Current Status and Information from Master Management Board of Directors
There are many comments being posted on blogs and discussed at poolside relating to the purchase of the golf course property which are meant to divert the residents from having an understanding of the reasons why owning the property is important to Century Village. This is the current situation.
There are aesthetic considerations (the City requires grass to be maintained at 12″ or less; Mr. Bast has fired the grounds maintenance employees, stopped watering and mowing, removed all leased equipment, and boarded up the rest room) and a security component (Mr. Bast is not required to maintain the fences along Hillsboro Blvd and Military Trail). Our Letter of Intent requires that he maintain the property, but once that expires, we have no control over what he does – and no expectation that he will continue to water, mow and maintain the property.
Currently, Master Management has no plans other than leaving the property as open space for the benefit of our residents. That will entail irrigation, mowing, some pest control and, of course, probably some maintenance of the buildings. (The initial estimate of those costs is less than $1 per month per unit.) We are now conducting due diligence and gathering cost estimates from vendors. Those costs are estimates, but will get firmer when we see the current costs and get bids from vendors. Final costs will be negotiated before signing a maintenance contract.
This is a work in progress gathering the information, getting estimates, etc, so we can act in the best interests of CV. We are taking steps to find out how the unit owners feel about the property purchase if the cost was a maximum of $10 per month for a maximum of 10 years. If the deal cannot be done for less, it may not be done. That is another step – but for now it’s estimated to be a maximum of $10 per month per unit for a maximum of 10 years.
The taxes on the property are currently about $35,000 per year, but will decrease to zero after 2013 if Master Management owns the land since we are a Not for Profit Corporation.
This is a risk management situation where there are at least two sides to consider – what is the property worth as a stand-alone property purchase and what is it worth to Century Village under our unique situation? For Century Village unit owners, it’s a personal as well as financial choice.
The main issues are:
- maintaining the perimeter fence along Hillsboro Blvd and Military Trail;
- keeping this a gated community with limited and controlled access;
- the ability to control what happens to the property in terms of future use;
- having a “Central Park” and open space for recreation activities;
- not having to fight with the owner to maintain the grass and structures;
- not having a weed patch running through the middle of Century Village and behind the Clubhouse;
- not having to be concerned about losing the use of the strip of road between Ventnor and Ellesmere (Ventnor Drive), and the road over the bridge from Century Blvd to Ellesmere at Keswick (Ellesmere Drive); etc.
So it seems the intangibles weigh greatly into what the property is worth.
If we do not own the property:
- We need to continue the Declaratory Action against the City to require Deerfield Beach to create Land Use criteria for the Open Space zoning category.
- We continue to depend on the good will of the Deerfield Beach Commissioners to prevent uncontrolled development of the Military trail and Hillsboro Blvd parcels.
- We may have costly legal and political battles with outside owners over proposed rezoning and development which other recent cases show we may lose.
- We have little or no say over what is done with the property.
- We have a patch of brown weeds as tall as 12” growing in that property and, especially, behind the Clubhouse. Aesthetically unpleasing, a fire hazard and a haven for insects and rodents. This is especially significant since those parcels behind the Clubhouse have no access unless Century Village allows the owner access, so although little development of those parcels is expected, a very low level of grounds maintenance is a real possibility.
- We lose control of the fence integrity along Hillsboro Blvd and Military Trail and have no ability to require that it be maintained.
- The road from Ventnor to Ellesmere parallel to Hillsboro Blvd could decay or be blocked as could the bridge from Century Blvd to Ellesmere, in which case Ellesmere would be completely isolated and Ventnor would have only one road access. Currently there does not appear to be any other location to access the Ellesmere area buildings, even if another bridge or bridges could be built.
- We lose a beautiful open space area for recreation and green space.
- We do not spend a maximum of $10 per month for a maximum of 10 years to buy the property.
Is it worthwhile to spend $120 per unit per year for 10 years to control all of these unknowns? That is why the MM Board is asking the opinion of our 8,508 unit-owners.