Ames resigns from HI board

Friday, June 20, 2014
Ken Ames

HOLIDAY ISLAND -- The Holiday Island Board of Commissioners has been taxed with finding a replacement for Commissioner Ken Ames, who announced his resignation Monday.

Ames is in the third year of his one three-year term.

He told the board he and his wife don't care for the winters here and are moving to Florida, to the Fort Myers area on the Gulf Coast. They also have a daughter who lives in that area.

"I have appreciated both being part of the Holiday Island Board of Commissioners team and the opportunities that have been provided to me during the last several years," he said.

Fellow commissioners thanked Ames for his service and noted he served as chairman during a very difficult time for the district, during two major lawsuits.

Ames' resignation is effective June 30.

Roads and the water system were the main topics of discussion, as commissioners heard from residents and staff about problems.

Rupert Baumgarten, who lives on White River Lane, said rain washed out his road, and it cost him $2,000 to $3,000 to fix areas affected on his property. The culvert needs cleaning, he said, but he had gotten nowhere asking for it to be done.

"All this chat we put on the roads ends up in the ditches and clogs up the culverts," said Commissioner David Makidon, who also lives on White River Lane.

"Last year you put a cosmetic fix on it, and there were potholes the very next day," Baumgarten said, referring to chip-and-seal work done. "It's a disgrace."

Road Superintendent Kenny DeHart explained the road needs to be taken down to the hardpan and rebuilt.

He also said he has only three full-time staff to work on miles of roads and ditches.

"I have it written down, and I'll make it a priority," he said to Baumgarten.

He also said he would put together a package for what it would take to rebuild the road.

District Manager Dennis Kelly said he had met with McClelland Engineering last week to talk about a preliminary study of long-term solutions for roadwork.

He also said he spoke to them about establishing the pounds-per-square-inch force that asphalt and chip-and-seal roads can handle and bringing in portable scales to weigh trucks.

"We have to let trucks know they can reduce their load or add axles to spread the weight out more evenly," he said. "We'll educate them."

He said a company could be hired to weigh trucks on portable scales and post limits.

By way of road damage from new construction, the board approved 4-1, Greg Davis voting nay, to raise the road damage inspection fee from $250 to $400.

Property owner David Nanna, who lives on Sailboat Drive, said he has had to replace three water pressure regulators because of problems with too high a pressure, even though they are rated for 400 psi, he said. Failures affected his water softener, he said, citing more than $400 in damage.

He questioned whether the Water Dept. staff is qualified and know what they are doing.

Water/Wastewater Superintendent Dan Schrader said his staff are certified and he goes on 90 percent of the calls when there is a problem.

The district has 36 manual pressure reducing valves, and the hilly terrain affects water pressure at different locations. The remedy, he said, is to turn off one of the valves and open another in order to put Nanna's location on a different pressure plane.

Schrader said the district does not monitor overall system pressure, which is costly to set up.

"It depends on how much you want to spend," he said.

Matchpoint, Inc., will be coming out to do more leak detection this summer, Schrader said. He said a leak identified at Stateline and Wild Turkey drives will be repaired soon, but the street will be shut down except to local traffic for a couple hours.

The board heard a draft 2012-13 audit report from Eric Hoyt of Beall, Barclay & Associates. He said the district has a "qualified opinion" on the audit, which means there are material deficiencies in reporting, but they are nothing new and not uncommon in a small government like the district. Separation of duties is not financially feasible, as it would require hiring two or three more people. Some journal entries also had to be corrected, he said, but added he saw nothing that concerned him in the audit, and if he had, he would have brought it to the board's attention.

The board approved a motion to lease golf course equipment from Toro and Luber Bros. as opposed to taking a loan to purchase it. A resolution will be passed at the next meeting.

The board also approved, 4-1, Brown voting nay, the Ad Hoc Screening Committee -- Legal Services, composed of Kelly, Fire Chief Jack Deaton and property owner Wes Stille. Brown questioned the possible conflict of interest because Stille is the president of the Table Rock Landing Timeshares board, which sued the district in 2011 over assessments and settled with the district last year.

The board will meet Monday, June 23, at 9 a.m. The agenda will include a date for a town meeting on the board's strategic planning retreat held in April and nominations to replace Ames.

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  • Never seen a place do more studies than holiday island...all the studies could fill the ball room and the actions on those studies well, could fill a thimble..just sayin...

    -- Posted by recdoctor on Sat, Jun 21, 2014, at 1:03 PM
  • most of the road issues can be summed up with these words. LACK of MAINTINENCE! When I moved here many years back, there was some attention given our roads. But even with maintenance, some of these roads were poorly surfaced to begin with.

    There is no pride in workmanship with our roads, and examples are all around us. All one has to do is drive around and look, before criticizing my remarks. So much of the areas where lots are available, have very poor roads, and the person in charge is failing in job performance.

    Lets not talk just about the roads, but the pot holes, jagged edges that can slice a tire or grass/weeds that are only trimmed in certain areas.

    Maybe there's no budget, maybe the deficit absorbs to much money, maybe there's no knowledge, but more then likely no dedication to the job of road maintenance. So when you see a H.I truck at Fred's or Office Pub and know it isn't lunch time, ask them how their doing with the roads.

    -- Posted by Concerned Person on Mon, Jun 23, 2014, at 8:51 AM
  • Maybe our HISID Manager needs to drive around and observe first hand, areas not being serviced but pay their assessments. Mr. DeHart states, "if there is only one house, there is no need to take care of the road." Guess that one house doesn't pay assessments!

    -- Posted by Concerned Person on Mon, Jun 23, 2014, at 8:58 AM
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