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WCA Directors Fill Board Vacancy

Filling a vacancy caused by Director Brittany Riefler’s moving outside of Westchase, WCA directors appointed Radcliffe’s Chuck Hoppe to the board at their Aug. 11 meeting.

But prior to the board tackling its business, trees, parking, dog poop, and noise were on residents’ minds during the open forum of the Westchase Community Association (WCA)’s meeting.

Chelmsford Voting Member (VM) Bill Dennis asked the board what could be done about sidewalks that had been damaged by oak tree roots. He said there were many areas where water collected on damaged sidewalks and other raised areas were hazardous. Board Vice President Brian Ross encouraged Dennis to contact the Community Development District (CDD) and give the address of damaged area. He said the CDD might have a grinder and be able to fix the sidewalk or they would call Hillsborough County. VM Mary Griffith (West Park Village Single Family Homes) said she had called Hillsborough County about unsafe areas on her sidewalk and that they came out a few days later to repair it. Griffith went on to say that while the county had fixed her sidewalk, they had not fixed her neighbor’s and when she called to ask why it had not been fixed, they said each person had to call about their own address.

A West Park Village resident addressed the board to ask what could be done about the noise level at Patio 6. He said that bands performed on the restaurant’s patio every Friday and Saturday night and that he had measured the level of the music and it was 90 decibels, 30 decibels over the residential limit. The resident said that he had called the Environmental Protection Commission (EPC) and talked to the area deputy but he was wondering if the board could do anything. WCA President Joaquin Arrillaga told him that something similar had happened with Octoberfest and that the board was told they had no legal standing but that he would double-check to see if there was anything the board could do. Ross encouraged the resident to continue to focus on contacting the EPC.

Griffith asked the board if they could approach the CDD about putting more dog waste bag stations up around West Park Village to help combat the issue of residents not cleaning up after their dogs. She said there was one public green space in the neighborhood where the smell was so bad that you could not sit there. Arrillaga said that he had talked to the CDD in the past and they were not interested in putting up more stations. Ross, however, said that as a CDD member he knew the issue had not been discussed recently and that he was willing to raise the issue again if the board wanted him to. All directors said they would like him to do so.

Document Review Committee Chair Dale Sells reported the committee was on schedule. Director Rick Goldstein thanked Sells and the committee for all of their hard work.

Government Affairs Committee Chair Joe Odda reported that Westchase CDD Supervisor Jim Mills and he attended the Zoning Hearing Master Public Hearing on July 18 to express the WCA and CDD’s opposition to Flournoy Company’s request to rezone land on Thomas Ranch Lane Road, near the intersection of Linebaugh Ave. and Sheldon Rd. (Story, page 26)

Odda also reported that the Northwest Dog Park should be completed soon and he expressed his appreciation to the Dog Park Task Force and others who helped bring the project to a successful conclusion. 

A Woodbay couple asked the board for leniency regarding fines for deed restriction violations. They said that they had moved into their home last September and the outside was in bad shape when they first bought the home. They said they received their first notice within three weeks of arriving and thought they had corrected it but then realized that they were responsible for more area of sidewalk than they originally thought. They said they also received a notice for palm trees in need of pruning. They pointed out that both violations were ones that had already been in place when they bought the home and that they had begun working on the home to improve the outside. When they received their third notice, this time for an exposed AC unit, they became very frustrated because they were told they needed to cover it with a six-foot fence, which was not an easy fix. They said the WCA’s legal counsel had been rude and not forthcoming in answering questions. All directors voted in favor of WCA Director Ruben Collazo’s motion to waive the fine but not the attorney’s fees. Ross encouraged the couple to wrap up the issue with the attorney.

A Radcliffe resident asked the board about a notice she had received about a car parked over the sidewalk. She said that her family was diligently trying not to park over the sidewalk and had not done so in several months so she did not understand why she was receiving a violation notice. She said they had been using a neighbor’s driveway for several months while he was selling his home. Arrillaga told her that the fine had been suspended as long as it did not reoccur within three months. He assured the resident that hundreds of violation letters were sent out every month and that she was not being targeted. Collazo said that he had received a violation notice when his daughter parked on the street overnight.

Directors voted to not impose the fines for three homes where violations had been corrected, table one fine that was pending Modification Committee approval and to impose the fines and suspend facility use for eight homes with uncorrected violations. They also voted to uphold the fines yet suspend them and reinstate facility use for nine homes provided that their violations do not reoccur within three months.

Addressing the Riefler vacancy, Arrillaga reported that the board had sent an email asking for volunteers to complete Riefler’s term through September 2017 and Radcliffe resident Charles Hoppe volunteered. All directors approved Director Keith Heinemann’s motion to appoint Hoppe to the board.

WCA Manager Debbie Sainz reported that she had received a bid to repair pool tiles at both neighborhood pools. She added that while the $3,340 to repair the pool at the Westchase Swim and Tennis Center on Countryway Boulevard was covered by the current budget, there was not enough budgeted to cover the $21,616 in repairs for the West Park Village pool, which are more extensive. She said that Pool Works told her there was more damage to the West Park Village tiles because the pool is close to water and there is water underneath it, which leads to more settling of the deck. All voted in favor of Collazo’s motion to accept Pool Works’ bid to repair the pools and to use money from the reserve interest budget to cover the extra cost.

All also voted to accept Collazo’s motion to accept the bid from Superior Plumbing to repair water fountains at both facilities and pay for the repairs from the operating budget.

Sainz reported that an engineer had examined the West Park Village tennis courts and said that the cracks on the courts came from water under them, which created vapor pressure that caused the cracks. The engineer reported that the courts were not uneven and that players would not trip on the cracks. Goldstein asked if the cracks affected players’ games and was told no.

Directors tabled discussion of new awnings and shade structures for the tennis courts at the Westchase Swim and Tennis Center until more information could be gathered.

All voted in favor of not proceeding with installing ice machines at both facilities after citing the cost of upkeep and potential contamination issues.

Arrillaga encouraged residents to submit nominations for the Nathan Lafer Good Neighbor Award. Arrillaga said that the award was not just for residents who did good work in Westchase but was meant to honor those who did good throughout the surrounding community. He stated he hoped to see lots of nominations. For more information about the award and a nominations form, click here.

The next board meeting is scheduled for Sept. 8 at 7 p.m., at the WCA Offices at 10049 Parley Dr. Following board elections on Sept. 13, the board will appoint its officers at an additional meeting on Sept. 15 at 7 p.m. at the same location.

By Marcy Sanford

Chuck Hoppe at a Glance

An energy consultant and 20-year resident of Westchase, Chuck Hoppe has served as Radcliffe’s Alternate Voting Member (VM). Hoppe threw his hat into a crowded race for the WCA Board in September 2015. He was one of six residents vying for three positions and missed election by two VM votes.

Hoppe helped co-found the Cub Scout Pack 46 and Boy Scout Troop 46. He has held positions on many social and community boards, including Gulf Ridge Council Executive Leadership Committee, Tampa Mayor’s Youth Corp, Tampa Bay Commuter Services Organization, Leadership Tampa, Leadership Tampa Bay and President of Hillsborough High School Booster Club. He has also volunteered for Meals on Wheels and the Westchase Thanksgiving Food Drive.

Posted 14 August 2016

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