With the ringing in of a New Year, it is common for many to think about fresh starts.
So it is at Club West with the upcoming elections for four HOA Board of Director positions. Up for re-election are: Paul Moroz, 20 years on board; Fred Kaiser, 20 years; Chris Geist, 12 years; Martha Neese, six years.
It is time for leadership change.
For 10 years, the Club West Golf Course has experienced a steady deterioration of its financial and physical condition.
The Board and these four directors each stood by during most of this period and watched this deterioration happen instead of working productively with homeowners and community leaders to find solutions.
The Board complains that it has not received any proposals for the golf property from homeowners, but isn’t that backwards? Shouldn’t we expect our Board to display leadership and initiate engagement with the homeowners to research and present options to the community?
The only action taken by the Board was to invite the Edge developers to make their pitch for 162 new houses at its meeting in January 2020 and outline a calendar for community consideration of the proposal.
Thus, despite claiming it has never taken a position on new housing, the only proposal the Board has seen fit to bring to the community was a plan for 162 new homes.
Missing from any consideration by the Board was discussion of the following: What are the other options? What are the costs? What are our legal options – given the success of the Lakes lawsuit against Wilson Gee?
A significant source of these issues is that board members simply do not listen to the community or seek community input. Board members rarely allow a question-and-answer period at its monthly meetings – or at any other scheduled times.
The Board has never conducted a survey of homeowners for their opinions.
The Board then ignored the decisive results from the community-wide survey conducted by the Club West Conservancy (CWC) which found that 85 percent of homeowners said they would be OK with just a walkable parkland and 81 percent stated they would prefer to leave the property “as is” versus having any new houses built.
These results were ignored even though the Survey Monkey statistical tool indicates the results were projectable to the entire community at a margin of error of just +/- 3 percent at a 95 percent confidence level.
The Board also operates improperly in closed sessions.
Each month, the Board conducts a one- to two-hour “executive session” prior to the open meeting.
The Board voted in executive session to obtain the Declarant Rights to the Golf Course Property and to dilute the requirements for approving changes to the Golf Course CC&Rs from 75 percent of all homeowners to a mere 16 percent (a majority of a 30 percent quorum of those who choose to vote).
In a recent legal ruling, the court stated these “are not the types of actions that may be taken in executive session.”
The message seems to be that the Board “knows best” so it is free to act with impunity and ignore the community, the law and the HOA governing documents.
The CWC supports candidates that will pursue finding a solution for the Golf Course Property that does not include home or commercial development, that support term limits and are committed to open communication and acting in a transparent manner under the governing HOA documents.
It appears that our current Board is unable to meet this standard. It’s time for fresh leadership.
Luckily there are volunteers that are willing to seek positions on the board of directors replacing the current four board members up for re-election and have stated positions that align with these attributes. CWC urges Club West homeowners to review their candidacy statements and give them your support.
Matthew Tyler is president of the Club West Conservancy.