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To All Hot Spring Village Property Owners

To All Hot Springs Village Property Owners:

This is Marcy Mermel and I would like to share with you this recent email exchange between me and with the Board of Directors (until they decided not to reply, that is) addressing their Assessment Increase announcement at the Wednesday regular Board Meeting. [August 18, 2021]

We were told that they had already discussed the issue in a private executive session. Assessments and Budget issues are NOT considered material for a private session. After the FRATF Presentation on 8/4, it was the Board’s fiduciary responsibility to discuss the issue publicly either that day or on another date.
Instead, we were told they chose a “turbocharged” Option 1 and will be voting on it in ONE WEEK!

Please see below what I proposed and later begged them to do. We need time to ask questions now.

After reading I ask that you please take a moment to address the board – letting them know we have a right to receive answers to all our questions, now that they have unveiled their “over the top” intentions.

1st Email to the Board of Directors and Joanne Corry on Thursday, 8/19 (please excuse the reference, should have said “Yesterday”)

Dear Members of the Board –
Now that we have been quasi-enlightened with your intentions during this morning’s meeting, I would strongly request changing your strategy regarding your plans for next week.
Although I attended all task force town halls, listened to their presentation of August 4th , actually participated in a suggestion that was vetted by Rose, and have studied their PDF twice through, none  of that really mattered until today when the board set its intentions, which, by the way, are still not clear.
If you want to be perfectly transparent about this (first I am not sure why your meetings are in executive session – assessment increase or any use of funds, budgeting, etc., were ever one of the reasons for executive session, but what is done is done), not only should the Discussion AND Vote be done publicly, but you should also be doing this by rollcall vote for documentation purposes. 
That said, I would wish that you strongly consider the following:
Instead of an Executive Session to vote on what we just learned today are your intentions, schedule a Town Hall in the next week with you as Board Members, and anyone else from Staff or FRATF to be up on stage, all as a seated panel. Please set up 3 aisles with designated, secured (by operators) open mikes and answer all the questions that are now relevant and pertinent since we have only learned today what the Board’s actual intentions are.
Answering individual emails does not help others that have the same questions. It is also a horrible avenue for rebuttal or follow-up questions.
This would not only be informative for you, but show true transparency. 
In reality, the options as presented skewed the most correct, fairest, and most successful “option” which would be number “4”:   a combination of the three!  If you are willing to go away from the Options suggestions, which Tucker stated today, then surely you would be willing to take the best of all three and get it right!
Please, I beseech you, give the property owners an opportunity to be clear about this with a Town Hall next week and postpone your vote until you really give the residents (that as Tucker said are “paying the price”) an occasion to truly understand.
The Residents of HSV need and deserve a chance to ask the relevant and pertinent questions that are now before us, given today’s information. 
Respectfully submitted,

Reply from Tucker Omohundro Thursday, 8/19

The meeting will be public.  Property owners have a week to reach out to the board.  The vote will be done next week at the meeting.  

Response to Tucker Omohundro, Board, and J Corry Thursday, 8/19

Hi Tucker – or Pam?  Not sure who is answering.
Thank you for the correction – so the voting meeting will be public.
That really doesn’t answer or even approach any of the questions or issues I have submitted here.
If I send you a list of questions, would you be willing to answer them?
Why would we not do that for everyone?

Reply from Tucker Omohundro Thursday, 8/19

I will answer any questions you have.

Response to Tucker Omohundro, Board, and J Corry Thursday, 8/19

First, is it Tucker who is actually responding to my email and if so, are you/is he speaking on behalf of the whole board in answering these questions?

Reply from Tucker Omohundro Thursday, 8/19

It is Tucker.  Your questions will be answered by me and or the board.  It will be clear who is answering.

2nd attempt at Readdress to Tucker Omohundro, Board, and J Corry Thursday, 8/19

Thanks so much and that would be great.  Instead of asking one by one, let me create a list for you so we can all be more efficient.

BTW, I wanted to confirm that you are aware that although FRATF gave their presentation on 8/4, “FRATF will provide additional information as requested by the POA Board and their assessment team.”

So FRATF would be willing to support the Board in a Paneled Town Hall, should you ask them to do so.

Also, “Another forum by FRATF (hosted by the Voice) was under consideration but because of Covid ramping up again and low turnouts at previous forums, they have decided not to have another.”

So, the VOICE would be willing to support the Board in a Paneled Town Hall as well should you ask them to do so.  And, I believe COVID would not be an issue if this was truly a question answering venue.

With all this support to help you sell your decisions, I would think you would take full advantage of it!  It can only help you down the road when the Vote actually takes place.

I urge you to reconsider, as truly the best outcome is if everyone is convinced that it is the right thing to do when the ballot arrives, don’t you think?

Do you want some time to discuss or shall I assemble my list of questions for you?

Please advise!

No Reply

3rd attempt at Readdress emailed to the Board of Directors and Speak up on Monday, 8/23

Dear Board of Directors;

I am asking for a third time – please amend your motion on Wednesday to postpone voting on an OPTION and instead announce a last Town Hall paneled by you all, FRATF and any staff, so that we, as Property Owners, can ask all the relevant and pertinent questions that are so important now that you have declared your intentions at last week’s regular board meeting.

Would you please reconsider and do this for the sake of the Village?

No Reply

By Marcy G. Mermel, August 24, 2021

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