Ever wonder why the "SCREAM" is screaming?  He just realized he's paying $850.00 in dues and getting less services. 

 

IMLCA Members who pay their dues are paying for the 25% that do not pay their dues.  Many just thumb their noses at the Association and the Members who pay why heading off to the store to buy a new 99 inch 3D TV.  Meanwhile the Board of Directors does nothing serious to collect these debts, but guaranteed they will raise our dues next year $15.00 - $25.00 and continue doing so as they reduce services to make up the difference from those who did not paid their dues.  Many have not paid their dues in years.




We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government.





The words above were written over 230 years ago but they still define the way we, as Americans, think. We believe in laws that are just and protect personal freedoms. We believe in living under laws and in following them and understand that a Civic Association might have slightly tighter laws than the local municipalities. But when a BOD decides it wants to re-invent a community to be what they want and not what the homeowner's want then they are abusing the power of their positions and must be stopped.  They need to be removed and replaced with members of the association who are not coming in with agendas of their own but what is right for the community.  Their fiduciary responsibility should be in keeping the association property values as high as can be.  Making the association a clean, safe place where people would want to come and buy or rent a home for vacation.  To maintain its infrastructure and keep it in good financial state.

Instead in recent years we've watched our Association's swimming amenities go from three lakes to one and two pools to one.  Our main entrance beautification and gate system looks like crap.  First impressions count and coming in through our gates gives the impression of a poorly managed, poorly maintained community.  Rusty generator box to signs all over and bent  Our roads are in bad shape and crumbling and cracking away. But its hard to maintain when the money is not coming into the association.

As you drive through our community take notice of the "little" things.  We have street signs and stop signs that are bent, twisted and leaning at odd angles, we have swales that are sad shape and no longer able to direct rainwater runoff properly and some that simply do not flow properly, trapping the water thus turning that section of the swale into ideal mosquito breeding grounds.  Regarding the swales we have had Boards that said the swale maintenance is the responsibility of the Association and then the next group of board members decides it is the responsibility of the homeowner and wash their hands of the issue.  Honestly the day to day maintenance, keeping them free of litter and mowing the grass does fall on the homeowner however the major maintenance of ensuring that the swales remain properly defined to direct the water flow falls on the Association.  Properly defined swales and proper stormwater runoff maintenance is of paramount importance in protecting the infrastructure of the roads.  We have many areas where the shoulder of the road is crumbling due to stormwater drainage problems but rather than actually fixing the problem the Association just keep throwing loose stone in when an area gets washed out, which then get washed away with the next major rainfall and adds to the drainage problem as well as landing up on the roads making them dangerous especially for people on motorcycles and bicycles although even in a car you can have issues with skidding on the stone.  I have had a number of friends and neighbors complain to me about skidding on our roads when on their motorcycles, we are lucky that so far no one has been seriously hurt.  There are some areas where the shoulder is so bad, especially where the swale is undercutting the road surface, that if a car goes off the edge of the road it will destroy the tire and the car will be at the very least seriously stuck in the swale and could possibly sustain major damage as well. Same could be said of some of the deep washed out ruts on the side of the roads.

For years I have had people tell me that they have difficulty driving their trucks through the community because of the amount of trees overhanging the roads and now you can't even walk on our roads without having to walking in the middle (very safe) to avoid walking into the overhanging tree branches.  When you go to the mailboxes in the winter you take your life in your hands as there is frequently heavy snow and ice coating the roof which becomes a hazard when the temperatures start to warm up a bit.  Another "trivial" issue is the marquee at the 115 gate that is supposed to be there to keep us informed of important happenings in the community it can't be read past the second or third line as the bushes have grown up around it.  By the way have you noticed the unbuilt lots that have dead trees still laying on them from as far back as the 2005 ice storm if not further?  Don't those lots look lovely?  I'm sure you realize that in addition to be aesthetically displeasing they are also a major fire hazard but the Association has done nothing about them.  This is also a major reason why your homeowner insurance may have gone up in the last few years because of the fire threat due to this excessive fuel load (look it up).

We had some community members who worked diligently to get our community up to the silver level in the Firewise program through the state.  This program was intended to make us safer in the event of fires.  In order to get to that level they designated evacuation routes and marked them with signage and got the Association to install dry hydrants so that there would be multiple sources for the fire trucks to draw from when needed.  Sadly if these hydrants break they can sit for weeks waiting to be repaired, the evacuation route signs are as bent and twisted just as the road and stop signs and when the firetrucks come in they have to be careful that the equipment on the trucks like the radio antennas, that allow them to call for extra help if needed, and their mirrors are not broken off by the overhanging tree limbs.

Now let's talk snow removal.  The first half of 2013 the Association's snow removal program was abysmal.  There was one snow that I believe was about 6 inches total, we had shoveled our driveway several feet out into the road early in the day as usual in anticipation of the trucks coming through so my wife could get out to work.  After several hours we called the office to find out why they hadn't reached our road yet as we had heard them out on Mountain very early in the morning and we were told that the Maintenance department was have trouble moving the snow and we should be patient.  They have heavy duty dump trucks with appropriate plow blades but they couldn't handle a couple inch snowfall.  God help us all if we get a foot or more.  There was also an incident where they plowed a small side road completely in.  They plowed the roads at either end of the street but instead of pushing it to the side as they approached the corner they kept pushing straight through and completely barricaded the smaller street.  How's that for quality service?  Also many of the smaller side roads went all winter with only getting perhaps one pass with a plow which would leave a thin layer which would freeze into ice as soon as the temps started to drop again.  I am also concerned about the product they put on the roads this year.  It appeared they were using a bottom ash product which had more rock, coal and stones, ash in it than traditional salt and cinder.  At one point after a snow when they were putting down product my wife almost got hit by a piece of coal/rock/stone that had stuck together to create a conglomerate projectile about 5 inches long and 2-3 inches around.  We have never to my knowledge had such a thing before.  Now that winter is over where do you think all the product on the roads went especially with some of the heavy rains we have had over the spring and summer.  That's right, into the overworked, under maintained swales and drainage pipes.  Good thing was early on the second half of snow season (late fall) in IMLCA was the Association had switched to 100% salt.  Worked great but because of budget issues it was annonced that we cut back to a 1/3 salt to 2/3 anti-skid material.  They did go with a finer cinder but Penn-Dot uses 80 percent salt to cinder on secondary roads.  The state on major roads will use 100% salt and go back and reply anti-skid if needed.  You noticed with 100% salt the first couple storms the snow and ice was gone.  But since we have such poor collection we cannot afford higher amounts of salt.

As of the December Board meeting the Association is only at a 76% collection rate, that means just slightly more than 3/4 of the members have paid their dues this year and the Association is owed millions in dues and other miscellaneous charges from past years.  When asked about this huge amount still owed the Board just shrugged their shoulders, what can they do when the law gives no real teeth to Associations.  They can't take aggressive action against those who owe us thousands as they just file bankruptcy.  So all the board does is raise dues on those who do pay and cut services and amenities.  How many of you realize that we only have one Security guard on during the "midnight" shift?  How long can we go on like this before the development goes belly up!

To summarize, for the amount we pay in dues we have only two swimming facilities, we have an under maintained infrastructure and we have a Board that cannot do anything to collecting a huge past due debt yet they raise dues and cut services to those of us who are in good standing.  Do you see something wrong with this picture?  What do you think this is doing to our property values and our community's reputation?  We have been told there are real estate agents who go out of their way to avoid bringing buyers into our community and are reluctant to list properties as well.

Do you realize that our Main Lake, Indian Mountain Lake, hasn't been open for a couple of years?  If you go down there to use the swings you have to be alert to avoid the minefield of goose droppings.  Also the Board needs to read the rules that govern the Association.

The only way things are going to change in here is if:

 1)PEOPLE START VOTING!  Now before you vote you should try to find out about the candidates.  You want a candidate who is interested in the whole community not one who's attitude is well it doesn't affect me personally, it isn't in my area of the community or I don't use that amenity so it doesn't matter.  One way to see if the candidate cares beyond themselves is to check their previous volunteerism especially within the community.  You also don't want a candidate who has a personal agenda such as they are only running to get a rule changed because it is inconvenient to them.  We used to have Meet the Candidates prior to the elections but they were stopped a few years ago because no one came out to meet them.
 
 2) COME TO BOARD MEETINGS.  Writing letters, filling out complaint forms in many cases means nothing to the Board members who are there for personal reasons, although it is good to have such on file as a paper trail.  However you should follow up your written communication with attendance at the Board meetings.  The Board doesn't deal well with criticism or confrontation on a face to face basis, they find it difficult to sweep a problem under the rug if they are being told about it in a public forum on the record.

 3) VOLUNTEER/GET INVOLVED.  I know it is hard for a lot of people to manage monthly meetings with all the other demands on their time but try to be involved even if it's just attending social functions.  The more people get involved, the more people come out for movie night and bingo, the more people talk together about what's going on, what's being done right and wrong, the more the Association, the Board and employees, will be scrutinized and the better it will be for the community as a whole.

In summary we need members to get involved in their community! Members need to make sure that the Board is doing the work that is needed for the community in a cost effective manner and that the work is being done in a timely, quality manner.  That the work they do is for the betterment of the community not personal agendas or ego trips. We need volunteers on our committees right now. Some committees we used to have are no more because of no volunteers and others have simply been disbanded by the Boards actions and treatment, like the Rules and Regulations committee.  We used to have an independent group who would be given an idea for a new rule or a change to a rule and they would determine if it was good for the community now the Board makes or changes rules with absolutely no oversight. We need people to show up at the monthly BOD meetings and find out what is going on. Without everyone's involvement and treating each other in a respectful and dignified way we can find ourselves losing property and civil rights. We can end up with another Board that does what it wants not what the membership wants or needs.

We can take back our community and restore our community reputation but we have to want to and we have to be willing to work to do it.







Our goals are simple and few, what we wish to accomplish is:


*Preserve property owner's rights.  NOT A CONCERN TO CURRENT BOARD!


*A forensic audit of the Associations finances.  WON'T HAPPEN UNDER CURRENT BOARD!


*Accountability of work preformed by Association's Employes.  WHEN WE GET BOARD MEMBERS WHO REALLY CARE!


*A monthly bill list with the financial report. WE HAVE A RIGHT TO SEE WHERE AND WHAT ARE MONEY IS GOING!


*Limit Board authority over members property rights. NOT HAPPENING, POWER CORRUPTS.


*Stop using the Rules and Regulations as another way for the Board to collect money. THIS BOARD IS ONLY MAKING THIS EVEN WORSE!


*Propose By-Law changes that are easier to read. That make sense and are fair and just. STILL WAITING FOR!


* Change our out of date Covenants. PROBABLY WHEN HELL FREEZE OVER!





We need your help. Get involved in the community. Show up at BOD meetings every second Saturday of the month at 10:00 AM at the club house!



Size of product being flung out of maintenance spreader last winter!

IMLCA's idea of anti-skid material!

Pot hole in Mountain Road.

Geese droppings at Main Lake.


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This site has been updated on December 18th, 2013




This Site was made and owned and edited by William Thomas Byron Jr. It is not sanctioned by the Indian Mountain Lake Civic Association (IMLCA) or any of the Board of Directors or any employee's of the Association. The only person editing this site is me and it represents my opinions. This is MY site! I am exercising my rights under Amendment 1 of the Bill Of Rights. “Freedom of Speech” Something certain people fear or think it should work only one way {their way}! That we in America have lost the right to have or express you opinions.



For more information check out my other site http://www.angrymechanics.com