Below is a summary of this month’s Board of Directors meeting. Official minutes of the meeting will be published on the SIPOA website following their approval at the January 2018 Board meeting.
SIPOA President Ed Houff called the meeting to order at 1:00 pm. The agenda was modified by motion at Ed’s request because of the unavailability of necessary financial data and the mismatch of committee meeting dates with the Board date that was changed due to the holidays. The board approved the amended agenda by deleting motions relating to the adoption of the 2018 FY budget; the renewal of the landscaping contract with The Greenery; and the extension of the contract with Priority One Services. They will likely have a special meeting later in December to take up these matters as well as changes to the ARC policy and procedures as well as conforming the SIPOA Rules and Regulations to the changes approved by the Board in December 2017. An official announcement of the special meeting, including the delayed contracts and revised documents, will be published in accordance with the bylaws.
The minutes of the November 11, 2017, meeting were approved.
Treasurer’s Report: John Feldman reported that there was no November Treasurer’s report because, as noted above, the SIPOA’s financials (which are prepared by an outside vendor) are not available. The financials will be reviewed as soon as they become available and will be reported to the Board by the January 2018 meeting at the latest. Ed Houff added that at this time of year, several of the Board committee meeting dates have not lined up well with the holiday-related changes to the Board Meeting dates and that this issue will be corrected for the coming year so that reports are available in a more timely way.
Executive Director’s Report: Heather Paton reported that
- Operations & Maintenance: Bids for stormwater pipelining have been received. GOMC has reviewed them and recommended a contractor. There will be a motion later in the meeting to approve a contract for work that will begin in early 2018. Dredging of two stormwater outfalls will begin in the next several weeks.
- Lake House: Thanksgiving activities were well attended. The Turkey Trot had over 300 participants and the Sprint Triathlon Relay sold out at 10 teams. More than 400 people attended the Holiday Tree Lighting which is the most well-attended Lake House event we’ve had to date. We have exceeded our canned-food drive goal of 3,500 pounds and have raised the goal to 4,500 pounds. (Note: Julie McCulloch added that they had received 5400 pounds to date.) All donations will go to Sea Island Hunger Awareness Foundation.
- Safety & Security: The Norred Officers have been on the island for eight weeks. Officers on all 3 shifts are working the gate and doing patrols. Owner response so far has been positive and we appreciate everyone’s patience as the new officers continue to train. We anticipate that the new ABDI gate software system will go live on January 8, 2018. We will be sending messages with information regarding use of the system shortly.
- ARC Activity: There were 12 new home applications, 2 new homes approved, but not yet started, and 19 new homes under construction.
- Communications: There were 15 comments for November on email@example.com. No one item stood out. They consisted of address changes, barcode information, building access, gate passes, DHEC questions, etc.
- Administration: Staff continues to work on annual meeting and budget preparation and the Annual Report.
- Audubon International Sustainable Communities Program Stage 3 Completion. SIPOA has successfully completed the third and final stage of the program, which means that Seabrook Island has received the official designation as an Audubon International Certified Green Community. We are the first community in South Carolina and 6th overall nationally to receive this designation from Audubon International. At the Annual Meeting, we will officially recognize the volunteers who participated in the certification process, but at the meeting, the Board recognized the longest-term committee members – Jim Bannwart and Carl Voelker – for their dedication to the project over the past 6+ years.
Committee Reports and Discussion Items
Safety & Security Committee: SIPOA Vice President/Safety and Security Committee Chair Julie McCulloch discussed the 2017 YTD citation review of speeding on Seabrook Island. She had several PowerPoint slides with graphs and charts that laid out all the data that was collected.
- Citations by Month: There was a total of 284 speeding tickets issued from January through November (11 months). This averages about 26 per month. The highest month was April, which had 62 citations and the low was in September which only had 8. In June, July and August, the citations dropped down and she thought there were a number of reasons other than not as many people speeding. They were working with the former security company during this time and changed a number of things. She is anticipating the numbers to be significantly different this year.
- Percentage of Citations by Driver Type: 40% of the citations were received by Guests/Renters; 29% by Property Owners; 25% by Contactors; and 6% by Employees (SIPOA, Club, Camp St. Christophers, etc.)
- Number of Citations by Driver Type: 114 of the total 284 were received by Guests/Renters; 81 by Property Owners; 71 by Contractors; and 18 by Employees.
- Citations by Speed Category: The categories were broken down by those driving 1-10 mph over the speed limit of 25 mph, those driving 11-20 mph over, and those driving more than 21 mph over the speed limit. There were 209 citations (of the total 284) given to people driving 1 – 10 mph over the speed limit; 73 citations for those driving 11 – 20 mph over; and 2 citations for driving more than 21 mph over the speed limit.
- Highest Number of Citations by Speed: In February, people drove the fastest. The highest speed recorded was 51 mph. In March, the highest speed was 46 mph. The lowest high speed occurred in July and that was 36 mph. Many people say that they are being ticketed for going 26 mph, but this data indicates otherwise.
In summary, Chair Julie McCulloch said that speeding continues to be a safety concern on Seabrook Island. The new security force is increasing its presence with regular patrols and the security staff is being closely monitored as they make their rounds. Traffic enforcement will continue to be a priority. Directors Con Constandis and Dan Kortvelesy added comments, with Dan indicating that the Planning Committee will use the data in its Mobility Study.
Planning Committee: Committee Chair Dan Kortvelesy stressed that even after it is adopted, the Strategic Plan is a dynamic document so that if there is a demonstrated need, the Board can change priorities.
Nominating Committee: Dennis Pescitelli reminded everyone that the Candidate slates were announced at the last meeting and the Committee is now involved in planning for the January 8, 2018, Meet the Candidates event at the Lake House. They are also reviewing the staffing protocols for the SIPOA standing committees in order to recommend procedures to ensure broad representation among property owners. In addition, the Committee is to more actively use committee membership as a developmental tool for future Seabrook Island leadership. The Committee will bring its recommendations to the Board at a future meeting. The December 9 COVAR-sponsored event was successful. It was well attended and the candidates appreciated the opportunity to interact with villa/regime owners.
General Operations & Maintenance Committee: Committee Vice-Chair Michael Orris said the subcommittee continues to look at the flooding issues. There was also Board member discussion about the motion to approve the drainage pipe relining.
Environmental Committee: Committee Chair Michael Orris noted that the committee meeting scheduled for December 12 is one of those that is out of sync with the Board Meeting. He did ask to follow up on the earlier discussion about the Audubon Sustainable Community certification. He continues to be impressed with the resources/people we have on the island. There is rarely a subject that comes up where there isn’t an expert on the topic. He invited anyone that would like to, to come to a meeting and see the immense talent that is working on behalf of the people of Seabrook Island.
Activities Committee: Committee Chair Ed Williams said all the topics had been covered. He did mention that he was impressed with the COVAR meetings because of the interest everyone showed.
Motions for Board Consideration
- 2018-2019 board of Directors Meeting Schedule: The meetings are scheduled for the third Monday of every month, except January. November and December. Ed Houff said every effort will be made to get the materials out earlier than the meeting dates. He reminded everyone that the meetings are open and anyone can come and voice their opinion. The motion was passed
- 2017 Deer Herd Recommendations from the Environmental Committee: Michael Orris explained that the committee is recommending that between 50-85 deer be harvested in December. This is based on a survey done in September and November at the same or similar locations each year. The exact number will be determined at their December meeting. There are six different data points among the criteria that guide the harvest decision. It is not just the number, but also the health of the herd, complaints of property owners, the importance of the deer to the island, deer population levels, the ratio of bucks to does, etc. The subcommittee is comprised of property owners who in many cases are experts in the subject area. Only one contractor, who is also a Wildlife Management Expert and is employed in that capacity by Kiawah, is licensed in the state to do this work in residential areas. After more discussion, the motion was passed.
- Stormwater Pipe Lining Contract with SAK Construction, LLC: Guy Gimson asked that the Board approve the contract for 2018 pipeline improvement project not to exceed $1.2 million. The funds are included in the 2017-2018 capital budget. The work will begin in January and run through May 2018. The request for bids was reviewed by 6 contractors and SAK Construction was chosen based on extensive qualification criteria. This does not include any work on the Crooked Oaks 16/17 pipe. The committee will be doing some surveying of the project independent of what the contractor provides to ensure that the work is completed as specified. The motion passed.
- 2018 Strategic Plan: Dan Kortvelesy explained that the plan was developed by the Long Range Planning Committee. He further clarified that items that have a lower priority could be moved up as the need arises or is deemed appropriate. Some items, such as continuing the upgrade of the audio/video equipment in the Lake House, were listed on the last page as a reminder that these might be ongoing projects. The motion passed.
There was no new business.
Property Owner Q & A
- Are there other ways of removing deer from the island as opposed to killing them? Michael Orvis responded that the subcommittee also wrestled with this. The bottom line is that there is not a simple answer. They hired an expert to look into this and the subcommittee took all factors into consideration including age and sex of the deer. They feel it is important to maintain a healthy herd at levels acceptable to homeowners while taking as few as possible. In addition, they have ensured that the meat goes to the Low Country Food Bank. The discussion concluded with the assurance that the piebalds will not be harvested.
- Has progress been made on working with the Club on flooding and lagoons near Tarpon Pond as requested at the last board meeting? It will be taken up at the Tuesday Environmental Committee meeting.
- Are the storm drainage pipelines flexible to accommodate the rising water levels? They are not.
- Homeowners were asked again to report any low flying planes to information or photographs related to the airplane that flew low over the beach on Sunday, August 6, 2017, and was reported to have been spraying for mosquitoes. Information should be submitted through firstname.lastname@example.org.
Executive Session and Result
The Board conducted an executive session to discuss matters that are permitted by the Bylaws to be discussed in closed session. Following the executive session, the Board returned to open session and passed a motion to file a foreclosure action on certain delinquent properties.
The Meeting was adjourned at approximately 4:00 pm.
There may be a special meeting of the Board during the week of December 18 to discuss and decide the matters mentioned above that were taken out of the agenda for this meeting. Separate notice will be provided as required by the bylaws.
The next regularly scheduled meeting of the SIPOA Board of Directors will be on Monday, January 8, 2018, at 1:00 p.m.
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