July 2019 Report to Members
Your Board and management team hope you had a safe and fun-filled July 4th week. It seemed there were more families here this year than last and many more boaters were transiting the canals—with numerous new boats I might add. It was great to see so much activity in our community. The Board continues to work diligently on your behalf. We have made great strides on numerous initiatives, and this report will shed light on the latest news and updates.
IN THIS REPORT
- Bridge Rebuild Update
- A Reminder About Renting Your property
- Security Cameras Installed at the Bridge
- CCRs and Legal Documents Session set for Sat. Sept. 14 at 1:30 p.m.
- Canal Dredging Being Considered for Founder Canal
- Speeding in Canals – Slow It Down
- Bulkheads – Know Before you Build
- Financial Report
- Public Realm Committee Update
As we reported last time and in the latest newsletter ISLANDER, TxDOT has finalized plans for the new bridge system at the entrance to Key Allegro. Core samples have been taken around the site of the new bridge and surveying is nearing completion. As a reminder, the new bridge will have much better sight-lines, longer approaches, a wider span (as much as double the existing) similar height as current bridge, better lighting, and walk/bike paths on both sides.
Plans are to begin construction in November of this year.
Renting Your Property
Homeowners who rent or lease their properties in Key Allegro are ultimately responsible for their tenants. We recommend you discuss the rules of the community with your tenant. You may consider a rental or lease clause requiring tenants and their guests to abide by the Key Allegro Canal and Property Owners Association Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions (CC&Rs).
Recently, we have received several complaints regarding renter behavior in our community. This is a friendly reminder to homeowners who have rented out their property to monitor the property and your tenants. While rental properties provide an income for many landowners, if not managed properly, they can reduce the value of your home and other homes in a deed-restricted community. Make sure you are inspecting your property periodically to ensure tenants are following the rules governing the KACPOA.
Here are some tips to help you avoid the pitfalls of renting out your home in Key Allegro:
Review the HOA Governing Documents
Be sure to review your KACPOA Bylaws and Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions. They may contain special requirements or restrictions for owners who rent out property within the HOA.
Discuss KACPOA Rules and Expectations
Discuss the rules and regulations of the KACPOA during the tenant interview or on any online rental website to ensure they understand the importance of living in a governed community before they sign a rental or lease agreement. Provide renters with a copy of the rules and policies to preview.
Include a Lease Addendum
Consider attaching an addendum to your lease that covers the rules and regulations and requires renters to adhere to the KACPOA rules. This is very important because it gives you and the KACPOA a means of enforcement for non-compliance. Otherwise, you, as a member of the KACPOA, will be held responsible for any violations of the governing documents and the resulting consequences. A good lease or lease addendum should require and/or include the following:
– Tenant must remain in compliance with the Bylaws and Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions (provide a copy for reference). You can download the KACPOA legal documents by logging into your account on the Spectrum website at www.spectrumam.com.
– Tenant is responsible for, and must pay, any fines incurred as a result of KACPOA rule violations.
– Tenant will be evicted if the rules and regulations are repeatedly violated. The more information you provide your renters, the more successful they will be in the community. We remind our homeowners about their responsibilities as to their guests—any owners or guests which are not respectful of neighbors will be reported to local authorities and/or fined in compliance with our Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions.
Security Cameras Installed at the Bridge
Recently, the Rockport Police Department installed a camera system at the entrance to the Key Allegro bridge. This system allows the RPD to monitor bridge traffic, cars entering and exiting the island, and to track known suspicious activity by license plate.
There are still some issues to be resolved and the cameras are in trial mode. If the cameras prove to be a viable deterrent, more cameras will be placed at the end of various canals in hopes of curbing theft.
Signs will be posted on each side of the Key Allegro bridge to alert the public about the cameras. NOTE: The RPD is the only organization who has access to the cameras and the video data.
CC&R Session Scheduled for Saturday September 14 @ 1:30 p.m.
An information session will be held at the Allegro House, 29 Mazatlán. Interested homeowners are encouraged to attend the meeting. The KACPOA Board will not be making any decisions at this meeting. We will be presenting the current drafts and reviewing the Master Covenant Advisory Committee roles and responsibilities.
All interested homeowners who want to learn about the revisions to the KACPOA legal documents, and who may want to participate on the Master Covenant Advisory Committee, should attend. There is an article on the homepage that explains the reasons for updating the documents and links to the proposed draft version.
Canal Dredging Being Considered for Flounder Canal
In May of this year, The KACPOA completed a Bathymetric Study of all Key Allegro canals which concluded there were several locations where large debris was still present from the aftereffects of Harvey, and there is widespread small debris in most canals of up to one foot. After careful study and counsel from engineers and marine contractors, the Board has voted to proceed with one-foot dredging of Flounder Canal and the removal of the large debris. This large debris is currently marked with red buoys within the navigable portion of the canals. Owners are encouraged to carefully search for large debris or other dangerous objects under their docks and close to their bulkheads. This sweep we are doing of the large debris will not remove anything closer than 10 feet from your bulkhead. We urge caution when swimming in the canals—use the community pool instead.
Upon completion of the dredging of Flounder Canal, a long-term plan will be defined to remove the small debris within a depth of one foot in all of the canals.
Currently, engineering and permitting are in process and bids will be taken over the next few months. This is a laborious process as we must work with local governing bodies regarding logistics of spoil removal and staging. From the study, we found there were no toxic materials in our canals from the after-effects of Harvey. But of course, we know there is construction debris throughout our canal system that must be removed and screened out for disposal.
Speeding in Canals – Slow it Down
Did you know that speeding and causing a wake in the canals compounds our issues regarding failing bulkheads, let alone the problem of damage to personal property like boats, PWCs and docks? It is a real problem and the Board is considering raising fines and coordinating with the RPD regarding on-water patrol.
If you see a boater causing dangerous wakes, ask them to slow down or take down their TX registration numbers and call the RPD or Spectrum Association Management.
In the next few months, the Board will be presenting a plan of action.
Canal Bulkheads – Know Before You Build
Our bulkheads are one of the most valuable assets each canal-front member owns, and each member has a responsibility to the KACPOA and adjoining property owners to maintain their bulkheads in compliance with our governing documents.
In the last few years, failures of our 50-plus-year-old bulkheads have increased to the point where we must now start requiring our owners to comply with our minimum requirements.
KACPOA restrictions and policies are designed to protect you and your investment on Key Allegro. Members have experienced swimming pools that have failed (sunk), docks that have collapsed, retaining walls that have cracked and failed, and even homes that have experienced foundation failures due to failed bulkheads, non-engineered bulkhead repairs, and newly installed non-engineered bulkheads.
On the island, everything within 25 feet of the water naturally erodes and subsides toward the canals unless constructed well to counter the forces of nature—this even includes properly repaired and maintained bulkheads. If your bulkhead is underwater during any tidal event, or always underwater, the sand and fill on your property is entering the canal system and thereby hindering our ability to maintain navigable canal depths.
Bulkheads which were originally constructed on the island used “tiebacks” which are metal rods that are affixed to the horizontal concrete bulkhead panels at the canal, and horizontally bored approximately 10-16 feet into your property. These rods were then connected to pilings under your property and keep the bulkhead from falling into the canal. If these rods are cut or compromised in any way, you will experience a failure of your bulkhead, and could even create a failure of your neighbors’ bulkhead.
Building over a Failed Bulkhead
If you build a new structure anywhere near a failed or failing bulkhead, you are in essence removing your ability to ever repair the failed bulkhead without tearing out any new construction at a future date. Reconstructing a new bulkhead at a future date will be much more expensive as water-side construction—from a barge for example—is much more expensive than land-based construction. Also, your ability to install new tie backs is nearly negated since you will not be able to remove the old system to install a new system.
The point being, fix the bulkhead when it is the least possible cost, rather than proceed with new construction that prevents you, and all future owners, from economically addressing a deteriorated bulkhead.
Our financial statements look very different now as we strive for more clarity and readability. With the help of Spectrum, KACPOA has now split the income statement and the balance sheet into three separate divisions: operating, reserve and special assessment. You will now be able to see clearly what expenses have been charged to each as well as the assets they hold.
KACPOA’s finances remain in great shape with $2.1 million in cash which is invested in safe securities such as FDIC insured money markets and CDs. Our operating income statement for the first 6 months is break even to budget with increases in income due to building permits partially offset by increased spending for the annual audit and legal fees.
Regarding the Reserve Income Statement, the association budgeted for $32,000 for a Bathymetric Study to determine the condition of our canals and bulkheads in the wake of Hurricane Harvey. During the process, it was determined there was more work to be done based on what was found in the canals so the study was completed for approximately $42,000.
Special Assessment spent approximately $58,000 during the first half of 2019 on demo and planting the test islands and circles, the test LED light fixtures and the majority spent on The Allegro House including a new roof, interior fixtures and painting. Final bills for Allegro House including new outdoor furniture and sail shades will be received in July/August.
You can review the financial statements when you log into your account on the Spectrum website at www.spectrumam.com.
Public Realm Committee Report
The Public Realm Committee has been busy this spring and the island is looking great. The focus of the committee is around three areas for the balance of this year.
Circles and Islands: A test was performed on three locations on the island (Bay Shore at Flamingo, Bayshore at Luau and Sandpiper at Luau). Native grasses and drought-resistant plants along with our existing palms trees were used. The comments from all have been that these islands look great. We are now in the process of bidding out the balance of the islands and circles to be completed in the fall.
Blue Heron Park: The Committee scaled back the plans for BHP back to landscaping, benches and natural shade. The plan is still being formed but the committee hopes to bid it out for implementation in the fall.
New Street Lights: The Committee worked with AEP to create a test along Bayshore (Bayshore at Mazatlán, Bayshore at Riviera and Bayshore at Curlew) for new LED street lights with a more community feel. So far, the comments have been good with one resident saying the family finally does not have a yellow night light shining in the bedroom. The lights have a cover to help moderate nighttime light pollution. We will be working with AEP on a roll-out plan for the balance of the fixtures on the island as well as looking at areas that may need additional lighting. AEP and the city are shouldering the majority of the expense for these fixtures.
Republic Waste Trash Bins
A reminder that the KACPOA no longer pushes your trash bin back to your residence after Monday trash pickup. Please make sure your bin is removed from the street by Tuesday morning. We realize this is hard for some owners who leave the island on Sunday, but the costs of the program was not sustainable in our operating budget. We appreciate everyone working together to push bins back to keep the neighborhood tidy.
In closing, if you see a Board member, thank them. They work tirelessly for your benefit and care deeply about our community and about protecting your assets. Without them, we would not be where we are today—a thriving, growing community which we like to call the best island on the Texas Coast.
We have received many requests from homeowners for Saturday meetings. In response to that request, please note the next Board meeting will be held Saturday, September 14 at 8:30 a.m. All members of the KACPOA are always welcomed to attend.
President of the Board, KACPOA
Dave Foster, President
Lynn Powers, Treasurer
Debbie Kahanek, Secretary
Rickey Williams, ACC Chair
John Schwarz Jr.