KICA COO Jimmy Bailey presented the 2018 budget for approval at the Nov. 6 board meeting. This presentation highlighted the variety of concerns and considerations taken into account during budget creation.
Hear Jimmy Bailey’s comments and explanations of the presentation by watching on the KICA YouTube Channel.
After more than a year of planning, The Sandcastle closed last night for a long-awaited renovation. The scope of the project includes:
-The addition of a second pool,
-A dedicated bath house,
-Relocation of the bar to provide ocean views,
-Reconfiguration of the parking lot to add spaces and improve drainage, and
-A complete remodel of the interior of the building.
With reorganization of the floor plan, space dedicated to fitness will increase by 25%, and ocean views from the first floor will be restored to the way they were when the building opened over 20 years ago. While the building is closed, additional maintenance and repairs will occur, such as replacing the roof, repainting and elevator maintenance. The budget for the renovation and repairs is approximately $4.5 million, and is being funded by existing resources.
The work is slated for substantial completion by July 3, 2018, and during the interim we have worked hard to provide alternatives for the regular programming that occurs at The Sandcastle. KICA appreciates the membership’s patience, as the logistics of finding homes for clubs and groups, as well as a variety of fitness activities, have been coordinated.
Temporary Fitness Options
Thanks to a friendly lease agreement with Kiawah Partners, a temporary fitness center will be located at 2 Beachwalker Drive, next the Kiawah General Store. KICA is currently seeking approval from the Town of Kiawah Island for the building, and as soon as a permit is issued, delivery will be scheduled. The facility will have two rooms, one for fitness equipment and the other for classes.
In the meantime, there are several fitness options available to members:
Outdoor Classes: Some regularly scheduled classes will be held outdoors at Night Heron Park and Cinder Creek, and will be taught by KICA instructors. Visit kica.us/fitness for an updated schedule.
Studio 33 (Freshfields): KICA has negotiated a reduced drop-in rate of $10 for classes at Studio 33. This new group fitness studio offers a variety of classes including yoga, Pilates, Barre and more. Owners Liz and Frank Silva opened the studio in June. Their goal is to create a self-sustainable community around health and wellness. To sign up, either visit the studio or register online.
To register online:
-Select a class you would like to take.
-Create your account and select the drop-in rate.
-At checkout, enter the promo code “kica” for a $10 drop-in (KICA will confirm that you are indeed a KICA member and eligible for the discount).
Kiawah Island Golf Resort: The Kiawah Island Golf Resort is offering temporary access to fitness equipment (not classes) through Nov. 30, 2017.
-$50 per family.
-Access to KIGR fitness equipment center.
-Facility is currently located at Straw Market through Wednesday, Nov. 1, moving to Night Heron Park Nature Center on Saturday, Nov. 4 (closed for two days for move).
-Fitness equipment center hours are 6 a.m. – 11 p.m., at both locations.
KICA members interested in this option may get a code/pass from the resort’s Night Heron Park Nature Center, between the hours of 8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.
19 Miles of Leisure Trails and 10 Miles of Beach: Island owners and guests routinely say the best part of their experience is walking, running or biking the leisure trails and beach. If it’s been a while since you’ve availed yourself of Kiawah’s natural splendor, perhaps this is a great time to rediscover these valuable community assets.
The Sandcastle Pool
The pool is now closed, along with the entire facility, parking lot and boardwalk 8A. Boardwalk 8B is open; however, there is no parking available. As construction progresses, KICA will work with its contractor to determine whether a phased reopening of the facilities is possible. With significant work occurring around the entire site, members should expect the possibility that The Sandcastle pool will be closed for the duration of the project.
The Kiawah Island Golf Resort has again offered assistance to KICA members. Details are still being finalized, but the resort will offer pool-only memberships next spring, from the time the pools open until June 30. This membership is expected to cost approximately $275 per family. Additional details will be shared as they become available.
Community Club and Group Meeting Space
With the Town of Kiawah Island officially moved into their new facility, the former Kiawah Municipal Center building at 23 Beachwalker Drive has been renovated and renamed. The building, which houses KICA offices and member meeting space, is now called Beachwalker Center.
With the closure of The Sandcastle for its renovations, recreation staff, community groups and other events have been or are being relocated (as space allows) to Beachwalker Center. Office hours for recreation staff during this time are 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. For members visiting Beachwalker Center or the temporary fitness facility, KICA suggests carpooling when possible, as parking is limited at these locations.
If you would like to schedule space for a community group, or have other questions regarding KICA recreation and fitness, contact recreation staff at email@example.com or 843-768-3875.
Did you know you can pay your Tropical Storm Irma Supplemental Assessment online for no additional fee? Payment for this assessment is securely processed by Payment Service Network (PSN).
A statement for this supplemental assessment was mailed to property owners on Friday, Oct. 6. Payments are due within 30 days.
In the required “Client ID” field, enter the “Customer ID” number (C-*****), which is located at the top right of your statement.
Working to clean up and restore the island following Tropical Storm Irma, KICA staff has heard and seen a number of comments about the restoration of Internet and cable service. Members who have service with Comcast are encouraged to contact KICA’s livability director, Ed Monahan, at 843-708-3611 if they are having service issues that aren’t being resolved.
Several years ago, KICA learned that Comcast did not have a right-of-access agreement with the association to operate on Kiawah. (Their equipment is located on and in KICA rights-of-way, and in order to remain there, they needed permission.) Armed with this information, KICA had leverage and the opportunity to seek proposals from various competitors to determine whether better options were available to our community. Comcast was invited to submit a proposal. (As an aside, AT&T did receive an easement over KICA rights-of-way at the onset of development, as the ability to connect a property to the 911 system is prerequisite for development activity.)
KICA talked to several competitors who were willing to provide services on the island, but they wanted exclusive bulk cable and internet contracts. Some members who have lived in condos or apartments may be familiar with this type of arrangement. The provider gives a below market rate, but everyone is required to subscribe, and everyone gets the same service. Comcast made several offers, including a very attractive bulk contract. However, we wanted no part of determining which option was best for each of our individual members, whose needs and desires are diverse.
Instead of a bulk contract, KICA negotiated an agreement with Comcast that provides several key components. First, both parties agreed to some minimal service standards. Some simple but annoying things are no longer allowed, like temporary cable being left above ground for an extended period of time. Service calls are handled within an agreed upon time frame. Most importantly, KICA required a dedicated account representative who could be personally responsible for troubleshooting service issues that aren’t handled appropriately through normal channels. Comcast is the only one contractually obligated to KICA. This Comcast representative interacts with Ed Monahan on an almost daily basis, and those who’ve tapped Ed as a resource have provided very positive feedback.
In exchange for access to its easements, the community receives compensation. At the original execution, KICA received a lump sum of nearly $1 million and continues to receive compensation on a revenue share formula, which increases based on the number of on-island subscribers. This amount has totaled around $150,000 per year for the last couple of years. These two sources of funds are playing a significant role in the ability to upgrade the Sandcastle without a member assessment.
Members who want to learn more about the services that Comcast provides are encouraged to stop by the XFINITY Experience pop-up in the Sandcastle parking lot on Friday, Sept. 29. A representative will be there to demonstrate XFINITY’s features. There will also be snacks, raffles and giveaways.
Dear Fellow KICA Member,
For the third straight fall, our community faces a natural disaster-related clean up. Thankfully, the storm shifted west from its original projected track and we missed the worst of it. Those in Texas who are still reeling from Hurricane Harvey, as well as the people who took direct hits from Irma, face restoration and recovery far worse than anything here on Kiawah.
Despite our good fortune, winds were strong, rain was heavy, and the biggest storm surge since Hurricane Hugo in 1989 flowed back and forth across much of the island. As a result, Kiawah experienced meaningful damage. Some damage was much worse than Matthew, especially the roads, while other things fared better this time. The surge caused major damage to some roads, leisure trails, and our boardwalks. Our KICA team began clean up and repairs the moment the storm passed, and on behalf of the board and all of you, I extend our appreciation for their hard work and commitment to the community. It’s also been heartwarming to see the community spirit of members-helping-members over the last few days.
The KICA Board of Directors held a special meeting yesterday for the sole purpose of discussing storm recovery. Staff reviewed their initial damage assessment, as well as very preliminary estimates on cost. The board then discussed and reaffirmed KICA’s Named Storm Policy, which calls for an assessment of members to cover these unbudgeted expenses. As a reminder, KICA develops reserves to replace roads, bridges, boardwalks, and other infrastructure based on reasonable projections of expected useful life, however we do not have a reserve for natural disasters. Therefore, when material costs are incurred for storm clean-up, they must be recouped by a supplemental assessment.
While we don’t have final costs yet, we expect the amount to be similar to last year’s assessment for Hurricane Matthew, which was $250/improved residential property (commercial entities such as the resort pay substantially more). Final costs and the amount of the assessment are expected by the end of next week, and will be billed on Oct. 1.
Chairman of the Board
Kiawah Island Community Association
Join KICA and the Kiawah Conservancy for a community Q&A session at the Sandcastle on Thursday, Aug. 24 at 2 p.m.
Ways to View the Q&A
-In person at the Sandcastle
-Via Live Stream – Visit kica.us/livestream at the start of the meeting. The page will display all KICA videos, with this session first, marked “LIVE NOW” in red. Just click that display to join.
-Watch a Replay – A replay of the session will be available immediately following the meeting at kica.us/livestream.
Livestreaming allows you to listen live to the session, and is not interactive. However, if after reviewing the detailed materials and FAQs you still have questions, you may email them to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Proposal materials, including maps of the properties in question, a message from the chair and updated FAQs, are available for review at kica.us/parceltrade.
Information and ballot packets were mailed and emailed last week to all primary members. If you have not previously voted, you may vote in one of the following ways:
–Mailed Ballot – USPS mail was postmarked Aug. 14, though some locations are just now seeing delivery. If by the end of the week you have not received a packet, contact email@example.com.
–Online Voting – An email with personalized voting codes was sent on Aug. 15 to all primary household email addresses on file with our office. If you have not received an email, please check your spam/junk folder or with other email holders in your household. The email subject is 2017 Kiawah Island Community Association Property Vote Ballot Link, and it was sent from firstname.lastname@example.org. To have an email resent or to update your email address contact email@example.com.
–In-person or by proxy – At the Sept. 22 special meeting
Because quorum is required to conduct the vote, online voting is preferred and encouraged. Online and phone voting are open until 5 p.m. on Sept. 13. At this time, proxy voters will be contacted to cast the votes assigned to them. All other voting after this date must be done in-person at the Sept. 22 meeting.
Please note that the Vote-Now ballots are anonymous and cannot be responded to. If you have a question/comment, or are the primary member of a property and haven’t received your email or ballot, contact Holly Newman at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our community is made up of a diverse group of homeowners. Association members range from full- to part-time residents, single family owners to condo and villa owners, club members to non-club members, renters to regime owners, etc. Regardless, we are all members of KICA, and if our board of directors reflects our community, it will be better positioned to understand the different perspectives that exist among our membership.
The KICA Nominating Committee was formed for this very reason, to help build and maintain a board with the skill and diversity to provide effective governance for the community. The committee, consisting of a small group of volunteer members, works with the board and chief operating officer to evaluate the most important candidate qualifications and characteristics needed for incoming board members .
All interested members are urged to attend an informational session after the regularly scheduled board of directors meeting in September (NOTE that this meeting has been postponed due to potential impacts from Hurricane Irma). The board meeting begins at 1 p.m. and the information session will begin directly following. (The brief presentation and Q&A portion of the program will be available on the KICA website after the meeting.)
Any member may run for board service by submitting an application package, which includes background information and a statement of focus. These statements will be published along with other election materials. To view the board application and to learn more about board service, visit kica.us/about/board. The application deadline for all candidates is Tuesday, Oct. 17, 2017. For specific filing details or to obtain application materials and assistance with completing the process, contact email@example.com.
Diverse board leadership is vital to the continued success of our Kiawah community, and the board thanks you for your interest in making an impact on the future of the island.
KICA Nominating Committee
Lynn Morgenstern, Chair
KICA has been presented with a unique opportunity to gain important land, for both KICA and the Kiawah Conservancy, at no cost, in an exchange with Kiawah Partners.
Such an exchange requires a vote of the membership at a meeting, which KICA will hold on Friday, Sept. 22, 2017, at 3 p.m. at the Sandcastle.
Information and ballot packets were mailed from Vote-Now by USPS on Aug. 14 to all primary members. Vote-Now is KICA’s independent voting service which has conducted our annual meeting votes the past several years.
On Aug. 15, Vote-Now also emailed primary members who have a valid email address on file, with specifics about the proposal and information on how to vote, including registration codes. If you are a primary member, have a valid email address on file and did not receive the email, please first check your spam folder for an email from Vote-Now.
When you receive your information, you may vote online, by phone, or live or by proxy at the special meeting if you have not previously voted. Because quorum is required to conduct the vote, online voting is preferred and encouraged.
Please note you cannot vote until you receive either the email or the USPS packet from Vote-Now, since you will need your personalized voting codes. However, you can review the materials online at kica.us/parceltrade.
After you have received and reviewed the materials, please contact KICA with questions. Voting will be open until 5 p.m. on Sept 13.
Primary members are the designated members who receive votes when a property is owned by more than one person. Non-primary members may receive informational emails from KICA but will not receive emails from Vote-Now or a ballot package by mail. If you are the primary member of a property and haven’t received your email by Aug. 15, contact Holly Newman at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you see vehicles shining lights into ponds around the island over the next two nights, don’t be alarmed! On Monday, July 24 and Tuesday, July 25 from 9 p.m. – 12 a.m., Town of Kiawah Island and KICA biologists will be performing alligator spotlight surveys. Members may notice town or KICA vehicles behind their homes shining spotlights into the ponds during these hours. During these surveys, biologists shine spotlights into Kiawah ponds. The light reflects off of alligators’ eyes, giving the biologists a count of the approximate number of alligators in each pond.
If another hurricane strikes South Carolina, Rep. Mark Sanford wants residents in private communities and neighborhoods with homeowners associations to be eligible for help cleaning up debris.
Congressman Sanford introduced a bill in early July – the Disaster Assistance Equity Act – that would allow common interest communities – neighborhoods, condominium complexes, and cooperatives that share amenities and infrastructure typically owned by an homeowners association (HOA) – to receive Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) aid following a natural disaster.
“I find it strange that FEMA treats the 70 million Americans who live in common interest communities differently than it does those who live in other types of communities,” said Congressman Sanford. “In my experience, storms don’t discriminate between different kinds of communities. As such, it seems to me that FEMA should treat them all equally when it comes to the assistance available in the wake of a disaster. The simple aim of the bill is to treat taxpayers the same.”
Under current guidelines, Kiawah, like other HOA’s throughout the country, is not eligible for FEMA assistance following a natural disaster (i.e. hurricane, fire, earthquake, etc.). KICA COO Jimmy Bailey believes this should change and supports this proposed bill as a step in the right direction.
“Residents in private communities or neighborhoods with homeowners associations are citizens who pay the same federal taxes as everyone else. This is an issue of equity.”
Sanford’s bill is cosponsored by a bipartisan group of New York congressmen: Democrats Jerry Nadler and Eliot Engel, and Republicans Peter King and Lee Zeldin.
The Disaster Assistance Equity Act has been referred to the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure for discussion and a recommendation.
“I urge association members around the country to contact their elected officials expressing their support of this bill,” said Bailey. “We were lucky that Hurricane Matthew resulted in only a modest supplemental assessment for clean-up and repair, but a bigger storm could create a huge financial burden. Fixing this flaw in the current guidelines would prevent that from happening.”