16, 2019 at 5:30 PM at The Club at Town Center (TCTC) Canyon View Room. The Draft Meeting Agenda as published by the SOA may be accessed by clicking on the following link:

October 16th BOD Meeting Agenda – Draft

Typically, a revised meeting agenda will follow, along with the corresponding Board Meeting Packet. When the Board Meeting Packet is published, an update with agenda item details and comments will be provided on this website.

 

SOA 2020 Budget Presentation

 

The Somersett Owners Association (SOA) presented an overview of the proposed 2020 Budget at an Owner meeting held last night (October 9th) at The Club at Town Center (TCTC). Unfortunately, attendance was disappointing as only about a dozen owners (exclusive of Board and Staff members) showed up. Perhaps because Owners really have no say over the Budget and must rely on the Finance Committee and Staff “professionals” to come up with a Budget based on projected income, expenses and reserve requirements. So what is the bottom line that most Owners are interested in?

Monthly Assessments:

  • Assessments associated with TCTC and Private Gates & Streets will remain the same at $89/month and $54/month respectively.
  • Common Area Assessments will be increased by $13/month. That is, from $92/month to $105/month. This equates to a 14% increase over 2019. The maximum the Board can increase without owner vote is 15%. This increase is apparently necessary to 1) replace depleted operating cash, 2) bring reserve funds to more acceptable levels, and 3) potentially pay down on the current $6M loan debt, a consolidated loan from 2018 that combined separate loans for TCTC, Canyon 9, SGCC Purchase and Rockery Wall Repairs into a single loan with more acceptable terms. Paying down on this debt will provide more “headroom” for future loans if required.

Special Assessments:

  • No special assessment is contemplated or expected for 2020. The 2018 Loan and 2019 Special Assessment adequately covered the Rockery Wall repair costs, with some monies left over that will be kept in reserves. The other wall of concern (i.e., at Roundabout 2) is being monitored, with no sign of required near term repairs.

2020 Bottom Line Totals Per Assessment (Cost Center) Area:

  • Common Area:  Total Revenue $4,392,590, Reserve Contribution $430,000, Total Operating Revenue $3,962,590, Total Operating Expenses $3,962,590
  • TCTC:  Total Revenue $$2,374,602, Reserve Contribution $353,000, Total Operating Revenue $2,021,602, Total Operating Expenses $2,108,402
  • Gates:  Total Revenue $571,052, Reserve Contribution $305,000, Total Operating Revenue $266,052, Total Operating Expenses $266,052
  • Total Consolidated Budget: Total Revenue $7,338,244, Reserve Contributions $1,088,000, Total Operating Revenue $6,250,244, Total Operating Expenses $6,337,044.

One can see from the above, that the SOA is a large enterprise, and that an experienced staff is required for its management.

For those interested in the Presentation details, a copy of the Presentation is available on the SOA website (www.somersett.net) under the “SOA/Committees and Meetings” tab (login required) entitled “2020 SOA Budget Presentation Powerpoint (PDF)”. For those who do not have login capability, the Presentation (as extracted from the SOA website) may also be accessed via the following link:

2020 SOA Budget Presentation

The October 9th Budget Presentation meeting provided a simplified overview of the proposed 2020 Budget. The finalized and more detailed Budget will be approved at the October 16, 2019 Open BOD Meeting. Subsequently, no later than November 2, 2019, the approved Budget will be mailed to all Unit Owners. Owner ratification of the Budget will then occur at the November 18, 2019 annual Owners Meeting. Note that ratification is essentially guaranteed given the provision of Article II, Section 6 “Budget” of the SOA CC&R’s which states: “Unless at that meeting seventy-five percent (75%) of all voting power of Owners rejects the budget, the budget is ratified, whether or not a quorum is present”.

 

SOA Board Performance?

As a fallout of the Court Order granting the Defendants in the Rockery Wall lawsiut a Summary Judgement in their favor, along with losing the Northgate Owners (James) litigation (which collectively total aproximately $800K in SOA legal fees, not counting any Defendant legal fees the SOA may be subject to on the Rockery Wall lawsuit), calls on both this website as well as on the Somersett NextDoor website have been for the SOA Board to resign and to fire the SOA Legal firm.

However, in all fairness, it needs to be recognized that current Board Members Retter and Strout were not on the Board when the then Board voted to move forward with the Rockery Wall lawsuit and that Board member Roland recused himself. The Board Members that approved the lawsuit were Fitzgerald, Leto, Burns and Guderian, of whom only Fitzgerald and Leto are currently on the Board. Only Board members Leto and Rowland’s positions are open for election this year.

Additionally, other than inheriting it, none of the aforementioned Board members were party to the initiation of the Northgate Owners litigation, the fault here (if you want to characterize it as such) lies with previous Boards.

Given that yesterday (October 4th) was the deadline for submitting Board candidate forms for the Roland and Leto positions, it will be interesting to see who will be running. Will it be any of those who have expressed disdain over the performance of the current Board? Are Leto and Rowland running for re-election? If so, they should not be judged solely on the Rockery Wall and Northgate Owners lawsuits (especially Board member Rowland, who did not participate on any vote associated with either), but rather on other issues as well.

Transcript of Summary Judgement Hearing

Our last post (i.e., Rockery Wall Litigation Update 6) published the Nevada District Court Order granting a Summary Judgenment in favor of the Defendants in the Somersett Owners Association (SOA) Chapter 40 Construction Defects lawsuit. This pursuant to the Summary Judgement Hearing held before the Court on July 15th.

For a background information on the aforementioned Summary Judgement Hearing, the reader is directed to SU’s previous post of July 22nd entitled “Rockery Wall Lawsuit Summary Judgement Hearing”. This post contained links to the Court documents associated with the Defendant’s motion for a Summary Judgement based on statutes of limitations and repose, and the SOA’s motion to strike such defenses, both of which were subsequently argued before the Court at the Summary Judgement Hearing of July 15th.

Due to its 118 page length, the SU Post of July 22nd did not contain an access to the actual transcript of the Summary Judgement Hearing. However, given the subsequent Court order granting the Summary Judgement, a few of our readers may be interested in reading the actual transcript of what was presented/argued at the Hearing by the Defendant’s and SOA Attornies as well as the questions and comments of the presiding Judge. Therefore, access to the transcript may be accomplished via the following link:

Transcript of Summary Judgement Hearing

Rockery Wall Litigation Update (6)

On October 2, 2019, the Second Judicial District Court of Nevada (Judge Elliott A, Slatter presiding) entered an “ORDER GRANTING THE DEFENDANT’S MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGEMENT”. The Defendant’s being the Somersett Development Company LTD, Somersett LLC, Somersett Development Corp, Q&D Construction Inc., Stantec Consulting Services Inc. and Parsons Brothers Rockeries Inc., with the Plaintiff being the Somersett Owners Association (SOA) , who as we know, filed a NRS Chapter 40 “FIRST AMENDED COMPLAINT FOR DAMAGES (FAC)“ against the Defendants seeking relief for damages associated with the SOA’s Common Area Rockery Wall failures.

So what is a Summary Judgement? Per Merriam-Webster: “a judgment that may be granted upon a party’s motion when the pleadings, discovery, and any affidavits show that there is no issue of material fact and that the party is entitled to judgment in its favor as a matter of law”. The purpose being to cut down on unnecessary litigation by eliminating without trial one or more causes of action in a complaint.
In issuing the Order, the Court basically ruled that the SOA’s lawsuit had no merit under Nevada’s statutes of repose. In quoting from the Order:

“The Court will grant the Motion because there is no genuine dispute of material fact the Plaintiff failed to file the FAC within the six-year statute of repose. Even when viewing the evidence in the light most favorible to the Plaintiff, the Plaintiff has not identified any admissible evidence proving the FAC was filed within the six-year statute of repose. Because the Plaintiff bears the burden of persuasion on the statute of repose issue, the lack of affirmative evidence is fatal.”

A full reading of the Court’s Order may be viewed via the following link:

Order Granting Defenant’s Motion for Summary Judgement

The above ruling, in favor of the Defendants, represents very bad news for the SOA and its lawsuit. It upholds the opinions of many Association members, that the SOA Attorneys were leading the SOA down a “primrose path” in attempting to circumvent Nevada Law on statutes of limitation and repose. So where does the SOA go from here? An appeal perhaps, or do the SOA’s attorneys simply pack their briefcases and go home? It will be interesting to see how the SOA now moves forward on the lawsuit, which has already cost the SOA $365K through June of this year and possibly $400K year to date.

Also, where does this now leave the Tolling Agreement (effective through June 30, 2020) between the SOA and the Somersett Golf and Country Club (SGCC) ?, which placed on hold any SOA litigation against the SGCC for its share of rockery wall damages (estimated at ~$700K), pending outcome of the SOA lawsuit. This agreement also has a 30-day notice termination clause that can be implemented by the SOA.

A history of past events and related documents are available via the following previous posts:

Rockery Wall Litigation Update, May 22, 2018
Rockery Wall Litigation Update (2), August 29, 2018
Rockery Wall Litigation Update (3), November 7, 2018
Rockery Wall Litigation Update (4), March 28, 2019
Rockery Wall Litigation Update (5), June 19, 2019

SOA September BOD Meeting Cancelled

For our readers who may not be on the Somersett Owners Association (SOA)’s “Somersett Happenings” email distribution, be advised that the September 25th SOA  Board of Directors (BOD) Meeting has been cancelled citing “scheduling conflicts”.  No notice on rescheduling, Most  likely,  the September 25th agenda items will simply be postponed for action until the October BOD Meeting.

September 25th SOA Board Meeting

The Somersett Owners Association (SOA) Board of Directors (BOD) open meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, September 25, 2019 at 5:30 PM at The Club at Town Center (TCTC) Canyon View Room. The current Meeting Agenda as published by the SOA may be accessed by clicking on the following link:

September 25th BOD Meeting Agenda

Typically, a revised meeting agenda will follow, along with the corresponding Board Meeting Packet. When the Board Meeting Packet is published, an update with agenda item details and comments will be provided on this website.