Virginia City Highlands Property Owner’s Association

Minutes of the Annual Meeting – Saturday July 23, 2011

Virginia City Highlands Fire Station Training Room


Present: Flanagan, Morrow, Tallent-Stewart


I.              Call to Order, Declaration of a Quorum and Approval of Meeting Agenda

Steve Morrow called the meeting to order at 9:25 a.m. and declared a quorum present.  Mary Tallent-Stewart made a motion to approve the agenda with a second by Pat Flanagan. 


II.            Approve Minutes of the June 14, 2011 Regular Meeting

Approval of the minutes is deferred until the August 2011 regular meeting.


III.           Financial Statements

Dave Thomas reviewed the financial statements with the group, comparing fiscal year end figures from 2010 to 2011, showing ending balances of $25k less in 2011.  There is $6,239 more showing on the balance sheet for equipment.  This is due to the purchase of the new roller versus previously renting it.  The association shows $29k less because of the purchase but as Dave pointed out, this will be caught up in the next fiscal year.  On page two, Profit and Loss statement, the $16k loss is misleading.  There is $25k noncash depreciation expense.  On page three, Cash Flow statement, $24,798 loss is due again to the roller purchase.  On page four it shows $69,820 expenditures over budget.  The entire amount is due to road reconstruction and not budgeting for the roller purchase.  The actual over budget amount is about $47,500.  The reasons for the higher expenditures are additional labor cost, vehicle deferred maintenance catch-up and extra fuel.  On page five it shows total spent on the roads during the fiscal year to be about $185k.  Last year $38,490 was spent, $63,910 below budget which all carries over into the following year.  No roller was rented this year but a backhoe was rented to do ditch work for two months.  Rental expense includes trucking to haul base materials..  On page six it shows how much was actually spent.  Dave Thomas explained the previous six years spending.   $112k was spent in fiscal year 2010/2011, $144k 2009/2009 and $134K 2006/2007 so the average for the period is approximately $130k, this includes labor, equipment replacement and snow removal.   Page seven shows the assessment level required to offset inflation which would, in today’s dollars equal $277.08 per lot (be grateful people).  Page eight shows the percentage change in prices of certain goods since 1972 to date.  Page nine is the proposed budget for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2012.  Accounts receivable is up slightly due to collections of dues and assessments.  Cash balance is $215,250 income has been consistent with the unknowns being transfer and architectural fees.  Road are the biggest unknown expenditure.  Dave Thomas commented that he feels that the roads are in great condition after all the rebuild/maintenance done in May and June and that the association is legally obligated in the CC & R’s to keep them in good condition.  We could recoup the $25k overspent this year by next year.  Dave also explained the collection process for dues and assessments.  The reserve study done every five years shows cash needed in the reserve fund.  There is no funds set aside in next year’s budget for a new water truck either.  Dave asked the group if they were okay with all of this and they were.  Mary Tallent-Stewart made a motion to approve the financial statements with a second from Pat Flanagan and also made a motion to accept the annual budget for 2011/2012 with a second also from Pat.  Motion carries.


IV.          New Business

Update by County Commission, Fire Department, Public Works

An update was given by county commissioners Bob Kershaw and Bill Sjovangen.  The new legislature has shifted state burdens onto the counties.  A coalition with Douglas and Lyon counties has been established for some services.  Storey county is in better shape because of the business park on I-80 but has also reduced it’s workforce by about 30%.  Bob explained the state budget issues.  Bill would like to see our association form a General Improvement District.  There is no re-districting in the county at this time.  Dave Thomas told the group that 35% of the registered voters live in the Highlands.  Fire chief Gary Hames stated that there will be an interlocal agreement with the one-acre roads crew for fires.  The new Firesafe Highlands chapter point person is Gwen Buck and he encouraged everyone to get involved with the organization as they are formulating short and long term goals now.  The You-Call, We-Haul program has purchase three trailers for use by Highlands residents.  Residents can call the fire station, who will deliver a trailer and pick it up when full, dump it at the slash pile and check the property afterward.  Seasonal staff of the NDF can also help with removal of trees and limbing.  Contacts are on the local website.  The representative of the NDF did not recommend limbing of trees during the summer due to the IPS beetle infestation but dead trees can be taken out.   Gary Hames also talked about the ambulance program.  For an entire family under age 55 the cost if $25 and over 55 is $10.  This covers Storey County ambulance insurance co-pays.  Volunteer fire chief Al Drake has been appointed to the Nevada State Firefighters Association and was congratulated by the group.  Gary Hames talked about fire district consolidation with Reno, Silver Springs and Carson.  Fire crews/personnel can cross area boundaries in case of emergency or fires.  775-847-0954 is the contact number and Gary’s e-mail address is   A resident told Gary that recently she was run off the road by an NDF truck going to fast on Cartwright and caused her to swerve into a ditch.  The issue will be addressed.  Another resident talked about Tall Mountain Whitetop that has become a big problem in the Highlands.  Someone from the Board will call Austin Osborne at the county in the spring to discuss the problem and possible solutions.  Tad Fletcher from the Sheriff’s office gave statistics for the past year.  There were 14,000 miles patrolled in the last year, 2,073 incidents reported, 672 property checks, 452 traffic stops, 125 citations, 50 accidents, 8 vandalism calls, 2 burglaries, 11 thefts, 2 fraud cases and 8 trespassing calls.


V.           Comments by Association Members:

A resident commented on the efficiency of the telephone fire/emergency warning system issued by Storey County.  There was also discussion regarding no signage regarding fire safety for non-residents and all accesses to the Highlands should have the signs.  The NDF will be contacted regarding putting up signage.  The issue of dedicated roads was also brought up.  Cartwright is a private road from Saddleback east and is not dedicated, however, the dirt roads are dedicated for traffic control only.


VI.           Committee Reports:

A.    Architectural Committee

Rita Lumos reported to the group that although there had been applications for minor things like sheds, fences, etc, it had been a quiet year.

B.    Road Report

Steve Morrow gave the road report and discussed the functions of the road manager position.  Road dust suppression using the mag chloride was also discussed.  Steve recapped the year’s road rebuilding and maintenance as well as equipment maintenance (see attached report for June/July) and introduced the road crew.  Chris Nahhas is the grader operator, Jim Stewart, roller operator, Dennis Jahn, backhoe operator, Remus Pelt, equipment mechanic, Neal Melton, snowplow driver/labor and Gary Grate, water truck operator.  Steve also explained that it was suggested that he take over the duties of the road manager because Chris Nahhas had resigned the position for personal reasons.  As this was Steve’s last meeting as a member of the Board because he was termed out, his experience as the Road Committee chairman and his involvement with the Board and good repoir with personnel and the community made him a good person for the job.  He will be subsequently appointed at the August meeting.

C.    Park Report

Karlyn McPartlin gave the park report.  The county owns the park and for each new house built $250 is supposed to go into the Park Fund.  Dave Thomas is researching prior years to get a total on missing park fund monies.  To date $22,000 has been spent and the county has said that is all the community has.  We are opposing that figure.  Karlyn gave a warm thanks to the fire and sheriff’s department for all their hard work on the park.  New fences have been installed, retaining wall built, gazebo painted and rock put on the BBQ.  There is more to be done but no ATV’s can access the park now.


VII.               Unfinished Business

A.    Condition of Mailboxes/Cleanup Day

Dates will be established at the August meeting.

B.    Annual Audit

Pat Flanagan explained briefly that the audit is finished and the auditor is making the changes that Dave Thomas recommended.

C.    Update on Firehouse sale

There was a June 30th deadline and the memo of understanding is in the hands of the District Attorney.  Pat Flanagan will work on the first draft of the agreement with the county to purchase the firehouse.


VIII.             New Business

A.    Garlick Fire

A memo of understanding is being drafted by Pat for review regarding the use of the road crew and our water truck in future situations.  The MOU is with the District Attorney for review.

B.    Board Election

The new board members and their positions will be announced at the August meeting.


IX.                Guest Speakers

      Wildlife biologist Craig Downer spoke to the group about the wild horses

      as a native species and introduced his book “Wild Horse Conspiracy”. 

     Craig has documented the horses on the Virginia Range for many years

     Well as other wildlife but horses are his main focus.


                        Bob Maccario, president of the VRWPA spoke to the group and stated

                        that there is a new vitality on it’s Board.  They have a new agenda and

                        are addressing many new things including raising the value and

                        awareness of our wild horses.  He also explained the cooperation and

                        collaboration with the Storey County Sheriff’s department with VRWAP

                        and range management.


X.                Any Other Matters Which Board Members Wish to Discuss

           None to report.


XI.              Comments by Association Members

A resident spoke about a petition for the state to put cameras on SR 341 to catch motorists that cross the double yellow line.  He has been successful in getting many signatures and wanted to make the public aware of his attempt to get this inacted.


XII.              Adjourn


     The meeting was adjourned at 11:35 a.m.


     Respectfully submitted,

     Mary Tallent-Stewart