Category Archives: Financial

Related to finances and/or budgeting

Please Don’t Put Glass in Recyling Bins, It Costs Us Money

Glass is not recycled in Santa Fe County. If you put it in your bin it taints the entire load, which then has to be taken to the landfill instead of being recycled. Additionally, we are fined $250 for each tainted load. So please, to avoid even higher recycling fees, please remember not to put glass in your recycling bin.

 

 

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New County Recycling Ordinance Could Raise Homeowner Fees – Update: Increase Announced at Sep BOD Mtg

Posted for Jim Bailey:

I am attaching a copy of a county ordinance that was adopted in May, requiring trash haulers to also pick up curbside recycling. Initial information from our vendor is this may increase our solid waste fee by 50 percent, from $49.50 per quarter per home to $74.25.

Ordinance 2016-4

Map of Service Area

While serving as president of the board, I encouraged board members to become informed of and active in county affairs, however there was a bump in that road, and as a consequence the board and management are just now dealing with this ordinance that was enacted three months ago and is set to be in force November 1st. Community Manager Montoya is exploring all options.
Please be advised that the board, NOT the treasurer, NOT the Budget and Finance Committee, is responsible for setting the 2017 HOA dues.
Additional information is available on my website, JimBaileyForRVS.com
Thank you.
Jimmy Bailey
RVS Board work:
FACEBOOK:
TWITTER:
twitter.com/@jimmycbailey

Annual Meeting Recap

Despite having an agenda with 20 minutes allocated to resident questions and comments, for the second year in a row, no resident input at the end of the meeting was allowed. What did the Board consider more important?

The Board hired the facilitator of the irrigation meetings to conduct a silly group exercise. We were also treated to a 10-minute picture presentation of the Community Manager driving around the community. Yes, those two things were way more significant than answering resident questions or listening to their comments.

The firm of Swain and Grieco made a presentation of their recently completed audit. They stated there were no material findings. However, the audit contains the following language.

“An audit involves performing procedures to obtain audit evidence about the amounts and disclosures in the financial statements. The procedures selected depend on the auditor’s judgment, including the assessment of the risks of material misstatement of the financial statements, whether due to fraud or error. In making those risk assessments, the auditor considers internal control relevant to the entity’s preparation and fair presentation of the financial statements in order to design audit procedures that are appropriate in the circumstances, but not for the purpose of expressing an opinion on the effectiveness of the Association’s internal control.”

Also we now have a situation where the one individual fills both the Board president and the treasurer positions. That is not a good practice from the standpoint of checks and balances.

2016 President is Also Treasurer

This is a very tricky subject, so first let me say that I think Jim Bailey will make a good Treasurer.  Let me say further that I believe him to be a fairly ethical person despite some of the things he has said about me on public blogs.  He also has the kind of folksy friendliness to get along with the other directors and probably will make a good president.  He gave a committee report at the Annual Meeting that was witty, informative (especially in sharing delinquent account data), and could have been better if it had been a bit shorter.

Jim has my best wishes for success whether he needs them or not.  After being on the board for two years, I know that serving this community is no easy task.

I also know that all across the country, when HOA’s get into trouble with financial misdeeds (not saying we are), it is often the President who is found guilty, especially if granted access to HOA cash or funds.  Most boards of directors, HOA or otherwise, do not allow the fearless leader to also “handle the books” – at least, not without further checks and balances.  It is very puzzling that out of seven board members, no one else volunteered or was nominated to be president, so that Jim could concentrate on being Treasurer.  Since no one else obviously felt comfortable volunteering to be Treasurer, I hope the rest of the directors and HOAMCO are up to the task of providing helpful oversight, since they ALL have fiduciary responsibility for the Association (no matter what letters they have – or not – after their last names).

RVSCA Annual Financial Comparison

See below for a comparison of Income Statements from 2011 to Sep 2015 for our community.  Per HOAMCO, we received an “unqualified” audit this year and last, but that does not mean either audit was perfect.  In 2014, a former board member discovered errors in the audit and contacted the audit firm to schedule a meeting to discuss the errors.  The meeting was cancelled by the Board.  A new audit firm was hired after the former firm declined to audit our financials this year.  In the same time period, resignations, re-appointments, and a changing of the guard occurred.  In 2015, after a County investigation into unlicensed businesses, it was discovered that no Gross Receipts Taxes were paid on Advertising Revenue in the RoundUp newsletter since 2008, which could lead to fines and penalties.  A resident asked about this issue at a Board meeting this year, but did not receive a satisfactory answer.

It is HOAMCO’s responsibility to track financials, produce reports, guide the Board, and ensure transparency – especially when we have had no Treasurer since July 2014.  Make sure you ask about the financials at the Annual Meeting – and make sure you get your proxies to the Community Manager before 5PM Monday or your votes may not be counted at the Annual Meeting.  Last year’s photo of the Community Manager altering proxy votes was pretty embarrassing for the Board – don’t expect more transparency this year.  Last year, they cheated to win.  Let’s hope we won’t have to endure another “rah-rah” speech from the Association Attorney and the HOAMCO CEO again this year.  What did Einstein say about the definition of insanity?  Keep voting for the same people, folks ….

Click HERE to download a copy

FC 2015 Pg 1

FC 2015 Pg 2

 

RVS Association Attorney Threatens Me Because of My Post on Financial Statements

The bullying has begun. This is what happens when somebody says something that the Board doesn’t like. Following is a letter from the Board’s attorney to an attorney that previously represented me when the Board and HOAMCO were harassing me, and my response to Ms. Krupnik.

Krupnik Letter 11-4-15 - redacted

Here is my response to Ms. Krupnik:

Response to LK - Pg 1

Response to LK - Pg 2

How Many Sets of Financial Statements Does the Board Keep? Part 2

The HOAMCO community manager responded to my initial post about two sets of financial records by sending an e-mail to all residents saying that there are two versions of the financial statements “because any delinquent resident accounts cannot be made available to the entire membership. There are times when some residents may have difficulty paying their dues and such information must remain sensitive and confidential out of respect to your neighbors and friends… Posting of these delinquent accounts would be a violation of these residents privacy and would lead to a certain lawsuit for the Association.”

That is utter nonsense. While records of delinquencies must be kept, only the total amount in arrears need be aggregated in a financial statement. Furthermore, the HOA files liens against residents who have large outstanding dues balances. Those liens are public records that anyone can view. The Board will have to come up with a different lame excuse as to why there are two versions of financial statements.

Despite my request, once again the Board has refused to provide year-to-date expenditures in the financial materials sent out with the Annual Meeting notice. Only the 2016 budget was included. Residents have a right to know if the Board is adhering to budgeted amounts.

The fact that the Board refuses to provide this information just makes me more suspicious about how our dues are being spent.