Ad Hoc Cooper Land Evaluation Committee To Turn Findings and Recommendations Over to Board
On Thursday, July 7, 2022, the Ad Hoc Cooper Land Evaluation Committee met for the last public committee meeting. The committee is finalizing its investigation and is scheduled to make a presentation to the HSVPOA Board of Directors on July 20, 2022.
The ad hoc committee consists of 7 members from multiple standing committees: Gen. Jeff Lofgren, Chair, Finance & Planning Committee; Janet Rowe, Vice-Chair, Trails Committee; Thomas Gale Smith, Public Services Committee; Mark Quinton, Parks & Recreation Committee; Concetta “Pookie” Dixon, Lakes Committee; Karen Crowson, Governmental Affairs Committee; and Max Billingsley, Common Property, Forest & Wildlife Committee. The Board Liaison to the Committee is Robert McLeod.
Chair Lofgren had an email discussion with Jody Latham, President of CCI specific to the Cedar Creek parcels (CCI refers to these two parcels as P 100 and P 101). Three topics were discussed:
- CCI has hired a national company to do a market analysis on the Cedar Creek property in order to give the Hot Springs Village POA a market value of the property. Latham will share the market analysis with the committee as soon as she receives it.
- Committee Member and Real Estate Agent, Karen Crowson, shared that there is a 127.06 acres real estate tract located in Lonsdale that is listed for $499,950.
- Lofgren said that the takeaway from this is, “we can probably expect the market analysis to lower the figure we have…It will probably be significantly less, therefore making it something that may be digestible for the community and will make the Board at least have to pause and think about how to proceed.”
- CCI is willing to give the HSVPOA first right of refusal if someone were to make an offer on Cedar Creek. Lofgren said he thinks the right of refusal should be put in writing.
- CCI is willing to finance the purchase of the land over a five-year period of time for zero percent interest.
Crowson said she likes the idea of POA hiring our own appraiser and that this recommendation should be made to the Board. Crowson estimates the cost of an appraisal for Cedar Creek would be $1,700 to $2,500.
The Declarations say we cannot buy property using a special assessment.
Addressing Community Questions
Committee Member, Mark Quinton, was tasked with answering questions/concerns from residents. Recently the community was again asked to submit questions.
Quinton felt that it would have been better to attach more information about what the committee has been doing to the request for questions/concerns from the community. Quinton said he received over 100 emails and most were very passionate about Cedar Creek Trail, both pros and cons for keeping it. Twenty-five percent of the emails were opposed to spending money to purchase Cedar Creek Trail and fifty percent wanted to keep the trail.
Vice-chair, Janet Rowe, said that she thinks if the POA has a public forum information session, this would help the community with their questions and concerns regarding Cedar Creek Trail.
There is also an option to take a survey, but there would need to be education ahead of time.
Rowe said, “Feedback I have gotten from talking to people. They hear things. They speculate. They don’t know all the facts.”
Avila said if we don’t have some kind of education before a survey, it will be biased. Use every means to talk about it and then pursue a survey. Not a small effort. It will take time to put it together.
Presentation to the Board
Lofgren will be making a presentation to the Board of Directors on Wednesday, July 20, 2022. The ad hoc committee’s final written report will be sent to the Board on Friday, July 15. Lofgren wants to make the presentation detailed enough for the community to understand why the committee made the recommendations they made.
POA will pay recording and survey fees, as required. This is the cost of doing business, said Lofgren.
When Reserve Property is Sold it May Not Be Required to Be Part of Village
Board needs to be aware that reserve property may not always be brought into the Village. This is potentially a risk part of the equation.
If CCI sells reserve property, they have the authority to determine if it is part of HSV. CCI said their criteria to allow the property to not be part of HSV is if it can be accessed by outside roads and does not use POA utilities. Cedar Creek falls into this category.
There are five landlocked properties, with 53 landlocked card holders, on the north side of the Village. These property owners are not part of the POA. Under Arkansas law, we have to give these property owners access to their land. The POA issues these property owners ‘landlocked cards’.
Report by Cheryl Dowden
Cedar Creek Trail
All village golfers, members and guests, are supposed to pay a $2.50 user surcharge – earmarked only for Balboa golf course improvements. There may be future separate user golf surcharges in the future for improvements to other village courses, thus being collected from golfing members and guests. I golf; therefore I will pay the golf surcharge user fee.
The POA has promised and earmarked monthly fee assessments for infrastructure and has no business in the Cedar Creek venture. This would be a loss in terms of spending POA monies. In my opinion, let the users (all trail walkers) open their checkbooks and pay for this in a trail fee if they want it that bad. When the POA collects the total amount in trail fees and private donations, then the purchase can be made from CCI.
Although I commend your efforts thus far it seems your committee is at a crossroads to figure out how to proceed on the Cedar Creek deal
In my professional opinion you should do three things
1. Pay to get your own appraisal to compare to CCI
2. Make a presentation to HSV ( sample test panel) in a public forum (qualitative research)
3. Based on forum then conduct data collection
based on a professional questionnaire design to eliminate biased opinions (quantitative research) & submit to same group who participates in sample test panel. Otherwise, you will have invalid data.
These fundamental steps will bridge the information gap between the committee & residents who participate.
If I can be of service feel free to contact my office pro bono .