RIVER HEIGHTS PROPERTY OWNERS ASSOCIATION
KNOLL REPRESENTATIVES MEETING
October 14, 2014, 7:00 P.M.
i. We agreed to move forward with the assistance of Earthview Environmental to conduct a pilot project to install some modest check dams in a select ravine or two to evaluate the appropriateness and effectiveness of this type of effort for potential further application in other ravines. This is being undertaken to cut down ravine erosion and further siltation of our ponds.
ii. Discussion was held regarding ongoing concerns for the health of our ravines, the need for residents to remove invasive species of plants, and prune/remove overgrowth of weeds, shrubs, and trees by all residents.
iii. The report of the Conservation Committee was approved by the Board.
i. Annual sealing of cracks in the asphalt on our roads was completed on schedule.
ii. There were several cracked curbs and washouts that have occurred in the past months and these have been repaired or are being repaired on an ongoing basis. Further discussion was held regarding long-term planning for more significant road work that may become necessary in the coming years.
iii. The report of the Roads Committee was approved by the Board.
i. Our water continues to pass all required tests for and continues to be safe to drink.
ii. We have installed a new high pressure relief valve in the main well house and we replaced a leaking fire hydrant on Valley View Place.
iii. There are some residents who have reported that their water smells bad but these don’t seem to follow any particular pattern or location. The Water Committee will continue to investigate or offer advice as needed.
iv. We agreed to discuss new water rates for usage under New Business of a “Phase Two” project to replace more of our again, past usable life cast iron water mains.
v. The report of the Water Committee was approved by the Board.
i. No Report
i. We reviewed the initial project cost and engineering estimates provided by our engineering firm and approved unanimously to move with this project by having the engineer solicit bids/price quotes from contractors interested in doing this work with the goal of being able to start the project by late spring.
ii. The Board voted unanimously to approve raising the per-cubic-foot fee rate from $0.05 (five cents) to $0.10 (ten cents) with the next invoice cycle. This was considered to be highly preferable to a one-time lump-sum assessment for each property owner. It was also noted that this approach has been the preference noted by the vast majority of the members at the Annual Meeting.
iii. The motion to raise the rates and commence with project planning was approved by the Board.
i. Warren Knar is planning to retire from his years of tireless duty being in charge of our water system. We are seeking a replacement, or replacements, for Warren and have potential interest in helping in this regard. We also discussed the positive aspects of hiring an independent contractor who could do a number of the routine monthly tasks such as taking water samples or flushing hydrants thus reducing the load on a single individual volunteer homeowner.
i. Long term strategic planning for the health of our roads, ponds, ravines, and common ground is needed. As our Association ages, we will need to do further significant maintain projects that have not occurred in many years. Our roads have not have had any significant upgrades in many years but it was noted that because have been vigilant in doing crack sealing of the roads every summer we have prevented water getting under the streets in many places. This has prevented undermining of the roads and there was agreement that this is an important annual maintenance activity we should continue.
ii. The Board agreed to look carefully at the annual fees for the Road Fund and the General Fund and strongly consider raising these fees by $50 annually for the General Fund and by $100 for the Road Fund. The Road Fund continues to get pressure by the cost of snow removal annual but there was consensus agreement that the service we get from our snow removal contract is excellent and the rates he charges us are quite reasonable.
The next Board and Knoll Representatives meeting will be Tuesday, January 13, 2015 at 7:00 p.m. at the Thayer’s at 5 Longview Knoll.