Archives for December 2014

Information Packet for January 5, 2015 BCA Board Meeting

Posted December 28, 2014 at 3:37 PM
The information packet for the upcoming BCA Board meeting is now available for downloading.

Agenda items include:
  • Discussion of Report by the Special Committee on Abandoned and Rental Properties (pages 8-14 of Board Packet).
    Due to special interest by the BCA Board and residents, a designated Member Voice session is scheduled immediately after presentation of the proposed recommendations.
  • Consideration of Changes to the Financial Policy to include changing "Collection of Delinquent Accounts" and adding "Use and Sale of BCA Assets" (pages 15-16 of Board packet).

We encourage residents to attend BCA Board meetings to learn of Brandermill "happenings". For a quick snapshot of what the BCA Board will be discussing, please read the agenda located on the first page of the Board Packet.

Highlights of December 1, 2014 BCA Board Meeting

Posted December 5, 2014 at 12:56 PM
Important Note: The below highlights are reported based on unofficial notes taken by NRC representatives who attended the above BCA meeting. Although we believe the below reporting is reliable and strive for accuracy, we cannot assure 100% accuracy. It is recommended to all readers that they read the approved BCA Board Meeting minutes when published.

Minutes of November 3 and 18, 2014 Board of Directors Meetings

The November 3 minutes were approved unanimously. One change to the November 18 minutes was proposed and accepted: Page 2, Paragraph 2 (see page 9 of December 1, 2014 Board packet) changed to read "Directors Pearson, Leonard and Hillman will work on a salary and benefits survey …." The November 18 minutes were approved unanimously as amended.

Member Voice

Mamie McNeal (Planter's Wood) reported that she appreciates that the BCA has been cleaning streets. However, she reported that when staff blew leaves along the curbs, they blew them into the fronts of driveways and created leaf piles which blocked drainage. She asked if the leaves could be vacuumed from the streets instead of blown to the sides.

Community Manager Bailey responded that he would look into it.

[Note: As of the date of this reporting, BCA staff has vacuumed the leaves from the streets. Thank you, BCA!]

Director Bettin reported that he had used the $75 leaf pickup service available to Brandermill residents and stated that he was very happy with the service.

Appointment of Committee Liaisons

The BCA Board has agreed to the following appointment of Board Liaisons to the committees:
  • ARB and NRC: Tom Leonard
  • Planning Committee: Don Blom and Greg Pearson
  • Hearing Panel: Bob Malek
  • Maintenance and Ecology Committee: Frances Hillman
  • Communications and Marketing Committee: Greg Pearson
  • Community Services Committee: Jack Bettin
  • Finance Committee: Frances Hillman

Special Committee on Abandoned and Rental Properties Report

Director Pearson reported that he is in the process of writing the report of the Special Committee. In regard to the rental issue, he reported that the consensus of the Committee is to recommend changes to the Covenants to allow a fee to be charged on rental properties. He noted that such a change to the Covenants will require a 75% vote of those voting to pass. He also commented that the Committee agrees to seek maximum input from the community on this proposal and recommended steps to be taken should include posting to the Brandermill website, review by the Finance Committee and meetings conducted through the NRC to obtain resident input.

Director Malek asked about the amount of the rental fee to be proposed. Director Pearson responded that initially the Committee had considered between $200 and $250 for the rental fee. However, he reported that the Committee had moved to support any change to the Covenants which would specify the fee as a percentage of the normal residential assessment. He indicated that the Committee was considering 50% of the assessment as the proposed amount for the rental fee. He went on to indicate the Committee's reasons for proposing this change to the Covenants to charge a rental fee: (1) BCA amenities become available to both the renter and the landlord, (2) rentals are twice as likely to have violations requiring BCA action and (3) administration of the fee to improve the condition of rental properties is likely to result in added inspections and possibly the need for an additional BCA staff member.

Director Hillman responded that the BCA should also consider tracking violations on rental properties separate from violations on non-rentals.

The BCA Board then discussed the timing for release of the report by the Special Committee and the steps to be taken to achieve broad community awareness and input. Manager Bailey clarified that the report would first be presented to the BCA Directors at its January 2015 meeting and that there would be discussion but no action taken at the January meeting. President Davis proposed that the January agenda be tailored to limit other matters in order to discuss this report. Manager Bailey noted that public input and interest would probably be light at the January 2015 Board meeting as it is scheduled to occur on January 5.

Director Bettin commented that interest on abandoned and vacant properties might be high because the Special Committee will recommend stronger action and faster timelines to address problem properties.

President Davis then proposed the following timeline: unveiling of the proposed changes in January with the report by the Special Committee and final action by the BCA Board in February or March with proposed Covenant changes to be included on the annual ballot in April 2015.

The BCA Directors then agreed to publish general information on the Special Committee's report as an announcement in the December 8, 2014 print edition of The Village Mill.

Pool Fee Structure

Director Blom presented a proposal for changes to the pool fee structure for 2015. Under his proposed changes, he recommended that non-resident pool fees remain unchanged for 2015. He recommended decreasing the cost of a resident family membership from the current $220 to $195, decreasing the cost of a resident single membership from $150 to $140, and increasing the resident daily pass fee from $5 to $6. Blom explained that his proposed changes would meet our budget revenue requirements for the pools at a lower fee structure for residents and also encourage more attendance.

Director Pearson asked if we had done a price comparison with other local pools. Director Blom answered that we had done a comparison and reported that we are $10 less for a family membership than the local YMCA. Director Pearson then asked if we had run advertising on our pools and fees this year. He emphasized that we can run free advertising in The Chesterfield Observer and The Chesterfield Monthly and encouraged the BCA to take advantage of this limited-time advertising opportunity.

Director Leonard then moved that Brandermill keep the same fee structure for 2015 as for 2014; Director Hillman seconded the motion. During discussion, Director Bettin indicated that Director Blom's plan to reduce pool fees in 2014 initially sounded crazy to him but that it had proven successful in increasing attendance and meeting revenue needs. He commented that he felt that the slight tweaking proposed by Director Blom for 2015 would have little negative risk on the budget and might increase memberships further. He commented that he wanted to try Director Blom's proposed resident fee changes for 2015.

Director Pearson commented that he wanted to know how other pool memberships are priced, adding that Brandermill already has the lowest fees, three pools and free advertising as competitive advantages.

Director Malek commented that Director Blom's plan to decrease pool fees in 2014 had proven successful and noted that he agreed with Director Blom's proposed fees for 2015.

Director Leonard's motion to make no changes to the pool fees for 2015 failed by a vote of 2:5 with Directors Leonard and Pearson voting in favor and Directors Davis, Blom, Hillman, Bettin and Malek voting against the motion.

Director Blom then motioned to approve the 2015 fee structure as he had presented above. This motion was seconded by Hillman and passed by a vote of 5:2 (Directors Davis, Blom, Hillman, Bettin and Malek voting "for" and Directors Leonard and Pearson voting "against").

Consideration of Memorandum of Agreement with the Midlothian Tennis Club

Director Bettin explained the Memorandum of Agreement ("MOA") as shown on page 20 of December 1, 2014 Board packet and moved to approve the MOA.

During discussion, Director Leonard stated that he agreed with the proposed MOA except that he opposed the joint swim and tennis offering. Director Bettin agreed with this comment, and this feature of the MOA was deleted.

Director Hillman expressed concern that entering into this MOA would mean that we will need to consider MOA's with all other interested commercial Brandermill members.

Director Pearson asked about the term of the free tennis academy. Director Bettin clarified that the duration of the free academy would be four weeks during the summer season.

Director Pearson made a substitute motion to defer action on the MOA for one month in order to get input from the Brandermill Country Club. The substitute motion passed by a vote of 6:1 with Director Bettin opposing.

It was agreed that Manager Bailey would meet with Mr. Hatch of the Brandermill Country Club.