Columbia Council Rep Report

CA Board Meeting April 23, 2020

Columbia Association Board of Directors Meeting

Thursday, April 23, 2020

NANCY’S NOTES (Click here to view the agenda/packet.)

Due to the limitations on the ability for people to call in to the virtual Board meeting, there will not be a verbal resident speakout. Instead, residents are encouraged to send their comments to CA’s Board of Directors at [email protected].

Board Votes – Proposed Modifications to the FY2021 Capital Budget

The budget for the upcoming year has been modified.  Because of the current financial situation, CA is no longer able to do all it had planned for the year.  A number of items can be put off without significant damage to the organization.  During these months of the pandemic lockdown, CA is not collecting membership fees, before and after school fees, and other means of gaining income.  For this reason, CA is borrowing money to get through the most difficult months before the annual charge bills go out to the community in July.   CA getting on a better financial position with a loan.  CA is not billing for periods that CA is closed. 

The capital budget was taken from a $15 million to $8 million. These are complex issues during difficult times.  Considering CA is borrowing money, it is less money than has been borrowed in the past.  The Board discussed the various items and the importance of maintaining what we have, and working on projects that are necessary so we don’t fall too far behind.  Upkeep is essential to have good facilities for members. 

 Board Votes – Proposed Modifications to the FY2021 Operating Budget

The operating budget indicates anticipating a reduction in school programs, abatement in annual charge and membership reductions.  The projections include reduction of staff at CA. The employer 401k contributions were cut in half.  There will be a reduction in the Village Community Associations’ annual charge share by the amount or percentage that is reduced to CA.  It is expected the annual charge will be reduced approximately 8.3%.   Thus, the village associations may be reduced by that amount. 

Grants to outside organizations have been eliminated.  It has been proposed that Fairway Hills will be opened as a driving range and putting green only.  Fitness clubs will likely be closed earlier in the evening.  It is expected there will be deeper reductions in staff in sports and fitness.  Plans are not solid but the situation is being assessed one month at a time while being prepared for upcoming changes.    

CA may open 9 pools this summer.  At this time, it is hoped they will open in July.   Number of pools to eventually open, camps, towels at the indoor pools, archives hours, and many other options are on the table to determine how to best move forward in the future.  Everything is on the table. 

CA has learned that some commercial annual charge payers have requested for abatement on property valuations. CA charges the annual charge based on the assessed value of properties.   Commercial properties annual charge is tied to its occupancy level.  The Columbia Mall is virtually empty and has been since mid-March.  Therefore it is anticipated that there will be a reduction in the amount of annual charge that CA will collect, thus a reduction to the villages. This is not permanent.  The Board moved to make changes to the budget taking the most conservative and pessimistic approach.  Because we need to wait for the governor to undo the lockdown, we cannot open anything.  The future is unknown. 

 Board Votes – Village Cap on Reserves

The cap on the Villages’ cash reserves will be waived for FY2020. Under the current management contract, the Villages pay for any maintenance and repairs that are under $1,000. The Board voted to increase the amount to $2,000. The Villages differ as to how to bring in revenue.  The Village are not able to get loans.  There was a lot of discussion about the cap on reserves. 

Please stay healthy and safe everyone. Spring is here and weather is getting warmer.  Please find time to get outside and enjoy the beauty of nature.

Warm regards,

Nancy McCord

Email   [email protected]