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Annual Homeowners Meeting

Meeting Held on February, 25, 2016.

Mr. Warner Johnson of Duckworth-Morris Realty called the meeting to order. He introduced Mr. Steve Tsapatoris who works with him at Duckworth-Morris and Joe Duckworth, of Duckworth-Morris. Mr. Johnson said he, along with Joe Duckworth and Dr. Jim Mills, were also Directors of the Association.

Mr. Johnson passed out the budget for the coming year previously approved by the Board. He stated that common area costs budgeted for the prior year were pretty much in line with expenditures except there was an area behind a couple of homes built in the last year whereby there was grass that needed cutting. The result of this small additional cost was going to increase the common area cost from $41.98 to $42.89 per month. This meant that if you only owned a lot the fee on the common area would increase to $42.89 per month effective April l st. He said the cost of maintaining the landscaped areas around the homes decreased slightly because the agreement with the lawn service contractor provided a floating amount based on the cost of fuel. Since the cost of fuel had decreased dramatically in the past several months, the Board budgeted a slightly less amount for lawn care for the coming year which actually offset the cost of the common area small increase. Therefore, the monthly Association fee for owners with homes on their lot will remain the same at $165.00 per month.

In other discussion, a question was raised about the status of an acceleration lane coming out at the entrance on Rice Mine Road. Mr. Johnson said there had been discussion in the past with the City, but as of yet nothing definitely has materialized. He did say he would contact Mrs. Cynthia Almond, the Councilwoman for the Ridges District, and see if lie could get some dialog going again.

There was a question raised about possible upgrades along the road between Rice Mine Road and the Gates entrance. Mr. Johnson said there is a committee of both the Gates and Ridges owners that oversees this area and lie would have them look at this. Another question was raised about mulching earlier in the winter. Mr. Johnson said lie would talk with the landscape firm and see if they could do the Ridges first next year.  Another question was raised about For Sale signs not being allowed in the Covenants. Mr.

Johnson said to change that would require the approval of 2/3’s of all owners. He was asked to have the Board revisit that issue and he said he would. Mr, Tsapatoris said that there was a break-in of a vehicle recently in Wellington whereby the car had been left unlocked and certain personal items taken. He strongly suggested that everyone keep their vehicles locked. In Wellington’s case he thinks the suspect has been taken into custody.

There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned.

Signed Steve Tsapatoris, Property Manager.

PDF version available here. 

Pets

From Steve Tsapatoris, property manager.

DOGS AND CATS SHALL NOT BE ALLOWED TO ROAM UNATTENDED WITHIN THE DEVELOPMENT. PETS SHALL NOT BE PERMITTED TO LEAVE EXCREMENT ON THE LOT OR DWELLING OF ANY OTHER OWNER WITHIN ANY STREET OR PORTION OF THE COMMON AREAS AND THE OWNER OF SUCH PET SHALL IMMEDIATELY REMOVE THE SAME.

2015 Annual Meeting Minutes

Meeting held on February 5, 2015.

Mr. Joe Duckworth, a Director of the Association and Principal with Duckworth-Morris Realty, the Association Manager, called the meeting to order.  He said everyone was given a copy of the budget.  He pointed out that actual expenditures for 2014 were less than budgeted for a couple of reasons.  The Association maintains a Reserve Account which is funded by removing $153.00 per month and depositing it into a Reserve Account, the purpose being a contingency account to cover shortfalls in the budget.  Mr. Duckworth said that there had been shortfalls in the 2013 budget and 2014 budget and withdrawals were made twice in 2014 from the Reserve account which show up as a credit.  Also, the Ridges Association paid for security upgrades on the security camera in 2013 and received a check from The Gates 50% in 2014 that showed up as a credit.  All in all, he thought actual expenditures in 2014 were close to the amount budgeted for 2014.  He said that the Directors increased the budget a small amount for 2015 to help cover increases in the common area account for irrigation maintenance, fountain maintenance and tree removal which would cause the fee to go up $1.50 per month.  He said the direct cost, which was primarily grounds upkeep for each home, was not increasing, so there was no need to increase the budget for that expenditure.  Therefore, the Directors had voted to increase the monthly fee for homes from $163.50 per month to $165.00 per month and on vacant lots, from $40.69 per month to $41.98 per month, both becoming effective March 1st.

In other discussion, Dr. Mills asked Warner Johnson to discuss the contract with the lawn care firm, TurfScape, in regards to taking bids.  Mr. Johnson said that he had taken bids about three years ago and TurfScape was the low bidder again.  In addition, he said he had recently bid out another Association’s contract much larger than the Ridges contract and that TurfScape was low on that one, so he felt that TurfScape price at the Ridges was very competitive and it was not necessary at this point to rebid that contract.  He said that normally he would not rebid contracts frequently so long as their service was satisfactory and their price did not change.

Mr. Johnson said in order to save the Association money as well as being able to provide immediate notification of things of interest to Ridges owners, Duckworth-Morris has updated their web site, duckworth.com, for owners to get mailings, notifications and even Restrictive Covenants.  After going to duckworth.com main page click on Associations’ tab and then the Ridges on the drop down tab and go from there.  In order to receive notifications, Duckworth-Morris needs everyone’s email address and if you were unable to attend tonight’s meeting, please send it to lesley.patrick@duckworth.com.  However, if you prefer to receive a hard copy, please call Mrs. Patrick at Duckworth-Morris 205-345-1810 and let her know this.

There being no further business, the meeting adjourned.

Signed Joe B. Duckworth, Director

You can see the signed PDF here.

On-going engineering and environmental field studies

The following letter is from Volkert dated December 11 to the owners of the Ridges of Wellington.

Volkert, Inc. is a Consultant under contract with the Alabama Department of Transportation (ALDOT) to accomplish engineering and environmental studies for a proposed Tuscaloosa East Bypass from I-59/I-20 east of the City of Tuscaloosa to U.S. 82 west of the City of Northport, Tuscaloosa County, Alabama.

The purpose of this letter is to notify you that personnel from Volkert and our subconsultants will be in the field gathering information and conducting environmental field surveys for wetlands, threatened and endangered species, archaeology, and other environmental features. In order to conduct these surveys, we will have to access your property.

In accordance with the Code of Alabama, Title 23, Section 23-1-44 officers and employees of the ALDOT are authorized to “enter upon and go across the lands of” individuals and corporations for the purpose of making “any and all surveys necessary for the construction of any highways, roads, and bridges to be constructed.” Every effort will be made to avoid damages to your property while conducting these surveys.

We appreciate you cooperation.

Signed Brett V. Gaar

You can access the PDF here.