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CDD to Entertain Greens Guardhouse Remote Access on Weekday Evenings

Faced with a possible increase to gatehouse costs for The Greens, supervisors are considering a change to its overnight staffing.

Supervisors of the Westchase Community Development District want Greens resident input at their Dec. 2 meeting, however, prior to making any decision.

At the district’s October meeting, James Davis and Andrea Kingston, representing Securitas, The Greens contracted security company, appeared before supervisors to request the district increase hourly compensation by 85 cents per hour. That amount would cover increased costs associated with providing health insurance under the Affordable Care Act, whose coverage mandate, unless delayed again, will go into effect Jan. 1. The increase represents a five percent increase (or $7,600 annually, roughly $18.10 per Greens home) to the current contract, whose costs are paid solely by Greens homeowners. Davis stated that Securitas would cover most of the $2 per hour costs associated with the healthcare mandate. Given the slim profit margins on security contracts, he added, the company needed the district to share the costs.

One way Securitas proposed the neighborhood could offset the cost increase was to replace The Greens’ overnight guard, who sees minimal visitors, with a remote, tele-entry access system. At the Nov. 5 meeting, supervisors discussed the fact that they recently received the requested proposal from Securitas delineating the remote system. The board suggested WOW offer information about the proposal to allow supervisors to gauge Greens’ residents support for the concept.

Securitas proposes removing 32 hours from the Greens weekly coverage, specifically by removing the overnight shifts Sundays through Wednesdays, and adding a tele-entry system to handle those evenings. The gatehouse would be manned by a security guard 24 hours a day Thursdays through Saturdays.

As part of tele-entry access, cameras and a telephone system would be installed on a pedestal just before the current guardhouse entrance. When a vehicle approaches, an image of the vehicle would be broadcast to a remote monitoring center. Using the phone, the visitor would then speak to the remote center, which would check the arriving driver against residents’ visitors log to determine whether to grant access. If necessary, the remote guard would also phone the intended Greens resident’s home to determine if access should be granted.

The system would also be also outfitted with an alarm, which would contact a mobile Securitas officer patrol. That individual would respond in person, should unauthorized access or trespassing occur.

In exchange for installing the equipment at no additional cost to Greens homeowners, Securitas is requesting a three-year contract at a cost of $11,090 per month. The current Greens gatehouse contract, which includes round the clock guards, costs $12,517.95 monthly. That amount does not include the requested 85 cent hourly increase. Under the new proposal, each Greens home would see their CDD neighborhood assessment decline by roughly $40.80 annually.

According to remarks made by Davis and Kingston at the district’s October meeting, at the end of the contract, the district would own the equipment should it decide to change security companies.

Greens residents wishing to offer their opinions on the proposed change are encouraged to reach out to CDD supervisors or their Voting Member.

By Chris Barrett, Publisher

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