Virginia City Highlands Property Owners’ Association

Minutes - Monthly Meeting

Tuesday April 11, 2006

Virginia City Highlands Fire Station Training Room

Present:  Woolley, Bent, Gravenstein, Landaburu (until 8:00 pm), and Lumos

I.       7:00 pm Call To Order, Declaration Of A Quorum And Approval Of Meeting Agenda (Discussion/Action)

The meeting was called to order by President Woolley at 7:00 pm.  All members of the board were present.

II.     Executive Session – hearings on complaint items – closed to the public (Discussion/Action)

As required by NRS 116, an executive session was held for scheduled hearings on violations of the CC&R’s.  Three violations were heard by the board.  Another short executive session was held at the end of the meeting to deal with two more complaints of violations.

III.    7:30 pm: Return to Open Session

IV.   Approve Minutes Of March 14, 2006 Special Meeting (Discussion/Action)

Ø                A motion by Bent, seconded by Gravenstein to approve the minutes as presented was approved unanimously.

V.     Financial Statements (Discussion/Action)

A.               Monthly Cash Report

B.               Monthly Financial Statements

Lydia Hammack presented the monthly cash report and financial statements.  The current balance in the operating account is $34,995.12 and in the reserve account balance is $28,077.31.  Approximately $5000 of the reserve account balance will be transferred to the operating account to fund a portion of the flood damage repairs.

Ø                A motion by Bent, seconded by Gravenstein, to accept the financial reports as presented was approved unanimously.

VI.   Comments by Association Members (NRS 116.3108(3)) (Discussion Only)

There were no comments offered by those present.

VII. County Commissioner Report on Planned Future Developments (Discussion/Action)

Commissioners Greg “Bum” Hess and Bob Kershaw were present to talk about some proposed developments in the County.  They announced that the meeting had been posted in order to comply with open meeting law. 

Commissioner Hess stated that his biggest concern is the urbanization of Storey County.  Most existing development in the county outside Virginia City is either industrial or rural estate type development, such as the Highlands.  He said that three developers who own approximately 12,000 acres north of the Highlands are proposing to build about 12,000 homes.   He believes that 12,000 new homes would translate to about 36,000 people which would put a tremendous burden on county services and schools.  It would be very difficult for the County to keep up with infrastructure for that type development.  He asked for support from Highlands residents to protest these developments.

Commissioner Hess stated that Sommerset Homes is in the planning process for a first phase development that includes retail, multi-use, and residential areas.  The residential areas planned may include high density residential of up to 8 or 9 homes per acre.  He feels that if the developers are made aware of strong opposition to their plans they will look at other options.  The land is currently zoned for either agricultural or forestry uses and will require zone changes to proceed.  The property starts at the Truckee River and extends to the north boundary of the Highlands 40 acre subdivision.

There is no current access to the properties.  He fears that the Pyramid-Tahoe Link will be routed near the property to provide access if the development is approved.  That section could be only a couple of miles from the Highlands. 

There is a development near Wadsworth proposed that will include luxury homes in the northeast corner of the county that is favored.  This will provide housing to support the Industrial Park.

He is asking for emails to the commissioners and State Senator Mark Amodei, expressing concern about the development.  He doesn’t feel we need more dense residential growth in the county.  He said that the County’s financial picture is positive this year.  It would be a huge drain to provide services to these developments.

Water is an issue.  Commissioner Hess believes the bulk of the development will be one acre lots with domestic wells.  He doesn’t believe the developers currently have water rights to support the development. 

President Woolley indicated that contact information can be posted on the association website for people to send emails protesting the development.  Commissioner Hess will provide the list and some talking points. 

It was disclosed that someone is buying a number of lots in the 40 acre subdivision and will likely be planning development of those in the future. 

The County Commission meets on the 1st and 3rd Tuesdays of the month at 2:00 pm.  Commissioner Hess indicated that the development probably won’t be on an agenda for some time.  He feels that the opposition should be expressed soon, before the developers have too much invested in the process.

There may be a town hall meeting soon to inform more people of the possible development plans.

It was suggested that the board send out a questionnaire out to property owners asking their opinion about the possible developments.  This can be done as part of the mailing that goes out before the annual meeting.

Commissioner Kershaw said that he had asked the developers about water availability and got no answer.  He fears the first development will be one that begins in Washoe County and comes up the Hills to the vicinity of the Highlands.  He feels the property would be better in protective hands such as being reserved as a preservation area.

VIII.          Committee Reports

A.               Architectural Committee (Discussion/Action)

Bob Moore was present and introduced as a new member of the committee.  There are two vacancies to be filled due to the resignations of Sherry McCready and Stephen Musser.  Ms. McCready has moved into the Highlands Ranches and Mr. Musser doesn’t currently own property in VC Highlands.  Volunteers are needed to fill these positions.

B.               Road Report (Discussion/Action)

President Woolley reported that John DuFresne is currently grading the worst roads.  He got a later start than anticipated due to weather.  He is working first in the lower areas and will move up the hill as it dries out.  He is bringing material onto the road in lifts, and waiting for traffic to compact it.  He will move more material onto the roads after some compaction is achieved.  President Woolley stated that this is just a band-aid approach due to lack of funds.  Work on the ditches is proceeding.  Many culverts across driveways are silted full or are undersized and need to be replaced.

Shelly Hansen, secretary of the Highlands Ranches association, stated that they are beginning their road improvements and asked which association is responsible to grade Crestview, Graves, and Highland.  The agreement in place is for snow removal and does not cover maintenance.  President Woolley will meet with their road managers and/or board to arrange an agreement on road maintenance.

IX.   Old Business

A.               Fire Station Lease Approval  (Discussion/Action)

President Woolley reported that he had received a response from Fire Chief Gary Hames regarding the changes the association suggested to the lease agreement for the fire station regarding repairs.   The Fire Department and the rental house both use well water and septic system.  Both he and Chief Hames feel that there should be reasonable agreement for shared costs of repairs.  He suggested that the language originally proposed by Chief Hames be reinstated.

Ø                A motion by Lumos, seconded by Bent, to approve the lease agreement with the reinstated language was approved unanimously.

B.               Sale Of Surplus Vehicles / Equipment  (Discussion/Action)

President Woolley indicated that an offer has been made to purchase the 1984 GMC pickup for $2,150.  The sale was approved at the last meeting.  Lydia pointed out that payment should be made by a certified check or money order.  There has been no response to advertisements for the 1979 Dodge.  John DuFresne wants to trade labor for truck in the amount of $2000.  There was agreement that Woolley should try to come to an agreement with him.

X.       New Business

A.               Partial Refund of Per Square Foot Architectural Fees (Discussion/Action)

Requests have been received in writing from Dale Morgan and Tom Yoder for a partial refund of fees paid to the Architectural Committee for their properties.  President Woolley gave a summary of how those fees were set for the last half of 2005 and then rescinded.  Depending on the outcome of the upcoming vote of property owners on the long term road plan, the impact fee will likely be set in the vicinity of $400 to $500.  The two owners would like a refund of all but $500 of the fees paid with any difference to be settled when the fee is established. 

Ø                A motion by Lumos, seconded by Gravenstein, to refund architectural committee impact fees as requested in writing, withholding $500, with any difference to be settled when the exact fee is established was approved unanimously.

B.               Business Advertising Signs in the Highlands (Discussion/Action)

President Woolley announced that the CC&R’s prohibit any signs other than those offering property for sale from being posted in the Highlands.  This includes construction signs, security system signs, etc.  Harry Stanley pointed out that the security system signs are part of the protection system.  It was agreed that a small window decal or sign next to the house is probably acceptable, but any sign posted near the roadway or on a fence post would be in violation of the CC&R’s.  It was pointed out that advertising can be done on the website or in the newsletter.

C.              Revision are Architectural Guidelines to resolve conflicts with the CC&R’s and Bylaws (Discussion/Action)

A request by Keith Judson to amend and record the architectural guidelines so that they conform to the higher governing documents was discussed.  It was decided to delay action on this request since an Ad Hoc Committee is to be appointed to study the governing documents and make proposals to bring them all into harmony,.

D.              Appoint Ad Hoc Committee to study governing documents and recommend any changes to be voted upon by the membership  (Discussion/Action)

Keith Judson was not able to be present for this meeting but has agreed to serve on or chair the committee.  Bob Moore and Debra Gravenstein were appointed to the committee.  Rita Lumos will help as necessary.

E.               Annual Meeting Preparation  (Discussion/Action)

A mailing will be sent out to all property owners next week asking for candidates for two board positions to be filled this year.  Questionnaires regarding the road plan and future developments, newsletter articles, and ballots will be sent in late May, to be returned by June 30.    

F.               Any Other Matters Which The Board Members Wish To Discuss (discussion)

President Woolley noted that the financial statement is not good.  He has projected numbers through the end of 2007 and is concerned that the association will only have enough money to provide “shoestring” services.  It will be necessary t to find ways to provide adequate funds to meet the obligations of the association.  In addition, changes to NRS 116 require that 80% of reserve account has to be in place when reserve study is accepted.  The association is due to complete a new reserve study next year.  He cautioned that creation and maintenance of a General Improvement District would be very expensive. 

XI.   Adjourn

There being no further business the meeting was adjourned at 10:30 pm.

Respectfully submitted,



Rita Lumos, Secretary