2015 ANNUAL MEETING MINUTES
Lost River Valley Property Owners’ Association
June 6, 2015
Call to Order
Board members present: Belynda Hicks, President, Richard Parry, Treasurer, Philip Robey, Secretary, DeWayne Lawrence, Member-at-Large (Roads).
Not Present: Jan Brito, Vice President
The meeting commenced at 1:03 p.m. with a quorum of members in attendance as determined by Belynda Hicks, President; verified by Philip Robey, Secretary. Belynda directed the membership’s attention to the meeting agenda and asked if there were any additions to which the membership responded that there were not.
The minutes from the June 7, 2014 annual meeting were approved unanimously.
Treasurer’s Report — Richard Parry
Richard Parry reported that actual 2014 expenses were $40,333, less than originally budgeted. Fall road work was limited due to construction work by Hardy Telecommunications (resulting in a transient cost savings). Actual 2014 income was $44,016. The reserve fund balance stands at $60,595. This has not been used but may be relied upon to pay for future road work.
For 2015, expenses are expected to be $49,950. This includes $5,000 for tree trimming and $1,000 for a donation to the Mathias-Baker Fire Department (includes a $500 catch-up donation for 2014). The forecast for the reserve fund is $61,895.
In response to a question on how the Board comes to a decision on what trees were selected for removal, Belynda Hicks noted that the general approach was to survey trees that are within 20’ from center of road if they are dead or heavily diseased, and there was a reasonable expectation that the tree would eventually come down across association roads.
Joe Keyerleber said that there were several trees that look dead on Settlers Valley Way. Blair Mastal responded that they are dying and he has had an arborist who says they will come back.
Blair Mastal asked about delinquencies on payment of dues. Richard responded that he continues to contact those who are delinquent through the annual assessment process. Jamie Coley asked whether LRVPOA rules allow owners who are delinquent to have a proxy vote; Belynda responded that they do not.
Road Work Report — Dwayne Lawrence
DeWayne introduced Keith Dove, the LRVPOA Road contractor.
Dewayne stated that the weather is slowing things down and has also been hard on roads this year. All work should be done in a few weeks. DeWayne informed the attendees that some gravel changes on Moonshine Hollow Rd. and Whispering Pines are being piloted to determine whether a new base and gravel combo works better than what we have done in the past.
Hardy Net is mostly finished and are putting individual lines to houses. Some roads have been put on hold, as construction vehicles cause significant damage to roads that are softened due to excessive rain. Hinkle & McCoy, those in charge of roads with Hardy Net, are providing us with material to redo the roads and Keith is doing the work.
DeWayne reported that roads were plowed 8 times by Garlan Funkhouser in the 2014-2015 winter season, which is more than in the past. Cinders were spread multiple times as well by Bobby Jenks to help with traction on icy areas. DeWayne expressed thanks to Jeff Grove for helping coordinate. The question was asked as to when we plow. The LRVPOA has guidelines on snow removal that balances a number of factors: Dewayne responded that we plow when needed and that it depends on how much is expected, and whether we expect that the snow will quickly melt (or not). He also stated that if a road gets damaged from plowing, we will fix it.
Tree removal – Boom Trimming:
If you do not want boom trimming in front of your property, please trim yourself by the second Saturday in October. Roads need to be cleared 15’ above the ditch and 25’ above the center of the road to allow access for maintenance and emergency vehicles. If you need trimming, please contact DeWayne. Dewayne emphasized that we cannot afford trimming every year.
Discussion on Settlers Valley Road Ownership:
Belynda requested approval of the minutes from the special meeting on March 21, 2015. A motion was made by Caroline Pickens to approve the minutes, seconded by Jaime Baisden and approved unanimously. DeWayne reported that the request was sent to the WV Transportation Secretary requesting that Settlers Valley Rd. be returned to local ownership, with the response that we need to have a petition with 172 signatures from property owners (that access their property via the 0.5-mile stretch of SVW) and a copy of all 172 deeds. In addition, we need 172 tax records to ensure they have paid taxes. This represented a change from previous communications on what exactly was required to return the road section to the owners and allow maintenance to be coordinated by the LRVPOA.
General discussion followed on what options could be pursued to improve maintenance of this important section of road. Key highlights:
- Tom Robertson suggested that the Board summarize all of this and ask who we as members can direct our concerns to. DeWayne stated that a WVDOT website exists that we can put concerns on (http://dotftp.wv.gov/cra/) but no replies have come back for those placed thus far.
- It was suggested that we have a revision put in our covenant that does not allow giving of roads back to state.
- Caroline Pickens asked about liability to the Association if an individual fills a pot hole instead of waiting for the state. Belynda responded that no liability is incurred by the Association for an individual’s actions.
- Jamie and Patty Baisden both called for an action item that will allow us to do something as the local roads person for the state needs pressure first. Belynda responded that we will circulate names of those responsible for the roads (Mr. Lee Thorne, Supervisor, District Five Engineer/ Manager, (304) 289-3521, Lee.J.Thorne@wv.gov).
- Mark Smith noted that he was LRVPOA secretary for three terms and had the exact same problem with respect to a lack of response from the state. Mark asked about taking this to the local press (Moorefield Examiner and/or Charleston Gazette) as this Board has diligently worked to fix the problem and this is a legitimate news story involving public safety.
- Peter Lefkin suggested that we could probably put pressure on them to return the road to local ownership with 142 signatures attached to a letter requesting such.
- Bob Earl asked how much the Board has investigated whether the original transaction was legal? Was it a legal transaction to the state since their process has changed? The question was not answered.
DeWayne noted that the Board will continue to pursue various options for ensuring that section of road is properly maintained but currently the LRVPOA has no legal authority or ability to provide maintenance at this time.
Discussion on Speeding:
Jessie Halpern requested that when people are hired to do work, they be reminded them not to speed on roads as speeding is causing roads to deteriorate. Jamie Baisden added that owners who rent their properties out should have same agreement with those they are renting to, and ask that they adhere to the 15 MPH limit on association roads. Tom Robertson stated that only speed bumps seem to work; DeWayne brought up the idea of movable speed bumps as an option.
- Belynda reminded those with upcoming construction requests to please complete and submit form available on the LRVPOA website prior to doing the work.
- Belynda reminded attendees that the LRVPOA covenants requires homeowners to conceal propane tanks.
- No Solicitation signs. Apparently Capital Meats is soliciting some of our members. Jeff Grove stated that the signs do nothing, but suggested that property owners call the Hardy County sheriff’s department to keep solicitors out.
- Street signs stolen. If you see street signs that are missing, please call sheriff’s dept. and ask for new signs.
- Directory. Carolyn Pickens asked whether we could publish and build a directory and have people opt out if they don’t want it listed. Jamie Coley suggested that we should publish a list of property addresses and have a check off for those members who want to opt out of having their names and addresses published.
- Water Testing. Members who have wells and are concerned about the quality of the water can contact the WV Sanitary Commission. They will test water upon request.
- Fiber Optics. Those wishing to sign up for cable/internet service must sign up for two years.
- Liquor Licenses for Association Members. Linda Phifel inquired about obtaining a liquor license for association property – in this case the desire to sell wine at the Farmer’s Market. Belynda advised her that the Market, sponsored by Bob Dillard, is officially an event – not a business. Still, the application was not approved by the state.
Election of Officers
The Association then conducted the election of officers for term of office from July 1, 2015 through June 30, 2016. The following Association members sought election to the Board of Directors:
President: Belynda Hicks
Vice President: Jan Brito
Treasurer: Bob Earl
Secretary: Phil Robey
Member at Large: DeWayne Lawrence
The floor was opened for additional nominations. No additional nominations were made. The slate of officers was approved unanimously by voice vote.
The meeting was adjourned at 2:36 p.m. with a motion by Blair Dermont, seconded by Jamie Baisden, and approved unanimously by voice vote.