Crooked River Ranch Roundup

The very few residents who attended a joint meeting of the Crooked River Ranch Club and Maintenance Association Board of Directors and Budget/Audit Committee March 17 got a glimpse of how much the cost of living on the Ranch is likely to increase in the coming fiscal year of 2015.

On top of a $24 increase in annual dues, some Ranch fees proposed to increase moderately are: golf memberships, green fees and cart rentals, plus visitors to the Ranch RV park will pay more in the winter months to offset the increased costs of keeping the park open during that period.

They also saw a sizeable list of capital expenditures proposed that, if approved, will fund various projects, including building additions, equipment acquisitions, golf course improvements and an added emergency route out of the Ranch via Southwest Quail Road, plus the addition of one accounting staff member to keep track of all the changes. Cost of adding the alternate emergency route may be offset by a government grant.

A review of the proposed increases raises the question of whether homeowners association members are being asked to play catch-up for needed expenses that were not addressed in the past few years, which would have lessened the amount of increased capital spending this year.

During a recent interview, HOA Treasurer Herb Parker said, “No, that’s not the case; increased costs of employee health insurance and an unusually big load of emergency road repairs necessitated by heavy winter weather are two of the main causes.”

The national Consumer Price Index hasn’t been moving upward significantly recently and isn’t forecast to in the coming months, so inflation should not be a dominant factor in higher 2015 fiscal-year costs either. It’s a stark fact that keeping the Ranch efficient is a complex and costly process, just like it is for any other comparably sized community.

It behooves Ranchers to try and take in one of the remaining Budget/Audit Committee sessions to obtain a grasp of what is going on with keeping the Ranch running efficiently and how that might impact their individual pocketbooks.

Both the Budget/Audit Committee and HOA board are composed of volunteers who desire and appreciate feedback from their constituents. If that doesn’t materialize while the annual budget is being debated, they can’t be criticized later for not making an effort to solicit resident reaction to the process taking place.

The remaining schedule of the Budget/Audit Committee and HOA discussing the 2015 fiscal budget includes a work session Monday, April 7, at 10 a.m., and a second reading and adoption of the operating budget by the board on Monday, April 21, at 6 p.m.

To show you care about how the HOA spends your money and avoid surprises, attend one of the meetings. A vocal group of interested HOA members in attendance asking probing questions can influence the voting on spending motions.

Contract Publishing

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