9/8/2020

Log In to Your Member Account

The new member portal is now available at kica.us/login. Navigate to “Services” and then “Member Accounts” to find the log in button.

Learn all about this new service portal for members here.


9/3/2020

Member Portal and More in September’s Digest

September’s issue of Digest includes a look at KICA’s member portal, which launches on Sept. 8 at kica.us/login. Learn how this portal will streamline your interactions with the association. This is a part of KICA’s recent database upgrade.

Here are some other interesting items at a glance:

– The Wannamaker Trophy has arrived at Kiawah from San Francisco and, less than a year from now, 156 of the world’s best golf professionals follow, fighting for a chance at the 2021 title. The PGA Championship will be played May 17-23, 2021 at the Kiawah Island Golf Resort’s Ocean Course. Get a brief look at the preparations, as well as some can’t-miss items for ticket holders.

– It’s boating season in the Lowcountry, and it’s also an ideal time to get more information on water-levels in the area. To help with this, the Town of Kiawah Island recently installed a new tide gauge at the Kiawah River. This tide gauge, the first at the site since the 1970s, will allow viewers to see NOAA tide predictions alongside real-time water level measurements for the first time.

– One of KICA resilience specialist Lucas Hernandez’s main priorities is meeting with property owners to discuss their specific experience with island flooding. During those visits, he offers information on steps these individual property owners can take to optimize water flow on their properties when the issue is not one that involves KICA’s common property drainage or infrastructure. Each lot has different complications and advantages, meaning there’s no one-size-fits-all approach. Take a look at some of the methods property owners can use and how they work.

Read September’s issue of Digest.


8/27/2020

Agreement Offers Exceptional Service to Members

For the past 6 years, Comcast and KICA have had a right-of-access agreement, which allows Comcast to access KICA’s rights of way on the island for a variety of service needs. When this agreement was made, KICA required some additional benefits for members, such as a minimum service standard and a dedicated team to respond to service requests. These requests must be answered within a specific time-frame. Other items, such as addressing aesthetic requirements quickly, were also included.

This unique service agreement enables members to skip the frustration of calling a service number and contact either KICA’s director of Livability, Ed Monahan or Tammy Peak at Comcast to have their new service or technical issue prioritized. The only issue these two can’t handle is billing support.

If you are an existing Comcast customer or interested in becoming one, reach out to Ed at 843-708-3611/ Ed.Monahan@kica.us or Tammy at 843-312-2604. There is no need to call a generic service number or attempt to reach a service tech directly, who is likely already assigned to other issues. Ed and Tammy will work directly with you to ensure your issues are addressed promptly.

While there is no requirement to purchase service from a specific company, Comcast is the only telecom service contractually-obligated to meet certain standards. For more information, please contact Ed Monahan.


8/12/2020

KICA to Launch a New Technology Platform and Member Service Portal in September

OVERVIEW

In the last several years, the Kiawah Island Community Association Board of Directors has prioritized investment in technology to elevate the association’s service capabilities. After a two-year process, KICA is now in the final stages of implementing Salesforce, a robust technology platform that will integrate formerly siloed technologies, streamline internal processes and provide an online service portal for community members.

The member portal, accessible Sept. 8 on at kica.us/login, will enable members to view and pay statements and assessments online, view their household account data, update their contact information, report issues or submit inquiries to KICA, and engage with other community members. It will provide the ease of self-service, and the visual confirmation of all household information and activity.

A secure and robust database is the foundation of the association, and was the impetus for the decision to implement Salesforce. Behind the scenes, Salesforce is the replacement for an array of technologies that were antiquated or inefficient, and it automates some formerly manual processes. KICA’s critically important database of property records and contact information for members, their households and commercial businesses will be transferred into Salesforce.

Yet, Salesforce isn’t just a database; it’s a scalable platform that connects all of KICA’s most important technology tools. Similar to a smartphone, it performs essential functions (storing  your contact list and allowing you to make calls and send emails), but the functionality can be expanded by adding apps. Salesforce houses KICA’s database, but the association has also chosen to add or integrate other technologies.

KICA’s work order system will now be executed in Salesforce and will integrate with property records. For example, if a member requests a mailbox repair, it will be noted on the property record, and members can view the status of the request in the member portal. Email marketing communication tools will be replaced with Salesforce tools that will connect seamlessly with the contact database. The Sandcastle’s check-in and point of sale system will be replaced with Salesforce tools that will integrate with member account information.

The launch of Salesforce marks the achievement of some significant association technology goals: a singular view of all members and data; a scalable platform that ties together KICA’s service tools; self-service capabilities for members; an increase in productivity and automation; and a decrease input redundancy.

While this is a giant step forward for the member experience and employee service capabilities, this is the first of several phases planned for Salesforce integrations, and not all member or employee service tools will be transitioned for the September launch. The gate access management system and the Sandcastle pool reservation system will be maintained as separate portals. KICA has a second implementation scheduled for 2021 and will continue to transition more capabilities into the Salesforce platform over time.

Member Account Features

My Account

KICA’s member portal will allow you to securely login to view your personal KICA account. On the My Account page, you will be able to view and edit the primary contact information for your household. This is the contact email, phone and mailing address for your membership correspondences, like annual voting, billing statements and emergency notifications. You will be able to view and edit contact information for all members of your household. Here you can also submit to allow your guests to visit the Sandcastle without your presence. You will be able to view your Kiawah Island property information, like your property type, which determines your allocation of KICA votes. Finally, if you have a home away from Kiawah, you can view and add other residences and select your preferred mailing address.

Billing & Payment

In the “Billing & Payment” section of the site, you will be able to view your account balance, recent charges on your account, and make payments.  Currently, making a payment is a multi-step manual process that lacks insight into the details of your account balance and recent transactions. You must reference your emailed statement total (sent monthly if you have recent association charges), or your assessment total (sent annually), then then navigate to kica.us/pay. There you must manually input the total amount of your payment, along with your credit card or bank account information. The record of statements and charges only exists for members to view in email.

With the launch of online member accounts, these actions will be consolidated into a comprehensive “Pay” page, which will show your account balance, transaction details, recent payments, and the ability to pay your charges or assessment within the portal. You will be able to securely save your preferred payment method for quick and easy association payments. Going forward, a monthly email notification will prompt you to log in to view your balance and make a payment.

If you had formerly requested the association to mail your statements, rather than email, your preference will still be honored. You will also be able to edit your billing preferences within your member account, if your billing email address or mailing address changes.

Community

In the “Community” tab of the portal, members will be able to join community groups and engage with other group members. The groups will function similarly to a Facebook page, with group information and a feed of community member conversation, photos and updates. Members will be able to search all community groups and easily navigate to the groups they’ve chosen to participate in.

Contact

One of the functionalities you may overlook is the Contact form, but not all contact forms are created equal. Ask any question, report an issue, or just share information (including a photo, if desired) and your submission will become a “case” that is reviewed by staff. You’ll be able to track the status of your inquiry as it’s assigned to the appropriate staff member and resolved. So keep in mind, the next time you want to touch base with KICA, use the contact form in the member portal!


8/11/2020

The 2020 Cars on Kiawah Has Been Cancelled

Organizers of Cars on Kiawah, an annual classic car show on Kiawah Island, announce the cancellation of the 2020 show which had been postponed from April 18th to November 7th .  In light of the number of new cases in the Charleston area and projections from medical experts, the organizing committee concluded it would be imprudent to jeopardize the health of our exhibitors, volunteers and spectators.  In addition, the State of South Carolina’s recently published “Guidelines for Re-Opening Festivals and Special Events”.  It contains requirements which would substantially increase the cost of putting on the event and detract from everyone’s enjoyment of the show.  According to Co-Chair Bruce Stemerman , “We have worked hard to put on a car show that is relaxed, family-friendly and encourages engagement between spectators and car exhibitors. That would be difficult under the guidelines”.

Stemerman notes: “This was a tough call to make; we are proud of the growth in popularity of Cars on Kiawah over the last several years none of which would have been possible without our participants, spectators, volunteers, sponsors” and the various Kiawah Island entities.”

Co-Chair John Wilson adds: “Cars on Kiawah is typically held in the Spring.  In 2021, Kiawah Island will be hosting the PGA  Championship at the Ocean Course, so we had planned to skip the show next year. We are now exploring holding it in the Fall of 2021 and updates will be posted to our website (www.carsonkiawah.com) next year.”

Cars on Kiawah (www.carsonkiawah.com) is an annual celebration of the Southeast’s finest automobiles displayed in the lush setting of Ocean Park on Kiawah Island, South Carolina.  The show attract 300 classic cars along with several thousand spectators. Cars on Kiawah is hosted by the Kiawah Island Motoring Retreat, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit. An annual donation of event proceeds is made to the Barrier Islands Free Medical Clinic (www.bifmc.org).


8/4/2020

Help Save Kiawah’s Bobcats in August’s Digest

KICA’s monthly newsletter dives into in-depth looks at island topic. Check out the articles below or read August’s issue of Kiawah Island Digest.

You Can Help Save Kiawah’s Bobcats

Kiawah’s bobcats have always been elusive. Now they’re starting to disappear. In a blow to the island’s many bobcat lovers, as well as its ecosystem, biologists now estimate that fewer than ten bobcats remain on Kiawah, down from a historic population of 30-35. Find out how you can act to help save the bobcats on Kiawah.

Lakes Team Manages Mosquito Abatement

Did you know that there are at least 61 different types of mosquitoes in South Carolina? Thankfully, KICA’s Lakes Management team is made up of biologists who tailor their approach to mosquito abatement to suit the island’s conditions. Matt Hill, Lakes Management supervisor, points out that “pest management is always a delicate balance between human comfort and environmental responsibility.”

Financial Update from KICA’s Treasurer

At KICA’s July 13 Board of Directors meeting, treasurer Dave Morley gave a report on the financial status of the association. KICA always provides monthly financial reports to members but in this case, it’s important to highlight how the association is performing in this unusual year. Dave’s report looked at KICA’s finances through the end of May 2020 in comparison to the annual budget. 


8/2/2020

Tropical Storm Isaias

As part of the island’s emergency management plan, KICA and the Town of Kiawah Island issue joint emergency communications to members.

Tropical Storm Isaias is forecast to regain hurricane strength later today and make landfall as a Category 1 near Georgetown, South Carolina.

Kiawah Island remains under a tropical storm warning and storm surge warning. Our community may experience sustained wind speeds of 45-55 mph with gusts up to 70 mph, excessive rainfall (3-6 inches), isolated tornado threats, flooding, dangerous storm surge, and minor erosion.

Conditions are expected to continue to deteriorate this afternoon with substantial impact occurring tonight.

As a result, power outages and falling trees and large debris are possible. If storm surge levels threaten Berkeley Electric‘s equipment on the island, a preemptive power shutoff could occur.

Flooding will likely occur tonight during high tide, which is at 9:13 p.m. Dangerous surf and rip currents are already present and expected to continue through this week. Stay out of the water. In tropical storm conditions, even knee-deep water contains strong currents and can quickly become dangerous. Beach Patrol will retract its staff during the storm.

COMMUNITY UPDATE

The community association has reduced pond levels to increase drainage capacity in preparation for the storm. KICA facilities closed at noon today, with the exception of the security gates. Contractor gate access for tomorrow has been delayed until 10 a.m.

The town’s damage assessment team will begin at 6 a.m. to perform a windshield survey of the island. This survey does not take into account damage to property not seen from the road.

The Municipal Center closed at 1 p.m. today and will resume regular hours tomorrow (8 a.m – 5 p.m.). Tuesday’s trash collection will operate on a delay and will not begin until 10 a.m.

The Sandcastle is currently planned to reopen for the 11:30 a.m. pool session on Tuesday, Aug. 4, pending cleanup.

Beachwalker County Park closed at 2 p.m. today.

Freshfields Village merchants may have modified hours.

PREPARE

Residents should wrap up their personal preparations and plan to shelter in place. Please make sure all trash cans are secure. Remember, in an emergency, dial 9-1-1, not the main gate. The Town of Kiawah Island, Kiawah Island Community Association, and Charleston County Emergency Management officials continue to monitor Tropical Storm Isaias and prepare for potential impacts.

Property owners and managers with rental guests should forward the information above to their guests.

HELPFUL LINKS

National Weather Service
National Hurricane Center

 


7/21/2020

Opportunities for Community Input on SLR Adaptive Management Plan

In September 2018, a subcommittee of the Town of Kiawah Island’s Environmental Committee submitted a report to the Town Council.  This report, Flood Mitigation and Sea Level Rise Adaptation for Kiawah Island, SC, was the result of 18 months of study and provided over a hundred recommendations for how the island could respond to the challenges of sea level rise and climate change. Both the town and the Kiawah Island Community Association (KICA) responded positively to the report and undertook a variety of proactive actions in response to the recommendations.  

A key recommendation in the report was the implementation of an Adaptive Management Plan (AMP) to monitor conditions on Kiawah that may require intervention. KICA has established a task force, with endorsement by the town, to guide the initial phase of development of this plan. The goal for this first phase is to identify conditions that property owners find undesirable or unacceptable as a result of flooding induced by continuing sea level rise, as well as the environmental consequences of increasing periods of drought broken by periods of intense rainfall. These conditions, or “thresholds,” are situations that we never want to reach. The total AMP Plan will include “trigger points,” warnings that actions are needed to avoid a threshold breach; a monitoring program that will follow “indicators” related to the trigger points; and a “response plan” to either prevent the threshold from being reached or take actions to adapt to that threshold. Additional information on these terms and processes will be provided as the AMP is developed.   

The development of the AMP is likely to take about a year, with the first step being the identification of “thresholds.” Thresholds will be established by considering impacts on public infrastructure, private property and the island’s environment. Since thresholds are primarily value judgments, their identification needs to reflect the diversity of community values. In order to reflect the values of the Kiawah community, the task force is planning for two opportunities for community input in this initial phase of the AMP development: virtual focus group meetings and a community survey. While face-to-face feedback is preferred, the COVID-19 outbreak limits our opportunities for face-to-face community input.   

For the virtual focus groups, the AMP Task Force is seeking to put together small groups of property owners representing full-time or part-time residents with diversity of geographical location on the island, type of housing, and property usage. The participants are expected to contribute about five hours of time to read preparatory materials and participate in the virtual meeting with other property owners to help develop threshold statements. The virtual meetings will be held during the month of August. These threshold statements will then be used to develop a community survey that will be distributed to property owners and interested Kiawah parties to gain a consensus on the key thresholds that are of concern. The results will be presented to the Town Council and the KICA Board of Directors in November 2020.  

If you are interested in learning more about participating in the virtual focus groups, please contact task force chair and KICA resilience specialist Lucas Hernandez at flood@kica.us by July 31. Decisions about participation will be made to ensure a diverse representation of the Kiawah community. In your email please include the following information:

  • Address
  • Whether Kiawah is your primary or secondary residence
  • If you rent your home

Thanks for your interest in this important initiative on behalf of Kiawah Island.

Sent on behalf of the AMP Task Force,

Lucas Hernandez, Chair
Jim Chitwood
John Kotz
John Leffler
David Morley
Cathy Pumphrey
David Pumphrey
John Taylor


7/17/2020

KICA Employee Tests Positive for COVID-19 (July 17)

Dear Member,

We regret to inform you that a Kiawah Island Community Association security employee who last worked on July 17 has tested positive for COVID-19. This employee followed precautionary procedures at work, wearing the required face mask and using hand sanitizer. This employee was asymptomatic, and was tested for COVID-19 as part of routine testing ordered by his doctor on Thursday, July 16. On Friday, July 17, the employee received the positive COVID-19 test result. The employee was immediately sent home. The employee worked July 11-13 and July 17, as a gate officer. The employee last worked patrol on July 12, but had no direct contact with people, while on patrol. KICA has continued to follow its protocol on contract tracing, cleaning, and other preventive measures.

Based on CDC guidelines, KICA’s contact tracing procedure identifies any person who the employee came in contact with in the previous two days for fifteen minutes or more. This employee did not come in contact with any member or island guest for this duration, and coworkers have been notified.

This notification is a reminder that the virus is present on Kiawah, and that association services may be impacted as we face the increasing challenge of maintaining staff.

We ask that everyone in the community remain vigilant about social distancing and wearing the town-mandated face coverings. These actions have proven to be the most effective defenses against the virus.

Sincerely,

Shannon White
KICA Director of Operations


7/16/2020

KICA Board Opens Discussion of E-bikes on Kiawah

At its July 13 meeting, the Kiawah Island Community Association Board of Directors opened discussion of electric bicycle use on Kiawah Island. In summary, KICA currently prohibits the use of all motorized bicycles on the island, but several community members have expressed interest in allowing some electric bicycles. The primary argument for e-bikes is that they have a pedal-assist feature which enables a more enjoyable ride for the older demographic. However, there are concerns that these e-bikes are able to reach speeds that could present safety issues on the leisure trails. Director David DeStefano proposed some potential guidelines for the community to consider and provide their feedback to the board.

DeStefano suggested that KICA amends its rules to permit the use of Class 1 electric bicycles, with some restrictions. Class 1 e-bikes will engage an electric motor when the rider is pedaling. These bikes can achieve a max speed of 20 mph. Class 2 bicycles have a throttle in addition to pedal-assist and Class 3 bicycles can achieve 28 mph, so these two types would be prohibited. To address the speed concern, DeStefano suggested restricting the Class 1 e-bikes to those with a maximum of 250 watt motor and implementing an age minimum. Only KICA members would be authorized to use e-bikes, and they would be required to register with the association. No e-bike rentals would be allowed. To enable enforcement, the e-bikes must display the KICA registration decal, and Class 1 must be clearly marked on the bike.

Thank you to those who provided comments on this topic at the July board meeting. If you’d like to provide your feedback to the board, email board@kica.us.