KICA operates with two separate budgets, the operating budget and the reserve budget.
The operating budget covers the costs of administration, security and livability, land and lakes maintenance, recreation and amenity operations, and general maintenance. Principally, the operating budget covers expenditures that are routine and predictable. This budget is funded primarily by: the annual assessment paid for by all property owners (more than 80% of funds), commercial access fees (approx. 10% of funds), investment income, the amenity assessment and user fees and other miscellaneous income. The association is committed to a balanced operating budget.
The reserve budget covers the cost of major repair to or replacement of existing island infrastructure. The reserve budget takes into account Reserve Study projections, which forecast the lifespan of and maintenance costs for all infrastructure in the next 30 years. It also considers predicted revenues. The reserve budget is funded by five sources: a transfer fee on all real estate transactions (about 40-45% of funds), the annual supplemental reserve assessment (about 40% of funds) paid for by all property owners, commercial access fees (about 15% of funds), investment income and if needed, a transfer from operations income. Each year, reserve budget costs vary due to the planned repair and replacement schedule for all assets, so this budget is designed to fluctuate between deficit and surplus.
The annual budget funds KICA’s five basic operations, all of which are crucial to daily life on Kiawah. KICA operates and provides administrative support for:
Security and Livability: Security controls access to the Main Gate and V-Gate, conducts island patrols and oversees commercial access. Livability manages covenant enforcement and contractor oversight.
Recreation and Amenities: Recreation operations include member events, as well as the operation of The Sandcastle, Rhett’s Bluff, Cinder Creek and Eagle Point.
Land and Lakes Maintenance: Land Management handles all landscaping and maintenance on KICA common property. The Lakes team handles water quality management, wildlife management, as well as mosquito abatement.
General Maintenance: This department does minor repairs to common property, such as roads, leisure trails, and boardwalks. General Maintenance includes a mechanic’s shop, which services vehicles and tools.
Major Repairs and Replacement (MR&R): MR&R staff include civil engineers who plan and manage the repair or replacement of roads, bridges, drainage systems and other island infrastructure.