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General Manager plans public budget sessions      

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General Manager plans public budget sessions      

Recreation Centers of Sun City West General Manager Mike Whiting has scheduled Budget Forums and invites the community to attend to learn about the proposed fiscal plan for 2017-18.

The sessions are:

9 a.m. Tuesday, April 25, in the Lecture Hall, 19803 R.H. Johnson Blvd.
1 p.m. Thursday, April 27, in Palm Ridge’s Summit Hall B, 13800 Deer Valley Drive, Sun City West
5:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 3, in the Lecture Hall, 19803 R.H. Johnson Blvd.

Whiting will give a PowerPoint presentation about the proposed operations and capital budget, including owner member dues, Asset Preservation Fee, golf and bowling fees. The budget is not yet final, as the Governing Board will not approve it until May. There will be time for questions from members.

Community members are encouraged to attend one of these sessions.

  1. Doug Swanson says:

    Please provide an independent review of the cost and usage of the tennis courts to support the purposed $2M upgrade. Upon observation of the tennis courts, the usage does not seem to justify the upgrade. Being the best courts in the area is also not justification. Maybe the tennis group should pay for a portion of the upgrades like the pickle ball group.

  2. RCSCW PR says:

    Thank you for your comments, Mr. Swanson. Bringing in an outside auditor to do head counts at the tennis courts likely wouldn’t be worth the cost of the service. Our staff has done counts, and we get usage numbers through our reservation desk and through other methods, aside from the club reports. At this point, we have heard from many residents at the forum – and a huge thank you to those who attended and provided input – and are looking at options. Primarily, we heard that a majority of residents who attended seemed to feel that at least some (but perhaps not all) of the courts should be converted to post-tension concrete, and that the Tennis Club should pay for the social area. We are looking at those options. We also have a petition signed by more than 1,000 residents, which calls for an election to allow the community to vote on the project. The Governing Board will meet on Monday to discuss how to proceed with that election.

  3. Jacque Humphries says:

    Good Morning; I attended Wednesday evenings budget forum. Great job to all. I do have a question on the bidding process SCW uses. What is the process of obtaining bids for the large projects; i.e. tennis courts, HVAC, etc. Thank you

  4. RCSCW PR says:

    Hi Ms. Humphries. Thank you for your question. Bids are required for any purchase above $5,000. Sealed bids are required for any purchases over $50,000. Our procurement policy can be found here: http://www.boarddocs.com/az/rcscw/Board.nsf/files/AFTL3L549993/$file/Fi10.pdf. We will be seeking bids on the tennis courts, for example, once we have a final design that is chosen and we know if/how we are proceeding. If you have additional questions, please don’t hesitate to ask.

  5. Don Harmon says:

    Hello,
    My wife and I attended Wednesday, It was very informative, and I feel that I received a better understanding of the budget. I was rather alarmed by the lack of understanding given to the lady who asked for a moratorium on membership dues. I understand that Mr. Whiting is the General Manager and has no say in this, but he should have referred her to a board member. This is a concern for several of our most senior residents and, it should be addressed. I made a suggestion and I it was not received very well in my opinion. We feel that the board should consider this. Our thoughts are as follows, First, they must be a full time resident of SCW, Second, Must have lived here in SCW for 20 years, Third, must be 75 years old. Fourth, they must apply for the discount. 10 per cent age 75 to 90. Over 90 no dues. This would effect very few people, and would help those effected very much. We have a great community here, and a very sound financial plan. This is affordable, and would be a plus for everyone.
    Thank You

  6. RCSCW PR says:

    Hi Mr. Harmon. Thank you for your question. We apologize you didn’t feel it was adequately addressed at the forum. We have heard this request – to adjust the dues based on need or to place a moratorium on increases based on age or longevity in the community – for a number of years. While we understand that many of our residents are aging, and some are outliving their retirement funds, we are not able to adjust the dues on a case-by-case basis. In fact, the Bylaws and the CC&Rs both state that dues must be levied uniformly. All residents also sign a Facilities Use Agreement when they buy here, agreeing to pay the dues. While the Bylaws could perhaps be changed – it would be a difficult and contentious process. The CC&Rs, however, would be extremely difficult to change. Del Webb set them up as such. There are more than a hundred variations of our CC&RS in this community. We would need an affirmative vote from each area that has its own set of CC&Rs to effect change. Although variations of the CC&Rs exist, all of them repeat the “Uniform Rate of Assessment” clause, which states “The annual homeowner fee must be fixed at a uniform rate per titleholder for all lots …” There is a state law that allows seniors to freeze their property valuation if they meet certain criteria (https://www.azag.gov/seniors/property-value-freeze); this can help seniors keep their property taxes lower. Additionally, the Sun City West Community Fund (http://www.communityfundsuncitywest.org/) – although it will not help pay rec fees – will help with other emergency bills that our residents face. While we do our best to keep everyone’s dues as low as possible, we also have a duty to maintain the community at the standard that residents have come to expect and that they experienced when they moved here. It is a balancing act. But the bottom line is, everyone’s dues must be equal.

  7. Don Harmon says:

    Thank you for your explanation., and response. Change could happen, but someone must take the lead, and believe in its process. Nothing is etched in stone, (e.g.) the U.S. Constitution, and we’re talking (CC & R). here. I,m sure their are many who would agree. As this case may be, I would like to see it changed, but I’ll try to keep more informed in the future, and who knows, maybe I’ll run for the board down the road. You might consider publishing an article, explaining the reasons why this would be hard to accomplish, so that other’s like myself, can be re-educated on what we signed.

  8. Multimedia says:

    Thank you for the suggestion about publishing an article about this complicated issue Don. Have a great day.

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