7 April 2004

Owners present:
Iain Bryson #102
Frank Shields #106
Denali Van Ness #203
David Vogel #302
Pat Gribble #303

  • Frank Shields offered his expertise in construction, should a need for construction consultation ever arise.
  • Iain summarized the financial report. We came out with silghtly more money in savings than projected
    • The building saved money on insurance, but the savings were eaten by utilities bills. We are interested in ideas for saving money on utilities.
    • Building repairs were much higher than projected. A a result, the roof fund received less money than planned.
    • It was decided that the reserver savings account (not roof fund) will be closed and the money transferred to our checking account, since we earn so little interest on it
    • The "big tick items" still on the horizon but not requiring immediate attention are: roof replacement, tuckpointing on the exterior walls; and carpet replacement

Old issues

  • The Board presented Bob's cleaning proposal, which depended on at least seven volunteer cleaners to be feasible. It was decided that the plan would not work since, based on previous experience, we don't realistically expect a minimum of seven owners to participate. As the cleaning of the common areas is the responsibility of all yet continues to be left to two dedicated owners, it was agreed that we should resume paying a service, Rent-A-Yenta, to clearn the building's common areas for us. Dues will be increased 3.5% to compensate for this expense (about $100 per month for the sweeping of the back steps, the tidying of the laundry room, and the vacuuming of the carpeted areas, to take place on the last Tuesday of every month).
  • David gave an update on the rat situation: a few rates were found in the building after the traps were installed, and then there was no rodent activity detected until Emilia found a hole in her closet, apparently caused by rats. The exterminator was unable to locate this hole, and no further sightings have been reported since then. If the problem does pop up again, we will need to buy "rat guards" for the wires and cables around the building to prevent rats from accessing the upper floors.
  • David gave an update on building repairs: the boiler is working well, and when Reed Right did a walk-through of individual units to inspect radiators they were satisfied with conditions of each. They also replaced steam valves on those radiators that lack. Everything in the building is working adequately except for the plumbing, which has been problematic in several units experiencing clogs or slow drains. Our plumber, Terry Conrad, inspected the types of units reporting problems, and stated that his opinion is that the problems are individual, as opposed to building wide. This means that future expenses related to clearing pipes, etc. will be the responsibility of the owner of the affected unit. In this building the kitchen pipes are connected vertically, so the clogs are located in the common pipes outside the boundaries of an individual units, all units on that line, from the top floor the bottom floor, should be affectedand only those units, not the Association as a whole, will be responsible for paying for repairs. Similarly, the bathroom pipes are connected horizontally, so all units on one floor should experience problems if clogs are located outside of individual unitsand only on the units on that floor will be responsible for repairs. Terri's report also mentioned that older pipes tend to equal more problems, especially since we have smaller than average pipes. He suggested that for slow drains, or just as a preventive measure, we poor solution of one cup of vinegar per 1 gallon of boiling water down the drain, instead of using harsh chemicals like liquid plumber, which can actually damage types. Another option is to hire a professional to make the pipes (not ideal, as this can also damage fragile pipes) or to disassemble them. Kerry, who has experience with her quirky plumbing system, volunteered to give phone consultations to other plumbing professionals individual owners might choose to hire if they do not use him. He also reiterated that anyone working on our plumbing system must take special care with our delicate pipes.

New issues:

  • The service directory for the Gayle is complete posted on the message board by the mailboxes. It lists companies and individuals with whom we have established working relationships, and who are often willing to build the Association rather than require upfront payment for services. The directory is intended to be updated periodically. Additional copies are available upon request to the secretary of the board.
  • David has submitted a claim to the insurance carrier of Roto-Rooter, which, during work in the yard of the house next door, was responsible for causing the elderly tree located to the right of the building to fall. David's claim listed the arborists fee (for cutting the remains of the tree) plus the value of the tree it self; David's time (many hours of letter writing, phone calls to insurance companies, etc.); and any potential future plumbing problems caused by the disturbance to the tree's root system, which had grown around some of our plates insurance company countered with an offer of $2318, which included only the arborists fees and the monetary value of the tree. Our options are as follows: a) accept the counteroffer; b) go to small claims court to fight for more compensation; c) have an expert come out to check the building for damage caused by the removal of the tree; d) counter the counteroffer, reserving the right to claim future problems (which would most likely arise during wintertime). We will revisit this issue to decide a course of action.
  • David raised the issue of improving the aesthetics of the exterior of the building, including landscaping and possibly a decorative, and or visible, sign on the outside wall over the entryway. He proposed that the money received from the tree claim go toward this endeavor. You respectfully requested any amount above the arborists fee plus tree value beginning to him as compensation for the considerable time and effort he put into the insurance issue.
  • The scheduled vote for a new board president (to replace David, who is moving out of state and planning to rent out his units) was postponed due to lack of a quorum. A second April meeting was scheduled for April 17 to give more owners chance to vote.
Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License