Wednesday, September 28, 2005

CROA Organizational Meeting

Tonight was the organizational meeting for our new CROA (homeowners') board. Since our intranet is still down, I'm posting a news-style write-up here. I know that it will be of interest mainly to my Celebration readers. To my out-of-town audience, sorry if it's not the most exciting information. Hopefully it will give you an idea of the inner workings of our town, especially if you're a potential resident. If you live in Celebration, you'll be able to view the meeting in its entirety on cable channel 12:

CROA Organizational Meeting, Sept. 28, 2005

The CROA board held its organizational meeting on Wednesday, September 28, to elect officers for the upcoming year and to set meeting dates for the remainder of the year.

At the meeting, recently-elected board members James Ryan (District A), William Pelaia (District B) Thomas Sunnaborg (District E) and Charlie Eldredge (At Large) were introduced to the near-capacity audience of residents.

Lee Moore was re-elected as president of the board, with William Pelaia elected as vice-president, Tom Sunnaborg as secretary, and Jim Ryan as treasurer. Charlie Eldredge was elected as a member of the Celebration Joint Committee. While all of the officers were elected unanimously, Charlie Eldredge prefaced his vote for president with a call for board members to adhere to "the highest standard of ethics and honesty."

Two budget workshops were slated for October. The first, which will allow board members to go through the budget line by line, will be held on October 17 at 1:30 p.m. The second, which will consist of further discussion of the budget items, will be held at 6:30 p.m. on October 24. A meeting to vote on the budget was scheduled for November 21 at 6:30 p.m. Additional meeting dates and times will be determined later.

The board discussed mailing a "Committee Interest Form" to allow Celebration residents to express their interest in serving on various committees. These include the Architectural Review Committee, the Covenants Committee, the Safety Task Force (which is expected to become a permanent committee), Community Watch, the Communications Committee, and the Recreation Committee.

Prior to adjournment, new board members were given the opportunity to bring up topics of interest or concern. William Pelaia brought up several questions, including how Florida's Sunshine Laws apply to CROA. Pat Wasson of Town Hall explained that there are differences between the laws that cover governmental bodies, like the Celebration Community Development District, and those that cover homeowners' assocations like CROA. It was explained that members cannot discuss business in a quorum (i.e. four board members) outside of the meetings. Also, while government meetings are open to the public, a homeowners' association meeting is only open to its members (i.e. the residents).

Thomas Sunnaborg ennumerated several issues that residents had brought up in various arenas, such as in-person forums and online. These included the Celebration Blvd. connector, funding of the CJC, a request from Lexin (owner of downtown) for CROA to share the cost of hiring a special events coordinator, short-term rentals (which are forbidden in Celebration), whether recycling is taking place, the CROA election process, the status of a library to be located within Celebration, the status of a potential skate park, and the status of the 851 Building purchase.

Pat Wasson shared the status of several items, including the Lexin request, which she said had not been put on a board report as either an informational or action item. She reported that a short term rental being advertised in the Siena condos has been dealt with and that recycling is being done, although trash is being mixed with recycleables that were separated by residents, and then everything is separated later. She stated that she spoke with the county manager about the library, and he said he did not believe it would be approved by the county commission due to potential parking issues. However, she said that she spoke with library manager Ed Kilroy, who will be touring the 851 Building with her on Friday as a potential location.

Status of the potential skate park was also given; the Recreation Committee has reviewed three bids and is checking with the insurance company to see if it would be covered. They will also be considering potential locations. The 851 Building is slated for its mortgage closing on or around October 15, and there are three space planning bids to assess the cost of transforming it into a community center.

The above is a Cliff Notes version of the meeting, but hopefully it will be informative for my fellow residents until they can see it on Channel 12.

Learn more about Celebration on my website:

No comments: