Sunset Bluffs and the SGCC

The Jenuane Communities Sunset Bluffs development in Mogul (41 homesites) has included a Somersett Golf and Country Club (SGCC) equity membership plus one years dues with the purchase of a home. Equity memberships at the SGCC are currently selling for $2,500 with $400/month dues for the first year ($500/mo. thereafter) and a $150/quarter food & beverage minimum. This equates to a $7,900 value to a Sunset Bluffs buyer. However, is it safe to assume that if the buyer is a non-golfer, some credit on the purchase price will be in order?

They also advertise membership at The Club at Town Center (TCTC) and Canyon9, albeit at buyer expense. However, this is not through the Developer, but via their equity membership at the SGCC. TCTC and Canyon9 access rights via the SGCC are granted under Article VII Section 8 “Somersett Country Club Membership Rights to Use Club at Town Center and Canyon9 Golf Course” of the Somersett CC&R’s, which can only be revoked by the SGCC (i.e., not the SOA). The CC&R’s do not identify the fees attributable to non-Somersett owner use, only that they are “reasonably similar” to the fees being paid by Somersett Owners. In this regard the SOA is currently charging $105/month, which is higher than the $89/month for Somersett owners (Note: Per the SGCC website, their fee for this access is $115/mo., does this mean a surcharge for the SGCC?).

Some have voiced a concern over non-Somersett owner use of TCTC fearing overcrowding. However, this is not really a problem as currently only 26 fall into this category. It is also doubtful that many of the Sunset Bluff’s purchasers will take advantage of this. Given only 41 homesites how many buyers will actually end up being Country Club Members, and how many of these will pay the additional $115/month fee (in addition to their own $40/mo. association fee) for access to the TCTC and Canyon9? Although the Sunset Bluffs development borders Somersett, there is no direct road connecting the two, therefore a five-mile journey to the Town Center.

Perhaps the planned and  neighboring Ventana Ridge development should also follow suit, the more the merrier!

The SGCC – Who Owns What?

At the July 24th Board of Directors meeting, the Somersett Owners Association (SOA) General Manager, Tracy Carter, made the statement “We (the SOA) own the Golf Course”, when referring to the Somersett Golf & Country Club (SGCC). This statement is not entirely true and needs the following clarification in understanding what was included and excluded under the 2014 SGCC Purchase Agreement.

Included was purchase of the following Property: 1) Approximately 220 acres comprising the land on which the SGCC operates, 2) Approximately 500 acre feet annually of water rights originating from both wells (major source) and the Truckee River, 3) Water Facilities (e.g., wells, retention ponds, pumping stations, related piping, etc) providing the irrigation water for both the SGCC and Canyon9 golf courses, and 4) the 7500 sq. ft. Maintenance Building adjacent to the SGCC Driving Range.

Excluded from the purchase was the following: 1) The SGCC Retained Property , that is, the SGCC Clubhouse, Parking Lot and the 6 acres of land it sits on, 2) Any leases, permits, service contracts, personal property, located on or relating to the Property, or that the SGCC uses in connection with the repair, maintenance, use, possession or operation of the Somersett Country Club and/or the Championship Golf Course and 3) The SGCC’s business of owning and operating the Championship Golf Course and/or the Somersett Country Club.

Therefore, what the SOA purchased (for $2.75M plus loan interest), and subsequently leased back to the SGCC at $2200/year (for 50 years with two 20 year renewal options at SGCC’s sole discretion), is basically just the land, water rights and water facilities, and not the business, the Club House, or any of the golf course maintenance equipment. If the SGCC ever defaulted on the leaseback agreement, for the SOA to continue operation of the golf course would require significant additional funding.

Regarding the “Seller Retained Property”, if for some reason the lease is terminated, the SGCC could continue to own and operate the Clubhouse property simply as a social/recreation club for its members. Also, if the SGCC wishes to sell this property to a third-party, the purchase agreement includes a “Right of First Refusal” clause, which provides the SOA with the right to purchase the property at the third-party offering price. However, this right only lasts for 30 days, making this provision moot, as it is likely such a purchase would require Somersett owner approval, which could not be accomplished within 30 days. Per the SOA CC&R’s any purchase over $500K requires owner approval and it is doubtful that this property would sell for less than the $500K limit. There is also a “Purchase Option” within the Lease Agreement that has longer option periods and market value considerations.

Exhibit C (Commercial Lease) and Exhibit D (Water Facilities Agreement) to the Purchase Agreement establishes the terms and conditions associated with the leaseback of the SOA purchased property to the SGCC, including SGCC responsibilities for maintenance and repair activities. It is in these areas that a dispute has arisen between the SOA and the SGCC over rockery wall and water facility component repair liabilities – but more on these issues in a subsequent post.

For those interested in all the gory details, a copy of the 2014 SGCC Purchase Agreement is available via the following link (also available under the References tab):

SGCC Purchase Agreement (Executed)

Question: Was the purchase of the SGCC properties referenced above a “piece of good fortune” for the SOA, or will it be “an albatross around our neck”? Comments welcome.

August 28th SOA Board Meeting

The Somersett Owners Association (SOA) Board of Directors (BOD) open meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, August 28, 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:

August 28th BOD Meeting Agenda – Draft

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

SNPAA Wine Sharing Party

The following posted in support of the Sierra Nevada Performing Arts Association (SNPAA). SNPAA ia non-profit organization established to support the performing arts in Northern Nevada and to provide scholarships to local talented students:

Hello: I am pleased to invite you to our Sierra Nevada Performing Arts Association Wine Sharing Underwriting Party on August 24, 2019 at the Hacienda Herring in Arrowcreek. (Details Below) Tickets are $40 plus a bottle of wine per person for sharing. You can go to snpaa.org to buy tickets, or just print the flyer below and mail in your order with your check by August 16. This is our end of summer party to cover our administrative expenses to manage our 501(c)3 non-profit focused on providing scholarships to students graduating from Northern Nevada high schools pursing higher education in the performing arts. We also support local performing arts schools. I am pleased to report that thanks to your generosity in supporting our events this year, we funded 5 more scholarships in 2019, bringing our total since our founding five years ago to 29. Please join us and invite your friends to attend, as well. If you can’t make it this year, a tax deductible donation is always appreciated. This will be a fun evening of friends, wine and great food.

P.S. Please consider donating a bottle of wine of $25 or greater value for our Wine Wagon Auction item. If interested, just let me know and we will pick up your wine donation by August 16.

Joseph Morabito
President
Sierra Nevada Performing Arts Association
+1.949.500.0753 Cell
jmorabito@paragongri.com

Water Rights – Explained

When the Somersett Owners Association (SOA) Board of Directors appointed the “SGCC and SOA Water Management Advisory Committee”, one of its stated objectives was to “Prepare and recommend a plan for the use and optimization of the Water Rights that make up the Agreement between both parties such that the Water Rights as granted never terminate or revert back to their origins and are managed within the state, federal, and local laws are requirements as outlined in any and all water rights licenses or agreements”.

So what Water Rights are they referring to? The Water Rights purchased from the Somersett Golf and Country Club (SGCC), along with the Water Facilities for accessing and delivering the water, which were then leased back to the SGCC subject to the terms and conditions of a Water Facilities Agreement. These Water Rights provide the irrigation water for both the SGCC and the SOA’s Canyon9 golf courses. The water supply comes from two sources, underground wells and the Truckee River via twenty water permits. These permits are listed on the attached spreadsheet, along with the permitted amounts in Acre Feet Annually (AFA) for each. Also, included are the dates when the permits were put into use, along with the next due dates for submittal of the routine “Proof of Beneficial Use” documentation. Note that some of the permits have not yet been activated. The attached indicates that the total allotment of available water is 511.87 ACA. However, how much of this is actually being used is unknown to the writer. Note that the vast majority of the allocated water comes underground wells, primarily Well 5 in Sierra Canyon, which has been the primary source of irrigation water for the SGCC. Whereas the Canyon9 irrigation water, which is minor compared to the SGCC, originates from the Truckee River.

SOA Water Permits

At the last SOA BOD Meeting, the BOD President, Tom Fitzgerald, remarked on “using it or losing it” when speaking about the Water Rights, and the SOA General Manager, Tracy Carter, remarked that Well 5 was no longer producing at the rate it should be for irrigation of the SGCC, which raises the following questions:

  1. If we are not using all, or the majority, of the water authorized under the permits, where can additional uses be applied, if anywhere, and what would be the cost?
  2. Is it possible that unused water rights could be sold off?
  3. If the Well 5 is no longer producing as required, where is the SGCC getting the additional water for irrigation? The alternate source is from the Truckee River, via the Canyon9 pond, but will this result in exceeding the Truckee River Permits?
  4. If a new well to replace Well 5 is required to provide sufficient irrigation water for the SGCC, a very expensive process, who will pay for it?

In addition, with regard to the Committee objective that “Water Rights as granted never terminate or revert back to their origins and are managed within the state, federal, and local laws are requirements as outlined in any and all water rights licenses or agreements”, who is ultimately responsible for this? The answer being that the SGCC is, this per Article 3.1 (d) of the Water Facilities Agreement which states: “The Operating Manager (defined as the SGCC) shall insure that the Water Rights are used so that they are kept in good standing and not subject to forfeiture or abandonment for non-use pursuant to the laws and regulations of the State of Nevada”

is indeed all well and good for the SOA to oversee that the SGCC lives up to the terms of the Water Facilities Agreement, but under the Water Facilities Agreement, the costs for managing the Water Rights and maintaining the Water Facilities lies with the SGCC.

Additional information about the Somersett Water Rights and Water Facilities may be accessed via the following links:

 

SOA Facilities & Amenities Projects

As reported on at the July 24th Board of Directors meeting, the Strategic Planning and Facilities Committee is compiling a list of potential projects for future consideration, with prioritization. This initial list was published on the SOA Website under the “Discussions with Terry” News item and may also be accessed via the following link:

SOA Project List

In accessing the list, note that those projects currently under consideration for 2020 budgeting are highlighted in yellow, and consist of the following:

  • Modify/Expand Existing Athletic Room – Expand into existing card room
  • Repurpose Stage Area – Wall up stage area in gym to make an additional fitness room
  • Solar or Geothermal Additions – Reduce electrical costs
  • Electric Car Charging Stations
  • Cover for the Lap Pool

Per the Facilities Committee, the project list is intended to be a “Living Document” capturing project ideas from all sources and providing a starting point for the process of evaluating, costing, and making recommendations to the BOD for budgeting.

Note that the project priorities for 2020 have not yet been finalized and financial considerations will obviously come into play. Especially those whose cost may require an assessment increase.

For those of you who may have your own project ideas, or want to voice opinions on project prioritization, the Strategic Planning and Facilities Committee meetings are always open to all Association Members. Meeting times are published on the SOA Website under the SOA/Committees & Meetings Tab (login required). The next Committee meeting is scheduled for 2 PM on Tuesday August 6th at The Club at Town Center.

Also, if you are interested in serving the community on these endeavors, the Strategic Planning and Facilities Committees currently has an available opening. To view its Charter, click on the following link:

Strategic Planning – Facilities Committee Charter

 

 

 

 

July 24th BOD Meeting Recap

Following is a recap of issues discussed and/or approved at the June 26th Somersett Owners Association (SOA) Board of Directors (BOD) Meeting. Related Agenda items are noted. The full meeting Agenda may be accessed via the following link:

July 24th BOD Meeting Agenda

Homeowner Comments:

Homeowner comments on Meeting Agenda Items were as follows (paraphrased):

  • Item 4.e. General Manager Report – An owner commented on a reference in the GM report that The SOA/SGCC Water Facilities Committee (now named the SGCC and SOA Water Management Advisory Committee) had agreed to get cost proposals to determine the viability of a new well near the Canyon9 ninth hole pond. Given that this is a new consideration, it raises the following questions: 1) what purpose will a new well serve, 2) who will benefit from it (i.e., water usage), 3) how will the cost be allocated, 4) was this the only item discussed at the meeting, 5) will formal meeting recaps be issued, and 5) will their meetings be open for homeowner attendance, as has been the case for other SOA Ad-hoc committees?
  • Item 6.b. Easement Access Appraisal Proposal for Ventana Ridge – Two owners spoke up against approval of the $4,500 proposal to obtain a professional appraisal for an easement through an unused portion of SOA property as requested by the Ventana Ridge Developer. Opinions being that the proposed process was flawed and did not address what was in the best interest of the SOA. Also, that an appraisal was not necessary, the asking price should be based on what the value is to the Developer, not on the land value itself. An additional suggestion that perhaps the Developer could be approached with on offer for annexing into the Somerset PUD.
  • Item 7.d. Ratify Boards Decision to Dissolve CSC – Six owners spoke up against the BOD’s decision to dissolve the CSC. Points made were as follows:
    1. The vote to dissolve the CSC at the June BOD meeting was illegal as it was not identified as an agenda item.
    2. No explanation was provided by the BOD as to why the CSC was being dissolved and how this would benefit the community.
    3. No rules/processes owners must now follow regarding non-compliances have been published (i.e., no path moving forward)
    4. With the BOD taking over the duties of the CSC, there would be no appeal process (i.e., from the CSC to the BOD), only the filing of a lawsuit.
    5. Unlike the CSC, the BOD turns over every year, therefore continuity and consistency in enforcing the SOA rules and regulations is lost.
    6. There was no transparency on the part of the BOD in their actions. Decision was made in secret, it was not identified as a BOD Meeting agenda item, owners were not given the chance to comment, the CSC was not consulted beforehand.
    7. No understanding on what the BOD wants to accomplish by eliminating the CSC as well as the previous elimination of homeowner membership on the Aesthetic Guidelines Committee. This appears contrary to statements encouraging more homeowner participation in community affairs.
    8. The Board has enough on its plate without assuming the duties of the CSC.
  • Item 7.e. Revised Expense Policy – A Facilities committee member spoke against the proposed revision to the SOA’s Expense Policy. The revision being to increase the dollar limit under which the Board should seek competitive bids from $12K to $25K. Opinion being that this is too high a limit for the Board to make unilateral decisions, especially without input from Finance and Facility Committees.
  • Item 7.f. Back Nile Trail Speed Control Device Survey Results – Three owners spoke up in favor of the installation of speed humps along Back Nine Trail (to be paid for by Back Nine Trail owners and maintained by the SOA), citing observed safety concerns and the positive results from the survey. Encouraged the Board to move forward with approval. The Board had previously approved the project but placed it on hold pending homeowner survey results.

Committee Reports

  • 4.a. Budget & Finance – Acknowledged the efforts put forth by MaryAnn McKinney and Ryan Burns during their tenure on the Committee (Finance Committee has openings for new members). The 2020 budgeting process will be kicked off at a Budget Workshop scheduled for 4:00 PM on July 31st at TCTC, owner attendance allowed. Recommended approval of the revised Expense Policy, per Agenda Item 7.e. below.
  • 4.b. Facilities and Strategic Planning – Working on the preparation of a “Future Capital Projects Prioritization” document. Recommended disapproval of the proposed TCTC external sound system upgrade. Proposed the following for 2020 budget consideration: 1) expanding the TCTC work-out room, 2) repurposing the TCTC stage for extended work out space, 3) utilizing solar or geothermal projects to reduce TCTC electrical costs, 4) installing electric charging stations at TCTC, and 5) a Lap Pool cover. Owners are encouraged to attend Committee meetings to voice their own opinions and project suggestions.
  • 4.c. Communications – Working on SOA website improvements and recommended approval of the D4 Advanced Media proposal (Agenda Item 7.f. below) to accomplish same. Also, recommended $10K be budgeted in 2020 for additional improvements. Spoke on the controversy over the issuance of four free TCTC guest passes to owners. These passes were approved back in 2017 and included in the 2018 budget. However, it was apparently not included in the 2019 budgeting process, raising the question as to whether it was only intended for 2018 and not a continuing benefit. Further complicated in that some 2019 SOA owner communications indicated they were available for pick up at the TCTC front desk. Committee recommendation was that these passes continue to be available until such time that the Board officially extends or suspends the program and notifies owners accordingly. Resolution expected by next Board meeting.
  • 4.e. General Manager Report
    1. The GM noted that the SOA had in the last month experienced 13 mainline irrigation system breaks along with some vandalism which has resulted in some stressed turf areas along the Parkway, which is being adequately addressed by Brightview (Note: in a homeowner comment it was noted that there are stressed areas where irrigation is working properly. and that if irrigation and fertilization does not solve the problem, perhaps replacement is in order)
    2. The GM advised that minutes for the Water Facilities Committee meeting would be published and placed on the SOA Website, also future meeting schedules and that homeowners could attend. With regard to the potential of drilling a new well, this would be to replace Well 5 in Sierra Canyon that it is not currently producing water at the rate it should be for irrigation of the SGCC, and that installation of a larger pump (note that when the original pump failed, the SGCC elected to install a smaller pump) would be a short term solution, which in the long term could create a bigger issue that it would solve due to the condition of the well. Hence the decision to obtain cost proposals for a new well. Tony Fakonas (who as Board President oversaw the preparation of the SGCC Purchase and Lease Agreement) interjected that per the Agreement, the SGCC was completely responsible for the maintenance and upkeep of Well 5 and that the SOA should not incur any costs in this endeavor. The GM sort of danced around this premise by opining it was “our golf course” and that the SOA needed to insure it was maintained correctly. However, when further challenged, he advised no SOA funds would be spent unless approved by the Board.
    3. The latest update on SOA Engineering Projects as prepared by Padovan Consulting is available via the following link: SOA Engineering Update – June 2019

Financials

  • 5.b. May 2019 Financials – The SOA Treasurer (Joe Strout) summarized the May financial balance sheets, which were then approved by the Board.
  • 5.c. 2018 Audit – The Finance Committee reviewed the draft 2018 Audit Report with the auditors and recommended approval by the Board, which was then approved. One take-away from the audit report was that the combined 2017 and 2018 rockery wall repair related expenses totaled $2.8M. For 2019, the Gypsy Hill rockery wall repair contract with R.L. Wadsworth Construction was $1.7M. This along with other related rockery wall expenses (e.g., change orders, landscaping, wall monitoring and legal expenses) could conceivably add an additional $500K in 2019 expenses, for a grand total of around $5M, which necessitated the $1200 Special Assessment.

Note: For those interested in the statements of revenue and expenses for both operating and reserve funds, consolidated or for the individual cost centers (i.e., Common Area, TCTC, Gates & Private Streets and Town Square Properties) these are contained within the BOD Meeting Packet and available on the SOA Website.

Old Business

  • 6.a. Legal Updates – Regarding the Rockery Wall lawsuit, a hearing was held on July 15th in which the Defendant’s (Somersett Development Company, et. al) motion for a summary judgment was heard as well as the SOA’s motion to strike the defendant’s statute of limitations and repose defenses. A written opinion from the Court on these motions is expected within the next two to four weeks.
  • 6.b. Easement Access Appraisal Proposal for Ventana Ridge – After much discussion, the Board unanimously approved the $4,500 proposal from Valbridge Property Advisors to appraise the value of an easement access through SOA property as requested by the Ventana Ridge Developer. Commenting that they believed Valbrigde Property was aware of all considerations pertaining to the easement request.

Note: The requested easement is through a short section of SOA unused native land at the upper end of Painted River Trail. 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 the SOA’s Painted River Trail from Ventana Ridge.

New Business

  • 7.a. Willow Removal Proposal from Brightview – No action required by the Board. A low cost proposal (under $3K) which was within the GM’s ability to approve.
  • 7.b. Trail Patch and Root Barrier Proposal from APS – The Board Packet did not contain an actual proposal, only the RFP generated by the SOA’s Engineering Consultant, Seth Padovan. However, Padovan advised that the proposal price of $160,000 did not make sense (way to high) for what the SOA wanted to accomplish. Therefore, the proposal should be rejected, the RFP modified and sent out for competitive bid. The Board approved this action.
  • 7.c. Scott Valley Ct Ditch Clean out and Erosion Control Proposal from EPS – The Board unanimously approved the $25,738 proposal from EPS to clean out approximately 430 ft of drainage channel and construct a 350 ft Rock Wall, rip rap buffer and fiber trench to abate future sediment and debris from filling the ditch. There was some discussion about approving this single source proposal given that the Revised Expense Policy increasing the suggested competitive bid amount to $25K (see Item 7.e. below) had not yet been approved.
  • 7.d. Ratify Boards Decision to Dissolve CSC – The Board ratified their June 24th Board Meeting decision (i.e., on a 4:1 vote with Board Member Roland voting no) to dissolve the Community Standards Committee. In discussion, the Board President apologized for not thanking the Committee Members for their service. That the decision was based partly on confidentiality issues that needed to be addressed in Board Executive Sessions anyway. That the Board recognized that a new process needed to be developed and communicated to all homeowners (one would think that this would have been accomplished before dissolving the CSC). Also, that this agenda item was added to alleviate concerns over how the vote was handled at the June Board meeting, which on attorney advice, they believe was legal.
  • 7.e. Revised Expense Policy – The Board approved on a 4:1 vote the proposed revision to the SOA Expense Policy that increases the suggested amount for competitive biding from $12K to $25K. In discussion, the GM advised that the proposed policy would provide flexibility in awarding contracts directly to vendors who we have worked with in the past, are familiar with the SOA infrastructure, and are convinced they would be the low bidder anyway.
  • 7.f. Website Enhancement Proposal from D4 – The Board unanimously approved the $3,222 proposal from D4 Advanced Media for SOA Website enhancements.
  • 7.g. Back Nine Speed Trail Control Device Survey Results – The Board approved moving forward with the owner funded speed hump installations along Back Nine Trail on a 4 yes and 1 abstention vote (Board Member Fitzgerald abstained due to living along Back Nine Trail). Homeowners are obtaining cost proposals for the project. The SOA GM is familiar with the proposed homeowner engaged Project Manager and will work with him to insure SOA needs and requirements are addressed.

Additional Homeowner Comments

Homeowner comments (paraphrased) at the close of the meeting included the following: 1) Inadequate Parkway maintenance, several dead grass areas that need to be corrected, no additional add-on work money to Brightview until they get the Parkway under control, 2) Unsafe (excessive speeding) and illegal operation of dirt bikes within Somersett, perptrators need to be identified and corrective action taken, 3) The four free TCTC passes policy was intended for ongoing use when previously approved, therefore, they need to be honored in 2019, 4) Vandalization of irrigation system components continue, some within the irrigation system control boxes which need to be made more secure, 5) Identification of a 41 acre parcel of land above Village 6 which is on the market for $1.4M and reportably suitable for residential development. A Washoe County map indicates it is within the Somersett PUD boundary. The Board indicated it was unaware of this parcel and its significance to the SOA and will look into it.

As usual, SU welcomes any comments and/or corrections to the above Board Meeting recap.

Rockery Wall Lawsuit Summary Judgement Hearing

The July 16th SOA Attorney Legal Disclosure Letter contained the following update with regard to the Rockery Wall lawsuit:

“Plaintiffs Motion to Strike Certain Affirmative Defenses Relating to Statutes of Limitations and Repose, Defendants’ Motion for Summary Judgement and Somersett Development Company’s Separate Motion for Summary Judgement were heard on July 15th, 2019. The Judge took the motions under submission and a written opinion is expected within the next two to four weeks”.

The Court order that set the above referenced Hearing and the resulting Hearing Minutes (as filed in Court records) may be viewed via the following Links:

Order to Set Hearing

Summary Motions Hearing Minutes

Note that the Hearing Minutes are not overly informative as to what was presented by the various attorneys, only a chronology of what transpired during the two and a half hour Hearing. However, it is safe to say that they simply argued their previously submitted motions to the Court, which may be accessed via the following links:

Motion to Strike Certain Affirmative Defenses Relating to Statutes of Limitations and Repose

Defendants’ Motion for Summary Judgement

Needless to say, the Courts ruling on the Summary Judgment motions will have a significant impact on the case moving forward. If the Court finds for the Defendants (Somersett Development Compant et al.) and issues a Summary Judgement in their favor, will that essentially end it for the SOA?, or will an appeal be in order? Same for an unfavorable ruling against the Defendants. Hopefully, the Court will indeed issue its opinion in the next two to four weeks.

For additional background information, see the previous SU post of June 19th, 2019 entitled:   Rockery Wall Litigation Update (5)

July 24th SOA BOD Meeting

Following is the final Agenda for the July 24th SOA Board of Directors (BOD) Meeting. Meeting starts at 5:30 PM at The Club at Town Center. The BOD Meeting Packet supporting the meeting is also available on the SOA website at www.somersett.net under the SOA/Committees & Meetings tab.

July 24th BOD Meeting Agenda

Details associated with meeting agenda items, as derived from the BOD Meeting Packet, follow:

SOA Committee Reports:

4.c. Communications – Recommended approval of SOA website enhancement proposal from D4-Advanced Media (see item 7.f. below). Requested $10,000 be budgeted for website maintenance in 2020.

4.e. General Manager Report – The General Manager Report contained the following entry regarding the SOA/SGCC Water Facilities Committee: “The Committee met on July 18th and agreed to get cost proposals for preliminary work needed to determine if the potential well location near the pond at the ninth hole is a viable option”.

Editorial Note: This implies that the drilling of a new well is being contemplated, which has not heretofore been discussed at a Board meeting. This raises the following questions as to its purpose: 1) To replace an existing water source ? 2) To provide additional water for golf course maintenance or other use? 3) Who will use the water from the new well? and 4) who pays for the evaluations and cost proposals?

Financials:

5.c. 2018 Audit – In addition to the monthly Treasurers Report, the BOD Meeting Packet contains the draft 2018 Audit Report issued by the SOA Auditor Hilburn and Lein, CPAs. The Table of Contents from the report may be accessed via the following link:

SOA 2018 Draft Audit Report Table of Contents

Readers who are interested in the financial details contained in the report may access the BOD Meeting Packet as previously noted above.

Old Business:

6.a. Legal Updates – Regarding the Rockery Wall lawsuit, the July 16th SOA Attorney Legal Disclosure Letter advised that a hearing was held on July 15th in which the Defendant’s (Somersett Development Company, et. al) request for a summary judgment was heard as well as the SOA’s motion to strike the defendant’s statute of limitations and repose defenses. A written opinion from the Court is expected within the next two to four weeks.

6.b. Easement Access Appraisal Proposal for Ventana Ridge – A proposal from Valbridge Property Advisors in the amount of $4,500 to appraise the worth of an easement access through SOA property as requested by the Ventana Ridge Developer.

New Business:

7.b. Trail Patch and Root Barrier Proposal – A Request for Proposal generated by Padovan Consulting LLC for asphalt patching, root removal and root barrier installation along portions of the Silver Willow Trail, Sierra Canyon Trail and Somersett Parkway Trail.

7.c. Scott Valley Ct Ditch Cleanout and Erosion Control Proposal – A proposal from EPS in the amount of $25,738 to clean out approximately 430 ft of drainage channel and construct a 350 ft Rock Wall with a 350 ft rip rap buffer and fiber trench on uphill side.

7.d. Ratify Boards Decision to Dissolve the CSC – At the June 26th Board meeting the Board voted to dissolve the Community Standards Committee. This over the objection of Board Member Roland who questioned the legality of voting on an issue not specifically identified on the Agenda. In publishing the meeting minutes, this website quoted the NRS statute which appeared to validate Mr. Roland’s position. So what is this agenda item about? Perhaps to properly identify it and revote (validate) on their previous action.

7.e. Revised Expense Policy – At the June 26th Board meeting the Board approved two single sourced proposals in the $20K range. A homeowner commented that this was not in keeping with a recently approved SOA Expense Policy which stated that projects over $12K should be bid out. Therefore, the Board should either adhere to the policy or change it. Hence the proposed revised Expense Policy that increases the suggested amount for competitive biding to $25K. A copy of the revised policy may be accessed via the following link:

Expense Policy SOME.0023.01

7.f.  Website Enhancement Proposal – A proposal from D4 Advanced Media in the amount of $3,222 for SOA Website Updates.

7.g.  Back Nine Trail Speed Control Device Survey – A tabulation of approximately 120 responses to four questions (along with some supplementary comments) related to a request that speed reducer devices be installed along the Back Nine Trail road. This for the protection of children. However, the tabulated responses contained within the Board Packet are essentially meaningless as published, as the four questions were not identified.

Water Management Advisory Committee

At the June 26th open SOA Board of Directors (Board) Meeting, the Board announced the formation of an “SGCC and SOA Water Management Advisory Committee”.

Having been appointed by the Board as an “Advisory” committee, its structure, methods and procedures will most likely differ from that of the SOA’s current Standing committees (e.g., Communications, Budget & Finance, Strategic Planning & Facilities). In this context, Advisory Committees are defined under Article III, Section 3.18 of the SOA ByLaws as follows:

“ADVISORY COMMITTEES: The Chairman of the Board, the Board, the executive committee or the President may from time to time appoint such advisory committees as it deems appropriate, consisting of directors or persons who are not directors, but such advisory committees shall not be deemed committees having the authority of the Board and shall not exercise any powers of the Board. Notices of, and procedures for, meetings of advisory committees shall be as prescribed by the chairman of each such advisory committee, and meetings of the advisory committees may be called by the Chairman of the Board, the Board, the executive committee, the President or the chairman of the advisory committee”.

The Board also approved a “Mission and Goals” document related to the Committee, the contents of which are admirable (if not overly general), and address needed activities. However, most represent common sense for each organization to individually accomplish and therefore, why the need for addressing by a “joint” Advisory Committee.

The Mission and Goals statements contained within the document are repeated below (in italics and unedited) along with SU comments. For those ‘fact checkers”, an exact reading of the entire document is available via the following link:    SGCC and SOA Water Management Advisory Committee

Mission

Rather than quote the entire mission statement from the document, it basically states that creation of the Advisory Committee is the best way “to assure both the short and long term ability to provide water to the Canyon9 and Championship course is managed in the best interest of both parties”

SU Comment;  What is in the best interest of one is not necessarily in the best interest of the other.  Hopefully this will not result in the Committee reaching funding concessions on the part of the SOA, as is feared by many due to the SOA’s deeper pockets, and past history.

Membership:

“Appoint a joint Advisory Committee consisting of at least two members from both the SGCC and the SOA. These members could but are not limited to Board members, staff and or outside experts”.

SU Comment: At the June 26th Board meeting in addressing formation of the Committee, it was not announced who its members were or who was the designated chairman. However, from Board comments, it was clear that SOA Directors Fitzgerald and Leto serve on the Committee. This leaves the question as to who the chairman is, who the SGCC members are, and whether or not it also consists of staff or outside experts. Since meetings have already occurred, it is fair to assume that they are known

Advisory Committee Meetings

“This Advisory Committee shall meet at least Quarterly to discuss and plan for the operational and governance of the water as outlined in the Water Rights Purchase document”.

SU Comment: It is assumed that reference should have been to the “Water Facilities Agreement” and not a “Water Rights Purchase” document, as this does not exist as a stand-alone document. Rather, it is the Water Facilities Agreement that outlines the operation, maintenance, cost allocations, responsibilities, warranties, etc. associated with the water supply system components, which utilize some, but not all of the purchased water rights. The purchased water rights are simply listed in an Exhibit to the Water Facilities Agreement. This goal statement skirts around the real issue, which is to assure that the SGCC is living up to its responsibilities under the Water Facilities Agreement. We certainly do not need a joint committee to assure that the SOA is living up to theirs. Also, will these meetings be open to owners, as are the current SOA Standing Committees?

“This Advisory Committee will meet annually during the first quarter every year to discuss the upcoming year as each organization begins to open their respective courses for play and their upcoming operating seasons.”

SU Comment: All well and good, except do we need a joint session to discuss how the SOA and SGCC plan to manage their respective golf courses for the upcoming year? What is the expected outcome of these discussions? Certainly, each organization does not need the other to tell them how to operate their respective courses.

Board Meetings:

“In addition the Committee will meet with the Boards no later than the first September of each year outlining their upcoming budget plans and expenses to operate the Water with the community for the golf courses”, also to “Develop and prepare an annual prioritization of maintenance and repair work with timelines and projected cost estimates to be presented to each Board no later than the end of September of each year. This will be used by both parties in the preparation of their annual budgets.

SU Comment: Sounds like something the SOA’s Finance & Budget and Strategic Planning/Facilities Committees would be doing anyway. As commented on above, the real issue here is to assure that the SGCC is budgeting appropriately for the repair and maintenance of the water supply system components for which they are responsible.

“In additional to an annual operating plan the committee will prepare a minimum of 3 but preferably a 5 year operating plan again outlining in detail upcoming projects in priority order with timelines and estimated costs for the use of both parties in the development of both longer range strategic plans as well as potential use in reserve studies”.

SU Comment: Good idea.

Water Rights

Prepare and recommend a plan for the use and optimization of the Water Rights that make up the Agreement between both parties such that the Water Rights as granted never terminate or revert back to their origins and are managed within the state, federal, and local laws and requirements as outlined in any and all water rights licenses or agreements”.

SU Comment: Also sounds like something an Advisory Committee could undertake. However, believe it would be beyond the expertise of SOA and SGCC Board Members and therefore, an outside expert (e.g., water rights attorney) would most likely be required.

SU Conclusion

SU’s opinion is that the Advisory Committee’s Mission and Goals statements are essentially platitudes, which do not directly address the real issue of concern. That is, will the SGCC live up to its obligations and responsibilities as required by the Water Facilities Agreement? This whole issue was prompted by the SOA paid for “Canyon9 & SGCC Water Supply Infrastructure Review” report, which identified short and long term replacement and maintenance activities estimated as high as $700K. The majority of which fall under the responsibility of the SGCC. This raised the question by many if the SGCC had the commitment and/or financial resources to meet its obligations. Hence the primary objective of the original Ad-Hoc Water Committee. Certainly, the SOA does not need the consultation, advice, permission or whatever from the SGCC to determine and live up to its responsibilities under the Water Facilities Agreement and to budget accordingly.

Bottom line  –  Perhaps rather than appointment as an “Advisory Committee” it should be an “Oversight Committee”, whose charter is to assure that not only is the SGCC living up to its responsibilities under the Water Facilities Agreement, but all other provisions of the SGCC Purchase (and Lease) Agreement.

For background information and additional details on this subject, see the SU Post of March 11, 2019 entitled “SGCC & Canyon9 Water Supply System Report” and SU Post of March 12, 2019 entitled “SOA and SGCC Water Facilities Agreement”

Reader comments, pro or con, on the preceding are solicited and welcome1