Post Office Box 446
Smyrna DE 19977
Pres Jim Sbarra Directors Margaret McNeil
VP Blaine Schrader Lillian Reynolds
Sec Bonnie Schrader Judy Sbarra Treas Lourdes Williams
General Meeting of Dec 2009
At our Community Meeting in December, the Board was questioned by a homeowner regarding the fact that we have adopted the new DUCIOA act. She stated that our community is not covered and should not be following it. Previously, the members of the Board attended a workshop on the new act and based on the information at that time, we have been conducting business accordingly. In an attempt to address her question, we got a legal opinion and found that the act has had some amendments since we were given our information and she is correct that we are not governed by it at this point. Due to this, the vote that was taken on the 2010 dues (voted and passed for $150.00) cannot be recognized and the dues must remain as they were the previous year, which is $160.00, when the original act was in effect.
An issue was also brought up concerning surplus funds. We had a total of $19.87 left on Dec 31, 2009 after all 2009 bills were paid. Our bylaws do not reflect making a distribution back to homeowners ( in this case .21 cents per homeowner) regardless of the amount in question.
The following is a direct quote from the attorney:
Because Burtonwood Village is (under Section 81-120) "a . . .planned community created within this State before the effective date of this chapter," and because "the annual average common expense liability of each unit restricted to residential purposes. . . does not exceed $500," Burtonwood Village is subject only to Sections 81-105 (separate titles and taxation),81-106 (applicability of local ordinances, regulations and building codes), 81-107 (eminent domain), and the requirement that the BVMC bylaws and any amendments thereto be recorded.
The Act in its original form adopted in June, 2008, as Senate Bill 273, and signed by Governor Minner on October 31, 2008, was subsequently amended to exclude from the burdens of the requirements of DUCIOA compliance. Naturally, you have discovered that being under DUCIOA also provides answers to an array of questions which are unresolved by the BVMC Maintenance Declaration, Certificate of Incorporation and Bylaws. But without the association voting to amend the Burtonwood Village Maintenance Declaration, Certificate of Incorporation and/or Bylaws, you'll continue to be governed by what you have in place and, as long as your annual assessment for common expenses remains under $500 (subject to upward adjustment over the years) BVMC will not be covered by DUCIOA, other than the three specific sections and the requirement of Bylaw recordation.
New procedures will be in place for 2010. Payment will be due in 30 days. If we do not get a payment you wil receive a notice.. If you do not make arrangements we will ask the justice of The Peace Court for a judgment against you. If you make arrangements to pay, we will ask you to sign a payment schedule. If you do not meet your obligation we will also go to the JP Court. The board spends an enormous amount of time on dues collection and letter writing for collection. We still have just one resident who is delinquent . The JP court seems to be our last resort. FYI, the board never contacts any credit agency on any cases we put through any court.
The board sent out nomination forms asking for possible new members on the board. No response.
We asked for some answers to a poll on some questions. No response.
Please register at our website to get updated community notices. www.burtonwoodvillage.com
Crime Watch Program
At the last general meeting the State Police and Roger, from a crime watch program attended our meeting to enlighten us about the program. Blaine Schrader, Doug Sullivan and I attended a meeting on Jan 7, in Dover, to learn more about it. Doug has agreed to look more into this program. If you want to help him out please contact us. Please look at the other side of this for some tips on crime prevention.
Jim Sbarra, Pres