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Document Amendments, Vacation Security and New Board Members

Bennington

At the June Westchase Voting Members we voted on the proposed amendments to the Declaration and Bylaws. Four of the Declaration amendments did not pass while all of the Bylaws passed. The amendments that did not pass were the one allowing for the association to go onto a property in case of an emergency; the one that would allow the Variance Committee to authorize variances not specifically set out in the Declaration; the allowance for retractable awnings on the rear of properties; and the one allowing for future amendments to guidelines to be voted on by individuals that are subject to the guideline.

A committee has been formed that is looking into the rental situation in Westchase. They presented a preliminary report that included how they are determining the number of rental units in Westchase, which does not appear to be as great as originally thought. The number does, however, vary from neighborhood to neighborhood. The committee is continuing to research the situation and will be presenting suggestions at a future meeting for possible guidelines to put in place to deal with rental units and tenants.

Now that school is out and summer has officially begun, more people and children are out and about so please be careful and alert driving through the neighborhood.

No meeting is scheduled for July. I hope that everyone has a good and safe summer!

By Jeanne Klimschot, Bennington VM

Stockbridge

Hello, Stockbridge residents! If you had not heard, the gator that had been encroaching on some of the lakefront yards was removed by a Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission trapper. The male gator was over five feet in length. While gators are common in Florida and our area, if you feel that one is getting too close for comfort, please contact me so we can take the steps necessary to request possible removal.

While writing this Village Voice, I am vacationing in our home state of Maryland. I offer a reminder to take the time to let your neighbor know that you will be gone as part of your summer vacation preparations. Ask them to keep an eye on your home for you. You should also stop mail for any extended trips and take precautions to ensure the safety of your home while you are away,

I hope everyone is having a great summer so far. I wish you a safe and happy Fourth of July!

By Ed Siler, Stockbridge VM

Townhomes of WPV HOA President

Having worked in the non-profit industry for more than 30 years, I understand and value the power of volunteers. They give their time, expertise and passion to make our community a better place. What could be better than West Park Village? As a homeowner in WPV since the beginning in 2000, I have seen our village grow and become a premier community in which everyone wants to live. When given the opportunity to step up to the plate to serve as a board member and then president (yes, a very fast transition!), I therefore accepted with the vision to continue to make WPV the neighborhood of choice for those transferring to the area, for those who want a different urban but suburban lifestyle and for all the other great reasons we chose to live in Westchase.

Your Townhomes board is currently searching for additional board members. The board will be recruiting and reaching out to not only long-term residents but also our new homeowners, who I know moved here because they love the village.

The board recently approved the replacement of dead shrubs and plants for our front lawns. I hope you have found this an improvement to your front yard’s landscaping.

I welcome your suggestions and solutions to any ideas that you may have regarding our association. More important, I welcome your volunteer spirit. I hope you will join me in our quest to continue to make our association a strong one.

I offer our special thanks to our outgoing president, Ray Chiaramonte, and his wife, Debbie, who will still be with us in the village, just not in the Townhomes of West Park Village.

I can be reached at debbiedawson53@yahoo.com.

By Debbie Dawson, Townhomes of WPV HOA President

COMMENTS

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Village Voices, June 2014: Block Party, Document Amendments and Board Members

Stockbridge

We had a great block party last month. Thanks to everyone who brought delicious food, it was awesome! We had the chance to reconnect and meet some new neighbors too. We offer a special welcome to the newest and littlest Westchasers: Owen, David and Mia. We look forward to the fall block party!

The proposed amendments to the Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions (CCRs) and Westchase Community Association (WCA) Bylaws will be officially voted on at the Westchase Voting Members (VMs) meeting this month. The VMs previously elected to send the amendments to all residents for review and vote. If you did not return your polling notice, I am required to vote for you at my discretion. It is imperative that you let me know your opinion if you did not return your polling notice. VM meetings are open to every Westchase resident. You may (and on occasion should) attend both VM and WCA Board meetings to be aware of the decisions about Westchase that affect us and our homes.

Several residents have asked why we had a re-vote on the mailboxes. We did not have a quorum on the first vote. Some residents informed me that they did not receive a ballot. Others stated that they did not know where to return it. Some said they did not realize there was a deadline. There were several requests for a re-vote and residents felt their voice was not heard. We will not vote again until VM elections for next year and only if it is added to the 2015 VM proxy by resident requests.

If you are not on the Stockbridge e-mail distribution list, please send me your e-mail address. If you are not receiving e-mails from me, you are missing out on information about our village and the Westchase community happenings. I invite you to participate in the process of making decisions.

I am here to represent each Stockbridge resident. I volunteered and ran so that we, as a whole, through a democratic process, have a voice within the WCA. Being a part of Stockbridge and the Westchase community means that we accept what is in the guidelines and bylaws and you can get involved in the decision making process if you participate.

Have a great summer!

By Ed Siler, Stockbridge VM

West Park Village Townhomes

It looks like we have avoided anything resembling a drought this year as we are approaching the summer rainy season in pretty good shape. Lots went on at the last Westchase Voting Members (VMs) meeting as we prepare to vote on changes to our documents at our June 10 meeting. In April the VMs agreed to send out the proposed changes to our property owners for polling. Remember if you do not vote on the ballot you received in the mail, I will have to make a decision on how to vote to represent those who chose not to participate. My intention at this time point is to support the changes proposed.

Other recent actions proposed at the VM meeting include changes to the residential guidelines. Many of the changes, if adopted, will provide more guidance to the Modifications Committee in making decisions. They include areas such as permitted paver colors, retractable awnings in the rear of homes, screen enclosure standards, outdoor kitchens and fire pits, solar tubes and skylights, and approved trees and plants for landscaping. Generally the direction has been to allow these changes with some guidance as to how they can be done. As new products and trends develop, it’s important that we keep up with them in our community. The VMs will be taking up these changes also at the June 10 meeting. 

On a different note, I will be selling my townhome and my wife, Debbie, and I will be moving down the street a couple of blocks to a single family home; therefore, I will not be on the board of the Townhomes of West Park Village any longer.  We will be having a meeting soon to have new board members fill my position and that of Mike Niemis, who recently moved out of Westchase. Look for our signs as to the date but it will be before June 12, when my existing townhome is scheduled to close.

I am pleased to say we are still going to live in West Park Village. Our new home will be the third one we have purchased in the immediate neighborhood. We could not think of another neighborhood in which we would want to live in Hillsborough County. This says a lot about what a great place this is and how privileged we all are to live here. I have enjoyed serving as your president for the last couple of years. It is my hope that some of you will stand up and volunteer to be on the board. Thanks for the confidence you have had in me. It was a pleasure to serve in this role.

By Ray Chiaramonte, WPV Towhnhomes HOA President

COMMENTS

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Village Voices, May 2014: CCRs and Bylaws Poll, Dog Duty and Mailboxes

Bennington

In April the Westchase Voting Members (VM) voted to send revisions to the bylaws and covenants of Westchase out to residents for polling. Please take a moment to review the proposed changes and vote.

I offer a reminder that I have set up a neighborhood page on Nextdoor.com. Since this is a secure site, you will need to create a login and then verify your address through a few simple steps. I urge everyone to check it out and please start using it to share information with your neighbors. I will continue to post a summary of the monthly VM meetings along with other timely information.

Another reminder for everyone: Please pick up after your dogs, especially if they go on the sidewalk! There have been numerous complaints about a neighbor who owns a very large dog and who does not show common courtesy to the neighborhood.

Everyone have a good month!

By Jeanne Klimschot, Voting Member Bennington

Brentford

It has been a year since my last Village Voice contribution. While it’s a shame to ruin a streak like that, here it goes anyway.

I’ll begin by borrowing some wisdom from the late Kurt Cobain, who said, “Just because you’re paranoid. Don’t mean they’re not after you.”

If you have a discolored driveway or trashcans that are visible from the street, you may feel like “the Man” has it out for you lately. Take solace in the fact that you have lots of company in your misery. The Westchase Community Association (WCA) manager recently reported that they had mailed out 1,700 violation letters in a six-week period. The WCA has stepped up their inspections recently in an effort to ensure that the appearance of Westchase doesn’t erode as the community ages. So when you think about it, every time you get that notice in the mail with the photo of your offending element, it’s like a little, friendly note from the Man saying that he cares about your property values. If your leanings are more radical and you decide you want to fight the Man – well, more power to you, but be aware that the covenants and bylaws of the association are being strengthened so that scofflaws may find that the penalties for non-compliance have some teeth.

On a related note, like a third-world despot I recently supported a change to the community bylaws that will extend my term of office as the Brentford VM to two years. Before you break out the torches and pitchforks, be advised that this change will save the association thousands for dollars each year on printing and postage in support of the neighborhood elections. Besides, I don’t think anyone wants the job anyway. By the time the May WOW is published, you may have already received a ballot in the mail from the WCA asking you to vote for the changes to the covenants and bylaws. If you’re interested, vote. If not, I will cast the votes for the owners that don’t respond at the next Voting Member meeting. Last, if you would like to be added to the Brentford distribution list, e-mail me at Ltcmartyhamilton@hotmail.com and I’ll add you. You can also get neighborhood updates on the Brentford Facebook page at "The Brentford Neighborhood Page."

By Marty Hamilton, Brentford VM

The Greens

Happy Memorial Day!

It’s hard to believe we are fast approaching Memorial Day and the hot, long, rainy summer season! Before you proceed with exterior changes to your homes or yards, make sure you double check with the Westchase Community Association (WCA) management office to confirm if you need prior landscape or painting approval.

At the April Voting Members (VM) meeting, I was presented eleven pages of violations attributable to The Greens. The most common violation, with 91 total, was discolored sidewalks and driveways. That’s pretty high when you consider The Greens has 420 homes. While it was not the only violation in The Greens, it definitely deserves our attention.

Additionally, VMs spent time reviewing the proposed amendments to the Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions (CCRs) and Bylaws. In late April you were mailed a poll regarding them. Please complete and return it.

When was the last time you attended a monthly VM or WCA Board meeting? When you purchased your home in The Greens, did you consider it a sizable investment worth protecting? If so, you owe it to yourself to participate in a meeting occasionally.

The Web site of the Community Development District’s (CDD) Greens gatehouse page is http://www.westchasecdd.com/4.html There. you’ll find further information, along with the resident form, just in case you care to update your resident file.

Please send all new e-mail addresses to me at gpappa@tampabay.rr.com so we can add all new Greens residents to The Greens database.

By Gerald (Jerry) Pappa, The Greens VM

Stockbridge

At the last Voting Members Meeting we voted on sending out a poll on the proposed amendments to the Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions (CCRs) and Bylaws. We also discussed Westchase rentals and investor-owned properties. It was decided that a committee would be formed in order to review the topic and determine if it needs any further discussion. I volunteered to participate on the committee and will keep you posted.

I have received several complaints about the parking and student pick-up issue for Davidsen Middle School. It appears that some Davidsen parents are parking on the right side of the entry way into Stockbridge, causing exiting cars to enter the oncoming traffic lane in order to leave the neighborhood. This is not just an inconvenience but a safety issue. I plan to talk to the Westchase Community Association (WCA) to find out what actions we can take in order to prevent our neighborhood entrance from continuing to be a student pick-up area.

Several residents have raised the Stockbridge mailbox question. Our vote turnout to change the mailboxes was about 70 percent of our total residents. Some have told me that they did not receive a ballot; others stated that they did not know where to return theirs. Several homeowners have requested a revote. It has been six months since the original vote was taken.

In talking to the WCA Office, we are permitted to vote again on the mailboxes. Due to the residents’ request and the low number of votes collected, we will vote again this spring. I will have ballots at my home and I will e-mail residents with the information as well. Please be sure to complete the ballot, return it to me and I will deliver them to the WCA for review.

I know we have some new residents in our quiet, little village and I would like to welcome you. Please be sure to say hello to Brie and Mike Gorecki when you see them around the neighborhood.

By Ed Siler, Stockbridge VM

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Road Repair, Spring Cleaning, Block Parties and Repainting

Bennington

Sorry for missing last month’s issue. I was a little under the weather.

I have set up a neighborhood page on a new social network called Nextdoor.com. It is geared specifically for neighborhoods and is a private online network where neighbors share community events, recommendations, items for sale, crime reports, ideas about how to improve our neighborhood and more. You will need to create a login and then verify your address through a few simple steps. I urge everyone to check it out and please start using it to share information with your neighbors.  You can also check out what is going on in surrounding neighborhoods that are part of the site. It is a more efficient way to share information on a timely basis.

I would like to thank those who came to the annual neighborhood meeting in January. Many concerns were raised and good discussions began. We received a very disappointing response from the Community Development District (CDD) representative about street repaving. She deferred to the county and said there was nothing that the CDD could (or would) do. It will therefore be up to our neighborhood to continue to put pressure on the county to fix the roads. We would like to organize the neighborhood and take turns continually calling and e-mailing the county in the hopes that they will get sick of hearing from us! I know that it is a longshot, but sometimes the squeaky wheel gets the grease. I will post information on the new Nextdoor.com site and hopefully we can begin organizing our efforts.

I hope everyone has a good month!

By Jeanne Klimschot, Bennington VM

The Greens

Happy spring! Now that spring has arrived, we all begin to plan all those great spring activities. Before you proceed with new landscaping or exterior changes, make sure you check with the Westchase Community Association (WCA) management office to confirm if you first need Modifications Committee approval.

When was the last time you attended a monthly Westchase Voting Members (VMs) or WCA Board meeting? When you purchased your home in The Greens, did you consider it a sizable investment worth protecting? If so, you owe it to yourself to participate in a meeting occasionally.

The Web site of the Community Development District’s (CDD) Greens gatehouse page is http://www.westchasecdd.com/4.html There. you’ll find further information, along with the resident form, just in case you care to update your resident file.

Please send all new e-mail addresses to me at gpappa@tampabay.rr.com so we can add all new Greens residents to The Greens database.

By Gerald (Jerry) Pappa, The Greens VM

Stockbridge

I was unable to attend the March 18 Westchase Voting Members (VMs) meeting, when we were presented the proposed amendments to the Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions (CCRs) and Bylaws. Once I have an update from our alternate, Ron Boyington, I will let the residents know via e-mail of anything that may affect us. Remember that Westchase Community Association (WCA) Board meetings and VM meetings are open to all residents. The monthly schedule is available under the events tab on WOW online, http://www.WestchaseWOW.com

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I am always looking for items to add to our Village Voice. Please share with me any items or events you think would be useful. I’d ask new moms and dads to be to keep me posted when the happy day arrives so we can celebrate your news. I will also pass these along to the WOW for consideration.

We are looking to hosting the neighborhood block party on April 25 or the following weekend in May. I will come around the neighborhood with flyers and send out an e-mail update the week before. Please let me know if you would like to assist in any way.

If you are not receiving my e-mails, please be sure to e-mail me to be added to the Stockbridge distribution list: edsiler@gmail.com.

Happy Easter!

By Ed Siler, Stockbridge VM

Townhomes of West Park Village

The Townhomes board of directors met on March 5 and discussed a number of items. The first was our landscaping. The association will be responsible for landscaping that was part of the original package that came with the townhome when it was built. If plants are diseased or damaged, then we will replace them. Simply notify Denise at Greenacre Properties and she will decide if the landscaping was part of our original plan. If it is, she will arrange for Davie Landscaping to repair or replace the plants. This is only for landscaping in your actual yard and does not include street trees in parkway area, which are the homeowner’s responsibility.

We also discussed painting of our units, coming up in a couple of years. The first issue is whether we should place ourselves on a six- or seven-year painting schedule to save extra money for the eventual replacement of our roof shingles. Right now we are on a five-year schedule. Remember that we borrowed money from that fund to replace our wood fences a few years ago with PVC fencing and are still catching up with replenishing the roof account. We made no decision on that issue, but will talk more about it in the future.

Another painting issue was exterior color choices. The last time we just painted the units the same color they were originally painted. I feel we should include some of the newer colors that are part of the Westchase master palette recently adopted by voting members. Mary McQuinn and I will review colors and report back. Color styles change over time and we want to keep our units looking current.

On a final note we have a new board member, Joshua Butts, who replaced Mary Rodriguez, who recently moved to another section of Westchase. We still need another board member to replace Mike Niemis, who will also be moving soon. It is important that we have involved board members to help make decisions. It’s not that time consuming as we do most of our business through e-mails and only meet a couple of times a year. Please consider volunteering.

I wish all our members a great spring as we watch our trees and plants come back to life and make our beautiful community even better.

By Ray Chiaramonte, WPV Townhomes HOA President

Wycliff

The March Westchase Voting Members (VMs) meeting occurred on March 18 after WOW deadline. Wycliff does, however, have an annual event coming up. You are cordially invited to the Wycliff Eggstravaganza!

Come help us celebrate Easter with the little ones and enjoy some appetizers, drinks and some good, old-fashion neighborhood camaraderie. If you don’t have kids, we still want to see you. If you have some little ones you know may enjoy this, bring ’em (but let me know so I can make sure we have plenty of eggs for them during the egg hunt)!

The Wycliff Eggstravaganza will be held in the cul-de-sac on Saturday, April 19, from 4 p.m. to whenever. The egg hunt begins at 5 p.m.

Please bring an appetizer of some sort (we are keeping it light), your own drinks and chairs.

By Shaney Nadel, Wycliff VM

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Village Voices, March 2014: Rentals, Neighborhood Meetings and Board Volunteers

The Bridges

At their March meeting the Voting Members are scheduled to discuss the subject of single family home rentals in Westchase. Westchase was built to be a very diverse housing community, offering rental apartments, condominiums, townhomes and single family homes. Some feel that a high density of rented single family homes, especially when the owners are absentee corporate property owners not interested in the long term value of their property or our community, may be bad for a community. Others feel like it doesn't matter. If you have any feelings on this, please let me know.

The Guidelines and CCRs Committee will present their proposed amendments to the Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions (CCRs) and By-laws at the March Voting Members meeting. The Voting Members Meeting will be held Tuesday, March 11, at 7 p.m. at the Westchase Swim and Tennis Center on Countryway Boulevard.

At the January Board of Directors meeting, the committee meeting with the Costco developer reported that the developer has been very receptive to our suggestions and most have been agreed to. I expect you can read more updated information elsewhere in the WOW or at WOW's Web site, http://www.westchasewow.com

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Please send an e-mail to bridgesvm@gmail.com and include your home address if you would like to receive updates by e-mail.

By Cynde Mercer, The Bridges VM

Stockbridge

The mailbox question has been resolved. Forty-nine of the homeowners submitted the ballot and voted on the mailbox question – retain the white mailboxes or upgrade to the black aluminum mailboxes. The vote closed on Feb. 7 and was very nearly a tie. No other ballots can be accepted at this time. In order for the change to take place, at least 51 percent of residents were required to vote in favor of the new mailboxes. Please be sure to maintain your current mailboxes and keep them in good repair.

The voting members meeting for February was cancelled. The next voting members meeting will be held on March 11 and we will be given an initial presentation of the proposed amendments to Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions (CCRs) and By-Laws. Just as a reminder, Westchase Community Association (WCA) Board Member meetings and voting member meetings are open to all residents. The monthly schedule is available under the events tab in the WOW online.

As a reminder from the monthly e-mail, if a resident wants to swap their trash or recycle cart for a different size, here is the info. Cart Swap-Out is now under way through March 15. A one-time size change at no charge can be arranged by contacting our franchise collector, Republic Waste Services, at (813) 265-0292, or e-mailing the Solid Waste Customer Service Center at solidwaste@hillboroughcounty.org. Roll cart size changes after March 15 will incur a $30 charge each. If you want a different size trash or recycle container, and do not want to pay for it please contact Republic Waste Services prior to the March 15.

With spring quickly approaching, I am sure most of us have household to-do lists looming. Mine is termed the Honey-Do, but I love to do it anyway! Be sure that if your home repairs, improvements or upgrades include enhancing the exterior of your property that you submit a request to the Modifications Committee. If you are not sure if your improvements require committee approval, call first before you take on a project. A list of FAQs regarding home modifications can be found on the WCA Web site, http://westchasewca.com

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Last, we have some great neighborhood events coming up this month. Frist Friday is right around the corner. Our last Movie in the Park is this month and will resume in October and then there is St. Patrick’s Day. Our Irish flag will be flying next week. We are looking to host the neighborhood block party in April and will send out a firm date very soon. If you are not receiving my e-mails, please be sure to e-mail me to be added to the Stockbridge distribution list: edsiler@gmail.com.

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

By Edward Fitzgerald Siler, Stockbridge VM

Townhomes of West Park Village

I hope all our residents are surviving this roller coaster weather. I have managed to catch something that seems to going around and never leaves. A friend from the school board said there are three different germs going around. It seems like when you get rid of one, another one comes in. I hope by the time you read this, I am better. I have been sick since Jan. 8.

Our Townhomes association has an important meeting coming up on Wednesday, March 5, at 7 p.m. It is being held at the Westchase Community Association (WCA) office next to the West Park Village pool. We need a couple of fresh faces to replace our outgoing board members, Mary Rodriguez and Mike Niemis. They will be moving out of our community soon and we need to have new volunteer board members replace them. We meet just a few times a year. This will give new people a chance to participate in our association. We hope to see some of you step forward. This meeting is also a chance to bring up issues you may have that you would like to discuss.

Don't forget spring break is coming up in March. Remember you can win $100 if you take along WOW and submit a photo of yourself holding the magazine on your out-of-state adventure. I look forward to seeing some of you on March 5. By then this cold weather should be over!

By Ray Chiaramonte, Townhomes HOA President

Villas of West Park Village

As we mentioned in last month’s Village Voice, on Feb. 3 the Villas held our annual meeting. Following the meeting, your 2014 Villas Board of Directors met, elected its officers and took action on various issues, including a proposed change to our Declaration of Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions (CCRs).

During the annual meeting 64 members were present in person or by proxy, 69.5 percent of the total members of the association. The three declared candidates elected to the board for 2014 were Gregg Spieth, Christine Miller and Carlos Quiros.

During the meeting the board took the following actions. They elected Carlos Quiros as president; Greg Spieth as vice president; Christine Miller as secretary; and Kevin Riley as treasurer. They voted to apply any excess of income over expenditures for the year 2013 to the 2014 budget. They voted to maintain the gutter materials as they currently exist, which follows the West Park Village architectural guidelines. They voted to continue for two more years the Villas association’s program of pressure washing sidewalks, lead walks, front and rear curbing and driveways of all villas.

Last, they voted to modify the wording of Article II, Section 3 (1) of the Villas of West Park Villas’ Declaration to read: “Roofs. All roofs shall consist of dimensional fiberglass shingles (30 years or better), except for any roofs on screened enclosures, screened porches or other additions to a home, that are first approved by the Westchase Modification Committee. Where a flat roof is utilized on a screened enclosure, screened porch or other addition, the roof system may consist of wood shingles, galvalume steel (corrugated, 5V-crisp or standing seam), aluminum, stainless steel, copper, or rubberized TPO roofing, or other acceptable roof material if first approved by the WCA Voting Members and included in the WCA Guidelines. This proposed change to our CCRs must be submitted to all Villa owners for their consideration as it requires 66 percent of members voting in the affirmative for final approval.

By Carlos Quiros, Villas of HOA President

COMMENTS

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Village Voices, Feb. 2014: Neighborhood Elections, New VMs, Costco and Foreclosures

Bennington

As I sit to write this, many January meetings have not yet taken place. I will hopefully have more to report in next month’s Village Voice.

I will send out notices of meetings as well as neighborhood and Westchase updates to those whose e-mail address I have; please send your e-mail address to benningtonwatch@outlook.com.

A major topic is the planned Costco at the southeast corner of the Linebaugh and Sheldon intersection. Some feel that it would be a benefit while others are strongly opposed. If you have a strong opinion, please feel free to e-mail me. Costco representatives are scheduled to meet with the Westchase community in February. I’ll send out the meeting’s date and time as soon as I receive notification.

All neighborhood dog owners are reminded that you must pick up after your pet! It shows your neighbors common courtesy and it’s also the law. You can face a fine if reported. Most people are responsible and courteous, but we still have a few who are leaving little (and big) presents on people’s lawns. Thank you for your cooperation.

By Jeanne Klimschot, Bennington VM

The Greens

Happy Valentine’s Day!

When was the last time you attended a monthly Westchase Voting Members (VMs) or Westchase Community Association (WCA) Board meeting? When you purchased your home in The Greens, did you consider it a sizable investment worth protecting? If so, you owe it to yourself to participate in a meeting occasionally.

Have you paid your annual WCA assessment yet? If not, it is now late, and you have been assessed a late charge. Remember to pay it before it’s turned over to the WCA attorney for collection, adding his legal fees.

The Web site of the Community Development District’s (CDD) Greens gatehouse page is http://www.westchasecdd.com/4.html There. you’ll find further information, along with the resident form, just in case you care to update your resident file. When was the last time you did that?

Please send all new e-mail addresses to me at gpappa@tampabay.rr.com so we can add all new Greens residents to The Greens database.

By Gerald (Jerry) Pappa, The Greens VM

Stockbridge

Hello, Stockbridge! I would like to thank you for voting for me to be your new voting member (VM). I, too, was sorry to see Joe Odda leave this post as he did an excellent job at representing us. Luckily, Joe will still be involved in the Westchase Community Association (WCA) as he was elected to the WCA Board at the January board meeting. Congratulations, Joe!

Over the last two months I’ve had the opportunity to meet many of you. If we haven’t met, please feel free to stop by and say hello or send an e-mail. I look forward to getting to know you and being Stockbridge’s voice. My wife, Jen, and I plan to organize a block party in the early spring. If you would like to assist, feel free to e-mail me.

I know Stockbridge mailboxes, a recent hot topic, are on everyone’s mind. By the time this is published, we should know more about where we stand. Some residents have not yet voted on the mailbox question. I delivered formal petitions on Jan. 11 to homeowners who had not cast a vote. (Of Stockbridge’s 68 homes, 42 voted as of Jan. 14.) All homeowners have had an opportunity to state their preferences and I hope every homeowner votes so that everyone is represented.

If you are not receiving my e-mails or if you would like to add an e-mail address to the Stockbridge distribution list, please e-mail me at edsiler@gmail.com.

By Ed Siler, Stockbridge VM

Townhomes of West Park Village

This month I just want to highlight a few things. At our last Townhomes board meeting our directors made a decision to discontinue the bait system of termite protection after discussing its effectiveness and cost. Our normal pest control is still in effect. Termite protection can be done by individual owners if they desire. Of course, this issue can be revisited in the future if the membership prefers a different approach.

We are putting the money saved into our roof reserves. This fund was short because it was previously used to replace our wood fences. We are making good progress on building the roofing fund back up and the additional money will help.

We are losing two of our board of directors this spring. Mary Rodriguez and Mike Niemis are leaving our board after many years of dedicated service because they are moving. We thank them for all they’ve done. We therefore need some new volunteers to run for the open positions. You would play an important role in guiding our future. The work is not too demanding – just an occasional meeting and sometimes some e-mail decisions. Please let me know if you are interested.

The final issue I wanted to discuss is the new Costco proposal. Developers are planning a mixed-use center on the property bordered by Sheldon Road, Linebaugh Avenue, and Old Linebaugh Avenue. It’s important to work with the developer to come up with a quality project that becomes a neighborhood asset rather than just another strip shopping center. Costco's hours of operation do not start until 10 a.m. The development may include restaurants and possibly a drug store. The developers are going to hold a February meeting to show the community exactly what they are proposing and answer questions. A WCA committee has been working with them to communicate concerns and recommended improvements. The Hillsborough County long-range plan does designate that property for mixed-use development. It’s important that we express our opinions to make sure it enhances our community.

According to recent sales our units are rising in value again. It feels like things are returning a more normal state – something that seemed missing the last few years. We are very lucky to live in such a desirable, nice community.

By Ray Chiaramonte, President of Townhomes of WPV HOA

Villas of West Park Village

You’ve all received the first notice of our next annual meeting on Feb. 3 at the Westchase Community Association (WCA) Office, 10049 Parley Drive, at 7 p.m. At this meeting we shall elect three owners to the Villas Board of Directors, each for a two-year term. You also received a proxy vote which I hope you have already returned to our management company. If you haven’t done so, please get it to any one of the board members so your vote can be counted prior to the meeting.

As of this writing only three Villa owners have indicated their intent to run for the board: Christine Miller, the current board secretary; Gregg A. Spieth, a Villa owner for over four years; and me. Since most of the Villa owners know Christine and me, I offer a short resume of the new candidate, Gregg Spieth.

Gregg and Carol, his wife of 40 years, reside at 9515 West Park Village Dr. He has over 30 years of progressive management experience in addition to extensive strategic consulting assignments in both the public and private sector. He holds an undergraduate degree from Miami (Ohio) University and an MBA from the Ohio State University. He is retired and possesses the time, energy and desire to be involved in our community.

Last, I would like to recognize George Pennington, who has been our vice president for many years but has decided not to run again. George has been quite active in all Villa activities. He has been our alternate voting member and always has said “present” for any special assignment on behalf of our sub-association. Personally, there are four things that unite George and me. First, we were both served in the Army as “medics.” Second, we both served as executive assistants to a major – George in Tampa and I in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Third, our birthdays happen to be on the same month, November. Last and quite curious, we both were married on the same month and day, Dec 22.

By Carlos Quiros, President of the Villas of WPV HOA

The Vineyards

Greetings, Vineyards residents! Much is happening in the first quarter of 2014 in The Vineyards. Our annual meeting and board elections will take place on March 15 at 5 p.m. at The Vineyards pool. The deadline to submit your notice of intent to run was Jan. 27, but it’s not too late! You are invited to run from the floor at the meeting and/or submit your name as a write-in candidate on the proxy. I encourage you to run as it is a very rewarding experience.

Please watch your mailbox for the proxy form, which will give you a chance to vote for the next Vineyards Board, to possibly change the painting requirement from five to seven years, and to indicate your position on any other issues which may be brought to a vote.

In addition to the election, several topics will be covered, including major landscaping projects and neighborhood beautification. I offer my thanks to both the 2013-14 Vineyards Board of Directors and the architectural review committee for their work over the past year, and the social committee for putting together a great holiday party in December. The horse drawn carriage is always a favorite!

Don’t forget about the trash can rules: please place containers on the street’s east or south side at least three feet from any object, including other containers.

By Kevin Kwan, President of The Vineyards HOA

Wycliff

As mentioned previously we were expecting another little addition to our neighborhood. Baby Serena made her debut at 9:30 p.m. on Jan. 8. Congratulations to the Merly family. We can’t wait to meet her!

Our Jan. 14 Westchase Voting Member (VM) meeting was very busy. We addressed an amendment to the Variance Committee, were provided a Costco update, addressed the issue of vacant or foreclosed homes, and were introduced to the World of Beer’s first 5K run on March 1 (a portion of the proceeds go to the Westchase Charitable Foundation).

The Variance Committee is a committee that addresses variances to Modification Committee denials, largely for health or safety reasons. VMs voted to remove the $150 application fee for a variance hearing.

The WCA has asked the Costco developer that any structure erected have a brick exterior in keeping with Westchase architectural features. The land will also hold outparcels for a possible fast food restaurant, drug store and more. There are no plans to widen Linebaugh Avenue at this time. Some have expressed concern that Westchase residents traveling to and from Westchase between 3:30-6:30 p.m. will encounter congestion. To counter this, the hope is that the county completes the connection of Citrus Park Drive to Countryway Boulevard (by 2025) and then to Linebaugh Avenue (by 2035). Morning rush hour was not a concern since Costco does not open until 9:30 or 10 a.m.

VMs also discussed abandoned and foreclosed homes. If one is on your block, you basically must wait for a bank to take it over, so it will be a waiting game. The WCA does have an attorney that addresses these homes in the courts. The association also has money set aside for some self-help (for example, lawn care).

Happy Valentine’s Day!

By Shaney Nadel, Wycliff VM

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Village Voices, Jan. 2014: New Year’s Greetings, Neighborhood Elections and Speeding

Bennington

Hello, Bennington! I would like to introduce myself as your interim voting member. For those of you who don't know me by name, you may know my dog, Darby. She has been dubbed by some as the neighborhood ambassador!

If you have not yet received it, you will soon receive the notice for the Bennington Annual Meeting, including a ballot for the neighborhood voting member. All you have to do is check a box, sign your name and put the card in your mailbox. We need one-third of the neighborhood homes plus one more to vote in order for the election to be valid. My name will be on the ballot along with my neighbor, Russ Crooks, who has offered to be the alternate voting member. It is important that we have representation and I would encourage all of you to please attend the annual meeting. It is only one night a year for an hour and it is a great way to have our voices heard.

I have set up an e-mail address and ask that you please forward to me your e-mail addresses so that we can compile a list for the neighborhood and notify everyone of important information and any announcements. Also please use this address for sending any questions or concerns. Please keep in mind that I can only do so much as a voting member, but will bring the concerns and issues to the attention of the group at the monthly meetings. The e-mail address is benningtonwatch@outlook.com.

After I’ve spoken with many neighbors, it appears there are a variety of concerns. I will attempt to address a few of these each month. One of the biggest concerns speeding. Please slow down when driving through the neighborhood. Most people are courteous and obey the speed limit; however, we seem to have a few that consider Bennington Drive to be the back stretch at the Indy 500. Be aware as you are driving through the neighborhood that there are people out strolling and walking their pets. Children are also out playing and crossing the street. We have had too many close calls and we don't want to have any accidents or, worse, have someone get hit.

I will sign off for this month, but hopefully there will be more to come if you elect me as your voting member for 2014!

Regardless of whom you support, please be sure to vote and attend the annual meeting!

By Jeanne Klimschot, Bennington VM

The Bridges

Happy new year! I hope that your holidays were very happy.

All homeowners should have received a postcard from the Westchase Community Association (WCA) with your ballot for the Bridges voting member election by now. The return postcard/ballot is return-addressed and stamped. Please take a few minutes to sign it and drop it in the mail. If you are prepared to vote or have a write-in nomination, do it at that time, but please just sign and return the ballot. If we do not have a quorum returned by mail, then we will be walking around the neighborhood asking you to sign and turn in a ballot prior to our annual meeting.

Please also plan on attending The Bridges Annual Meeting on Thursday, Jan. 23, at 5:30 p.m. at the
WCA Office at 10049 Parley Dr. to share your concerns.

Please send an e-mail to bridgesvm@gmail.com and include your home address if you would like to receive updates by e-mail.

By Cynde Mercer, The Bridges VM

Glenfield

The Annual Glenfield Block Party, which customarily would have been held this past December, is indefinitely cancelled due to poor attendance. After months of recuperating from a broken foot and after major surgery, with a sad heart I report I am unable to continue as the team leader anymore. I was very disappointed with the lack of attendance at Glenfield’s Block Party in December 2012. Only a handful of families came – less than one percent of Glenfield’s 101 homes.

I thank those who did attend the previous Glenfield Block Party on Saturday, Dec. 1, 2012 for sharing part of your day with us to celebrate and enjoy each other’s company! I thank Debbie and Mark Morley for all the help and for Nancy Fraser Carrier for the assistance after my injury with help breaking down the party. It made things so much more bearable knowing that you all were there to lend a hand.

If there is interest in bringing back the block party then maybe we will consider this in the spring time, but I cannot currently risk my health and well-being without assistance from my neighbors and assurances that there will be more than one percent of Glencliff showing up. Anyone interested in picking this up and running with it, be my guest. Pick a date and time and good luck! I will gladly give my assistance if asked but I cannot run it anymore.

Thank you. It has been a fulfilling and satisfying serving as your Glenfield Block Party Coordinator.

By Patti Soares

The Greens

Happy new year! Please note that The Greens Annual Meeting and election is scheduled for Thursday, Jan. 23, 2014 at 6 p.m. in the Westchase Community Association (WCA) offices. Remember to mail your proxy ballot back to the WCA office by Jan. 13, or plan to attend the meeting with your ballot.

Also, if you are a Greens property owner, you owe it to yourself and the continued value of your property to attend the January Voting Members meeting at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 14. At this meeting my fellow voting members and I will be discussing the issue of abandoned properties in Westchase and the effect it has on our neighborhoods. Please plan to join us.

The Web site of the Community Development District’s (CDD) Greens gatehouse page is http://www.westchasecdd.com/4.html There. you’ll find further information, along with the resident form, just in case you care to update your resident file. When was the last time you did that ?

Please send all new e-mail addresses to me at gpappa@tampabay.rr.com so we can add all new Greens residents to The Greens database.

By Gerald ( Jerry ) Pappa, The Greens VM

Keswick Forest

Happy new year to my fellow Keswickians! Please mark your calendars for our Keswick Forest Annual Meeting Monday, Jan. 6, at 6 p.m. at the Westchase Swim and Tennis Center on Countryway Boulevard. If you haven't already mailed in your proxy card, please do so quickly. All homeowners and renters are welcome and encouraged to attend. Typically, the meeting lasts no longer than 15 minutes and it's a great time to voice your ideas, concerns and suggestions and discuss neighborhood watch issues. I hope to see you all there.

On another topic, I've received a record-breaking number of complaints that need to be addressed. As of late, we've had a number of cars parking across from each other on the street, leaving very little room for folks driving in and out. Not only is it an inconvenient for your fellow neighbor, it's a hindrance if emergency personal should need to get into the neighborhood. Please keep this in mind when you or your guest(s) are parking.

My last soapbox item for this month is speeding through the neighborhood. If you find yourself asking, "I wonder if she means me," then yes, it's you. Please slow down. We love our children. Thanks!

If you wish to join our Keswick e-mail list, please send us your e-mail address at lmccluskie@tampabay.rr.com, Brian Loudermilk at bloudcct@gmail.com or Aaron Thompson at waaronthompson@hotmail.com.

By Leslie McCluskie, Keswick Forest VM

Villas of West Park Village

It seems it was just a while back that I prepared my contribution for the December 2012 WOW. The reality is different. A full year has passed but our love for Westchase, especially the Villas of West Park Village, has remained the same – or maybe has increased a little bit.

First, I want to express on behalf of your Villas Board the most sincere wishes for better health, happiness and prosperity to everyone in this new year. We hope we’ll continue working for the benefit of every member of our association and maintain the best curb appeal in West Park Village.

You recently received the first notice of our annual meeting at 7 p.m. on Monday, Feb. 3. As usual, this meeting will be held at the Westchase Community Association (WCA) Office, at 10049 Parley Dr. At this meeting we’ll elect three owners to the Villas Board of Directors, each for a two-year term. If you wish to run for a seat, you must file a notice of intent and may prepare a candidate information sheet setting forth your interest, background and qualifications. These documents must be submitted to our property manager, Denise Scheck, at dschek@greenacre.com. The deadline for submitting both documents is Jan. 6. This is needed to prepare the ballots for the annual meeting.

After the annual meeting the board will meet to elect its officers and address any other issue that might require board action. Once again, happy new year!

By Carlos Quiros, Villas of WPV HOA President

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Westchase Shout Outs, December 2013

I would like to take this opportunity on behalf of Radcliffe to say a big “thank you” to the Westchase Community Development District (CDD), especially to Sonny Whyte. She has made it possible for our school bus stop in front of our community park to be a more pleasant spot for the children to get on and off the school bus. All the parents are pleased with the newly paved areas, and we just cannot thank Sonny and the CDD supervisors enough. Thank you so much for listening to our concerns!

One of Westchase’s founding families will officially be leaving the community on Dec. 20. Hal and Joanne Gastler were the tenth family to live in Westchase and purchased their first home in Woodbay. Hal was the first president of the Westchase Community Association (WCA) and, with Joanne, started the original Westchase newsletter, which later grew to become the WOW. They have owned three homes in Westchase and lived in the West Park Village apartments for a year as well. It is with a heavy heart that we say goodbye to a family that has dedicated their lives to this community. They are moving to North Carolina, where Hal just took a new job. Joanne will be working remotely from there as well. Their daughters Jennifer and Christine have started their new lives as well. Christine lives in Connecticut after graduating from UConn and Jennifer was married Nov. 2 to William Chan. They are expecting their first child in January. Jennifer will be moving to DC in a few weeks. We wish all the Gastlers well and hope they will visit us often.

Congratulations to our daughter, Marybeth Lambert, for being accepted to University of Tampa for the upcoming year! We are so proud of your hard work, many accomplishments, and the dedication you have shown to your school, music and your friends! We love you! -Mom and Dad

WOW wants your Shout Outs, short messages saying congratulations, well-done, thank you or “hey, we have some good news.” Shout Outs should be no longer than 75 words and can include a high resolution photo (JPEG attachments please). Send by e-mail by the fifteenth of the month to editor@westchasewow.com.

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Village Voices, Dec. 2013: Block Parties, Annual Meetings and Holiday Greetings

The Bridges

Happy holidays! As I write this, turkeys are starting to look really nervous and the decorations are up in the malls. It is Chrismukkah! Have a very relaxed, joyous and safe holiday season.

Soon you will receive a postcard from the Westchase Community Association (WCA) with your ballot for The Bridges voting member election. The return postcard/ballot is return-addressed and stamped. Please take a few minutes to sign it and drop it in the mail. If you are prepared to vote or have a write-in nomination, do it at that time, but please – please – just sign and return the ballot. If we do not have a quorum returned by mail then we will be walking around the neighborhood asking you to sign and turn in a ballot prior to our annual meeting.

Speaking of our annual meeting, go ahead and mark your January calendar for The Bridges Annual Meeting on Thursday, Jan. 23, at 5:30 p.m. at the WCA Office at 10049 Parley Dr.

Please send an e-mail to bridgesvm@gmail.com and include your home address if you would like to receive updates by e-mail.

By Cynde Mercer, The Bridges VM

The Greens

Welcome to the month of December, the holiday season is now in full swing.

Please watch your speed throughout The Greens this holiday season and please remind your guests and service providers about our speed limit.

If you are having a holiday party, please notify The Greens gatehouse in advance, and provide them with the date, time and guest list, so that they can operate the gatehouse smoothly during this very busy time of the year. Remember that you are only one of 510 homes behind the gatehouse!

Please visit http://www.westchasecdd.com/4.html the C,ommunity Development District’s Web page for the Greens. There you’ll find further information, along with the resident form, just in case you care to update your resident file. When was the last time you did that?

Please note that The Greens Annual Meeting and election is scheduled for Thursday, Jan. 23, at 6 p.m. in the Westchase Community Association (WCA) office building on Parley Drive. Remember to mail your proxy ballot back to the WCA office by Jan. 13, or plan on bringing your ballot to the meeting.

Please send all new e-mail addresses to me at gpappa@tampabay.rr.com so we can add all new Greens residents to The Greens database.

Happy holidays to all!

By Gerald ( Jerry ) Pappa, The Greens VM

Radcliffe

Radcliffe salutes our own voting member (VM) – we thank Eric and Tamara Holt for hosting our autumn neighborhood block party! A good crowd participated, and it seemed everyone had a good time mingling and enjoying the drinks and eats. Thanks to all who provided the goodies! If you would like to host the next session, I’m sure Eric would like to hear from you.

I offer a reminder to all that our community association manager conducts monthly deed violation inspections, which include two overnight sessions. Recently, we have been faring pretty well. If your landscaping needs sprucing up or if you have dirty sidewalks or roofs, however, you might want to get those things spiffed up. At the HOA level, we’ve dealt with a few cases of overnight street parking. For the new folks (and the old heads, too), I offer a reminder that cars cannot be parked on the street overnight. They belong in your garage or driveway, but not blocking the sidewalk.

It also appears that our new trash schedule is working well after a few hiccups the first week. Thanks for your cooperation.

Also, please remember that holiday lighting is allowed from Thanksgiving until Jan. 15.

Last, Radcliffe also wishes to thank the staff members at both our association managers’ office and the Community Development District (CDD) for their support all year long in helping to keep our standards up and making Westchase a highly desired location to live in Hillsborough County.

On behalf of our VM team (Eric, Chuck and me), here’s wishing a safe and joyous holiday season to your families and you.

By Keith Heinemann, Radcliffe Alternate VM

Stockbridge

Serving as your Stockbridge Drive Neighborhood Voting Member (VM) these many months has truly been a privilege. I thank you for having elected me. My hope is that you feel I performed well and effectively. Though I have chosen not to serve again in 2014, my heart remains with Stockbridge and its dynamic residents. It is exciting to note that we have a person, or persons, with interest in being elected as our VM for next year. Along with that information, please remember to complete and mail your proxy as soon as possible to help elect a VM and to decide on our rules for either a wood or all-metal “retro” mailbox standard.

The annual meeting for Stockbridge is Dec. 19, at 6:30 p.m. in the Westchase Community Association (WCA) Offices at 10049 Parley Dr. I will be there. It will be a pleasure to see as many of our owners as possible that early evening. Please join us.

We will soon know the level of participation by Stockbridge in our 2013 Westchase Thanksgiving Food Drive for those in need. Everyone looks forward to a report of growth over our giving for 2012. The necessity for helping to feed the poor and marginalized individuals in this society does not stop after Thanksgiving weekend, however, so keep in mind that food aid can be provided year-round through clubs, organizations and faith groups. If we are willing to do it, consistent and targeted giving becomes a “force multiplier” in addressing the hunger problem. Kindly consider that option.

You have my wishes for safe and joyous holidays with peace, prosperity and good health in the new year. Again, thank you for making it possible for me to have served as your VM.

By Joe Odda, Stockbridge VM

Villas of West Park Village

On behalf of the Villas Board of Directors, I wish everyone the very best during Christmas and I hope that the year 2014 brings health and happiness to all Villa owners.

Different from years past, the Villas’ next annual meeting will be held on Monday, Feb. 3. Our documents require that the annual meeting be held 60 days before or after the start of the fiscal year. It was felt that we should leave the Christmas period to rejoice with family and friends and leave more mundane things for later. By Dec. 20 you will receive by mail the official notification of the annual meeting, which will also give you 15 days to nominate yourself or another Villa owner who is willing to accept. There will be three positions open for election at the annual meeting.

We hope that any member willing to be in the ballot for the annual meeting will respond as early as possible as we must prepare the printed ballot. It will describe the vacancies to be filled, set forth the names of those nominated for such vacancies and contain space for write-in candidates (those nominated at the annual meeting) and for written votes by members present. This ballot will be mailed to all Villa association members no later than Jan. 20. It should be returned no later than the day of the annual meeting.

By Carlos S. Quiros, Villas of WPV HOA President

Wycliff

We hope you had a great Thanksgiving. Mark your calendars: our annual Wycliff Holiday Block Party/Santa Parade will take place Dec. 14 from 2-6 p.m. Santa should arrive around 3-3:30 p.m. The time is early enough that those of you who have holiday parties that night can still come and join us for a bit. Please don’t forget to bring an unwrapped present to donate.

In addition the Wycliff Voting Member election will take place Dec. 10 at 6 p.m. at the Westchase Swim and Tennis Center. If you cannot attend the meeting, please make sure to mail your proxy card.

I hope to see you at the block party!

By Shaney Nadel, Wycliff VM

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Speeding, Dog Park Funding and VM Elections

The Bridges

It’s time to get serious about nominating yourself or your neighbor(s) for The Bridges Voting Member election. The ballots will be printed and mailed very soon. The election, held in January, is the only time homeowners cast an official ballot. The voting member, or an alternate, will represent you in all matters that come before the voting members (VMs), so it is important to have reliable, responsible representation. VMs elect the board of directors, create and approve guideline and Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions (CCRs) changes, approve the paint palette and help shape the annual budget. (See the Westchase Government Primer in the back of WOW for more information). If you are interested in nominating a neighbor (after obtaining that neighbor's permission) or yourself, send your nomination(s) to the WCA manager at manager@westchasewca.com immediately.

In order to run, you must be a homeowner in good standing with the association and be prepared to attend monthly meetings (if elected Voting Member, not an alternate) and familiarize yourself with Westchase government.

I have had some complaints about dog walkers not picking up after their pets. Do I have to tell you why you must pick up after your pet? Puppy poop not only stinks, it is also full of bacteria, worms and other things we humans don't want in our environment. When it rains, the runoff pollutes our yards and ponds. When lawnmowers run over it or we step in it, it gets tracked onto sidewalks and is carried into our homes. When we lie around on the carpet or floor, yuk! Carry a plastic bag or two with you and be nice. If you're not, keep looking over your shoulder. A smartphone may be taking your picture!

It is almost time to deck the walls, gutters, shrubbery and mailboxes. Don't forget the timeframe for holiday decorations. They may go up at Thanksgiving and must be down by mid-January. Be careful putting them up so you can enjoy your holidays.

Please send an e-mail to bridgesvm@gmail.com, and include your home address if you would like to receive updates by e-mail.

Happy Thanksgiving!

By Cynde Mercer, The Bridges VM

The Greens

Welcome to the month of Turkey Day! How are things in the neighborhood with regards to speeding throughout The Greens?

By the way, if you have encountered any issues with the Greens Gatehouse, please let me know. On the Web site for the gatehouse, http://www.westchasecdd.com/4.html you&r,squo;ll find further information, along with a resident form to update your resident file, which contains a list of your pre-approved visitors.

A friendly reminder: formal approvals are normally required from the WCA office for just about anything that is visible around the front exterior of your home, including painting. If you are in the process of selecting a color for painting your home or if you selected it from the former color palette, please make sure that the color(s) exist on the new palette. Further, if you have any questions, please contact the Westchase Community Association (WCA) office and speak to either Debbie or Charlotte at 926-6404. The new color palette is on display at the Westchase Swim and Tennis Center on Countryway Boulevard.

Please send all new e-mail addresses to me at gpappa@tampabay.rr.com so we can add all new Greens residents to the Greens database.

By Gerald (Jerry) Pappa, The Greens VM

Stockbridge

Our Westchase Dog Park Task Force was formed in early 2013 to explore the creation of a Westchase Area Dog Park. It has been an honor to chair the group, which includes Ron Boyington, Stockbridge Drive; Ray Chiaramonte, Townhomes of West Park Village; Ira Hoffman, Woodbay; David Love, Bennington; Karen Nelson, Traditional Townhomes; Tuyen Tran, Village Green; and Edward L. Santiago and Ken Blair, Westchase Community Association (WCA) Board Members. I’m happy to report our success!

The task force identified needs for a dog park, including at least one acre of land for a combination large/small dog facility. After Hillsborough County Real Estate Services provided a list of surplus county property, the task force identified a 4.2-acre site just north of the Upper Tampa Bay Regional Library and expressed that preference to Hillsborough County Commission Vice Chair Sandra Murman. We also documented the park’s needs and requested $100,000 for its construction. The board approved those funds for fiscal year 2014 through Hillsborough County Parks, Recreation and Conservation Department. Notably, the question of location remains to be decided by county staff.

Please join us at in thanking Commissioner Murman, her assistant, Jeffrey Huggins, and our county commission as whole for providing the park funding. I am also proud of, and grateful to, our excellent task force for their thoughtful and exceptional service. I’ll keep you posted on future developments.

Stockbridge Mailboxes (keeping our current ones or holding a petition drive to change them to black metal) are a topic of recent discussion. Response to my e-mail and hand-delivered background information the week of Oct. 7 leads me to conclude that it’s in Stockbridge Drive’s best interests to do a formal petition/vote this fall. All homeowners will have an opportunity to state their preferences. I will gather all background information and materials for the project. Several individuals have also offered to help. We must reach the owners of all 68 units.

Please remember to participate in this November’s Thanksgiving Food Drive. We want to increase our giving even above last year’s level. Do join many others in feeding the poor and the marginalized among us.

Happy Thanksgiving!

By Joe Odda, Stockbridge VM

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Gatehouse Wings, Mailbox Supplies, Halloween Block Parties and Elections

The Bridges

Homeowners in Baybridge, Sturbridge and Wakesbridge should have ordered their new mailboxes by now. The order deadline to avoid additional charges was Sept. 30. I erroneously put the wrong deadline in the September WOW, but we hand-delivered a notice with a corrected date to each home over Labor Day weekend. The order forms and an FAQ document are on the Westchase Web site (westchasewca.com) for download (look for a link in the left sidebar). Anyone who wishes may request a printed copy by contacting me.

It’s time to start thinking about nominating yourself or your neighbor(s) for our voting member election. The election, held in January, is the only time homeowners cast an official ballot. The voting member (VM), or an alternate, will represent you in all matters that come before the VMs, so it is important to have reliable and responsible representation. VMs elect the board of directors, create and approve changes to Westchase Guidelines and our Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions (CCRs), create and approve the paint palette, and create, with management's help, the annual budget, which is then approved by the board of directors. You may want to review the Westchase Government Primer in the back of each WOW if you are unfamiliar with the governmental process in Westchase. If you are interested in nominating yourself or a neighbor (after obtaining that neighbor's permission) send your nomination(s) to the Westchase Community Association (WCA) manager, manager@westchasewca.com. In order to run, you must be a homeowner in good standing with the association and be prepared to attend monthly meetings (if elected VM, not an alternate).

Please send an e-mail to bridgesvm@gmail.com, and include your home address if you would like to receive updates by e-mail, including the mailbox forms.

By Cynde Mercer, The Bridges VM

The Greens

Welcome to October! Maybe – just maybe – it will begin to cool down.

As you may be aware, our Greens gatehouse was struck by a delivery truck recently and was repaired at the expense of their insurance. Please make your delivery folks aware of the height restriction on both the entry and exit wings of our gatehouse and ask them to stay clear of them.

By the way, if you have encountered any issues with the Greens Gatehouse recently, please let me know. On the Web site for the gatehouse, http://www.westchasecdd.com/4.html you&r,squo;ll find further information, along with a resident form to update your resident file.

If you are in the process of selecting a color for painting your home or if you selected it from the former color palette, please make sure that the color(s) exist on the new palette.  Further, if you have any questions, please contact the Westchase Community Association (WCA) office and speak to either Debbie or Charlotte at 926-6404. The new color palette is on display at the Westchase Swim and Tennis Center, which is located just off Countryway Boulevard.

Please send all new e-mail addresses to me at gpappa@tampabay.rr.com so we can add all new Greens residents to the Greens database.

By Gerald (Jerry) Pappa, The Greens VM

Radcliffe

Hello, Radcliffe! Most of you may already know at this point, but we now have an official source of matching spray paint for our mailboxes. I have already placed our second order for paint and will continue to place additional orders as long as there is enough demand. We also have a source of replacement brass numbers for our mailboxes. Unfortunately, they are not cheap (approximately $60 for a full set). I can provide our contact for ordering upon request.

Finally, I wanted to announce the date of our next semi-annual block party. Please join us at our home at 11916 Keating Dr. on Saturday, Oct, 19, at 4 p.m. Because you can never get enough beer and bratwurst, it will have an Oktoberfest theme. More details will go out to everyone via e-mail. If you are not included on our e-mail list, please send your contact information to radcliffevm@gmail.com.

By Eric Holt, Radcliffe VM

Stockbridge

There were two responses to my informal survey on Stockbridge mailbox replacement in my September column. One indicated interest in replacing their mailbox with the newer all-metal type. The other expressed satisfaction with the present wood-post version. While not conclusive, let’s keep the vote idea alive. Let me know if you see a need for a formal survey/vote on a change.

On Sept. 10 the Westchase Voting Members elected three persons to the Westchase Community Association (WCA) Board for two-year terms. Elsewhere in this issue of WOW, the election outcome is reported. An interesting discussion took place afterward about owner attendance at monthly WCA Board meetings. Quite honestly, attendance is welcomed and encouraged. You will find that board meetings cover an interesting and complex agenda each month. They’re marked by thorough deliberation and owners have opportunities to share their comments and suggestions. Each month’s agenda is now published online at http://www.westchasewca.com Once .on the site, go to “Calendar” and then “Agendas for the Upcoming Meetings.” We hope to see many more residents attend.

As trick-or-treaters dart from house to house at the end of this month, what we really witness is a celebration of our nation’s abundance. When men from Spain and Italy landed those three small ships in the Caribbean in 1492, none of them imagined the enormous resources and opportunities this part of the world represented.  

Next month is November (What, already?), when we set aside a day to express our thanks for abundant food, shelter, clothing and security. It’s also a time when Westchase residents, through a small army of volunteers of all ages, donate food for those who remain in need of that most basic requirement. In 2012, Stockbridge Drive contributed at a rate well above the previous year. We hope to continue with even stronger growth in giving for the 2013 food drive. It’s scheduled for Nov. 24. Do take some time to confer as families this month and plan for what your household will contribute. Naturally, there will be more information provided on when and how to do so. Our outstanding volunteers will make certain we know.  

Enjoy these special autumn days!

By Joe Odda, Stockbridge Voting Member

Villas of West Park Village

During the last meeting of the Villas Board, the 2014 budget was presented, discussed and approved.  Your board felt the need, for the first time in the last few years, to increase the monthly assessment due to the need for a more consistent and aggressive maintenance program, especially in the repair of roof leaks, which increased notably in the past year. The increase will be $15 per month.

The Villas Board also decided to change out the CFI bulbs in the carriage lights on our garage exteriors and install an adapter to allow for the use of regular florescent light bulbs. By the time you read this article, we expect this project to be completed.

In the next few days you will receive the schedule for the October pressure washing of Villas’ sidewalks and curbs, the lead walks to the front porch, and the garage entrances. This will be the last time, within the present two-year contract, that we will conduct this program. We would like to hear from our members regarding whether it should continue it or not.

By Carlos Quiros, Villas HOA President

Wycliff

Summer is gone and fall is here. You know what that means, right? The garage sale! Mark your calendars. On Oct. 5 from 8 a.m.-1 p.m. the Westchase semi-annual garage sale will take place.

With the fall season comes cooler weather (hopefully soon), which means the Wycliff kids will be outside playing much more often. Please make sure to drive slowly and exercise caution around turns when entering our little street and our cul-de-sac.

A Halloween party will be planned for Saturday, Oct. 26. Details will be e-mailed out as time comes closer. Last, three candidates for the Westchase Community Association (WCA) Board of Directors were appointed by unanimous vote of the voting members (VMs). The directors are Joaquin Arrillaga, Ken Blair and Dyan Pithers.

Have a great October, Wycliff!

By Shaney Nadel, Wycliff VM

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Mailboxes, Garbage, Dog Park and Pool Rules

The Bridges

Homeowners in Baybridge, Sturbridge and Wakesbridge should be ordering their new mailboxes. The order deadline to avoid additional charges is Sept. 30. [Editor's note: The Bridges VM submitted an incorrect date for the hardcopy version of WOW. The correct date, Sept. 30, is included in this online version.] The order forms and an FAQ document have been placed on the Westchase web site (westchasewca.com) for download (Look for a link in the left sidebar). Anyone who wishes may request a printed copy by contacting me at bridgesvm@gmail.com.

This is the only notice homeowners will receive unless they are on my e-mail list, so please pay attention to the deadline and share with your neighbors if you believe they are unaware.

Trash and recycling containers have arrived – those giant containers that everyone will love to hate. Is it time to clean out the garage to store them? I know I have some shuffling to do to get mine in there with my car. Remember, your containers must be stored out of view, according to Westchase Community Association (WCA) guidelines.

If you have complaints or want more information about the new pickup plans, go to the county's Web site, http://hillsboroughcounty.org/talktrash

.

Please send an e-mail to bridgesvm@gmail.com and include your home address if you would like to receive updates by e-mail, including the mailbox forms.

By Cynde Mercer, The Bridges VM

Radcliffe

Hello, Radcliffe! I am pleased to announce that we now have an official paint match for our mailboxes. Many of you have expressed concerns over the required upkeep of our “new” mailboxes over the past several months. This has stemmed largely from the common issue of chipping and peeling of the finish that is taking place. Earlier this year, I communicated an offer that our mailbox manufacturer has extended to us to address our mailbox maintenance needs. In essence, it provides a replacement option through December 2015 at a one-time fixed cost of $240. However, a shorter term fix would be to touch-up or re-paint our mailboxes.

The trick has been to find the right paint match. Unfortunately, not everyone has been successful in this endeavor as evidenced by a recent increase in violations notices from the Westchase Community Association (WCA) on this matter. Well, problem solved! I recently took it upon myself to purchase a case of the correct color match spray paint for our mailboxes. This match was formulated by the manufacturer, and is now considered our official Radcliffe mailbox touch-up paint supply to ensure consistency moving forward. Many thanks to Keith Heinemann for tracking down our exact color match with our supplier! Cans are sold at cost and can be purchased for $23.50 by contacting me at radcliffevm@gmail.com or calling 727-2019.

By Eric Holt, Radcliffe VM

Stockbridge

Following up on an item from my August Village Voices column, I really would like to hear from our Stockbridge Drive homeowners about conducting a vote to determine interest in converting to black and gold aluminum mailboxes. These would replace our present white mailboxes with wood posts. There were no responses to my August query, so I again encourage everyone to offer their thoughts on whether or not to conduct such an election. A simple majority of owners would determine the outcome. Please reach me at 391-5706 or joeodda@hotmail.com with your opinion.

An opportunity presents itself this 2013 Labor Day to refrain from fireworks within Westchase. There are typically some each year. Maybe we can begin to diminish this practice which, in reality, is prohibited for many reasons. It’s pleasant to contemplate future holidays enjoyed without firecrackers and rockets. Give it a try?

Our Dog Park Task Force continues to move its agenda forward. We expect to report more on our project in the October WOW, especially the results of an Aug. 27 meeting that Ken Blair, WCA Government Affairs Chair, and I had with key personnel at the offices of County Commissioner Sandra L. Murman to discuss a priority location for a dog park. The available site is one of several that were identified as surplus county-owned land.

With the harvest season approaching, it seems appropriate to begin planning for our Westchase Thanksgiving Food Drive. Many of our neighbors throughout Westchase will generously volunteer their time to help in that effort and we thank them in advance. Everyone shares the hope that we will achieve even more growth over last year in the number of food contributions from Stockbridge Drive for needy children and adults. Kindly consider, and plan for, your participation.

By Joe Odda, Stockbridge VM

The Vineyards

Greetings, Vineyards residents! Summer has blown by and school is now back in session. The 2013 summer saw many new Vineyards residents. Please take a minute and make new residents feel welcome.

I have a few housekeeping issues to address. When parking, all residents must park their vehicles in their garages or completely on their respective driveways. Residents are prohibited from parking on the street or in cut-outs. At the pool, please close umbrellas. Use swim diapers so we do not find human excrement in the pool again. No pets are permitted in the pool area, period. No trampolines are allowed in the pool area nor is swimming permitted in the decorative fountains. Parents, please take personal responsibility for compliance.

Last, do not use the new 250-gallon trash cans until the week of Sept. 30. Garbage pick up will be Tuesday and Friday beginning Oct. 1. Please store them out of sight from the road. Please avoid putting them on your porch. Please visit our Web site at http://www.westchasevineyards.org Thank. you.

By Kevin Kwan, The Vineyards HOA President

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Pond Trespassers, Mailboxes and Dog Park News

The Bridges

Homeowners in Baybridge, Sturbridge and Wakesbridge are good to go with the new mailboxes. The order deadline to avoid additional charges is Oct. 31. The order forms and an FAQ document have been placed on the Westchase Web site (westchasewca.com) for download (look for a link in the left sidebar). Anyone who wishes may request a printed copy by contacting me at bridgesvm@gmail.com.

Got trespassers? The information I included in my June Village Voice about dealing with trespassers fishing on Westchase ponds has changed. The Community Development District (CDD), which owns the ponds, would now like for you to contact Doug Mays, CDD Field Manager, at 478-2716 when you encounter these folks, especially if they are net fishing.
As voting member, I receive a list of current deed restriction violations in our neighborhoods and there are too many. I know it is upsetting to get a violation letter. To avoid getting a letter from the Westchase Community Association (WCA), please try to keep your driveways and sidewalks pressure washed, store your garbage cans in the garage or out of public view, and do not park boats and trailers anywhere except in your garages. If you have a remodeling project and need to place a roll-off container or Pod storage container in your driveway, please complete a modification request. Remember, any exterior modification on your property will require an approved modification request.

Please send an e-mail to bridgesvm@gmail.com and include your home address if you would like to receive updates by e-mail, including the mailbox forms.

By Cynde Mercer, The Bridges VM

The Greens

Well, here it is August. With school’s return kids will be walking to and from their bus stop every day, so be aware of their presence and slow down!

Have you taken advantage of the special on mailboxes yet? From June 1 through Sept. 1, Creative Mailbox and Sign Designs is offering a special offer to Greens homeowners for a complete mailbox replacement. The regular price is $497.55, which includes installation of the complete mailbox, the post, your property address numbers and Westchase emblem. During this special offer period, Creative Mailbox and Sign Designs is offering this package to all of us for $369.15 – a savings of nearly $130. This special price includes all taxes, the removal/disposal of your existing mailbox and the installation of the new one. To place an order, please contact Creative Mailbox and Sign Design directly, and ask for The Westchase Greens Special. E-mail Cyndi Fannan at cyndi@creativemailboxdesigns.com or call them at 749-2443.

Remember, this is a 90-day special, so if you need to replace your mailbox, now is the time to do it. You are, however, under no requirement to replace your mailbox at this time, unless you have been served a violation letter from the Westchase Community Association (WCA).

Please send all new e-mail addresses to me at gpappa@tampabay.rr.com so we can add all new Greens residents to the Greens database.

By Gerald (Jerry) Pappa, The Greens VM

Stockbridge

In July an opportunity presented itself to attend a special session with the vice chair of the Hillsborough Board of County Commissioners, Sandra L. Murman, District 1 (serving Westchase and most of the coastal communities of Hillsborough County). About 17 people were present at the offices of Westchase Law to share their concerns, suggestions and ideas on a broad spectrum of issues. It is a pleasure to advise that, as I spoke about our Dog Park Task Force project, Commissioner Murman noted her special affection for dog parks and stated that they can be made available with relative ease. This is exceptionally good news. Our Westchase Community Association (WCA) Government Affairs Committee Chair and Board Member Ken Blair and I have been working to arrange meetings with Commissioners Murman and Ken Hagan and their staff to gain their good counsel about turning a parcel of surplus, county-owned property into an attractive, safe and effective dog park.

One of our Stockbridge Drive owners stopped me the week of July 8 to express enthusiasm for the black and gold aluminum mailboxes that are replacing the white, wood-posted ones in several neighborhoods. To make that change would require a vote with a simple majority of Stockbridge owners voting in favor. There is also a cost for the removal of the former mailbox and the purchase/installation of the new type. Your comments on whether or not to take this step will be most helpful. Kindly give it some thought and let me know your opinions.

It seemed to be a quieter Fourth of July this year, with the amount and duration of fireworks within Stockbridge reduced by about 50 percent from previous years. Our goal, however, is to eventually have none. Westchase prohibits fireworks that move or make any noise for the reasons most everyone can recite: disturbance of the peace, potential for injury, late-night firings, fire hazards, and so on. One irony in all this is that a large tent in Westchase in West Park Village was doing a tidy business selling these products many days before the Fourth. (That commercial property, however, lies outside the jurisdiction of the WCA.) All of this is mentioned because our Westchase owners and governmental entities share a concern over the use of fireworks in Westchase. Let’s contemplate it further as Labor Day and New Year’s approach. Perhaps we can voluntarily move toward full compliance with our community’s position on fireworks.

Best wishes to our students and their families as the new school year starts this month.

By Joe Odda, Stockbridge VM

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Bridges Mailboxes, Garbage FAQs, Firework Ban and Special Greens Offer

The Bridges

The order process for new mailboxes for Sturbridge, Wakesbridge and Baybridge is open. Visit http://westchasewca.com and look for The Bridges Mailbox Order Forms link in the left sidebar. The forms include an order form for orders through Sept. 30 and a late order form for orders placed after Sept. 30. There is also a FAQ document that will hopefully answer your questions about the new mailboxes.

Changes are coming to Westchase waste collection. Beginning Oct. 1, we will no longer be allowed to use our own trash containers for garbage or recycling or place bagged garbage without containers at the curb. We will have to use the 95-gallon county-provided containers for garbage and 65-gallon containers for recycling. (Residents, however, will still have to provide their own containers for landscape cuttings.) The county containers will be delivered prior to the Oct. 1 changeover. Hillsborough County has provided a set of FAQs to answer questions about the new process. Visit http://www.hillsboroughcounty.org/faq.aspx?qid=431 for more information.

With the July 4 holiday coming up please remember that fireworks are not allowed in Westchase. Many people have had their screens damaged by fireworks, so please don't cause a problem for your neighbors.

Mark July 13 on your calendar for a big pool party at the West Park Village pool.

If you have any issues that need attention, please e-mail me at bridgesvm@gmail.com

By Cynde Mercer, The Bridges VM

The Greens

As you may be aware, our homes in The Greens are beginning to age and so are our mailboxes. Recently, as your voting member (VM), I have had several discussions with the company that supplies mailboxes to Westchase and specifically to The Greens. Additionally, I brought this up this month at the Westchase May VM meeting, where the discussion became rather robust regarding existing pricing. Additionally, we have an issue with repairs of the existing Greens mailboxes, as there have been changes to the box and the post over the last 10-15 years and the “new” parts do not match up properly.       

So here is what we came up with. From June 1 through Sept. 1, Creative Mailbox and Sign Designs is offering a special offer to Greens homeowners for a complete mailbox replacement. The regular price is $497.55, which includes installation of the complete mailbox, the post, your property address numbers and Westchase emblem. During this special offer period, Creative Mailbox and Sign Designs is offering this package to all of us for $369.15 – a savings of near $130. This special price includes all taxes, the removal/disposal of your existing mailbox and the installation of the new one. To place an order, please contact Creative Mailbox and Sign Design directly, and ask for The Westchase Greens Special. E-mail Cyndi Fannan at cyndi@creativemailboxdesigns.com or call them at 749-2443.

Remember, this is a 90-day special, so if you need to replace your mailbox, now is the time to do it. You are, however, under no requirement to replace your mailbox at this time, unless you have been served a violation letter from the Westchase Community Association (WCA).

A friendly reminder: formal approvals are normally required from the WCA office for just about anything that is visible around the front exterior of your home, including painting. When you have questions, please contact them at 926-6404.

Please send all new e-mail addresses to me at gpappa@tampabay.rr.com so we can add all new Greens residents to the Greens database.

Happy Independence Day!

By Gerald (Jerry) Pappa, The Greens VM

Stockbridge

The fireworks staccato that typically surrounds us in early July celebrates an event in 1776 that, with the signing of a remarkable document, declared thirteen British colonies to be an independent and free nation. The 56 individuals who signed pledged their lives and their fortunes to this concept. Some lost both, with the devastation extending to members of their immediate families in several instances. They, and those who followed, pressed on and we remain a free, independent nation. Happy birthday, America!

As we work our way through the Westchase Community Association (WCA), Community Development District (CDD) and neighborhood agendas for the year, I am often struck by how well our founders’ notion of free and open discussion has been preserved. We feel safe and proud to let our thoughts and concerns be known. Consensus is subsequently built and decisions are made that the majority feel will be best for Westchase.

Within this context of decision-making, it has been a special honor being able to form a task force of interested residents to explore the feasibility of a dog park for Westchase. You are likely to see a little more information about our project in this month’s WOW profile. I am pleased to note that there have already been additional offers of help from others in our community. Great amounts of planning and coordination are needed before we will have many components of this project firmly established. We are, however, prepared for the effort and we look forward to keeping you informed about our progress. Please share your questions and comments as we move forward.

My best wishes go out to everyone for a safe, memorable Fourth of July. Thank you for all being such good neighbors.

By Joe Odda, Stockbridge VM

Villas of West Park Village

The Villas of West Park Village Board of Directors met on Monday June 10, when they discussed the responsibility imposed upon the association by Article IV of our Declaration of Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions. It states that the Villas association has “the exclusive right to painting and repair of exterior building surfaces…which must be conducted not less frequently than every six years, as determined by the board of directors.”

It was determined that for the next round of painting, the front porches of the villas, which remain the same color as when they were turned over by the builder, will be painted a similar gray hue. The board selected “Requisite Gray (SW 7023)” as the color to be used as it is the closest to the original color used by the builder. 

Although no formal action was taken, directors thoroughly discussed the lights installed by the association at the entrance to garages. The board agreed to explore the use of LED lights, which will also require changing the lamps. The LED lights will not use as much electricity and will last much longer than the present bulbs. Last, the board approved a three year extension of the contract with the association’s auditors, Bashor and Legendre. It will run 2013-2015.

The Villas’ next board meeting will be held on Monday, Aug. 26, at which time the 2014 budget will be presented for discussion and approval. We hope that many members will be present as this subject directly impacts all villa owners through their monthly assessments.

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Mailboxes, Noise Complaints, Trees, Gutters and Garage Lights

Brentford

Following another riveting discussion on mailboxes at the May Westchase Voting Members meeting, I was thankful for two things: first, I was glad I had a copy of the WOW magazine at my seat to help me pass the time. Second, I’m glad we have the old white mailboxes in Brentford.

As of May 2013, two more neighborhoods have decided to convert to black metal mailboxes at a cost of approximately $300 per home. It’s interesting to hear feedback from neighborhoods that switched mailboxes in the last 12 years. Most of what I heard was negative. The black mailboxes need to be waxed to stop them from fading and peeling. Westchase’s reclaimed water corrodes the posts. Multiple homeowners had anecdotes about having to replace the mailbox after the door broke off or the box was hit by a car; they discovered their $300 mailbox now costs $585 to replace at the same vendor.

I, for one, am feeling pretty smug about the white and gold lonely sentinel at the end of our driveway. It looks just as good today as it did 16 years ago when it was plunked into the ground. And there are at least two industrious young men in Brentford who are happy to keep my mailbox looking sharp for a very modest cost, although I find it more therapeutic to watch the queen of the castle do that task.

So remember neighbors: “Take care of your mailbox, and it will take care of you.”

By Marty Hamilton, Brentford VM

The Bridges

Baybridge, Sturbridge and Wakesbridge have approved replacing their mailboxes with black aluminum mailboxes (Stonebridge has already replaced theirs and Stockbridge and Woodbridge are separate neighborhoods now.). The Westchase Voting Members approved the guideline change on its first reading in May and they’ll hold a final vote in June. Afterwards, homeowners will be able to place orders and schedule their installations.

Order forms will be sent out attached to an e-mail and will be placed on the Westchase Web site for download. Anyone who wishes may request a printed copy by contacting me. We have also prepared an online FAQ feature for the mailbox switchover to help address questions. Orders will be accepted from July 1 through Oct. 31. After the Oct. 31 deadline, the price will increase and you may be liable for association fines for not being in compliance with our guidelines.

With the coming of spring our ponds are again a temptation for people coming into our community and fishing in them. These folks are trespassing on your or the Community Development District’s (CDD) properties. The CDD suggests that you call the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office non-emergency number (247-8200) and report them.

I have heard from several residents about noise complaints during the St. Patrick's Day festival at Westchase Town Center and the Relay for Life at Davidson Middle School. I have researched noise complaints with the county and have information available if you wish to pursue your complaints. Send me an e-mail requesting noise complaint information. Bottom line: you need to call the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office non-emergency number (247-8200) to report a noise complaint. In the case of organized events, however, they will not be able to do anything about the noise.

Please send an e-mail to bridgesvm@gmail.com and include your home address if you would like to receive updates by e-mail, including the mailbox forms.

By Cynde Mercer, The Bridges VM

Castleford

Many of you are anxious to get our new mailboxes finalized and have been patient with the lengthy process of voting, public notice and approval. Here is a quick update:

At their May meeting, the Westchase Community Association (WCA) Voting Members (VMs) supported the proposed change to Castleford’s mailbox guidelines and gave it their initial approval. If all goes as planned, VMs are expected to provide final approval at their June meeting and orders can be placed starting June 12. Each homeowner is responsible for ordering (and paying for) his or her own mailbox. The order form and a FAQ document will be posted on the WCA Web site around June 12. I will also send the order form, order instructions and other pertinent information to those on our neighborhood e-mail distribution list. If you still need to be added to that list, please send an e-mail to castlefordvm1@verizon.net and provide your e-mail and street addresses.

For any rebels that are planning to fight the system, I offer some gentle advice that’s really intended to be helpful rather than annoying. First, please remember that you chose to live in a deed-restricted community. Second, if you do not participate in the bulk order by the expected deadline of Aug. 31, an additional charge of approximately $100 will apply since your mailbox will now be a custom build and not part of a production build. By waiting you may also incur fines imposed by the WCA for violating the new guidelines. Fighting the process after its approval will simply make it more unpleasant, so I’d encourage everyone to place their orders early to take advantage of the lower cost.

By David Mantione, Castleford VM

Keswick Forest

Fellow Keswickians: As we approach the summer months, I won’t bore you with the usual June reminders to slow down because the kids are out of school and to close your garage doors to prevent thefts. I do, however, want to highlight a potential danger lurking in our backyards. Swimming pools are the number one cause of death amongst children ages 1-4. Simple prevention tips include keeping children, especially infants and toddlers, within arm’s reach. Keep an eye on them at all times, assign a responsible water watcher and install a pool fence. Taking a refresher CPR course could also be the difference between life and death.

As always, we welcome you to join our Keswick e-mail list. You can e-mail your neighborhood committee at lmccluskie@tampabay.rr.com (Leslie McCluskie), at bloudcct@gmail.com (Brian Loudermilk) or at waaronthompson@hotmail.com (Aaron Thompson).

By Aaron Thompson, Keswick Forest Alternate VM

Stockbridge

School ends June 7 and our youth will be enjoying their summer vacations. Please be alert to increased pedestrian and bicycle traffic.

Hurricane season begins June 1. Read and retain the excellent publications we receive from our media and government agencies on hurricane evacuation, shelters and post-storm survival. If you have a generator, it’s probably a good idea to run it for 10-15 minutes each month to be certain it continues to function well. Change the oil and put last year’s reserve of generator fuel in your car, replacing the generator’s supply with fresh gasoline. Purchase supplies of water, food (human and pet), hygiene and first aid items, and medications to avoid the shopping frenzies that begin when hurricane watches or warnings are issued. Neighbors can share good ideas about avoiding window damage and preventing flower pots or decorations from becoming wind-driven missiles.

Many of our families will be vacationing this summer. Piled up newspapers, door hangers, and mail represent sure tip-offs to burglars and invite a break-in. Even though you suspend newspaper and mail delivery while away, it is surprising how much marketing material can show up. Please consider volunteering to watch your neighbor’s home while they are away, and ask your neighbor to do the same. A neighbor’s pick-up of unclaimed items contributes to neighborhood safety.

Happy Father’s Day to all of our Westchase dads! I extend wishes to all for a great summer and thank you for being fine neighbors. It is an honor to represent our neighborhood.

By Joe Odda, Stockbridge VM

Townhomes of West Park Village

At our recent Townhomes’ association board meeting we addressed a few issues. We looked at some bids for exterior termite service and elected to stay with our present provider, who has provided good service at a much cheaper rate than the proposals offered. We have had no issues with termites that we are aware of.

We also discussed tree issues. We are moving ahead with trimming trees for hurricane season to protect our homes from dead or nearby branches. We will be sending out a schedule soon. Please plan to be home at the time your building is being done to provide any input to Davey on the work.

Damaged or unsightly trees exist in several areas of our townhomes. Residents are responsible for replacing trees in their yards. If there is a tree that you want to replace with different tree, you will need to go through the modification process. The Westchase Community Association (WCA) office has the form. You can use your own nursery or work through Davey, who takes care of our landscaping. Any cost will be up to the owner since we have no budgeted funds for tree replacement.

Before you remove a tree, however, you need to make sure it is not a size and type that the county protects. For front yards, ornamental trees like crepe myrtles or magnolias are a good choice, but other trees can also work. We will work with you on a case my case basis through the modification process. Issues with trees in the area between the sidewalk and the street should be handled through the Community Development District (CDD).

It appears that the values of our townhomes have gone up somewhat from what they were last year. Residents who are delinquent with their townhomes association dues have also decreased significantly. That is good news for all of us.

Have a great summer!

By Ray Chiaramonte, President of the Townhomes of WPV HOA

Villas of WPV

With the spring over, we will continue to maintain or improve the Villas’ curb appeal. Your Villas Board of Directors feels doing so will create both a beautiful neighborhood and top property values. We just completed the cleaning of all Villas’ gutters, many of which were full of leaves and dirt. The gutters in the front are hard to reach and if not properly maintained, they easily rot.

Next on our Villas’ maintenance list is the examination of our garage entry lights. About three years ago, the board replaced these lights with lamps with a light sensor so they would turn on only at night. We will have these lights checked and replace those that have burned out. To help us do this job, please make sure the switch for these lights is on.

Once again, I would like to remind Villas’ owners that any improvement in your lot, such as fences, and unit additions, must be presented to the Westchase Community Association (WCA) Modification Committee for their approval. No owner is authorized to first do any changes outside the unit and then request the approval from the committee. Please contact our property manager, Denise Scheck, at dschek@greenacre.com, with any questions.

The next meeting of your Villas’ board will be held at 7 p.m. on Monday, June 10, at the WCA office, located at 10049 Parley Dr. You are cordially invited to attend.

By Carlos Quiros, Villas of WPV HOA President

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Dog Park Task Force, Mailboxes, Boat Parking, Egg Hunt and Farewell to Former VM

The Bridges

The great mailbox approval process has ended, with a majority of homeowners voting in favor of the change to black aluminum mailboxes. It has taken a long time, but we are finally done. A big thank you goes out to Alternate Voting Member Linda Nijem Ryan for coordinating the project and Pam Wilcox for tirelessly walking, gathering petitions and counting up the results. We especially thank each of you who took the time to express your wishes on this important project for our neighborhoods. This change applies only to Baybridge, Sturbridge and Wakesbridge. Stonebridge already had double black aluminum mailboxes installed, so they were not included in the petition drive.

The new mailboxes are $291.67 each (plus tax), at the bulk order price. This price includes removing the old mailbox, cutting it up for curbside pick-up by Waste Management and installing and securing the new one. Any mailbox ordered after the cut-off date (estimated to be the end of September) will incur an additional $90-$100 charge. We will post a mailbox FAQ sheet and order form on the Westchase Community Association (WCA) Web site once we have received final approval on the change from the voting members in June. You will send your completed order form and payment directly to Mailbox Designs.

I have planned a neighborhood meeting for Saturday morning, May 18, at 9 a.m. at the Westchase Swim and Tennis Center on Countryway Boulevard. Sorry about the time. I hope that you early risers will drop by to meet and greet and express any concerns you have about our neighborhoods.

One suggestion I received while walking the mailbox petitions around was to allow both white and bronze screen enclosures. That is possible, but it will take a number of Bridges homeowners interested in the change. Then we will have to get a majority of approval from them just like we did for the mailboxes.

If you have any issues that need attention, or if you would like to be added to our Bridges e-mail list, please contact me at bridgesvm@gmail.com.

By Cynde Mercer, The Bridges VM

Castleford

I just wanted to update everyone on a few things. First, regarding the recent mailbox vote, we received overwhelming support and new mailboxes have been approved by Castleford residents. For those who returned ballots, the mailbox vote results showed 90 percent in support versus 10 percent opposed. I thank Julie Smith and Tracy Urso for helping to distribute and collect votes in their cul-de-sacs. I will provide more detailed updates via e-mail and in next month’s WOW regarding how to order the new mailboxes. In short, you will be able to order your new mailbox between June and August, so please put aside $315.65 as this change is a required change for all Castleford residents.

In the process of obtaining votes, I had the pleasure of meeting some residents whom I had not met before, and received quite a bit of feedback about Castleford and some concerns about general upkeep. The biggest area of concern regarded recent boat storage/parking in the neighborhood. I want to eliminate any confusion by stating that parking or storing boats outside of garages is strictly prohibited by community guidelines. As voting member, however, I do not have the authority to issue violations, so any concerns must be directed to the Westchase Community Association (WCA) office at 926-6404 in order to initiate a violation notice.

In order to receive specific information regarding the mailbox conversion process, if you did not provide your e-mail address on a ballot, please send an e-mail to castlefordvm1@verizon.net and I will make sure you are provided with instructions and timing.

By Dave Mantione, Castleford VM

Chelmsford

As other neighborhoods are doing, we are in the midst of selecting an updated mailbox design to replace our old white mailboxes with black metal mailboxes and street signs. We decided on the same design that Castleford just approved and have received a quote from Creative Mailbox Designs.

In upcoming weeks, neighbors will be coming around to get your vote. We need 51 percent of our homes to agree to pass this change and, if approved, each home will individually have three months to order its new mailbox. Please keep in mind that this is a small investment to increase our property values and keep our neighborhood updated.

By Bill Dennis, Chelmsford

The Greens

Residents, please always be aware of your surroundings when walking in The Greens. Keep an eye out for strangers and be careful when driving throughout both The Greens and all of Westchase. Children are everywhere, particularly with the warm weather.

If you are in the process of selecting a color for painting your home or if you selected it from the former color palette, please make sure that the color(s) exist on the new palette.  Further, if you have any questions, please contact the Westchase Community Association (WCA) office and speak to either Debbie or Charlotte at 926-6404. The new color palette is on display at the Westchase Swim and Tennis Center, which is located just off of Countryway Boulevard.

A friendly reminder: formal approvals are normally required from the WCA office for just about anything that is visible around the front exterior of your home, including painting. When you have questions, please contact them at 926-6404.

Please send all new e-mail addresses to me at gpappa@tampabay.rr.com so we can add all new Greens residents to the Greens database.

Have a safe Memorial Day weekend!

By Gerald (Jerry) Pappa, The Greens VM

Stockbridge

Several voting members (VMs) and alternates have generously volunteered their time to become a part of the new Dog Park Task Force: Ron Boyington (Stockbridge), Ray Chiaramonte (Townhomes of West Park Village), Terence Dutton (Chelmsford), Ira Hoffman (Woodbay), David Love (Bennington), Karen Nelson (Traditional Townhomes) and Tuyen Tran (Village Green). Our membership also includes Westchase Community Association (WCA) Board Member Edward Santiago.

It is a privilege for me to chair this group, which held its first meeting on April 10. At that time the task force discussed the feasibility of a dog park as a complement to the many excellent recreational facilities we now enjoy. April’s meeting then focused on determining a park vision, including its size, possible locations, essential facilities, safety factors, separate large dog and small dog areas and architectural standards. We hope to present our conclusions to the governing entities that could make this a reality. Naturally, a fair amount of time will pass before we reach a definitive point. Great enthusiasm, however, exists for the project. Everyone looks forward to the next steps. As always, your comments, questions and suggestions are welcomed.

Earlier in 2013, efforts were made to help reduce parking within 30 feet of the stop sign at Stockbridge Drive and Montague Street immediately before and after school. This is a particularly dangerous practice because it forces Stockbridge’s exiting traffic onto the wrong side of the street and creates the possibility of collisions with entering traffic. Increased sheriff’s office patrols were discussed earlier in the year. It’s a challenge to monitor the location fully during the early-morning and late-afternoon hours. Stockbridge owners are invited to let me know if they have seen an improvement or if problems still exist.

I thank everyone for being such good neighbors and I wish a happy Mother’s Day to all our Stockbridge moms!

By Joe Odda, Stockbridge VM

Villas of West Park Village

As a result of last walk-thru with our property manager and our landscape contractor, some villas’ front lawns had some work done in order to eliminate the crab grass that was beginning to take over. We had to do it as quickly as possible as the first sidewalk pressure washing of 2013 was about to begin.

By the time you are reading this, the pressure washing of your front sidewalk, front and back curbs, the lead walk to your front steps and your garage entrance will have been completed. As we announced last year, this was to be a two-year program which will be completed late in October. 
Your board would like to hear from villa owners if they would like to continue this program for years to come or whether we should have the owners do this on their own.

I wish to remind villa owners once again that the Villas association is responsible for providing maintenance upon each lot, including (1) the exclusive right to conduct exterior maintenance of your villa, including but not limited to the repair, replacement and maintenance of residential gutters, patios, lawns, shrubs, landscaped areas, irrigation system; and other exterior improvements installed by the builder; (2) the painting and repair of exterior building surfaces; and (3) the repair and replacement of roofs.

Any improvement in your lot, such as fences and unit additions, must be presented to the Westchase Community Association’s Modification Committee for their approval.  No owner is authorized to make any change to the outside of their unit and afterwards request approval from committee. In case of doubt, please contact in writing our property manager, Denise Scheck, at dschek@greenacre.com.     

By Carlos Quiros, Villas of WPV HOA President

The Vineyards

Greetings, Vineyards residents. In case you missed it, The Vineyards’ elections took place on April 7 at The Vineyards’ pool. Congratulations to our new/old board members, as all five positions remained exactly the same. We thank Amanda Wynne, Marissa Martin, Dan Fibkins and Josh Butts for their service in 2012-13 and I am looking forward to their hard work and dedication in 2013-14.

A regular board meeting took place immediately after the elections. Several large projects were approved: sidewalk repair, conservation area planting (next to the gazebo), removal of fan palms at The Vineyards entrance and new pool furniture. Please visit http://www.westchasevineyards.net for answers to general questions. Take care!

By Kevin Kwan, The Vineyards HOA President

Woodbay

It is with great regret that I make you aware of the passing of Gene McArthur. Gene was the past voting member of Woodbay. He cared a great deal about this neighborhood and the people in it. All knew how passionate Gene, a long-time resident, was in his beliefs about what this development could become. Thanks for you service, Gene! You will be missed…

Ira Hoffman, Woodbay VM

Wycliff

Howdy, neighbors! The wonderful months of March and April brought some interesting weather, don’t you think?

Our Wycliff Eggstravaganza was a success. I thank everyone who helped to make it a fun experience for our young ones. If you were not able to make it, no worries! Here in Wycliff we are always looking for a reason to celebrate. There will be plenty more opportunities to hang out. 

May your May be bright and sunny! See you around.

By Shaney Nadel, Wycliff VM

COMMENTS

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Pet Poop Punks, Brighter Street Lights, Block Parties and Driving with Deer

Brentford

I’m sorry to report that we are experiencing a wave of crime in the neighborhood for the past several months, and I’m asking each of you to be vigilant so that we can identify the culprits. No, it’s not the occasional burglary from a parked car, but something more pernicious. We have multiple daily violations of Article XII, Section 4 of the Westchase Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions as well as Article II, Sec. 6-32 of Hillsborough County Ordinance. The latter states, “Any feces deposited by a dog, cat, or pet pig on public property, public walks, recreation areas or the private property of others must be immediately removed by the person who has custody or control of the animal unless otherwise authorized by the property owner.”

I can attest that my own yard is the daily crime scene of a very large offender. Before you poo-poo this activity as a victimless crime, consider the following. Dog feces can contain millions of fecal coliform bacteria that can remain in the grass for months. This bacteria is transferred to children and adults that have contact with the grass and can make them ill. Also, this feces is carried into the waste water system, carrying the bacteria with it, which affects the environment and the Tampa Bay watershed. It carries a cost to the county (and therefore taxpayers) to remove the bacteria from drinking water. Unlike cow and chicken feces, dog feces are not fertilizer and can kill grass, which must be replaced at a cost to homeowners.

But what this really comes down to is that there are people who just don’t have any respect for others and common-use areas (examples range from the break room’s microwave oven to the former Soviet Union). I ask everyone to do what you can to fix this problem. For my part, if I can identify the culprit, I shall return the feces to the dog’s owner. I’ve done this in the past and found it to be pretty effective. If I get video evidence of the violation I will turn it over to the WCA office and county authorities and ask for the dog owner to be cited. I think this is a reasonable response.

By Marty Hamilton, Brentford VM

The Greens

For those of you traveling evenings along Gretna Green within The Greens, please note that we have recently had the street light upgraded with increased wattage along Gretna Green Drive. The light is located near the “tree island” between the entrance to Village Green and Greenhedges Drive. This increase of wattage will provide a dramatic improvement of evening light in a much needed area.

If you are in the process of selecting colors for painting your home, and/or you selected them from the former color palette, please make sure that the colors exist on the new palette. Further, if you have any questions, please contact Westchase Community Association (WCA) office and speak to either Debbie or Charlotte at 926-6404.

Please be aware that as of Feb. 13, a new exterior color palette, approved by the Westchase Voting Members, is applicable to all of Westchase. The new color palette is on display at the Westchase Swim and Tennis Center, which is located just off of Countryway Boulevard.

Formal Modification Committee approvals are normally required for changes to just about anything that is visible around your yards and the exteriors of your homes, including painting. When you have questions, please contact the WCA office at 926-6404.

Please be aware of your surroundings, keep an eye out for strangers in your neighborhood and be careful when driving throughout The Greens and Westchase. Children are everywhere, especially with this unusually warm weather.

Please send all new e-mail addresses to me at gpappa@tampabay.rr.com so we can add all new Greens residents to our database.

By Gerald ( Jerry ) Pappa, The Greens VM

Radcliffe

My family and I are pleased to be hosting our spring Radcliffe block party at our home on Saturday, April 13, beginning at 4 p.m. Please feel free to bring the whole family. Basic food and beverages (for kiddies and adults) will be provided, but all are invited to bring a dish to share! An R.S.V.P. sent to radcliffevm@gmail.com is appreciated, but not required. We are located at 11916 Keating Dr.

Spring is once again upon us and it’s time to recruit for the palm-tree trimming program. Many of us have already benefitted from our collective forces in the form of discounted rates. We need as few as ten homes to participate in order to receive prices as low as $20 per palm tree from Mays Trees Service. If you are interested in getting your palm trees trimmed under our Radcliffe program next month, just let us know by sending an e-mail to radcliffevm@gmail.com. As a reminder, we are on a May/November cycle. Once you are in, it works out beautifully each season.

Everyone on our e-mail list has hopefully received my recent update on mailbox maintenance, repair and replacement moving forward. While our new boxes were seen as a much needed upgrade by the majority of homeowners back in 2008, we have had to address some on-going and unanticipated maintenance concerns. A few of you have suggested we consider installment of a central mailbox. I think this is worth further review, and I have begun to take steps to determine if the option is available for us to consider. I’ll keep everyone informed. If you’d like to stay in the loop, please be sure we have your current e-mail address.

By Eric Holt, Radcliffe VM

Stockbridge

At 10:20 p.m. on Christmas Eve, 2011, my wife Linda and I were saying goodnight to her parents, sister and our brother-in-law after a day of snacks, dinner and gift opening. As they approached their vehicle in the driveway, we all (including Boston terrier, Libby, on leash) heard a loud clattering sound coming from up the street. Within seconds, what we initially thought was a large dog running down the middle of Stockbridge Drive actually turned out to be a six-point buck frantically dashing from the top of the street toward a suitable exit. He darted past us and – ours being the fourth house from the right turn onto the Stockbridge curve – cut through to the back of a home a few doors away, presumably planning to get to the wide fields on Montague Street. Within a few seconds, there was a brief thrashing sound and we heard no more. Several of us ran to the exit yard to be certain he was not trapped or hung up on something. He was gone. That buck seemed to have easily cleared about six feet of fence and shrubbery and was on his way home.

As this epic was concluding, some neighborhood children were coming outside with their parents. We explained what had just happened and (who could resist?) I speculated that one of Santa’s reindeer must have gotten lost and just found his way back. One does not have many chances to get adorable children saucer-eyed with a tale like that. They were astonished.

It has been many months since that Christmas Eve, but just a few weeks ago a Stockbridge neighbor was driving at night in The Bridges on Montague Street when several deer rocketed across the road. Collisions were narrowly avoided by my neighbor and some other vehicles. He related this incident to me in the context of taking necessary precautions while driving where there is unpredictable animal traffic. Deer have learned to live well in an urban environment and there are probably far more of them than we know. These remarkable creatures can emerge suddenly and easily collide with a vehicle, so please be vigilant this spring and beyond.

By Joe Odda, Stockbridge VM

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Pool Cages, Mailboxes, Street Parking, Annual Elections and Block Parties

Brentford

As of Feb. 12 Brentford residents have had the option of white or bronze-colored pool cages. Let the rejoicing begin. For those whose current cages look very bronze already, you’re in the clear now. Sincere thanks are in order to D.J., Jana and Mike for driving this ball down the field and over the goal line.

You will also see reported in the March WOW that the new exterior color palette was approved so any future painting you may do must follow the new rules.

On the topic of outside improvements, Stamford also received approval to have the option of using vinyl fencing that looks like wood rather than actual wood. If this is an option that interests anyone in Brentford, now would be a good time to work on the approval process through the Westchase Community Association (WCA) office. That office is very helpful for helping neighborhoods work through the required steps to change guidelines.

By Marty Hamilton, Brentford VM

Castleford

Hello, Castleford! As you may already know, some of the other Westchase neighborhoods are in the process of upgrading their old, beat-up, white mailboxes to more current, subtle (and far less obnoxious), black metal mailboxes in an effort to give their neighborhoods a much needed facelift. I’ve had several neighbors approach me to get this project going in Castleford and we are now underway. We will soon be approaching each of you to seek your vote to approve this project, which is vital to keeping our neighborhood current and competitive with newer communities. Without question this will help support our property values in what we all know is a very tough market.

I’ll be communicating updates, pictures, and progress via e-mail, so if you are not already on the neighborhood e-mail distribution list, please send me your e-mail address (along with your street address) to castlefordvm@verizon.net and we will add you to distribution.

Each mailbox will be approximately $300 installed; we will have an exact figure as we ask for your vote over the next several weeks.

Please keep in mind that this is a small investment to update our neighborhood and appeal to new buyers, who determine market pricing for our homes.

By Dave Mantione, Castleford VM

The Greens

Please be aware that as of Feb. 13, a new exterior color palette, approved by the Westchase Voting Members, is applicable to all of Westchase. The new color palette is on display at the Westchase Swim and Tennis Center, which is located just off of Countryway Blvd.

If you are in the process of selecting colors for painting your home, and/or you selected them from the former color palette, please make sure that the colors exist on the new palette. Further, if you have any questions, please contact Westchase Community Association (WCA) office and speak to either Debbie or Charlotte at 926-6404.

Also, please be aware that once the new colors were approved, there is no grandfathering of previous colors. In simple terms, if your existing home color is not on the new color palette, you may not repaint your home with its existing color.

Formal Modification Committee approvals are normally required for changes to just about anything that is visible around your yards and the exteriors of your homes, including painting. When you have questions, please contact the WCA office at 926-6404.

A friendly reminder: your annual WCA dues of $320 were due Jan. 1. Did you pay them yet?

Please be aware of your surroundings, keep an eye out for strangers in your neighborhood and be careful when driving throughout The Greens and Westchase. Your children and grandchildren are everywhere, especially with this unusually warm weather.

Please send all new e-mail addresses to me at gpappa@tampabay.rr.com so we can add all new Greens residents to our database.

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

By Gerald ( Jerry ) Pappa, The Greens VM

The Shires

At The Shires annual meeting Ruben Collazo and Manny Parad were reelected to our village committee. Thank you for your votes. We look forward to continuing to serve our village. There is much to tell – more than can fit in this column. I send regular news updates via e-mail, so please subscribe to The Shires e-mail distribution list.

It's spring, which is great excuse for a block party in The Shires. This event will take place in the Ayrshire cul de sac on Sunday, March 24, from 1-4 p.m. This is open to all Shires residents.

The block party will be a great time for neighbors to get together and enjoy our beautiful Florida weather. We will have a DJ, cookout and egg hunt. Please bring your chairs, drinks and a dish to share. If you would like to help with the block party or donate towards the expenses, please e-mail Trish Blocker at trishandkevin@yahoo.com.

As a rule, e-mail is always the best way to reach me. I typically respond to e-mail within the hour but definitely within the same day. To be added to The Shires e-mail list, please send your name and address to theshires@verizon.net; all requests are verified for residency in The Shires. Thanks for your continued confidence and I’ll see you around the neighborhood.

By Ruben Collazo, The Shires VM, and Trish Blocker

Stamford

Hi, everyone! I wanted to let you know that Stamford’s new fence guideline amendment was passed at February’s Westchase Voting Members meeting. If you are interested in making a change to your fence, please let me know and I will forward a copy of the new guideline to you. Remember to first submit a form to the Modification Committee before making any changes.

On another note, I know that currently I do not have updated e-mail addresses for everyone for the neighborhood e-mail list. If you have not been receiving the occasional e-mail regarding neighborhood items, please send your e-mail address to stamfordwestchase@yahoo.com and I will add you to the distribution list. This is a great way to quickly get out information to everyone. As always, please feel free to contact me if I can help with anything.

By Lisa Jones, Stamford VM

Stockbridge

By mid-February, initial steps were taken to address two items that fall within the agenda I published for this year.

Dangerous Intersection Parking: As a reminder, this issue involves potential collisions when individuals park within 30-feet of our Stockbridge/Montague stop sign. This causes exiting Stockbridge traffic to be forced over to the left lane. Traffic turning into Stockbridge from Montague can then collide with vehicles. We have had several near collisions, and an actual one about two years ago. This situation typically occurs during school drop-off and pick-up times.

On Feb. 5 I was on the agenda for the Community Development District (CDD) meeting to discuss this issue. After my presentation and the discussion that followed, there were essentially three outcomes. First, the group’s consensus was that this is a matter best handled by the sheriff's office through regular patrols issuing citations as needed. Second, the supervisors indicated they are unlikely to allocate any supplemental patrol resources for off-duty deputies. It was, however, noted that the deputy coordinating patrols has been alerted to the problem, so some re-focusing of patrols on this intersection might be possible. I am hopeful this will improve matters. A supervisor also suggested that, if still operational, the Traffic Calming Program of Hillsborough County could, by neighborhood petition, enable placement of the suggested "No Parking or Standing from Here to Corner" signs within the area of concern. A search has begun to determine whether or not that is a resource for Stockbridge.

Standing Water: In ten areas on Stockbridge Drive, standing water in the street gutter is a constant problem. The water pools and becomes dirty and unsanitary. Water will remain in these places for weeks unless there is a drought or lawn irrigation stops. I have provided a description of the situation to Hillsborough County’s Public Works Department. The response so far is not conclusive, as the county needs to explore the matter.

Emerging from winter this month, we also look forward to spring break, Passover and Easter. A lot is going on in March. Allow me to wish our students and their families well in their respite from the rigors of the academic year. Additionally, I extend good wishes to all for joyous holidays.

By Joe Odda, Stockbridge VM

Woodbay

Hey, Woodbay! Group pricing for the mailboxes has officially ended. The group discount which began Oct. 2 has expired as of Feb. 28. The new price is $390, including tax and installation. For those who have yet to get your order forms and checks into Creative Mailbox, please e-mail me at hoffmanplace@tampabay.rr.com and I will forward you the forms that you need. Order forms and information can still be found on the Westchase HOA Web site, http://westchasewca.com

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In other news, the new exterior color palette for Westchase homes has been approved, so if you selected colors in the past and have yet to turn your forms into the Modifications Committee, you will want to check to make sure the color is on the new list. The updated list is now on the Westchase HOA Web site. Click on “Documents” and then “Forms” and view under “New Guidelines.”

Last but not least, I have been approached by some people in the neighborhood about having a Woodbay block party. I think that this is a wonderful idea! If you are interested in helping us organize something, please drop me a line and we can get a committee together to iron out the details.

By Ira Hoffman, Woodbay VM

Villas of West Park Village

Your Villas Board of Directors will hold its first 2013 meeting on Monday, March 4, at the Westchase Community Association (WCA) Office at 10049 Parley Dr. The board wishes to extend an invitation to all Villa owners, especially all who bought a villa during the past year. It is our custom to have members in attendance and allow them to participate in our meetings.

At last month’s WCA Voting Members meeting I received, as your representative, a list of violations the master association had found in our villas. I noticed that some of these violations, like mailboxes in need of paint, are beginning to appear more frequently. I wish to remind all villa owners/renters that if you receive a door hanger (courtesy notice) or a violation letter making you aware that your mailbox and/or the post need to be painted, please take care of it immediately. If you don’t, you could receive another violation letter and ultimately a fine of $100 a day for a ten day period. There is no doubt in my mind that it would be much more beneficial – and cheaper – to correct any violation the WCA manager sends. Other violations should be immediately corrected; once you have done so, I suggest you let the WCA manager know it has been resolved.

Finally, I wish to remind all association members that the Villas are a maintenance-free neighborhood. Article IV, Section 1(a) and 1(b), of our Declaration of Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions clearly states the responsibility of the association and owners regarding the maintenance of the properties. If any owner or renter has any question regarding this particular issue, they should contact, in writing or via e-mail, our property manager, Denise Schek. Denise can be contacted at dschek@greenacre.com.

By Carlos Quiros, Villas of WPV HOA President

The Vineyards

Greetings, Vineyards residents! The annual meeting and elections for The Vineyards Board of Directors is quickly approaching. If you are interested in volunteering to serve on the BOD or on a committee, please send an e-mail to vineyardshelp@yahoo.com. Please look for a letter in your mailbox with the meeting’s date and candidacy information.

By Kevin Kwan, The Vineyards HOA President

Wycliff

Happy March, everyone! The new paint palette was approved at the last voting member (VM) meeting. Make sure to check it out on the Westchase Community Association (WCA) Web site, http://westchasewca.com befor,e you do any painting. Our annual Easter Egg Hunt will take place this month although the date and time has not been set. I will e-mail everyone once it is determined. Have a great month!

By Shaney Nadel, Wycliff VM

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Village Voices, Feb. 2013

Bennington


Well, we are off to another year and many of you have ordered the new mailboxes for your home. If you have not, you are in luck! We have extended the deadline until Feb. 28 to get your order in at Creative Mailbox. You can download the form and all of the information on http://westchasewca.com

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If you are thinking about painting your home, please send in a modification request even if you are repainting with the same color. A new paint palette has been developed and it’s in the approval process. Don't paint without an approval. Your old color may not be on the new palette.

Since the holidays are over, we would like to remind everyone that street parking is only allowed in West Park Village and the Westchase Town Center. Please be mindful of the speed limit as well.

By David Love, Bennington VM

Brentford

I missed the WOW deadline last month but still want to share a few New Year comments. Thanks to everyone who made our little piece of Westchase look so beautiful during December (thus earning us an honorable mention in the neighborhood judging…whatever that means). For me nothing evokes the feelings of holiday spirit like palm trees wrapped with thousands of tiny lights. I offer special accolades this year to the Brentford cul-de-sac for providing cheer in surround-o-vision. I struggled this year with fuses and circuit breakers so I think I will be a re-engineering for 2013.

I believe 2012 was another good year for Brentford. Every house that went up for sale was bought. Good neighbors left and good neighbors moved in. Our outstanding brewmeisters treated us to a Novemberfest, and there were lots of fun evenings in various driveways.

Last year I resolved to update the neighborhood e-mail list and, just like the previous two years, it didn’t get done. If you live in Brentford and are not getting an occasional e-mail from me and would like to, please e-mail me at ltcmartyhamilton@hotmail.com and I’ll add you to the list.

Last, in January the voting members reversed course and have approved a color palette that allows for trim colors that are darker than the house’s body color. This should be a relief to the minority of homes, like mine, that are thusly adorned.

By Marty Hamilton, Brentford VM

The Greens

With the month of February upon us, please be aware of your surroundings, keep an eye out for strangers in your neighborhood and be careful when driving throughout The Greens and Westchase. With the warm weather, kids will be everywhere.

Did you know that Westchase is close to finalizing a new color palette that will likely take effect in February after the voting members (VMs) meeting? Please be aware that once the new colors are approved, you won’t necessarily be able to repaint your home its existing color. If you wish to express your opinion on the new color choices, please attend the February VM meeting.

Formal Modification Committee approvals are normally required for changes to just about anything that is visible around your yards and the exteriors of your homes, including painting. When you have questions, please contact the Westchase Community Association (WCA) office at 926-6404.

A friendly reminder: your annual WCA dues of $320 were due Jan. 1. Did you pay them yet?

Please send all new e-mail addresses to me at gpappa@tampabay.rr.com so we can add all new Greens residents to our database.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

By Gerald (Jerry) Pappa, The Greens VM

Radcliffe

Hello, neighbor! By now this may seem redundant, but last month the Westchase Voting Members (VMs) voted to approve a new Westchase home exterior color palette. While it is not quite yet official, we expect it to be finalized within the next few weeks. This means that we have to consult with the Westchase Community Association (WCA) office before painting our homes, even if we’re repainting them the same colors. Your existing paint color may no longer be an approved color. Therefore, be sure you are using an approved one before doing any exterior painting.

On another note, I have been speaking with the owner of MetalCraft Industries over the past couple of months. I initiated these discussions after several owners expressed concerns over the chipping and peeling of their mailbox finishes. Many of you may have already had your mailbox replaced by MetalCraft in the past due to this problem. Unfortunately, the issue persists.

MetalCraft has cited the cause as the “corrosive nature of our reclaimed water.” I have received a formal proposal from MetalCraft to address mailbox replacement and refinishing over the next several years. I will review this document with other mailbox manufacturers and consult with the Hillsborough County Water Department. I will be sure to communicate more details when they are available.

By Eric Holt, Radcliffe VM

The Shires

The Shires annual meeting will be held on Feb. 5 at 6 p.m. at the Westchase Swim and Tennis Center, located at 10405 Countryway Blvd. behind the fire station. So far on the agenda are security cameras, pet etiquette, house painting, new business and election of our voting member.

One of our neighbors recently lost a beautiful, little cat. She got out, never returned and has not been found. Our neighbor feels that she may have been consumed. I agree. There are still many significant predators in the woods behind The Shires. We have bobcats, coyotes, large owls, hawks and the occasional gator. With all of these natural predators it makes sense to safeguard your pets, particularly small ones. If you do lose a pet, let me know immediately so that we can quickly put the word out.

To be added to The Shires e-mail list, send your name and address to theshires@verizon.net.

See you around the neighborhood!

By Ruben Collazo, The Shires VM

Stockbridge

I thank everyone for electing me to another term as your Stockbridge Voting Member (VM). It is also a pleasure to note that you selected Ron Boyington as first alternate and Brian Kennedy as second alternate.

I prepared a tentative agenda for 2013, which was discussed immediately following our Dec. 19 neighborhood annual meeting elections. The goals follow:

I hope to eliminate standing/parking of vehicles up to the stop sign on Stockbridge Drive at Montague Street by individuals dropping off and picking up Davidsen students. They are dangerously blocking the exit lane to Montague Street, increasing the chance of collisions between Stockbridge vehicles forced to exit on the wrong side of the street and those trying to turn into Stockbridge. My Jan. 14 meeting with our Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Community Resource Officer has begun a more structured approach to resolving the issue. I also look forward to exploring appropriate resources from our Community Development District (CDD), which is helping address this dangerous situation.

Several owners have expressed a need to identify solutions for full drainage of curb water. In several locations on Stockbridge Drive, unsanitary water is pooling in front of residences. Only with a drought or non-use of irrigation systems will they ever dry up – and those are rare possibilities.

The feasibility of a Westchase Dog Park needs to be explored this year as an addition to our fine facilities. There were, as of this last spring, more than 800 dogs registered within Westchase.

Defining more Stockbridge fence options appears to be an important goal for 2013. Wrought iron-styles for areas such as backyards fronting ponds, synthetic board and perhap, white vinyl materials could be approved as we work our way through the decision process.

I hope you will comment on these goals or suggest additional issues we should explore.

I wish a happy Valentine’s Day to all. Maybe we can each consider a Valentine’s gift to our favorite charity to help feed hungry children and adults in our area.

By Joe Odda, Stockbridge VM

Woodbay

Hey, Woodbay! Sorry to keep harping on the mailbox orders, but please remember that Feb. 28 is the last day to have your check and order form turned into Creative Mailbox and Sign. If you do not have your order in by this date, you will not be eligible for the $300 group price. You can get copies of all necessary paper work by going to http://westchasewca.com and clicking on Woodbay Mailbox Order Form on the left side of the page or by e-mailing me at hoffmanplace@tampabay.rr.com and requesting the forms. Please keep an ear and eye out for neighbors who are not aware yet. We need to get them in the loop as soon as possible.

Please make sure your teenagers are driving the speed limit and stopping at posted stop signs. I have gotten a few more complaints about this issue and we need to take care of this before we experience a tragedy.

Last, Cindy and I would like to wish all the couples out there a very happy Valentine’s Day!

Wycliff

Hi, neighbors! It looks like we are starting off the new year with a new paint color palette for Westchase homes. The details will be published in the WOW meeting notes, but here is the gist: Upon approval, the paint palette is effective immediately; if you plan to repaint your house the same color, you still need to get Modification Committee approval on the paint color because it may no longer be on the palette. My house color, for example, is no longer there.

In the meeting I requested that a couple of the Movie in the Parks take place at Glencliff Park. I was told that the Westchase Community Association (WCA) board had decided to try a couple over there. I will pass along details once I have them.

By Shaney Nadel, Wycliff VM

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Annual Meetings, Proxy Cards, Pet Safety and a Happy New Year

Keswick Forest

I hope all of you had a joyful holiday season and happy New Year. First, I would like to express how delightful it was to see the long-time residents and so many new faces at our annual holiday party. What a great celebration it was! It would not have been possible without our wonderful party organizers and helpers, including David Smith, Christophe and Sandra Setin and Sylvaine Clarkin. You guys are awesome! Thank you!

Next, all Keswick homeowners should have received their blue proxy cards to cast your ballot for those you want to represent your village as voting member and alternate(s). Please be sure to take a moment to return it so we can meet our quorum. The bonus of sending it in as soon as possible is you won’t receive a half dozen annoying reminders via e-mail. Keswick Forest’s annual meeting will take place Jan. 15 at 6 p.m. at the Westchase Swim and Tennis Center on Countryway Boulevard. All homeowners and renters are welcome to attend.

In closing, we have had some newcomers to the neighborhood and I would like to welcome you to join our Keswick e-mail distribution list. You can do so by e-mailing me (lmccluskie@tampabay.rr.com), Heather Greeley-Hessefort (heather.greeleyhessefort@gmail.com) or Brian Loudermilk (bloudcct@gmail.com). Happy January, everyone!

By Leslie McCluskie, Keswick Forest VM

Radcliffe

Happy New Year, everyone! The most important neighborhood business this month is ensuring that we have our voting member and alternates chosen for the coming year. Our annual meeting will take place on Jan. 22, at 6:30 p.m. at the Westchase Community Association (WCA) offices on Parley Drive. You should now have your voting proxies in hand; they were mailed to everyone in mid-December. For those not planning to attend our annual meeting: please take the one minute necessary to complete and return your choices via the self-addressed, postmarked proxy card. We need 30 percent of Radcliffe ownership represented (about 50 homes) to reach quorum. If we don’t hit that target, we may have to incur additional expenses to conduct a re-vote in February.

Residents on our neighborhood e-mail list had plenty to read about the wildlife sighted in the area last month. Encounters between wild animals and pets often do not end well for the pet. Unfortunately, there have been recent reports of pet casualties. In addition to many other animals, we have had snakes, raccoons, alligators, coyotes, bobcats and an even what was believed to be a panther seen in the area. While all of these animals are beautiful and fascinating in their own right, it is important to protect your pets and family from potential harm by using some basic precautions and common sense. It’s best to keep your distance and keep your pets in at night if at all possible.

By Eric Holt, Radcliffe VM

Stockbridge

When the Westchase Santa Claus, holiday greeters and gift collectors passed through Stockbridge Drive on Dec. 8, they created a remarkable atmosphere. For some time before the caravan’s arrival, children and adults were bordering the pathway and wondering about the exact time the sights and sounds would appear.

Apart from their eagerness to see and hear this annual spectacle, many neighbors were also eager to reach a designated wagon to present gifts for children who might otherwise have none during the holidays. The December 2012 response was preceded by major growth in our Thanksgiving Food Drive for the preceding November. The spirit of generosity is strong and consistent on Stockbridge Drive. Please allow me, again, to thank everyone for responding with such kindness. My appreciation is added for those who spent so many hours on parade for Westchase.

We now look to the New Year of 2013, with its set of holidays, celebrations, remembrances and priorities. During the year our board, voting members and committees will be carrying forward a vigorous agenda devoted to the many facets of maintaining the quality of life we value so much in Westchase. Please plan to share your observations, ideas and suggestions with me throughout the year. It is always a pleasure and honor to serve our Stockbridge Drive neighborhood. 

Finally, I hope this will be the best New Year ever for all of us, with peace, good health and prosperity.

By Joe Odda, Stockbridge VM

Villas of West Park Village

On behalf of your Villas Board of Directors, I wish all villa owners and renters a happy New Year full of happiness and health.

As I mentioned in last month’s Village Voices, on Dec. 3 the Villas held its annual meeting and following the meeting, the 2013 board of directors met, elected its officers and proceeded to discuss and approve a couple of issues.

Over 50 percent of Villas’ members were present in person or by proxy. During the annual meeting the two declared candidates, Kevin Riley and Richard Johnson, were re-elected to the board for 2013. During the regular meeting which followed, last year’s board officers were reelected to their positions, with Carlos Quiros as president, George Pennington as vice-president, Kevin Riley as treasurer and Christine Miller as secretary.

A motion was discussed and approved to accept the Westchase Community Association (WCA) Board of Directors’ motion to work with WCA sub-associations regarding owner delinquency on the master association’s annual dues as specified by the agreement between both parties. The Villas Board also discussed and approved a motion that applied any excess of income over expenditures for 2012 to the 2013 budget, as provided by IRS Revenue Ruling 70-604.

By Carlos Quiros, Villas of WPV HOA President

Woodbay

Happy New Year, Woodbay!

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season! I wanted to thank all of you who mailed your proxy ballots for Woodbay’s VM election into the office. I was told that this was the first time in Woodbay history that we met our quorum.

As for the mailboxes, one of our neighbors made the suggestion that we extend the Jan. 31 deadline to have our order forms and checks mailed to Feb. 28 to give a bit of recovery time from the holidays. I have spoken to Creative Mailbox and they will be holding group pricing until that time. All order forms and checks must be received by Creative no later than Feb. 31 to get the group rate of $300.

Creative also called my attention to the fact that they did not receive the required 30 orders to go into production for the month of November. They have decided this one time to build and install those boxes but will be unable to run more until they receive a full 30 orders. So, if 20 neighbors mailed their order forms and checks in December, they will not go into production until another 10 are received. This will make it difficult to pinpoint when installation will be, so please make sure your neighbors are aware of the required change and pass along my e-mail address (hoffmanplace@tampabay.rr.com) to them.

Of the 165 homes in Woodbay I currently have 104 e-mail addresses. I am hoping that I can acquire all of the remaining in the next two months.

As always, if you have any questions please feel free to contact me.

By Ira Hoffman, Woodbay VM

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Mailboxes, Exterior Color Palette and Holiday Greetings

Bennington

Voting members’ final approval for our mailboxes have occurred and now it is time for the residents to place their orders with Creative Mailbox. If you proceed to the Westchase Community Association’s (WCA) Web site, http://www.westchasewca.com on th,e left you’ll see a box called Latest News. There you will see a link to the mailbox order form. Simply download it, print it, fill it out, and mail it with your $300 check (there is a place to fill out information for a credit card as well) before Jan. 31, 2013.

This is not an option. The mailbox standard is mandatory. You could face fines if the order is not placed by Jan. 31. If you are unable to download the form, please call me or preferably e-mail me, provide your name and address, and I will hand deliver a form to you.

I appreciate the great response we have had for the new mailbox design, and thank everyone for the orders that have been placed. Soon our subdivision will share the updated look of Westchase!

By David Love, Bennington VM

Brentford

At the November Voting Members Meeting the neighborhood representatives reviewed the work done by the Color Palette Committee. This is important to homeowners since decisions on the color palette impact the colors that you can paint your house. Imagine my shock and dismay when I discovered that I am living in a potentially ugly house. I learned that my house may potentially be ugly because my trim is darker than the body of my house. Adding to my house’s potential to be ugly is that my trim is not a minor variation of the color white.

Apparently during previous iterations of the WCA approved color palette, my current paint scheme, selected by the previous owners, was potentially less ugly. I tried to stand firm against the tyranny of the majority on behalf of all the homeowners of Westchase whose homes are potentially ugly, but we didn’t have the votes (as I’m sure will be ably reported elsewhere in WOW). As I drove home from the meeting, head hanging, I contemplated how this decision would affect the other residents of Brentford. After a short walkabout, I discovered (because I’m a male and don’t notice color unless it is on a car or dog) that there are actually only a handful of potentially ugly homes in Brentford.

So the bottom line is that the new color palette will soon be approved and will apply to you next time you paint your house.

By Marty Hamilton, Brentford VM

The Bridges

The great mailbox approval process continues. It has taken so long, we may have to get some of the old petitions signed again. Linda Nijem Ryan and her helpers have done a great job gathering signatures, but we are not there yet. You can help by picking up a proxy form, completing it and dropping it off in the sample mailbox at 10363 Lightner Bridge Dr.

The mailbox proxy voting form can be found in two places. Bridges homeowners may find a copy on the Westchase Community Association’s (WCA) Web site (http://www.westchasewca.com) or inside the sample mailbox in front of 10363 Lightner Bridge Dr. Just fill it out and leave it in the mailbox as it is checked daily.

The new mailboxes will run $291.67 each (plus tax) at the bulk order price. This price includes removing the old mailbox, hauling it away, and installing and securing the new one. Any mailbox ordered after the cut-off date (four months after the new guideline’s approval) will incur an additional $90-$100 charge.

The new black mailboxes are made of heavy duty aluminum. They come with a two-year product guarantee and are manufactured in Tampa.

If there are any immediate questions, contact Linda at bridgesvmalt@yahoo.com or 892-6686.

Village elections are coming up. The Bridges will hold its annual meeting at the WCA offices at 6 p.m. on Jan. 24. Watch your mail during the holidays for the voting card and be sure to indicate your vote and return your card.

If you have any issues that need attention, please contact me at bridgesvm@gmail.com.

By Cynde Mercer, The Bridges VM

The Greens

The holiday season is here with days of cleaning and decorating the house, putting up the Christmas tree and holiday entertaining. The kids will be at home, playing outdoors and visiting their friends. Please be aware of your surroundings. Keep an eye out for strangers in your neighborhood and be careful when driving throughout Westchase.

How do you like our new Greens message board? Have you noticed the changing messages on the board, announcing community events and news? It’s also illuminated at night. A special shout out to Greens residents Jennifer Foster and John Trentacoste for taking charge of this project. I appreciate their assistance.

A friendly reminder: your annual HOA dues of $320 are due Jan. 1. Look for the many great improvements that are coming to Westchase in 2013. WOW will feature them in January.

Please remember that approvals are usually required from the property manager’s office for changes to just about anything that is visible around the front exteriors of your homes, including painting. When you have questions, please contact the Westchase Community Association office at 926-6404.
Please send all new e-mail addresses to me, so we can add all new Greens residents to the Greens database.

Last, please remember to advise the gatehouse of your guest list in advance of your holiday parties, so we don’t experience backups there.

A merry Christmas and happy holidays to you and your family!

By Gerald (Jerry) Pappa, The Greens VM

Keswick Forest

The results of this year’s Thanksgiving Food Drive are in and you, my fellow village people, rocked it! We came in first place. With that WOW has generously awarded our Village $300 towards a holiday party. Thank you, WOW!

As of the writing of this article our party planners are busily planning this event. Details will be sent out via Keswick e-mail list, so if you haven’t already signed up, please do so at lmccluskie@tampabay.rr.com, Heather Greeley-Hessefort (heather.greeleyhessefort@gmail.com) or Brian Loudermilk at (bloudcct@gmail.com).

Congratulations and our greatest thanks to all who were able to contribute! In total, 13 turkeys and two fully loaded vehicles of canned goods came from our little village of 64 homes. Hats off to our team captains, Val and Hunter Harris; captain’s helpers Mel and Karen Holmes, Tracy and Cameron Bowers, Daniel McCluskie, Sylvaine, Kelly and Coco Clarkin, Matthew Getty and Heather Greeley-Hessefort. We also thank our adorable little helper elves, Mia, Sophie, Jake and Jack. You guys were awesome!

By Leslie McCluskie, Keswick Forest VM

Radcliffe

Here we are at the end of another year. It’s amazing how quickly the months pass by. Despite the rapid pace of our lives, I do hope that everyone has the chance to truly enjoy the holiday season this year, no matter what holiday you celebrate.

Although we could not host the block party as intended last month due to a double case of the chicken pox, I encourage everyone to hang out in the neighborhood and enjoy the Santa Parade with family and friends this month. Santa is scheduled to cruise through Radcliffe from 4-6 p.m. on the Dec. 8.

I would also like to remind everyone that the Radcliffe Annual Meeting will take place on Jan. 22 at 6:30 p.m. at the Westchase Community Association (WCA) office on Parley Drive. Attendance is typically low for this meeting, but it’s an ideal opportunity to ask any questions or express any concerns about what’s happening (or not happening) in our neighborhood. In either case, please be sure to complete your voting proxy and return it to the WCA by the designated deadline. Without a quorum, we can’t conduct the business of voting in our VM team!

Finally, please keep an eye out for each other as we move closer to year-end. Many residents leave town to reunite with family or friends during the holiday break. Unfortunately, the holiday season is also a time of opportunity for those who seek to take advantage of the situation. Let a good neighbor know if you’re going to be gone for awhile.

Happy New Year!

By Eric Holt, Radcliffe VM

Stockbridge

Activities in November have taken Stockbridge Drive residents happily into a spirited December. The holiday season really began with 157 percent growth over last year in the number of Stockbridge homes contributing abundantly to the Thanksgiving food drive for Metropolitan Ministries. Many of the lesser-resourced in our Tampa community have experienced a memorable Thanksgiving because of your generosity. You responded energetically to last month’s appeal for support published in WOW and in this Village Voices column. Our rate of participation in Stockbridge went from 10.8 percent last year to 28 percent in 2012. Thank you for giving! Additional appreciation is directed to Jeff and Lorie Chilcott, who picked up all gifts and brought them to the collection center with promptness and good cheer.

Please keep in mind that you are invited to attend the Stockbridge Annual Meeting on Dec. 19 at 6:30 p.m. We will be at the Westchase Community Association (WCA) offices at 10046 Parley Dr. The meeting will conclude by 7 p.m. Election of a voting member and alternate(s) will take place and there will be a brief overview of plans for 2013, including any proposals you would like to suggest. Please be certain you have returned your proxy by mail or personal delivery well in advance of Dec. 19. It has been my privilege to serve as your voting member since March of 2012 and I would welcome re-election for another one-year term. Do let me know your attendance plans.

A fine committee of voting members (VMs) has been laboring to develop a revised exterior color palette for Westchase. With the help of a talented designer, they have reviewed a huge spectrum of potential main, trim and accent colors. Moreover, much preliminary review and commentary have taken place at recent VM meetings. A fine work product is coming forward for use by our community. When the final palette is available for review, I hope you will join others in thanking this group of residents for their efforts.

Finally, you have my thoughts and prayers for the happiest of holidays and a new year of peace, good health and prosperity.

By Joe Odda, Stockbridge VM

Villas of West Park Village

On Monday, Dec. 3, at 7 p.m., our Villas sub-association will conduct its annual meeting. It will be held at the Westchase Community Association (WCA) offices, at 10049 Parley Dr. If by any chance any Villa Owner has not yet returned his or her proxy, please give me a call and I’ll stop by your unit and pick it up. We hope many of you will attend and participate during the meeting. Once the meeting is concluded, the elected directors will meet to elect the board officers as well as discuss pending issues. Owners attending the annual meeting are welcome to stay for the board meeting. Your board has always maintained that this is your association and that you should actively participate in its meetings.

Recently I forwarded to all members for whom we have electronic addressees an annual report. In it I presented what your board has accomplished during 2012. If you have not received a copy, please e-mail me and it will be my pleasure to send you one.

I wish to take this last opportunity during 2012 to offer a reminder. In order to maintain the best possible curb appeal, it is the responsibility of all of us – the association and Villa owners – to comply with the requirements of Article IV, Section 1 of our Declaration of Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions, especially where it refers to the rights and obligations of the association and the owner’s responsibilities. I honestly believe that the new pressure washing program together with our landscaping maintenance contract has made our neighborhood second to none in curb appeal. It is the intention of your board to keep it that way.

Finally, on behalf of your board, I wish everyone the very best during Christmas and hope that 2013 brings health and happiness to all of you.

By Carlos Quiros, Villas of WPV Board President

Woodbay

Hello, Woodbay! At the November Voting Members Meeting, we were shown a new home exterior color palette. There are more discussions to come before it is finalized. I can assure you, however, that the issues many of you have approached me about have been addressed. A great number of the more questionable colors have been deleted.

I have also been approached by a few residents with concerns about vehicles rolling through or not stopping at posted stop signs in the neighborhood. I am sure that we can all agree that accidents or loss of a life are just not worth the extra three seconds we will lose when trying to get somewhere.

The neighborhood mailbox initiative has been moving along, and I was just informed by Creative Mailboxes that they have received the necessary amount of orders to begin building them. By the time you read this, I hope they will have already been installed. Please keep those orders coming in. The Jan. 31 deadline to have your order form and full payment mailed is fast approaching and we do not want anyone at risk of incurring a fine for non-compliance.

As always, if you have any questions about anything, please feel free to e-mail me at hoffmanplace@tampabay.rr.com. If you have not received an e-mail from me, it means you are not on the mailing list yet, so please reach out with your e-mail.

Last, as we wrap up another great year in Woodbay, I would like to again thank all of you who have either e-mailed or told me face to face how excited you are about our neighborhood’s new direction. There is much work to be done and together we are limitless in what we can accomplish.

Cindy and I wish you all a happy holiday season filled with love, health and happiness.

By Ira Hoffman, Woodbay VM

Wycliff

Holy cow! Father Time, stop the train! I want to get off. I can’t believe we are already preparing for our December block party (mark your calendars for Dec. 8). A big thank you to everyone that contributed to the Halloween party – you know who you are. It was a great success and the kids had a blast.

As you all know, we have several neighbors that are hitting the road and moving onto greener pastures. We wish you all much luck and happiness in your new adventures! We also look forward to welcoming our new neighbors (pssst…the block party is a great way to meet everyone).

Now for some voting member (VM) business. In our last VM meeting we discussed a new paint palette. The main concern was what to do about trim colors. Do you keep it white or cream for every house? Do you provide the option of only a lighter shade on the same color strip of the house color? Or do you allow darker shades? I would like to know your thoughts.

I have left a message with the county regarding repaving of the streets. I will e-mail you once I have some information to share. Please provide me your e-mail address if you are not receiving my neighborhood e-mails. You can reach me at ksmagee@aol.com. Don’t forget to e-mail any shout outs to editor@westchasewow.com.

Take care!

By Shaney Nadel, Wycliff VM

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Village Voices, Sept. 2012: Trick-or-Treaters, Tree Trimming and VM Elections

The Greens

October brings cooler weather, shorter days and Halloween. Children are boarding school buses, playing outside and trick-or-treating, so be careful when driving throughout Westchase.

Have you noticed The Greens new message board? It’s been installed near The Greens’ entrance to announce community events and news. I hope by the time you read this, the Community Development District (CDD) will have also installed a spotlight to illuminate the board at night. Now we need to form a committee that will work with both The Greens and the Village Green Voting Members (VMs) to post regular messages on the board. If you are interested in serving on this committee, please send me an e-mail to gpappa@golfviewteam.com.

In September the Westchase VMs and ultimately the Westchase Community Association (WCA) Board conducted their annual budget meeting and review. The result was that we held the line on the annual HOA fee at $320. We’re still, however, happy to announce that many great improvements are coming to Westchase in 2012, including a tennis cabana, a multipurpose court, a geothermal heating/cooling system and a rock slide for the West Park Village pool.

Please remember that formal approvals are normally required from the association manager’s office for just about anything that is visible around the front exteriors of your homes, including painting. When you have questions, please contact the Westchase HOA office at 926-6404.

Please send all new e-mail addresses to me, so we can add new Greens residents to The Greens database.

Happy Halloween!

By Gerald (Jerry) Pappa, The Greens VM

Radcliffe

School is back in full swing and I’ve seen quite a few new, little faces at the bus stop these days. That includes our youngest son Reid. If you are like Tamara and me, it’s now a guilty pleasure to send both boys off together in the morning and enjoy some down time at home!

In all seriousness, the truth is that we are very fortunate to live in a place like Westchase and in a great neighborhood like Radcliffe. We thank you all for being good neighbors and friends. We love it here.

Along those lines, my family is once again excited to be your host at our fall neighborhood block party. Mark your calendars for Saturday, Nov. 3! We will communicate more details next month.

Discount tree trimming season is here! All Radcliffe residents can once again take advantage of the volume discount program we have negotiated with Mays Tree Service. As was the case this past spring, we need just over 10 homes to get rates as low as $20 per palm tree. Cutting will most likely take place in early November, so if you are ready for your bi-annual trimming, let us know by sending an e-mail with your contact information to radcliffevm@gmail.com.

Last, I’d like to recognize and thank Radcliffe resident Darrick Sams on behalf of the entire neighborhood. After narrowly missing a plurality of votes last year, Darrick stepped up to the plate once again and this time successfully filled one of the open Westchase Community Association (WCA) Board positions. Not many are able or willing to consider that sort of commitment to the community. He deserves our thanks and praise for his persistence and readiness to volunteer his time and effort on our behalf. Thanks, Darrick!

By Eric Holt

Stockbridge

Signs of autumn are appearing everywhere. Our neighborhood’s children are preparing for Halloween and houses are displaying images of scarecrows, pumpkins, ghosts and witches. Most telling, however, are the conversations you hear among the small army of potential trick-or-treaters, who share their costume plans with the opening line, “I’m going be a….”

Parents and neighbors are also planning ahead with early purchases of handout items, but not at our house. We learned years ago that we will attack and devour all the candy long before the last day of October and then have to go to the store again. So we buy everything the morning of Oct. 31. In these instances, procrastination pays off with less poundage.

Sometimes autumn brings elements of mischief. We have had to alert our owners of two instances of major, late-night mailbox damage. Evidence of drug abuse has also been left on one or two lawns, adding to concerns in an otherwise quiet and friendly neighborhood. We appreciate how readily owners have been sharing information with Westchase leadership and urge you to continue doing so. “If you see something, say something” is an appropriate piece of advice.

Good wishes to all of our trick-or-treaters and to our generous owners who welcome them for Halloween, 2012.

By Joe Odda, Stockbridge VM

Villas of West Park Village

During the Villas’ September board meeting, directors discussed and approved the 2013 annual budget and the extension of contracts with Greenacre Properties and Davy Commercial Grounds Management. We had few members of the association present and they had the opportunity to offer their input.

The Villas’ 2013 budget will see an increase of $10 per month in our assessments. Directors have noticed that more maintenance issues for which the association is responsible have begun to appear more frequently. This should take no one by surprise as the villas are already over 10-years-old.

The contracts with our management company and our landscaping maintenance company, Greenacre Properties, Inc. and Davey, Commercial Grounds Management, were extended for periods of five years and three years respectively. The board felt that the service provided by both companies deserved high marks and that it would be to the association’s advantage to maintain their services. This opinion is shared by many villa owners.

The next pressure washing of the villas’ sidewalks and curbs, front lead walks, our garage entrances and the alley curbs will begin in early October, depending on weather. All owners will be notified by flyer regarding the approximate days when the work will be done at their villas. It will also advise everyone of the steps they should take in order to assure the job is done without any problems.

Last, the board wishes to remind every villa owner or renter that every one of us is responsible for the maintenance of our mailboxes. At the last Westchase Voting Members meeting, I was given a list of villa owners to whom the Westchase Community Association has sent a friendly reminder to paint and/or replace the “W” or numbers on their mailboxes. The maintenance of the mailboxes is not the responsibility of your association; it is yours. Let’s keep all of our mailboxes nice and clean. Remember that they are part of the villas’ curb appeal.

By Carlos S. Quiros, Villas of WPV President

Wycliff

Happy October, Wycliff! I hope you all are well!

I have a couple reminders for you. First, the annual yard sale will take place Saturday, Oct. 6, from 8 a.m.-1 p.m. Second, Wycliff’s annual meeting and its election of its voting member is just around the corner. I will let you know once the date is set. In the meantime the Westchase Community Association (WCA) is preparing the election proxy cards and the manager requires the names of anyone interested in running to serve as VM or alternate VM. At this time I am happy to continue as voting member for Wycliff; however, I encourage anyone else who might be interested in the VM position or Alternate VM position to let me know as soon as possible so we can get your name on the proxy card.

Last, if you have any special shout outs that you would like published in WOW, please e-mail editor@westchasewow.com.

By Shaney Nadel, Wycliff VM

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Junk Mail, Street Signs, Solicitors and Mailboxes

Bennington

It has been a while since our village has had representation. Carol Lambert and I felt it was time to give Bennington a voice. We have had an unusual series of events happen.
There are a group of residents who feel the same way and believe during these economic down times that we need to improve the look of our community. Many of you have met us as we’ve traveled the neighborhood requesting your signature to replace the mailboxes. We have acquired the number of signatures needed to change Bennington’s mailbox guideline and will now go through the requisite number of public meetings to make the change.

I have recently attended the Community Development District (CDD) meeting for possible financing of the mailboxes. Because our rights of way and streets are not CDD property, this will not be possible. The Westchase Community Association manager will instead send out special assessments to each residence after the final approval of the mailbox standard.

I also presented another improvement for the CDD to consider – street signs in Westchase. If you have visited some of our other subdivisions, you will notice their street signs match their black metal mailboxes. My request for a community-wide change to these signs did not go unnoticed by CDD supervisors. I look forward to future discussion of this issue by the CDD.

Many thanks to the residents who have inspired these changes and all of their hard work collecting signatures.

Keswick Forest

I would like to thank Aaron and Joellyn Thompson for the baby-revealing party last month. During the weeks leading up to the event, the comment I heard most was: “What the heck is a gender revealing party?”

Well, I can now say without a doubt that it was quite the occasion. Seeing the mother- and father-to-be celebrating with family and friends as they found out the gender of their first child turned out to be a very emotional and memorable experience. Thank you, Aaron and Joellyn, for sharing it with us. We are all looking forward to meeting your little girl!

As school gets back into full swing, I offer a reminder to please keep an eye out for children and parents as you enter the neighborhood. With the curves and narrow roadway we have a unique entrance to our neighborhood. Parents, if you must pick your child up in your vehicle, please try to keep your cars on the side of the road with the sidewalk. This will help make room for cars to pass and will prevent your child from having to cross the street.

Last, for those who might have missed it, Keswick Forest dominated the “Great Neighbors List” in the August WOW. We also had some great quotes from our residents as part of the article. We continue to lead the way in community involvement and generosity, which makes Keswick Forest such a positive place to live. I look forward to seeing everyone at the next neighborhood function!

As always, we welcome you to join our Keswick e-mail list. You can e-mail Leslie McCluskie (lmccluskie@tampabay.rr.com), Heather Greeley-Hessefort (heather.greeleyhessefort@gmail.com) or me (bloudcct@gmail.com).

By Brian Loudermilk, Keswick Forest VM

The Shires

Hi, neighbors! The mailbox upgrade is proceeding in an orderly fashion. The process has been smooth, reliable and stress-free. There have been no major hiccups. That’s what you get when you work with a vendor who has proven experience. I thank Patrick Knight and the mailbox committee for a job well done.

The mailbox order form and mailbox Q and A can be found on the homeowners association Web site, http://www.westchasewca.com All q.uestions are answered there. Any other questions, concerns or comments can be e-mailed to me at theshires@verizon.net. (I am on e-mail all day and I typically answer within the hour.)

The last day to order your mailbox is Sept. 30. Orders placed in September will be installed at the end of October. Effective Oct. 1, homeowners must have either (a) the new mailbox already installed or (b) an order on file for a new mailbox. As of Oct. 1 any home without the new mailbox or on the schedule for replacement is in violation of the deed restrictions.

Also remember that we do have a Facebook page, “The Shires at Westchase, Florida.” This page is open to all. Feel free to share your comments, thoughts, concerns and especially your block watch observations. This page was originally created to be our crime watch information center. Because most people have Facebook apps on their phones, it works extremely well as a real-time crime watch notification forum. Please use it for that purpose.

We do have a Shires e-mail distribution list. We currently have 234 e-mails on that list. Considering that we have 235 homes, it’s safe to assume that we reach more than 95 percent of the homes via e-mail. To join the e-mail list, please send your name and address to theshires@verizon.net.

See you around the neighborhood.
By Ruben Collazo, The Shires VM

Stockbridge

They arrive with regularity: unrequested complimentary newspapers and similar publications thrown onto our driveways and tree lawns. There they remain until the owners, concerned neighbors or kind elves remove them. Sometimes they sit in place for several days, giving potential burglars a suggestion that no one is home. Recently, a good neighbor expressed the concern that we usually make careful arrangements to suspend mail and newspaper delivery when we are away, but the arrival of these unwanted and unexpected pieces neutralizes our efforts. (Worry not, WOW staff, everyone understands that a mass drop the first day of the month is the only reasonable way to deliver our community magazine.)

Less than a year ago, I called the circulation department of one of the daily newspapers to explore possible alternatives to unsolicited deliveries of the papers. They advised that this is all under the management of marketing firms who make the decisions to circulate them among non-subscribers. It seems to me, however, that any publication’s marketing should be under the publisher’s control, but that is another story for another time.

Here is an approach that might address the issue: extend the Westchase non-solicitation policy on door-to-door contact to unwanted complimentary newspapers and other publications. Your comments, suggestions, and recommendations on that idea would certainly be welcomed. Feel free to reach me at 391-5706 or joeodda@hotmail.com at your convenience.

Last, as this school year gets underway, an expression of appreciation goes to Davidsen Middle School students who are remarkably conscientious about avoiding littering along Montague Street and in nearby neighborhoods. Best wishes go to all for another productive, successful year at Davidsen.

By Joe Odda, Stockbridge VM

Wycliff

Hi, Wycliff! I hope you had a great summer. Voting Member (VM) meetings are resuming so if anyone would like to add anything to the agenda, please let me know. There have been several concerns regarding residents’ safety and solicitation in our area. They may seem like legitimate businesses, but they are not supposed to be soliciting in our community.

Our community resource officer and VMs have made several suggestions for handling solicitors. The first is to avoid opening the door. They can leave a business card outside by the door. If you do receive a business card, you can provide the information to Westchase Community Association Manager Debbie Sainz and she will contact them and let them know they are not to be soliciting in Westchase.

Please keep yourself safe.

By Shaney Nadel, Wycliff VM

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Message Boards, Vacation Tips, Weather and Wi-Fi

The Greens

The return to school this month will bring increased activity at the bus stop at The Greens entrance. I hope you have noticed that lighting has been improved on the TECO pole just inside the entrance gate, across from the Village Greens entrance. Please note that this stronger light improves night visibility there.

A new message board will soon be installed near either the entrance or exit of The Greens to update residents about community news. We intend to form a committee that will work with both the Greens and Village Greens voting members to post regular messages on the board. If you are interested in serving on this committee, please send me an e-mail to gpappa@golfviewteam.com.

As a reminder, formal approvals are normally required from the association manager’s office for any visible changes to the front exterior of your home, including painting. When you have questions, please contact the Westchase Community Association office at 926-6404.

Please send all new e-mail addresses to me, so we can add all new Greens residents to the Greens database.

Happy August!

By Gerald (Jerry) Pappa, The Greens VM

Stockbridge

One impression from this year’s Fourth of July holiday was that there seemed to be far fewer fireworks in the neighborhood than in previous years. Moreover, the number of blasts decreased rapidly shortly after 10 p.m. By about 10:30 p.m., it was pretty quiet.

Work continues on the issue of parking adjacent to the stop sign during school hours. There will be more to share later. Further, I am currently reviewing the historic treatment of the dog park idea in Westchase.

Driving and walking through Stockbridge is bringing to mind a matter of home security. The concern is that newspapers, magazines and door hangers are being left out for days in front of some of our units. Naturally, they are unsightly. The real problem, however, is that they can cause burglars to think that no one is home, inviting illegal entry.

You will increase your home’s security by not allowing mail, papers and promotional items to accumulate in front. We are a friendly neighborhood and here are ways to help each other. First, pick up any items on your property each day. Second, suspend newspaper and mail delivery when you are away from home. Third, arrange with your neighbors to pick up promotional items, complimentary newspapers and door hangers while you are away – and offer to do the same for them. Last, if you are going to be away, buy timers for selected lights inside your home and set them to go on during the evening hours.

In just a few days the welcome, happy voices of students returning to school will fill our streets. Good wishes to all for a successful school year!

By Joe Odda, Stockbridge VM

Townhomes of West Park Village

Recently we had a little excitement with Tropical Storm Debbie paying us a visit. I find the press’ insistence that this was just a minor storm a little interesting. While it was, the problem is that from Friday through Monday it was just hanging around raining on us. That is not a typical situation.

Usually a storm will pass through within a few hours and be gone, yet this storm just would not move on. I really do not remember us getting this much rain since May of 1979. The good part is that we live in a community that was built to more recent regulations – unlike many of the areas that badly flooded. While we have occasional problems, they are usually minor in comparison. Hopefully not too many of you had any leaks. Unfortunately my wife Debbie and I had a problem with our flashing around one of our attic vents.

We are continuing the long process of trying to get past dues brought up to date for our association. It’s a problem when homeowners in our association fall behind in their dues and the rest of our residents have to deal with the situation.

Hopefully we will be spared any more storms this season, especially during Tampa’s upcoming major event. A political convention is the largest media event in the world next to the Summer Olympics. Over 15,000 reporters from all over the world will be covering the convention. This will likely be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for Tampa Bay to show the world what a great place this is to live. Other communities’ experiences show the positive effects can continue for years. If we do a great job hosting this event, it may help jumpstart our economy by showcasing our attributes to the largest audience Tampa Bay has ever had.

By Ray Chiaramonte, VM of Townhomes of WPV

The Vineyards

Happy summer, Vineyards residents!  The Vineyards is joining the 21st century as we now have Wi-Fi at The Vineyards swimming pool.  Please review and accept the terms and conditions posted at the pool bulletin board.  Please also make sure to close the pool umbrellas to avoid damage from summer storms. 

On a sad note, one our original owners and long-time residents, Katherine Griffin, moved out of The Vineyards.  We will miss you, Katherine! 

Last, we offer a fond goodbye to another original owner and long-time resident, Jim Senk. Rest in peace, our good friend.

By Kevin Kwan, The Vineyards HOA President

COMMENTS

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Modifications, Dog Parks, Collection Policies, Noise and Fireworks

The Greens

As a reminder, formal approvals are normally required from the association manager’s office for any visible changes to the front exterior of your home, including painting. When you have questions, please contact the Westchase Community Association office at 926-6404.

I hope by the time you read this, you will notice that a brighter light has been added to the TECO pole just inside the entrance gate, across from the entrance to the Village Green. We hope this improves night visibility in that area.

A committee is currently reviewing and updating the official Westchase Color Palette. Once it’s completed, we intend to form a Greens Color Palette Committee to establish the new standard colors for our neighborhood. If you are interested in serving on the Greens Color Palette Committee, please e-mail me at gpappa@golfviewteam.com.

Please send all new e-mail addresses to me, so we can add all new Greens residents to the Greens database.

Happy Fourth of July!

By Gerald (Jerry) Pappa, The Greens VM

Keswick Forest

Happy Fourth of July! As summer break continues I would like to send out a friendly request to all adults and kids. Although no one is looking to put a damper on the fun, I’d ask everyone to turn the noise level down a few notches, especially after dark. If parents could remind their kids of this, I know folks experiencing sleepless nights would be most appreciative.

Every year I’m also asked about Westchase rules on fireworks. Well, don’t shoot the messenger with a bottle rocket, but our guidelines prohibit items that “explode, move or make noise anywhere within the Properties.” Those flying missiles can be costly when they land on screen enclosures and they can result in a violation letter and fine. Please be considerate and refrain from using explosive devices.

In closing, I’d like to acknowledge our very thoughtful Keswick neighbors, Leslie Glick and Judith Mihara. For years they have carried bags around and picked up the trash that sometimes gets discarded at our neighborhood’s entryway. Their good deed has not gone unnoticed and I thank them for keeping our neighborhood beautiful.

As always, we welcome you to join our Keswick e-mail list. You can e-mail me at lmccluskie@tampabay.rr.com, Heather Greeley-Hessefort at heather.greeleyhessefort@gmail.com or Brian Loudermilk at bloudcct@gmail.com.

By Leslie McCluskie, Keswick Forest VM

Stockbridge

As background information relating to the prospects for a Westchase Dog Park, I recently asked Hillsborough County Animal Services Project Manager Mike Honer to provide me with a number of the licensed dogs in the 33626 zip code. I thank Mr. Honer for being so helpful and responding quickly.

As of April 2012 there were 2,555 licensed dogs in 33626 with Westchase accounting for 832. Stockbridge has 17; the Westchase street with the largest population was Gretna Green Drive with 46. (Please e-mail or call me and I will be glad to share the list with you.) There clearly is a sizable number of dog owners who would welcome a Westchase Dog Park.

As I requested, Dyan Pithers and Mary Turnbull of the Master Plan Committee included a dog park idea in their June 14 report to the board of directors. It suggested exploring why the Community Development District (CDD) had rejected one in the TECO easement near the library. The CDD recently announced that a dog park wasn’t feasible given its cost and the lack of land. Let’s press on to other ideas for such a facility.

I have shared my concern about the amount of standing and parking adjacent to the Stockbridge Drive stop sign near Montague Street. This creates a dangerous situation when school is dismissing and when events are held at Davidsen Middle School. I spoke with the Hillsborough County Senior Traffic Engineer about installing an additional no-parking reminder sign on that side of the street. The county is reluctant to do so because a law prohibiting parking or standing within 30 feet of a stop sign already exists. If we wished to apply for one, however, the owners of the unit fronting that area would have to make application and approve the sign’s placement. That does not seem feasible at this time. Two other ideas I will explore are: 1) increased police patrol at those hours and 2) the school board and Davidsen Middle School helping to educate parents on parking limitations at the intersection.

By Joe Odda, Stockbridge VM

The Vineyards

Happy July, Vineyards residents! The Vineyards is in for a very busy month. Ongoing projects include painting of the light/sign posts, sidewalk repairs (grinding and replacement) and various landscaping projects.

Since we are in the middle of the summer, I would like to offer a few reminders. Please close the umbrellas upon leaving the pool area as these can get damaged in summer thunderstorms. Please close your garage doors when not in use to avoid petty thefts. Also ask neighbors to keep an eye on your home when you are away on vacation. Last, please visit http://www.westchasevineyards.org for a couple of new polls relating to wifi at the pool and the possibility of extending the lakeside boardwalk to include a dock. The Web site also offers answers to frequently asked questions.

Have a safe and happy Fourth of July!

By Kevin Kwan, The Vineyards HOA President

Villas of West Park Village

Your Villas Board met on June 4 and it was nice to see many association members present. Our next board meeting will be held on Monday, Sept. 3, at which time the board will discuss the 2013 budget as well as the contracts with Greenacre Properties and Davy Commercial Grounds Management. Both contracts expire Dec. 31. I hope many of you will be present.

At our last Villas Board meeting, directors amended the association’s collection policy, which was established in October 2005. The new policy is as follows: a) first collection letter to be sent at 14 days past due; b) attorney demand to be sent at 45 days past due date with intent to lein, by certified mail; c) interest charge at 18 percent per annum; d) payment plans may be made on a case-by-case basis per board approval (late fees will be considered).

The board discussed the issue of basketball hoops, which will be presented to the Westchase Voting Members, and unanimously approved a motion “to agree with the existing policy of the WCA on the issue of basketball hoops.”

The last issue discussed and approved by the board was to buy light bulbs for the exterior carriage lights, at association expense, for replacement as needed.

Once again we wish to remind all Villa owners that we are already in hurricane season. Everyone should be prepared. Please know your evacuation zone and route; have a first aid kit at home; and be ready to take any action the county suggests. We all hope and pray that we will not be affected, but as the saying goes: “It is better to be prepared and not be hit that to be hit without being prepared.”

By Carlos S. Quiros, Villas of WPV HOA President

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Pool Cages, Hoops, Mailboxes, State Law Complications and Adverse Possession

Brentford

In early May I was surprised to learn that my understanding of Brentford’s deed restrictions was woefully incomplete. When the voting members approved measures last year that allowed bronze pool enclosures for all of Westchase, I thought that was the end of the story. This is apparently not the case.

A few neighborhoods, including Brentford, have a neighborhood-specific guideline on the books that addresses pool enclosures. If you want to put a bronze pool enclosure frame in Brentford, the following guideline currently applies: “Upon request for a variance to the guidelines, screened enclosures with bronze frames and charcoal screens may be approved only when all three of the following are satisfied: a. The window frames must be bronze; b. The enclosure is not visible across a lake, pond, or mitigation area; c. The enclosure is located on an interior or a conservation lot.”

Given these restrictions, most or all of us do not have an option for bronze enclosures. While most are probably satisfied with the current white enclosures, if you were putting in a new pool with a new enclosure, you may very well want to opt for a bronze enclosure. This is the case for our neighbor, D.J. Schmitt, who discovered the additional Brentford guideline when he applied to the Modifications Committee to build a pool.

By the time this article is published in the June WOW, you may already have seen D.J. at your door asking you to support a change in the Brentford guidelines. The first step is to get 51 percent (43 of 85) of the Brentford households to approve the change. After notifying all of Westchase about the suggested change in WOW, VMs representing at least 66 percent of Westchase homes must vote to approve the change. In the best case, this is a three-month process.

If you agree with changing the Brentford guidelines, sign D.J.’s petition when he comes around and we’ll start rolling the rock towards the goal line.

As always, you can e-mail me at ltcmartyhamilton@hotmail.com to comment or to get on the Brentford e-mail list.

By Marty Hamilton, Brentford VM

The Greens

Hello, summertime!

Have you voted in the voting members (VMs) basketball hoops survey running on WOW online, http://www.westchasewow.com? If you have not submitted your vote, please do so. When you choose one of the four alternatives, remember that if you are pro-hoops, only one alternative can be chosen: either permanent or portable hoops.

As a reminder, formal approvals are normally required from the property manager’s office for just about any visible change you make to your home’s front exterior, including painting. When you have questions, please contact the Westchase Community Association (WCA) office at 926-6404.

In May The Greens’ violations report was dominated by 1) mailboxes and mailbox posts that need to be refurbished or repainted, etc.; 2) driveways and sidewalks that need to be cleaned; and 3) un-stored basketball hoops. If you were one of those homeowners who received a notice, please work with the WCA to resolve the violation at your earliest convenience to avoid a fine.

By the way, a committee has been established to review and update the official Westchase Color Palette. Once that palette is complete this fall, we intend on forming a Greens Color Palette Committee to establish the new standard colors for our neighborhood. If you are interested in serving on the Greens Color Palette Committee, please e-mail me at gpappa@golfviewteam.com.

Please also send all new e-mail addresses to me, so we can add all new Greens residents to the Greens database.

Have a great summer!

By Gerald (Jerry) Pappa, The Greens VM

Radcliffe

Squatters! That was the initial buzz around Radcliffe when a few of our neighbors noticed some unexpected guests moving into the long abandoned home at 11906 Wandsworth Dr. last month. Knowing that something didn’t seem quite right, several calls were quickly made to the local sheriff’s office expressing concern. After a quick response by a few local residents and a vigilant effort by our Westchase Community Association (WCA) office, the unfortunate truth surfaced. Turns out, they were merely victims.

In a strange way, it’s a shame that after all of the hard work the new occupants put in to cleaning up that tattered front lawn, they were soon after served notice of their adverse possession of the property by our local deputy. Why? They were taken for a ride by some unscrupulous con man. It appears that after scoping out the home and confirming its abandoned status, someone falsely posted the home for rent on Craigslist. More than likely, they made a quick buck collecting a first month’s rent and perhaps even a security deposit in the process.

While we expect that the family who moved into this home under false pretenses will have moved by the time you read this, it is another reminder of the importance and value of a neighborhood that’s engaged in their surroundings. While this truly is a sad circumstance for one family, the reality is that the situation – under a slightly different scenario – could have been much worse for Radcliffe.

Kudos to our neighbors, our association and our local deputy for paying attention and acting swiftly!

By Eric Holt, Radcliffe VM

The Shires

Hello, everyone! After a much deserved rest, I am back at the helm as voting member of The Shires. I'm looking forward to doing this job again. Believe it or not, it gets into your blood.

There are many questions about the new mailbox. If you want to see what it looks like, my mailbox will soon be installed. I think you’ll like the way it looks. I’ll let you know as soon as it is installed. Please stop by my home and take a look when it arrives.

Details about the rollout of the new mailbox are still being hammered out. I’ll tell you what I currently know with a disclaimer that some details may change for operational reasons. The final cost of the mailbox is $291.71. We will begin taking orders on June 1. Orders must be pre-paid in full because the mailboxes are manufactured to order. The vendor will combine the orders every month until either 40 units are reached or the month closes.

If the month closes with fewer than 40 units, then the bulk order remains open until the next month that a minimum of 40 units is attained. Closing dates are June 30, July 31, Aug. 31 and Sept. 30. Our drop-dead date is Sept. 30, at which time all mailboxes must be installed. After Sept. 30 failure to install the mailbox is a violation of deed restrictions that will be enforced. After Sept. 30 the unit price will also increase because the production runs will be in single units. The cost at that time will be $382 per installed mailbox.

I will make order forms and other details available as I have them. Stay tuned to e-mail, Facebook and the association’s Web site, http://www.westchasewca.com To jo.in The Shires e-mail list please send an e-mail to theshires@verizon.net. All requests are verified for Shires residency.

Last, I know that the mailbox issue has been debated for many years. We conducted four votes to get to this point. I would like to suggest that we all just move forward and not rehash the mailbox debate. There are other fish to fry. Basketball goals are next.

My phone number is 855-6336 and my e-mail is theshires@verizon.net (Please be aware that my phone does not accept blocked, private or anonymous calls). As a rule, e-mail is always the best way to reach me. I often respond to e-mail within minutes if not within the hour.

I’m glad to be back at the helm. See you around the neighborhood.

Stockbridge

With an appropriate blush, I must note that my correct phone number is 391-5706 (in May’s column I gave you the wrong one). My e-mail address remains joeodda@hotmail.com. It will help me reach owners rapidly on Westchase matters if each would share his or her e-mail address for my Stockbridge Drive owners list. This is used exclusively for Westchase. I assure you that such things as cartoons, political items and chain e-mails will not flow from my laptop.

There were about 175 responses to the poll on basketball hoops. Its outcome is currently being compiled into the best reporting format. I trust the information will be available shortly.

This past week I took steps to learn more about the history of discussions and actions on the idea of a dog park within Westchase borders. I contacted the Westchase Community Development District (CDD) Board of Supervisors with a request for information. Additionally, I have asked to have this topic considered by the Westchase Community Association’s Master Plan Committee, currently working on developing a two-year master plan. Our supervisors and Master Plan Committee chair have been most helpful and I truly appreciate their responses.

One of our Stockbridge residents recently expressed concern about the risks associated with exiting Stockbridge onto Montague when school is in session. While there is a "no parking or standing" sign on the north side of the street, parents are parking right up to the stop sign on the south side to wait, forcing exiting residents to drive on the left side of the road. This risks a dangerous, head-on collision with anyone turning into Stockbridge from Montague. The law prohibits parking or standing within, I believe, 30 feet of a stop sign. A reminder sign, however, might help. CDD staff has advised that I need to contact the county’s public works department or sheriff’s office since this is a public street. I’ll keep you advised of progress. School is out soon and it would be good to resolve this problem before August.

By Joe Odda, Stockbridge VM

Townhomes of West Park Village

Even during a beautiful spring the realities of issues involving our association can creep in. Our board of directors had a special meeting with our attorney to discuss a situation that could have a significant effect on our ability to collect back homeowners’ dues. A new law in Tallahassee has put master associations such the Westchase Community Association (WCA) in front of our townhome association in its ability to collect past due association fees.

The problem is that it appears to our attorney that the WCA could move to collect their dues, which would also include the fees charged by their attorneys. This would put our association in a subordinate position and make us responsible for the WCA's attorney's fee if we wanted to try and get our back dues paid. Our lost dues would most likely be a higher amount since our dues represent monthly fees rather than the yearly fee the WCA collects. The legal fees could be quite expensive and we would have to pay them if we wanted to try and get our past due association fees back.

As a result, several association presidents held a special meeting with the WCA president. It was agreed that the WCA will not make future moves against homeowners with past due fees until we are notified and can decide if we want to pay the WCA's back fees in order to keep us in the first position. We will have to decide on a case-by-case basis depending on how much is owed.

We hope this will be a more equitable way to address the problem. The attorneys are working out the details now. I will keep you posted on the outcome. It is my hope that this will be a reasonable solution to a complicated situation in which the new state legislation has put our association.

By Ray Chiaramonte, WPV Townhomes HOA President

Villas of West Park Village

Just a reminder that on Monday, June 4, your Villas Board of Directors will meet at the Westchase Community Association (WCA) offices on 10049 Parley Dr. at 7 p.m. We would like to have as many villa owners as possible present since we’ll be discussing topics that will have a direct impact on all of our residents.

As summer gets closer, we would like to remind everyone that hurricane season is around the corner and everyone should be prepared in case we get hit by one of them. Everyone should know the evacuation route; have a first aid kit at home; and be ready to take any action the county might suggest. Aside from this possible headache we confront every year, remember these months represent our kids’ summer vacation. It’s the best time of the year to go swimming or visit our state’s amusement parks. Florida is the capital of the world as far as amusement parks are concerned.

Also, as we approach mid-year, the Villas Board wishes to express to all members that our association’s financial status is healthy. Except for a case or two, everyone else is currently paying assessed dues. At the same time our contractors are complying fully with their work, making the Villas’ curb appeal very attractive. We intend to keep it that way.

Recently you received an e-mail regarding the issue of basketball hoops in Westchase. The e-mail included four different options in order to gauge resident feedback. As of this writing, I have received only 22 responses, which I believe is not enough. Please take just a minute to let me know what your opinion is. When the issue comes before the Westchase Voting Members, I can then truly represent your wishes.

By Carlos S. Quiros, Villas of WPV HOA President

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Basketball Hoops Poll, Mailboxes, Master Plan Suggestions and Nuking Varmints

Brentford

I was sitting in Baybridge playground recently watching a spirited group of 6-year-old boys playing on the fitness equipment behind the iron fence with the black and gold “adults only” sign. It was then I recalled that the Westchase Community Association (WCA) Board of Directors has appointed a committee to make recommendations on a two-year plan for beneficial ways that the board can spend our money to improve the community.

I’m better at shooting down ideas than originating them, so I’ll toss out their request to the Brentford community at large to make suggestions. If you have an idea for something you would like to see the WCA do in the next two years to improve Westchase, contact me, ltcmartyhamilton@hotmail.com, or the WCA office and share it.

On an unrelated note, I’ve heard from more than one neighbor that they are dealing with rodents in their landscaping and garages. My creed on varmints is always to “go nuke early,” so I encourage everyone to be vigilant and take steps to destroy (not dissuade or drive away) any rodents on your property while safeguarding pets.

By Marty Hamilton, Brentford VM

The Bridges

A survey is being done door to door by Alternate Voting Member (VM) Linda Ryan to see if we can approve changing our mailbox style to the black metal box-type already in use in many other Westchase neighborhoods.

The voting members have again been asked to reconsider the rules regarding basketball hoops. We are taking an informal survey to gauge our homeowners’ opinions on this. At this time, this is only a straw poll. If it is decided to change the association rules, you will be offered the opportunity to cast an official vote that I will be required to cast at the VM meeting when the decision comes to a vote.

The survey addresses the current version of Article XII, Section 9 of the Westchase Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions (CCRs), which specifies rules for sports equipment. That section currently reads, “The erection or installation on any part of any Unit of any sports equipment that is not portable is prohibited. The term ‘sports equipment’ shall include, but not be limited to, basketball hoops, backboards, bicycle ramps, soccer or hockey nets, and any other item used in connection with sports, recreation, exercise, or fitness activities. Portable sports equipment may be used within any unit and must be stored out of view from any road or right-of-way between sundown and sunrise.”

The poll requests residents select one of the following options relating to the restriction on basketball hoops: (1) leave the basketball goal restriction as currently noted in Article XII, Section 9; (2) allow portable basketball hoops to remain out at all times; (3) allow only permanent installation of basketball hoops; or (4) no basketball hoops permitted at all at any time.

This is an informal poll and is being used to gauge resident feedback only. The results of this poll do not imply any rule change will be made at this time. To participate in the poll online, log on to http://www.westchasewow.com

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Since I do not have e-mail addresses for all 300 Bridges residents, please send an e-mail to me at bridgesvm@gmail.com to let me know which of the above choices you prefer. The third choice would eliminate the option of having portable hoops in our community in lieu of a permanently mounted hoop. When you send your e-mail, please indicate what subdivision of The Bridges you live in: Baybridge, Wakesbridge, Sturbridge or Stonebridge. Residents of Stockbridge and Woodbridge are represented by other VMs and need not respond to me.

By Cynde Mercer, The Bridges VM

The Greens

Welcome to May 2012, the month that transitions us into the summertime…the hot summertime!

By now each of you should be aware of the newly revised Basketball Hoops survey running on WOW online (http://www.westchasewow.com). If you have not submitted your vote, by all means please do. Go online to WOW right now. When you choose one of the four alternatives, remember if you are pro-hoops, only one alternative can be chosen, i.e., either permanent or portable.

Now that we are officially in the month that begins outdoor activities, please keep in mind that formal approvals are normally required from the association manager’s office for just about anything that is visible around the exterior front of your home, including painting. When you have questions, please contact the Westchase Community Association office at 926-6404.

By the way a committee has been established to review and update the official Westchase exterior color palette…once that palette is complete, hopefully by this fall, we intend on forming a Greens Color Palette Committee to establish the new standard colors for our neighborhood based on the revised master palette. If you are interested in serving on the Greens Color Palette Committee, please e-mail me at gpappa@golfviewteam.com.

I wish you the very happiest and safest Memorial Day.

God bless America!

By Gerald (Jerry) Pappa, The Greens VM

Stockbridge

In March 2012 you submitted the proxies that elected me your voting member (VM) for Stockbridge and my first Village Voice message begins with a statement of appreciation for your votes. It has been a pleasure meeting and talking with many of you in the weeks before and since election. Since then I’ve attended my first VM meeting on April 10 and board of directors meeting on April 12 as a VM guest. Here are some items of note from those meetings.

You are encouraged to respond to the new, four-option poll on basketball hoops appearing on WOW Online at http://www.westchasewow.com Inter.esting perspectives have already been shared by a few owners on a face-to-face basis. The poll will provide valuable feedback on consensus views, which will be shared accordingly.

Summaries of the proceedings of the board and voting member meetings will, of course, be conveyed by those components of our governance, but I must comment that the organization, management and conduct of both meetings were truly impressive.

Noting the extraordinary quality and extent of park and recreational areas within Westchase, several Stockbridge dog owners lament that we have not yet identified the potential for a fenced dog park located centrally within our remarkable community. Naturally there would be factors of dollars, land, materials, equipment, water and sewage, as well as ongoing safety and maintenance to address. In any case initiating discussion on this possibility is an agenda item we wish to bring forward.

For those who have not circled and counted, there are 68 units in Stockbridge and is it a wonderfully diverse community.

You can reach me at 240-4753 or joeodda@hotmail.com. I look forward to your thoughts, comments, questions and suggestions.

Again, thank you for electing me.

By Joe Odda, Stockbridge VM

Villas of West Park Village

The directors on the Villas Board wish to express our satisfaction with the assistance given by every Villa owner or renter regarding the board-approved program to pressure wash all property line sidewalks; curbing; walkways to front porch; driveway concrete slabs, and alley curbing of all villas. The first pressure washing was recently completed and the second will likely take place in September. We’ll keep all owners informed.

Also during the past month many shrubs or landscape plants that were not on the WCA’s list of acceptable plants were replaced. We shall continue to be on the lookout for any front landscaping which might require a change as it is our wish to maintain the very best possible curb appeal for our units.

Through its voting members group the Westchase Community Association requested World of Westchase (WOW) carry out an informal online poll, with four different options, regarding the issue of basketball hoops, in order to gauge resident feedback. The result of this poll does not imply any rules changes will be made at this time. Every Villa owner for whom I have an electronic address was notified of this poll and I requested a reply stating a preferred option. As of the date of this writing – April 14 – I have received 13 replies. I exhort every Villa owner to express his or her opinion as it will help me to better present our Villas’ point of view whenever the issue is discussed at a voting members meeting.

Last, our next board of directors’ meeting will be held on Monday, June 4, at 7 p.m. As usual the meeting will be held at the WCA offices at 10049 Parley Drive. I hope to see many of you at the meeting.

By Carlos S. Quiros, Villas of WPV HOA President

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Opting Out of Garage Sales?

Radcliffe

Hello, neighbor! First, let me get the fun stuff out of the way. My family will once again be hosting our semi-annual Radcliffe Block Party on Saturday, April 21, starting at 4 p.m. Please come by with the family and enjoy some time chatting with your friends and neighbors. Complimentary snacks and beverages will be provided, but all contributions to good food and drink will be welcome!

I hope many of you received the garage sale survey I sent out via e-mail last month. This was in response to a few recent proposals that we consider “opting out” of the Westchase garage sales that occur in May and October of each year. While there were a handful of residents that indicated a desire to see our participation in these events halted, it appears that the overwhelming majority of us either accepts or embraces them.

The net result? No additional action will be taken in this area. Radcliffe will remain accessible and open for garage sales moving forward. There were some good suggestions offered to try to mitigate the traffic flow issues associated with the event, such as the strategic placement of no parking signs on our street corners or in front yards. We need, however, to be aware that our roads are public. While we can attempt to influence certain behaviors on our neighborhood roads, we cannot necessarily control them.

Spring is once again upon us, and it is time to recruit for Radcliffe’s palm tree-trimming program. Many of us have already benefitted from collectively seeking discounted tree trimming rates. We need as few as ten homes to participate in order to receive prices as low as $20 per palm tree from Mays Trees Service. If you are interested in getting your palm trees trimmed under our Radcliffe program next month, just let us know by sending an e-mail to radcliffevm@gmail.com!

By Eric Holt, Radcliffe VM

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Annual Meetings, Mailboxes, Trees and Pressure Washing

Keswick Forest

I’d like to begin with thanking all of you for taking the time to mail in your proxy cards. For those who were unable to attend our Keswick Forest Annual Meeting, I will continue to represent you as your voting member along with Heather Greeley-Hessefort as first alternate. This year we welcome a new volunteer, Brian Loudermilk, as second alternate.

At the meeting, we discussed the pedestrian crosswalk at the entrance of Keswick and the possibility of widening the area or creating a turnaround where cars park for the bus stop. The bus stop area represents a bit of a challenge because the street is owned by the county and the land surrounding the area is protected conservation. We do, however, continue to ask that parents not park along the curve or on the grass.

As for the Countryway Boulevard crosswalk, in the next month we will be reaching out to law enforcement to see if they can assist us by addressing drivers who are failing to yield to pedestrians.

Last, those who missed the Super Bowl party hosted by Brian and Michelle Loudermilk missed a great time. We thank them for hosting their fellow Keswickians. I also thank Ed Kupsche for organizing the Super Bowl pool even though I didn’t win.

As always, we welcome you to join our Keswick e-mail list. You can e-mail me at lmccluskie@tampabay.rr.com, Heather Greeley-Hessefort at heather.greeleyhessefort@gmail.com or Brian Loudermilk at bloudcct@gmail.com.

By Leslie McCluskie, Keswick Forest VM

Radcliffe

Hello, Radcliffe! Our annual meeting was held on Jan. 24 at the Westchase Community Association (WCA) office on Parley Drive. Although we barely reached a quorum with only 49 out of 154 homes having submitted their proxies, a special thanks goes out to those neighbors that made it a success. The results are in and it appears that I will remain your voting member (VM) for the upcoming year. Thank you for your confidence! Keith Heinemann, Sadye Melchiorre and Chuck Hoppe round out the local team as your alternates.

Topics of discussion were limited during the meeting, which I take as a good sign. Concern about solicitors, fencing and drainage issues were addressed with attendees. The possibility of opting out of the bi-annual garage sales was also brought up. As always, you can send me an e-mail with any questions or concerns at radcliffevm@gmail.com.

In support of my own efforts to institute a new VM tradition, my family will once again host a spring block party for the neighborhood. Mark down Saturday, April 21, on your calendar. There will be more details to come!

By Eric Holt, Radcliffe VM

The Shires

I hope that everyone has survived Valentine’s Day without any major altercations and life will now proceed normally as there are no major holidays for a few months. I would like to thank residents for their participation at our first town hall meeting and I hope that the other two will be as fruitful. Making our neighborhood and community a better place is contingent upon your participation and it is much appreciated. I will keep you updated on the mailbox referendum as we move forward with the vote.

A few other items have come to my attention. Please remember that we have covenants and guidelines that govern our community and everyone should at least have a basic understanding of them. You can get a copy from the manager’s office or go to the World of Westchase’s Web site (http://www.westchasewow.com) and find them there. Two that seem to go unheeded in our neighborhood need to be fixed. Under Westchase rules you aren’t supposed to place your trash at the curb until after 6 p.m. on the night before the trash collection. Second, for those who park multiple cars in your driveway: please realize that you are not allowed to block the sidewalk. When you do so, you are forcing your neighbors and our neighborhood children into the street. Please look before you put it into park.

Thanks again for all of your participation.

By Patrick Knight, The Shires VM

Townhomes of West Park Village

The holidays are finally over and life is back to normal – whatever that means in the times in which we live. Recently many items have been discussed at the voting members (VMs) meetings. One of them included a discussion of whether we need to revise the list of acceptable exterior paint colors again. The current list is the result of a major effort a few years ago. After considerable discussion, VMs felt that the effort that took place offered enough choices with maybe just a few additions. A committee is going to look at possibly adding a few colors to keep current with changing styles and colors while ensuring original colors are allowed. As it stands now, the permissible colors for West Park Village are separate and will not be revised at this time.

Another interesting discussion was trees. We need to understand that the county has rules on the removal of trees and they must be followed. There was some concern about trees sometimes cracking or raising the sidewalks, which does sometimes take place. Being the street tree lover that I am, I spoke up and reminded other voting members that street trees add value to property as well as the community in general. Many of the most desirable communities like Hyde Park, which we are patterned after, are beautiful because of the street trees. Sometimes sidewalks do crack but it is much less expensive to fix a cracked or raised sidewalk than to remove a tree. Trees add tremendous benefits, including reducing air pollution and providing shade that can reduce electric bills.

There was also a lot discussion about the success of the Movies in the Park and other activities that the community association plans. Attendance at the VM meeting each month has been good, although a couple of neighborhoods are not represented because of the difficulty of finding someone willing to serve on the board.

Most of the other discussions were more minor and specific to areas of Westchase that are not part of West Park Village.

Please e-mail me if you have any issues you want to discuss and I will try to get an answer. My e-mail is ramondchiaramonte@msn.com.

I hope you all are looking forward to spring as much as I am.

By Ray Chiaramonte, Townhomes of WPV HOA President

Villas of West Park Village

Your Villas Board of Directors met on Monday, Feb. 6. At the meeting the board discussed and approved a two-year experiment to provide pressure washing twice yearly for all sidewalks, driveways and curbs for all 92 villas. The first pressure washing will commence on Monday, March 12.

It’s very important that every owner or renter makes sure that no vehicle is parked anywhere along the property line sidewalk or at the garage entrance concrete slab. Neither the Villas HOA nor the contractor assumes any responsibility for dirt vehicles or damage caused to cars parked along the sidewalk while the pressure washing is being done. At the same time the contractor has been instructed not to return to any lot to pressure wash a curb because a car was parked there. It is very important for all Villa residents to follow these instructions.

Also at the meeting the board approved a resolution to request from the Westchase Community Association (WCA) Modifications Committee authorization to change any shrub or cover that is located in the front yard of any villa and which is not in keeping with the WCA’s acceptable standards. Ten different shrubs,out of over 100 that are included in the WCA-approved Guidelines (under Section 2.2.8’s Plant Material List) were submitted to the Modifications Committee as suggested by our landscaping company, Davey Commercial Grounds Management. The board wishes to express its sincere thanks to the Modifications Committee for their approval during their meeting on Tuesday, Feb. 14.

During our next walk through the neighborhood, we’ll be on the lookout for any front landscaping which might require a change. The association will pay for the cost of these changes unlike two years ago when the damage was caused by a hard freeze. Then the owners had to pay for the installation of new flora as indicated by our declaration.

By Carlos S. Quiros, Villas of WPV HOA President

The Vineyards

Greetings, Vineyards residents! It is already March 2012, which means that it’s time for the Vineyards 2012-2013 Board of Directors elections. The annual meeting and elections will take place on Sunday, March 25, at 5 p.m. at the Westchase Swim and Tennis Center on Countryway Boulevard. Please watch for the meeting notice and proxy card/ballot in the mail over the next couple of weeks. If you are unable to attend the meeting, please make sure to return a signed proxy in order to establish a quorum and insure your vote counts.

We will once again place on the ballot a proposal to change painting requirement from once every five years to every seven years. Were just eight votes short of passing the proposal last year!

Thanks again to the Social Committee for putting together a great program in 2011. We look forward to great events in 2012, including the Easter Egg Hunts and Halloween and Christmas parties.

Last, we are experiencing issues with parking, speeding, incomplete stops at stop signs and wrong way drivers in the neighborhood. The board voted to retain an off-duty deputy to enforce the moving violations, so make sure drivers observe the speed limit (15 miles per hour), drive the right way and completely stop at stop signs. Residents who do not comply with the parking rules are subject to towing.

If you have any questions, please send an e-mail to hoa@westchasevineyards.org.

Take care.

By Kevin Kwan, The Vineyards HOA President

Wycliff

Hi, Wycliff! During our February voting members (VMs) meeting, VMs discussed updating the master exterior color palette for Westchase homes. In addition, a presentation was made to possibly have a mini triathlon here in Westchase. Proceeds would be donated to several charities that are yet to be decided.

As always please feel free to e-mail me with any questions or concerns.

Happy March!

By Shaney Nadel, Wycliff VM

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Decorations, Village E-mail Lists, Volunteerism and Annual Meetings

Brentford

I thank everyone who made our little piece of Westchase look so beautiful during December. For me, nothing evokes the feelings of holiday spirit like palm trees wrapped with thousands of tiny lights.

Special accolades are offered to those who have embraced the future and converted to LED bulbs, (I’m still waiting for my strings of old-school incandescent bulbs to kick the bucket, so I can make the switch) and to Joe Davis, who added lights synchronized to music which surprisingly wasn’t annoying.

I believe 2011 was a good year for Brentford. Almost every house that went up for sale was bought, there were plenty of kids and dogs out playing in yards (and the street), the corner of Gretna Green and Gretna Green didn’t flood (that I can recall), we had an awesome Oktoberfest hosted by three outstanding brewmeisters, and my lawn didn’t have a summer swoon (condolences if yours did). I wish all of you a happy 2012.

This year I have resolved to update the neighborhood e-mail list. Of course, that has been my resolution for the past two years as well so I’m not too optimistic that I’ll get it done. Nevertheless, if you live in Brentford and are not getting an occasional e-mail from me and would like to, please e-mail me at ltcmartyhamilton@hotmail.com and I’ll add you to the list. Last, space in the WOW is not solely reserved for me, so I encourage anyone in Brentford who has something to say to send it in to the editor.

By Marty Hamilton, Brentford VM

The Greens

Welcome to 2012!

On Jan. 26 at 6:30 p.m. in the Westchase Community Association (WCA) conference room we will have The Greens Annual Meeting, where we will elect a voting member and alternates to represent the Greens in 2012. If you know of anyone who is interested in serving, please have them contact either the Westchase Association Manager or me so we can have their names placed on the ballot.

With the new year, please review those who have access to The Greens via your guest/service providers’ list. Please make the necessary corrections so the gatehouse can be more efficient in processing guests and creating fewer backups at the gates.  

Last, should you know of any new residents, please advise them to send me their e-mail addresses, so I can pass them on to our Greens Webmaster for inclusion on all Greens and Westchase news.

By Gerald (Jerry) Pappa, The Greens VM

Keswick Forest

Happy New Year! I would like to say thank you for being one of the most proactive neighborhoods in all of Westchase.  As your voting member and dedicated alternate, Heather Greeley-Hessefort and I take great pride when we get showered with compliments on how actively involved all of you are.  We now ask that you once again let us beam with pride – simply mail in your proxy card before Keswick Forest’s Jan. 19 annual meeting.  One hundred percent participation would be really awesome.  All you have to do is fill out that card and drop it in the mail. For those who would like to attend the Keswick Forest annual election, it’s Jan. 19 at 5:30 p.m. at the Westchase Swim and Tennis Center across the street. This is the time to come out and discuss neighborhood issues, so please feel free to join us. 

Second, I would like to thank Nikki and David Smith for doing such a great job organizing our Keswick Santa visit this year.  For those who missed it, we had a jolly time with Old St. Nick. We also offer our kudos to Brian and Michelle Loudermilk for again hosting this year’s New Year’s Eve bash.  What a great party with wonderful friends!   

Last, as a reminder, all holiday decorations have to be down no later than Jan. 15.

To sign up or make changes on our Keswick e-mail list, please e-mail me at lmccluskie@tampabay.rr.com or Heather Greeley-Hessefort at heather.greeleyhessefort@gmail.com.

By Leslie McCluskie, Keswick Forest VM

The Shires

Happy New Year! I hope that I have represented our community well as voting member and I hope to continue serving you in the future. I nevertheless still encourage each of you to take more of an interest in our community’s affairs. While The Shires inhabits a far corner of Westchase, we need to represent ourselves on committees or even just help out in any way possible.

Please remember that your association always needs volunteers. Just contact me or any other voting member, board member or the association manager and they will direct you to the right person. As always, if you are new to the neighborhood and would like to be included in the e-mails that I send out – or if you have a new e-mail address, please contact me at theshireswestchase@hotmail.com. Last, if you are on Facebook, please join the page for The Shires. Lots of information gets posted there as well.

By Patrick Knight, The Shires VM

Villas of West Park Village

On behalf of your Villas Board of Directors, I offer my best wishes to all association members for a happy new year full of happiness and health.

As mentioned in our last month’s Village Voice, on Dec. 5 we held our Villas annual meeting. Following the meeting, your 2012 board of directors met, elected the officers and took action for a new program.

During the annual meeting we had 51 out of 92 members present in person or by proxy. The three declared candidates, George Pennington, Christine Miller and Carlos Quiros, were elected to the board for the year 2012. During the regular meeting the officers remained the same as last year with Carlos Quiros as president; George Pennington as vice president; Kevin Riley as treasurer; and Christine Miller as secretary.

A motion was made and approved that board meeting times and information related to association activities were to be relayed to association members via e-mail. The Villas’ e-mail list is still incomplete as we still lack some 22 electronic addresses. I wish to take this opportunity to request that those members send me an e-mail so I can complete our members list. Also, a motion was approved to apply the excess of income over expenditures in 2011 against the year 2012 members’ assessments as provided by IRS Ruling 70-604.

The final issue discussed and approved was for the board to assume, for a two-year period, the responsibility assigned to owners in our Declaration of Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions for the pressure washing of lead walks and driveways. The board will also cover the pressure washing of the property line sidewalks and the curbs in the front of the units and in the alleys. We received two bids and the contract will be formally awarded to the lowest bidder. This service will be performed twice a year as determined by the president with the advice from our property manager.   

By Carlos Quiros, Villas HOA President

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Holiday Parties, Santa’s Visit and Annual Meetings

The Greens

Welcome to the holiday season in Westchase!

On Jan. 26 at 6:30 p.m. in the Westchase Community Association (WCA) office building on Parley Drive, we will have The Greens Annual Meeting, where we will elect a voting member and alternates to represent The Greens in 2012. If you know of anyone interested in serving, please have them contact either the Westchase property manager or me so we can place them on the ballot.

Please make sure the gatehouse knows of your holiday party/dinner guests prior to their arrival so there are fewer backups at the gatehouse.   Further, if the gatehouse is not made aware of a delivery in advance or if they cannot reach you, the delivery will not be made (this does not apply to the USPS, UPS or FedEx).  

Merry Christmas and happy holidays!

By Gerald (Jerry) Pappa, The Greens VM

Keswick Forest

With December already here, please mark your calendars for our annual Santa's Coming to Keswick Party on Sunday, Dec. 11, at 2 p.m. The children will have the opportunity to tell Santa what they would like for Christmas as well as listen to Santa read his classic poem, A Visit from Saint Nicholas. Please bring a dish to share and your favorite holiday spirit. If interested, we will be taking up a collection of unwrapped toys for Toys for Tots. To help cover the cost for Santa’s visit, we ask for a $10 donation per family. Don’t forget your cameras.

As a reminder, we’re still looking for any homeowner that might be interested in running for Keswick voting member and/or alternate. Leslie and I have decided to keep our names on the ballot again this year but we could always use one more. As of this writing, we have not confirmed the dates of our annual meeting, but details will be sent out via Keswick e-mail distribution list. To sign up for e-mails please contact Leslie at lmccluskie@tampabay.rr.com or me at heather.greeleyhessefort@gmail.com.

By Heather Greeley-Hessefort, Keswick Forest Alternate VM

Radcliffe

Thanks to all who stopped by to enjoy our Oktoberfest block party on Oct. 8. We appreciated all of the delicious food and drink that so many brought. We hope the spring/fall block party format remains a tradition for voting members (VMs) moving forward. Tamara and I are already prepared to host again next spring.

I have heard several mentions of theft from cars in recent weeks. Please keep your cars locked when parking in your driveway overnight and never leave valuables in plain sight.

The success of our discount palm trimming program continued last month with our highest participation levels to date. When you participate, your palm trimming costs can get as low as $20 per tree. If you’re interested in taking advantage of this deal next spring (May 2012), please let me know at radcliffevm@gmail.com.

Last, just a quick note that our annual neighborhood meeting will take place at 6 p.m. on Jan. 24 at the Westchase Community Association (WCA) office on Parley Drive. This marks the time of year when the Radcliffe VM is elected into office. Please consider joining your neighbors in attending this meeting as it is a great opportunity to express your opinions, concerns or praise. If you can’t attend, please make certain to mail in your election proxy when it arrives. A quorum of at least 30 percent is necessary to ensure that the VM election occurs.

Happy holidays to everyone!

By Eric Holt, Radcliffe VM

The Shires

I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving!

We will be having The Shires voting member/alternate elections on Jan. 15. If you would like to run for the position, I encourage you to join me and the other candidates. If you can’t get me your name in advance, please list yourself as a write-in. We can always use more volunteers.

On the proxy there will be a space for a vote on the replacement of our Shires mailboxes. Fifty-one percent of Shires homeowners must vote in support of the change for it to go into effect. I will leave it up to you to either sell it to your neighbors and friends or not.

The Mailbox Committee is working diligently to get bids. As soon as we get the best one, I will send it and related information about its appearance and installation via e-mail.  We are looking to stay in line with what some of the other neighborhoods like Radcliffe have done.  I understand concerns about the economy. Please realize that I am doing this because multiple residents have asked me as voting member to do so.  I am aware that there are very passionate views on both sides and I ask that you discuss it with your neighbors during the next two months. Personally I believe that new mailboxes are needed and that a few hundred dollars is very little compared to keeping our neighborhood looking as good as possible.

Last, if you are not on my current e-mail list, please e-mail me at theshireswestchase@hotmail.com or knight.patrickj@gmail.com to be added.

Additionally please check The Shires Facebook page as I will post current information, including mailbox news, there.

By Patrick Knight, The Shires VM


Village Green

It was wonderful to see all the neighbors who came out for our annual Halloween street party. As usual, you outdid yourselves with the tasty food offerings and fantastic costumes. Special thanks to the Tran and McElroy families for generously sharing their electricity to power the bounce houses. Also, thank you very much to Vivian and Lisa for their tireless dedication to organizing the get-together. Everyone seemed to have a great time.

A number of neighbors have contacted me regarding the recent break-ins here in the Village Green. If you have any knowledge of break-ins, unlawful activities or even shady characters, please share that information. I would be happy to put out a timely village e-mail alert regarding possible threats.

Another issue that has been brought to my attention is that vehicles are parking in the center of the intersection of Green Links and Gretna Green in the morning. The traffic congestion combined with the cluster of vehicles at that intersection has become a safety hazard for our high school and middle school kids, who wait at that corner for their bus. With all that is going on there, it is sometimes very difficult to see them.

By the time you read this note, the updated Village Green Directory should be in hand. Please forward any additions or changes to me. I greatly appreciate those neighborhood business owners who purchased ads to support its printing. Please remember their contribution when you are in need of the services that they provide.

I wish everyone a very special holiday season!

By Bobbi Pitcher, Village Green VM

Villas of West Park Village

On Monday, Dec. 5, at 7 p.m. our Villas sub-association will conduct its annual meeting. It will be held at the Westchase Community Association offices, at 10049 Parley Dr. If by any chance any Villa owner has not yet returned his/her proxy, please do it today. We expect many of you will be in attendance and will participate during the meeting. Once the meeting is concluded, the elected directors will meet to elect the board officers as well as discuss and approve any legally presented issues. Owners attending the annual meeting are welcome to stay for the board meeting. Your board has always maintained that this is your association and that you should actively participate in its meetings.

Recently I forwarded to all members for whom we have electronic addressees an annual report were I presented what your board has accomplished during the 2011. If you have not received a copy of the annual report, please e-mail me and it will be my pleasure to send one.

In order to maintain the best possible curb appeal, it is the responsibility of all of us – the association and Villa owners – to comply with the requirements of Article IV, Section 1 of our Declaration of Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions, especially where it refers to the rights and obligations of the association and the owner’s responsibilities. I honestly believe that of all the neighborhoods in West Park Village, our villas are second to none when it comes to curb appeal and it is the board’s intention to keep it that way.

Finally, on behalf of your board I want to wish everyone the very best during Christmas. I hope that the year 2012 brings health and happiness to all Villa owners.

By Carlos Quiros, Villas of WPV President

Wycliff

Hi, Wycliff! I start by offering our big thanks to Melinda for organizing our annual kiddie Halloween party for the kids, Nancy and Ken for letting us trash their driveway and everyone else who helped out.

Speaking of parties, our annual Pot Luck Block Party is just around the corner. The festivities will be held Dec. 10 from 3-7 p.m. The Santa parade will be down our road around 3:30 p.m. The party will feature live music, a bounce house, and, as always, some of the best home-cooked dishes and desserts. If you plan to come, R.S.V.P. by Dec. 4 to me (Shaney) at 727-0082 or ksmagee@aol.com with what you plan to bring. Don’t forget an unwrapped gift to donate!

Happy holidays!

By Shaney Nadel, Wycliff VM

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VM Candidates, Food Drive, Chili Cookoff and Holiday Block Parties

The Greens

Welcome to fall in Westchase and the unofficial beginning of the holiday season 2011! With the cooler days and evenings, look out for more Greens residents outdoors running, bike riding and walking.

As we approach the end of 2011, please think about serving the Westchase community in 2012. Did you know that there are a variety of programs and committees throughout Westchase that need your help?

Come January we will have our Greens Annual Meeting, where we will elect a voting member and alternates to represent The Greens in 2012. If you know of anyone who is interested in serving, please have them contact either the Westchase Community Association Manager or me so we can place them on the ballot.

By the way, when did you update your list with The Greens gatehouse last? Does it include your cell phone number?

Last, should you know of any new resident, please advise them to send me their e-mail address, so I can pass it onto our Greens Webmaster. That way they can be included on all Greens and Westchase news.

Happy Thanksgiving!

By Gerald (Jerry) Pappa, The Greens VM

Keswick Forest

Hi, fellow Keswickians! I hope that everyone had a fun Halloween with more treats than tricks! Let's start out this month by congratulating our newest homeowners in the neighborhood, Samuel and Lindsey Dorrance and Naim Hamdar. Welcome to the neighborhood! Christy Grimste will be delivering your official welcome bag as she has enthusiastically volunteered to take over as our new Welcome Committee representative. Thank you, Christy!

It’s time to pull out your favorite chili recipe for the annual Keswick Forest Chili Cook-off. Details on the event will be sent out via e-mail to the Keswick Forest distribution list.

If you would like to be included on our e-mail distribution list, please e-mail me at heather.greeleyhessefort@gmail.com or Leslie McCluskie at lmccluskie@tampabay.rr.com.

By Heather Greeley-Hessefort, Keswick Forest Alternate VM

Townhomes of West Park Village

Our Townhomes of West Park Village association had its annual meeting on Oct. 6 and we just achieved the quorum to make it all legal. We were able to accomplish a few things that needed to be done. Mary McQuinn and Mike Niemis were re-elected to the board for new terms. Karen Harte will continue on the board and was named secretary/treasurer. Mary Rodriguez will also continue as the board’s vice president and I will continue to serve as president.

The most important item taken up was the dues. The board unanimously voted to raise the dues $16 a month starting Jan. 1 to cover maintenance expenses such as irrigation repairs, tree trimming, landscape maintenance as well as general maintenance so we do not have to dip into our reserves.

The contract for mulching has been signed and we will all see new mulch soon to complement our beautiful new fences. We are going to review the covenants over the next couple of months to address two major items. One will change our requirement for audits every year to just a financial review, which will save us some money. The state does not require an audit yearly so we are planning on changing our covenants to match state law. The other change will clarify the association’s responsibilities regarding painting, roof replacement and other repairs. Changes to our covenants require a 51 percent vote in favor of any change so we will need to have a majority of our owners support the revisions. We plan to take action in the spring on these items.

Last year we voted to use some of our roof reserves to pay for the new fences. Unless we can extend the life of our roofs beyond 15 years, we will have to make that reserve money up over the next few years. We tried to not raise the dues too much this year, but we will likely have to raise them more in the future to make up for the expense of replacing the fences, which were not originally budgeted by the developer as part of our dues. Considering all that is going on in the world of real estate, we should consider ourselves very lucky to be living in such a nice neighborhood and be in the financial shape we are in as an association. Others have it much worse.

On the lighter side, one of my family’s favorite holidays occurred on Oct. 31. There is no better place to be that night than West Park Village. It is truly a community made for Halloween. There were lots of decorations and people out for a good time coupled with the perfect atmosphere to celebrate the day. If Halloween can measure the health of a neighborhood, ours is doing great. Most of our family and friends cannot believe what a big deal it is here in our own neighborhood. We are so lucky to live here.

If you would like to get on an e-mail list to be aware of what affects our association, please send your e-mail address to ne at ramondchiaramonte@msn.com and I will put you on the list. I appreciate the chance the serve our association as president and look forward to any input or guidance you would like to provide.

By Ramond Chiaramonte, Townhomes of WPV President

The Vineyards

Greetings, Vineyards residents! November is suddenly upon us, which means that it is time for the holidays, Vineyards flag football and the pool heater (set at 86 degrees). Please remember to contact The Vineyards Compliance Committee if you need a parking pass for your guest (three or more days).

The first week of November features the annual Westchase food drive. Please try to participate to help families in need enjoy their holidays.

Last, we thank the social committee, especially organizers Kristin Butts and Sarapage Bauguss, for the Halloween social on Oct. 28.

Please stay posted for news about our annual December party, which includes horse-drawn rides. Go to http://www.westchasevineyards.org

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By Kevin Kwan, The Vineyards HOA President

Wycliff

Happy November, Wycliff! First let me say that it has been a pleasure being your voting member (VM). Due to family and work obligations, however, I can no longer provide the necessary commitment for the VM position. I ask that one of my fellow Wycliffers please consider taking over the position. Wycliff’s annual meeting and election will be held Dec. 6 at 6:30 p.m. at the Westchase Swim and Tennis Center. Please let me know as soon as possible if you are interested.

Wycliff’s Holiday Block Party will take place Dec. 10 from 3-7 p.m. Santa will visit around 3:30 p.m. so please don’t forget your unwrapped gifts for his sleigh. It will be a potluck, so please e-mail me if you plan to attend and let me know what you would like to bring. As always, bring a chair and your own beverages. A bouncy and band will provide our entertainment.

By Shaney Nadel, Wycliff VM

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Halloween, Oktoberfest, Mailboxes, the New WOW Online and Annual Meetings

The Greens

Here we are entering the month of October! As we enter fall, we’ll experience some great, cooler evenings along with the kids trick or treating in Westchase. Let’s all be extra careful driving throughout The Greens.

If you’re thinking of painting your home, contact the Westchase HOA office first !

When did you last update your list with The Greens’ gatehouse and does it include your cell phone number?

Also, this month I’d like to invite you to check out the new Web site for WOW Online. If you log on to http://www.westchasewow.com you&r,squo;ll find a new site that allows residents to read WOW’s content, post comments and classifieds, and offer reviews of businesses within its online business directory. To participate fully, simply register for your online profile. (Note: The information residents provide to WOW within their profile is not shared with other entities or businesses for commercial purposes.)

Last, should you know of any new residents, please advise them to send me their e-mail addresses so I can pass them onto our Greens Webmaster. That will enable them to be included on all Greens and Westchase news.

Happy Halloween!

By Gerald (Jerry) Pappa, The Greens VM

Keswick Forest

It’s that time of year to start hunting and gathering for that perfect costume for Keswick’s annual Halloween party, sponsored by yours truly, me. It’s going to be tough to outdo some of the fantastic costumes and food we saw last year, but I know you will give it your best Girl/Boy Scout effort. Any brave soul not dressed in proper attire (a costume) will be promptly camouflaged in whatever remnants that have been leftover through the years. The date and time will be sent via Keswick e-mail. If you haven’t signed up to be on the list, please e-mail me at lmccluskie@tampabay.rr.com or Heather Greeley-Hessefort at heather.greeleyhessefort@gmail.com.

By Leslie McCluskie, Keswick Forest VM

Radcliffe

Hello, neighbor! Hopefully you have already received your invitation to our Oktoberfest block party taking place next Saturday, Oct. 8. Our family is excited to be your host and we are looking forward to a great time, complete with festive favorites like bratwurst, pretzels, music and beer (of course)! Please consider stopping by even if for a brief stay.

Discount tree trimming season is here! We are inviting all residents to once again take advantage of the volume discount program we have negotiated with Mays Tree Service. As was the case this past spring, we only need 11 or more homes to get rates as low as $20 per palm tree. Cutting will most likely take place in early November, so if you are ready for your bi-annual trimming, let us know!

Last, I’d like to recognize and thank Radcliffe resident Darrick Sams on behalf of the entire neighborhood. Darrick recently stepped up to the plate and agreed to run for one of the open Westchase Community Association (WCA) Board positions last month. Truth be told, many are simply unwilling to consider that sort of commitment to the community. Even though he was not voted into the position (this time), he deserves some thanks and praise for his readiness to volunteer his time and effort on our behalf.

Thanks, Darrick!

By Eric Holt, Radcliffe VM

The Shires

School is back into full swing and that includes all of the activities that go along with it! From soccer to Scouts, from football to tap dancing, your time management is key to making sure that everything is accomplished on time. Please make sure to plan out your days well in advance. My advice is to get a large, dry-erase calendar or chalkboard and have each day’s/week’s activities listed so that everyone always remembers what’s going on around the house.

A couple of items for your review for the upcoming months:

I will be gathering bids for new mailboxes at the request of quite a few Shires residents. I will be utilizing the same companies that some of our other neighborhoods have been using. So no one has sticker shock, they were in the neighborhood of $300 per mailbox, including installation. Realize that this is the bidding procedure for me to get a cost estimate. Final approval for the project will depend upon Shires homeowners’ votes during the election for next year’s voting member. Now is either your time to express your disdain or sell this to your neighbor. It will come down to majority rules – 50 percent plus one of Shires homeowners.

I have noticed more and more people exercising around our community and a lot more in our neighborhoods. This includes joggers, families riding bikes, parents taking the newest addition out for a stroll, or residents taking the dog out for a walk. Please remember to utilize our sidewalk system for safety. If you decide to jog or run on the streets, please use the proper precautions by wearing reflective clothing so that the drivers can see you. If you are wearing earbuds, make sure that the music isn’t so loud that it prevents you from hearing what is going on around you.

Don’t forget that the Fall Westchase Garage Sale is Oct. 1, so start cleaning out those closets and empty that chest of drawers for some extra holiday cash.

By Patrick Knight, The Shires VM

Townhomes of West Park Village

We have an important meeting coming up on Oct. 6 at 7 p.m. at the Westchase Community Association (WCA) offices located at the Village Swim and Tennis Club. This is the date and time of our annual budget meeting and also the election of board members for our Townhomes association. I hope we can have a good turnout for this important meeting, as well as people interested in running for the board. Nominations from the floor are allowed. This meeting is a chance to ask questions and better understand the issues of our association. Please plan on attending.

The association still has not settled the sale of the townhouse it owns but we are working hard on bringing it to a conclusion. Somehow this has been extremely complicated even for a short sale and some problem always seems to appear at the last minute. Hopefully we will have solid news at our meeting.

One of the other important issues at our meeting will be our dues and the need to increase them to make sure we keep the proper reserves in our accounts. We will have relevant information at the meeting for review and discussion.

I hope everyone has had a great summer and be sure to remember that the Westchase Fall Garage Sale is Oct. 1.

I hope to see many of you at the annual meeting Oct. 6.

By Ray Chiaramonte, Townhomes of WPV VM

Village Green

The 2011 Village Green Directory assembly is under way. I have received many of the neighbor info-update forms, but not all. If you haven’t given yours to me, please do so as soon as possible. If you have not received the info-update form, please get in touch with me so that I can make sure that you are included. Also, we are still in need of business owners in the neighborhood who would like to support our directory by purchasing an ad. Additionally, we will need artwork for the directory cover as our former cover artist has moved away. I am hoping to have one of the Village Green children create a picture for the front cover. I will update more about that via e-mail at a later date.

One online message board that is available to us is the Greens Yahoo group. It has proven to be very helpful in many ways and puts us in touch with all of the Greens neighborhoods and events. If you have not received an invitation and would like to become a part of the Greens Yahoo group, please get in touch with me and I will be happy to help with that.

Once again, I extend the invitation to let me know if there are any concerns that you have regarding our neighborhood. I am always happy to help. Some fall get-togethers are in the works. I hope to see everybody soon.

By Bobbi Pitcher, Village Green VM

West Park’s Single Family Homes

Hello, neighbors!

I am certainly appreciative and thankful for the trust and confidence you have placed in me by allowing me to serve this past year as your voting member (VM). I assure you I have dutifully tried to represent your interests in the VM meetings. As we wrap up the year, I highlight a few items that affect West Park Village.

A couple of years ago, the Westchase Community Association (WCA) Board of Directors established a working group of residents to interface with the Westchase Town Center (formerly The Avenue) and its tenants. This committee was intended to work with our commercial neighbors to address and solve any continuing problems that adversely affect our community. I invited you to e-mail me with any issues that you would like the committee to address. It seems the growing neighborhood consensus is that the benefits outweigh the detriments.

In recent months, the flooding of our streets and yards has worsened. We have engaged the Community Development District (CDD) in the process of identifying a solution, and CDD staff is working with the county to press for a resolution (There has even been talk of sending a diver into the storm-water drains!). Please alert CDD staff of any problems or issues.

During this past month, it has unfortunately been reported that we had a mid-day break-in of a single family home. Please be on the lookout for vehicles staking out the community; do not hesitate to report any strange occurrences to the legal authorities. Also, continue to implement safe measures for securing your home and its contents. On that note, if anyone has seen the brass sundial missing or stolen from the CDD park at West Park Village Drive and Rowlett Way, please contact me.

The general feedback is that folks appreciate the WCA’s efforts to add community activities, such as pool parties and movie nights, even if they potentially impact our neighborhood. Please let the WCA know if you have any requests or suggestions or if you are experiencing any particular problems.
As always, thanks for being a great neighbor.

Brian Ross, WPV Single Family Homes VM

Wycliff

Hi, everyone! The September voting members (VM) meeting was dedicated to filling three positions on the Westchase Community Association (WCA) Board of Directors. After all nominees introduced themselves, answered written questions presented by the VMs and issued closing comments, the VMs voted. The three people selected to serve on the board of directors were Dyan Pithers, Joaquin Arrillaga and Ken Blair.

Also, make sure to check out our new WOW Online Web site, http://www.westchasewow.com

.

Happy Halloween!

Shaney Nadel, Wycliff VM

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VM Elections, Foreclosure, Flower Beds, Traffic, Budgets and Document Changes

Keswick Forest

Hi, fellow Keswickians! Let's start out this month by congratulating our newest homeowners in the neighborhood, Steve and Rachel Gage, along with their two boys, Tom and Luke. It’s great to see that you decided to stay and put down roots! Also, we offer a great big welcome to our newest bundle of joy, Lily Norris. Congrats to Heather and Craig and big sister Maya!

It might be seem early to send out a call for volunteers, but it is never too early to get involved. If you are interested in running for Keswick Forest Voting Member or alternate, I encourage you to contact Leslie or me for details. I also encourage you to attend a voting members meeting. It is a great opportunity to give back to the community.

Have a safe and enjoyable Labor Day!

If you would like to be included on our e-mail distribution list, please e-mail me at heather.greeleyhessefort@gmail.com or Leslie McCluskie at lmccluskie@tampabay.rr.com.

By Heather Greeley-Hessefort, Keswick Forest Alternate VM

Radcliffe

Over the past several months, many of you have noticed the persistent, unappealing condition of 11906 Wandsworth Dr. To help shed some light on the situation, I reached out to Radcliffe’s Nena Cox (one of our neighborhood real estate gurus), who has offered a brief explanation of the foreclosure process.

Technically, foreclosure begins once a homeowner is 30 days past due on their mortgage payment. It varies by bank, but if the mortgage remains unpaid, a homeowner is served legal notification of foreclosure proceedings at about the four- to six-month mark. Then the path can fork, depending on whether the property remains occupied. If the property is abandoned (as is the case with 11906), the bank moves into “property preservation,” during which time the bank doesn’t own the property, but has an obligation (and interest) in doing limited maintenance. The bank occasional checks the home, primarily to ensure that there has been no security breach. The home will remain in this stage until the foreclosure process is completed, which can take up to two full years. Unfortunately the home cannot be put up for sale during this time. Given that the home cannot be sold until the bank owns it, the bank has a minor interest in spending money on curb appeal.

Naturally, that leads to the question of whether the association should step up and address the property’s maintenance needs. There is an outlet for this called self help, but getting on the list requires a formal process. Once approved, the cost of this maintenance is borne entirely by Westchase’s existing owners. Although the association can make an attempt to collect these costs when the home is sold, it’s extremely unlikely that they will be recouped.

Just as important, the bank immediately loses any incentive to maintain the property if the association or neighbors are doing it.

So, there you have it. The ugly result of a national mortgage crisis. It’s certainly less than ideal and I keep hearing that it’s far from over.

By Eric Holt, Radcliffe VM

The Shires

I hope everyone has had an enjoyable summer! Now that the kids are back in school, I want to remind everyone about some of the things that happen around our neighborhood around school time. Please remember these few things and I believe that everyone will be safer for it.

First, remember that we have children that are walking from their homes to the front of the neighborhood to catch the bus in the mornings. Please therefore slow down when driving through The Shires. The posted speed limit is 20 miles per hour but you don’t have to go that fast.

Second, I’d ask that parents of children who walk up the front of the neighborhood please instruct their children that the area around the brick wall leading into Aryshire is a flowerbed. It also has sprinkler heads, so they should not be standing in it, walking through it, or playing there. Doing so causes damage to the sprinkler system and kills the plants.

Third, traffic in Westchase continues to get worse every month. As new apartment buildings on Countryway Boulevard, Waters Avenue and even Sheldon Road are finished, we will see more people moving to the Westchase area. This, in turn, increases traffic on all feeder streets as well as the main arteries like Linebaugh Avenue, Waters Avenue, Hillsborough Avenue and especially Veterans Expressway. Make sure you stay alert and give yourself extra time in the mornings so that we all remain safe.

There are a few other items that we all need to remember. Please remember that your garbage is not supposed to be placed at the curb untill after 6 p.m. on the night before trash collection. Last, with all of the recent rain, I still notice a considerable amount of water running down the gutters every morning. This tells me that some folks’ yards are saturated with water. Remember that it is possible to water your lawn to excess, which is just as bad as a lack of water. Just because we are using reclaimed water doesn’t mean we have to waste it. With that in mind, adjust your sprinkler systems and cut them back until drier weather returns.

By Patrick Knight, VM The Shires

Townhomes of West Park Village

Another summer is coming to a close and vacations are ending, but things continue to happen regardless of the season. The most important news for our residents is that it looks like the townhouse that the association owns is finally close to being sold. The remaining issues look on track to being resolved soon. Owning this unit has been an unpleasant experience for our association and it will be a great day when this closes and we get our past dues paid back. It is always a problem for us when dues go unpaid, when we have to spend money on legal action and when we find ourselves short of money that should be in our funds.

Our fences are finally finished and certainly have improved the appearance of our community. It shows how important it is to be able to adjust our regulations when new products prove to be a better solution. My thanks go out to our past board, led by Mike Niemis, who had the foresight to deal with this issue and do what was necessary to find a solution.

I want to clarify responsibilities of our association since some confusion exists regarding homeowners’ responsibilities. We are not condominiums, but fee-simple townhomes. Therefore nearly everything is the responsibility of the homeowners. The association is solely responsible the periodic painting of the outside of the units and the townhomes’ roof replacements. Maintenance of landscaping in the front and side yards is also done by the association, but typically not the rear yards, especially if the gates are locked. Normal maintenance, such as replacement of rotted wood or other types of damage, is not covered by the association.

It is always important for us to keep up the appearance of our homes since it affects the property values in our community. After coming back from a long vacation this summer, it was certainly pleasant to return to Westchase and see through different eyes how good our community looks compared to so many other places.

I cannot think of another place in the Tampa Bay area where I would rather live.

By Ray Chiaramonte, Townhomes of WPV HOA President

Villas of West Park Village

At the last Villas Board meeting, held Aug. 8, our property manager presented a draft budget for 2012. After explaining all budget items and answering questions from board members as well as from association members, on a motion made by Richard Johnson and seconded by George Pennington, the board resolved to approve – unanimously – the 2012 budget as presented. The 2012 budget includes no increase to our current monthly assessment.

As mentioned in the August WOW, some villa owners had their trees in front of their units replaced as result of the last walk-through, during which it was noticed that the previously planted trees were dying. It is board policy to do whatever is needed to maintain the best possible curb appeal of the villas. Also, we expect to complete the Villas’ painting project and the affected owners will receive written notification of the painting schedule as well as information regarding what they must do with furniture on the front or back porches.

At the meeting board members also approved holding the annual meeting on Dec. 5 at 7 p.m. This meeting will be held at the Westchase Community Association (WCA) offices at 10049 Parley Dr. We wish to remind all villa owners that there are three board positions up for election. If any owner wishes to be on the ballot, please let Property Manager Denise Schek know via e-mail at dschek@greenacreproperties.com, by Wednesday, Sept. 28. Remember that ballots have to be prepared, mailed and received before the annual meeting. Notification of your interest in appearing on the ballot should be through written communication – via U.S. mail or e-mail – as telephone calls will not be accepted for this purpose.

By Carlos S. Quiros, Villas of WPV HOA President

The Vineyards

Greetings, Vineyards residents! I hope you had a great summer. By now, all the kids are back to school and all of the traffic has returned.

As you recall, The Vineyards residents voted this spring/summer on three issues: (A) amending The Vineyards painting requirement from five years to seven years; (B) eliminating the requirement for a secret ballot during annual elections; and (C) removing language requiring an audit of the annual financial statements.

The good news is that we were able to secure enough proxies/votes to pass items B and C. We did not, however, receive enough votes to address the painting issue (we were eight votes short). Therefore, Vineyards residents are still required to paint every five years.

A couple of other recurring issues that I would like to remind Vineyards residents about are parking and caring for the pool furniture. Vineyards residents are required to park in their garages or completely on their driveways, which means that your car should not be sitting halfway in the street. Vineyards residents are also not allowed to park on the street or alleyways.

Last, we ask that you please care for the Vineyards pool furniture as if it were your own. This means moving the furniture back to its original location and closing umbrellas upon leaving. The biggest risk is losing open umbrellas in a summer storm.

Please direct any questions or concerns to our Web site, http://www.westchasevineyards.org

.

By Kevin Kwan, President of The Vineyards HOA

Wycliff

Hi, everyone! I hope you all have had a great summer. We welcome our new neighbors, the Crowleys. We hope they had an easy move and we look forward to having them on the block.

There was no voting member (VM) meeting in July. At their August meeting VMs discussed updating some of the language in our governing documents. Some of the verbiage is very generic and in need of updating.

To complete Wycliff’s mailbox project, we have one remaining mailbox to which we must attend. We are working with the Westchase Community Association (WCA) on this particular home. It will eventually get done.

As for roads, we are still on the re-pavement schedule for 2012.

Please feel free to e-mail me at ksmagee@aol.com or call my cell at 727-0082 with any questions. Please do not call my home phone; I never answer that line.

Also, if you have any shout outs, please e-mail them to Chris Barrett at editor@westchasewow.com.

Looking good Wycliff!

By Shaney Nadel, Wycliff VM

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