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WCA Board Moves Forward With Tennis Cabana Construction Contract

The Nov. 13 meeting of the Westchase Community Association (WCA) Board of Directors saw the board approve a new construction contract for the Tennis Cabana and defeat a motion to put their 6-year-old legal contract out for bid.

WCA President Joaquin Arrillaga opened the session by presenting a plaque to Nancy Sells for her work on the WCA board. Former director Derrick Sams was not present to receive his plaque.

Arrillaga said that Sells had worked for the board for many years and that she was one of the most active volunteers in Westchase. Sells thanked everyone she had served with last year. She said it had been a challenging year and that she was particularly thankful for Senior Community Association Manager Debbie Sainz and Community Association Manager Charlotte Adams’ help. “I could not have done it with out Debbie and Charlotte’s help and knowledge.”

Swim and Tennis Center Committee Chair Mary Turnbull attended the open forum of the meeting to discuss several issues brought up at previous meetings. First, she encouraged the board to have its own official communication that they were in control of instead of relying on World of Westchase to be their official publication. Next, she told the board that she understood that at last month’s meeting there had been some discussion about her participation on the Swim and Tennis Center Committee. She said that she thought the composition of the committee worked really well together and that it was good to have people who participated in WCA programs and used the facilities in different ways. 

Turning to board business, Arrillaga said that the board’s bank, C1, only has branches in South Tampa and downtown Tampa, and is therefore not convenient for petty cash and vending machine deposits. He suggested that the board open an account at a bank in Westchase just for petty cash and vending machine deposits so the community association manager could easily deposit the money from vending machines and have access to funds to replace the items in the vending machines. Director Brian Ross, however, said he was uncomfortable with that solution and suggested they bring the issue to the WCA’s management company, Greenacre Properties, Inc. (GPI), and ask for their solution. All agreed to table the discussion until January when they would have more information.

All board members voted to deny a fine appeal for a house on Springrose Drive despite the fact that the violation had been corrected. Arrillaga read a recommendation from Covenants Committee Chair Bill Flood who wrote to the board that while he tries to be lenient on fine appeals when violations have been corrected, the same issue had happened repeatedly at the same address over several years. He therefore recommended against dropping the fine. A representative for the homeowners said that they lived out of the country and had not been receiving the violation notices. Ross asked him if the homeowners had filed their lease with the WCA office. He was told they had previously not done so but that now the lease was on file.  

Ross had some objections and changes to Government Affairs Committee Chair Joe Odda’s proposed petition concerning needed road repairs in Westchase. The petition will be sent to County Commissioner Sandy Murman. Ross said that he felt that the petition should not come from the WCA but should instead be broadened to come from all Westchase residents and business owners. WCA Director Dyan Pithers said that she thought the language should be broadened to include anyone who drives on Westchase streets.

Ross said he also objected to Odda’s recommendation that association management resources be used to administer the petition. He said he thought the association’s resources should be used for their core duties. Board members first voted 3-4 against Odda’s original motion that the petition be sent from the WCA board and a GPI employee be the one to administer the petition. Pithers, Ross and Directors Ken Blair and Kathy Carlsen cast the dissenting votes. Next, board members voted 5-2 in favor of Ross’ motion that the petition language be broadened to include everyone who uses and has concerns about the public roads in Westchase and that association resources not be used to administer the petition. Odda and Heinemann cast the dissenting votes.

As part of their master plan for the community, the board has been planning renovations and additions to Westchase’s tennis courts, including construction of a new Tennis Cabana. The board was hoping to receive a $40,000 grant from the United States Tennis Association (USTA) to help pay for the new building. However, the USTA only gave $10,000 for the project. At last month’s meeting Arrillaga reported there was money in the budget to fund the project and the board decided to talk to the Westchase Voting Members (VMs) about the change in funding. Arrillaga reported that VMs had only positive comments about the proposed funding changes and renovations. He also said that he had received a new bid on the project from Southern Bay Contractors that was less than the original bid. All voted in favor of accepting Southern Bay Contractors bid pending verification of license and insurance.

Arrillaga told the board that there were three nominations for the Nathan Lafer Good Neighbor Award and that two of the nominations were for a Westchase couple. Board members voted 6-1 in favor of Blair’s motion that Nancy and Dale Sells be the recipients of this year’s Nathan Lafer award. Ross said he was casting the dissenting vote, not because he thought the Sellses were un-deserving, but to show support for his nominee, Mary Griffin.

Arrillaga said that at a previous meeting the board had approved late fees for the swim programs but not the tennis programs. He said there was a problem with people showing up for drop-in tennis sessions or clinics and not paying. Pithers said that due to the structure of the tennis programs, it did not make sense to incorporate late fees and that if people hadn’t paid, they should not be playing. Board members voted 6-1 in favor of instituting a $10 late fee for the tennis programs with Pithers casting the dissenting vote.

All directors voted in favor of Blair’s motion to accept Shade America’s bid to install shade structures at both community pools and Ross’ amendment that a two-year workmanship warranty, 20-year post warranty, and 10-year sail warranty be included.

Ross then made a motion to begin a bid process for the WCA’s more than 6-year-old legal contract, which recently saw Shumaker, Loop & Kendrick raise their fees by 12 percent. Arrillaga, Blair, Odda, and Pithers, however, voted against Ross’ motion, thus killing it. Arrillaga said that he did not support the motion because he has been extremely happy with their current legal team and thinks they are currently getting excellent service.

All voted in favor of spending $3,000 to repair the tennis courts at the Westchase Swim and Tennis Center on Countyway Boulevard and $3,500 to repair the tennis courts in West Park Village after both have been resurfaced.

All voted in favor of purchasing 100 Westchase medallions for $646. Board members will decide at a later date who should receive the medallions. Ross suggested they be used to inspire people to volunteer within the community. Blair said that they should not replace the current plaques and awards that the WCA gives but should instead be given as a way to recognize new people.

The next WCA Board meeting is scheduled for Jan. 8 at 7 p.m. at the WCA offices at 10049 Parley Dr.

By Marcy Sanford

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