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HSVPOA Board Discusses Balboa & Release of Information

Future of Balboa Clubhouse discussed at POA board work session; draconian rules on releasing information are relaxed

A detailed look at what it will cost to fix up the Balboa Club and how it should be used in the future was requested today at a work session of the POA board of directors.

Stephanie Heffer and Jason Temple reported on refurbishing the clubhouse.  Heffer said the building is structurally sound, but needs work.  It would cost about $25,000 to do the inside repair work.

Fixing the outside, including a leaky roof and skylight, is a different story.  While bid figures have not been received, Heffer said it could cost at least $150,000, and perhaps as much as $250,000, for the outside repairs.

Director Tucker Omohundro said the board has two options for the iconic facility: Fix it up, or tear it down and construct a new building.  A fix-up would cost around $250,000; a tear-down and rebuild would cost around $1.2 million.

Director Dick Garrison urged the Finance and Planning Committee to look at revenue per capita at restaurants in this region, and determine if the POA should have a restaurant at Balboa.

Interim general manager John Paul said there are many possible uses for the building.

Board vice-chair Lloyd Sherman said before the board makes a decision it needs firmer cost figures and options on what the building could be used for.  Heffer said she could have everything ready for a board work session on Aug. 5.

The board also talked about fixing up the Porte-cochere at the Balboa Club.

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On POA committees, Garrison said boat wakes were the primary concern of the Lakes Committee.  On the Golf Committee, he said members want to rework their charter and focus on reducing the golf subsidy.

Omohundro said the Architectural Control Committee is trying to streamline the permit process to speed up the approval of new-home construction.

Treasurer Dan Aylward said the Finance and Planning Committee is actively working with the staff to prepare the 2021 budget.

Sherman said the committee is asking whether the POA needs seven backhoes and whether the POA should be leasing them for four-year periods when they could be purchased and used for much longer periods.

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The board spent time on its policy covering the release of POA information.

A convoluted process was imposed by former CEO Lesley Nalley to block the release of information, or make it extremely difficult to get.  A Saline Court circuit judge said Nalley’s policy was illegal and information should be made available to property owners.

Sherman told of having to scan 300 pages of data on his own scanner last year and had 10 volunteers spend five days reworking what was available electronically.

The board talked about whether the information is readily available, and if it is a burden on the staff to provide it.

“I think it’s working fine,” board chair Diana Podawiltz said of a new policy that lets department heads release and email routine information to property owners.

Omohundro asked: “Why wouldn’t we provide it electronically if we could?  We should.”

Podawiltz said staff could handle most requests.  If there’s a question, it will be referred to Podawiltz and perhaps shared with the full board.

The board did not discuss whether property owners would be able to record board and committee meetings, probably because there is no question anyone should be able to.  Until the coronavirus rules change, of course, the only recordings we’re seeing are those on the POA’s YouTube channel.

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Political scientist Jerry Yeric talked to the board about its options for future POA elections.  He suggested creating an ad hoc committee to study what changes, if any, should be considered, including voting electronically.

Podawiltz asked Yeric to suggest names and said she would put the issue on the agenda for the board’s regular meeting on July 15.

Yeric has headed POA election committees several times in the past.

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Thanks to all who sent advice on how to handle our difficulties in finding a new refrigerator.

We ended up ordering a new one from Metro Appliances in North Little Rock because they offered a novel and wonderful solution to our immediate problems: They said they’ll deliver a loaner for us to use until the new unit is available.  That’s great customer care.

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At first, we didn’t notice it.  Then we did.  Silence.  The day was coming to an end without a single robocall.

For this, we thank you for the many suggestions you sent on how to deal with the irritating junk calls.  Your advice led us to Amazon where we bought a CPR V5000 Call Blocker.  Easy to hook up.  No programming needed.  Just plug it into your phone line and you’re in business.

Regular calls come through without a hitch.  And no others.  Peace and quiet is bliss.

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Pandemic casualty: After eight-plus decades of dodging injury bullets, I tore my right hamstring while trying to flip a mattress.  It really hurts and I’m told it’s one of those pains that won’t go away easily.  I’m convinced it happened because of my absence from the Fitness Center.

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The quarantine has had a major impact on our consumption of gasoline.  Last year, we used an average of 22.8 gallons a month.  This year: 8.6 gallons in April, 10.1 gallons in May, and 11.2 in June.

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As we celebrate Hot Spring Village’s 50th anniversary, keep in mind virtually every one of us came here from somewhere else.  The memories of where we came from being one of the great things about the folks who live here – the diversity, experiences, and opportunities we’ve all had.

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San Juan Island Frank Leeming

Above is a picture of where we lived before we moved here – San Juan Island, Wash. – and Mount Baker which we saw through our living and dining room windows.

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Two squirrels – teenagers if their behavior is any measure – live in a big oak tree in the woods next to our back deck.

Much to our enjoyment, the two have decided the metal deck furniture is an ideal playground.

One day last week, Joyce and I watched for nearly 30 minutes as the two wrestled, chased and tumbled, racing along the rail, leaping into the chairs and scattering the birds that stopped by to watch the show.  Hard to believe anything has that much energy.

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Big jump today in the number of new coronavirus cases in Arkansas – 734, up from 259 yesterday.

By Former Board Director, Frank Leeming, 7-8-2020

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Click here to subscribe to Frank’s email list.

Due to feedback received from people who like this site, we have decided to continue to use this site for the news/opinion blog. Click here to go to the Hot Springs Village Community Forums where you can discuss many subjects.

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Click here to visit the Hot Springs Village People Facebook Group.

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