The Rancho Santa Fe Post

Association Finances, Updated Bylaws, and Subdivision Reconsideration Disclosed at April Board Meeting

At its April meeting, the RSF Association Board of Directors disclosed several pressing matters to a crowded room of residents. The top issues at hand included the current fiscal health of the Association, newly proposed Association bylaws regarding voting rights, and a mix-up of multiple subdivision and boundary adjustment projects which will need to be reconsidered.

Modern Financing Practices Prove to be ‘Quantum Leap’ for Association

The finance team including Operations Manager, Don May, and Controller, Matthew Ditonto, presented members with an overview of the Association’s current finances and how much progress has been made over the last year with modernizing accounting infrastructure and practices.

Since March 2015, May has been transitioning the Association’s accounting practices which includes moving to full-accrual accounting, instituting modern security measures, and monthly recorded fund balances.

While the transition has taken some time to complete, May says, the new system that’s now in place provides residents and board members alike with a more detailed and transparent picture of Association finances.

“Accounting issues were pervasive and significant when I showed up and [they] have been substantially corrected,” said May.

Ditonto was optimistic about the changes saying, “I’d actually say we’re finally operating as a business where we have the staff capabilities to handle the membership demand. We’ve done very well with planning our staffing and controlling costs at the same time.”

Board Directors and Finance Committee members Fred Wasserman, Kim Eggleston and Mike Licosati thanked the finance team for a tremendous accomplishment.

“This is a real quantum leap in terms of our ability to understand this business,” said Licosati. “Now in 10 minutes [we] really have a good sense of where we stand.”

Governing Documents Committee Awaits Member Comments

During Board Director Fred Wasserman’s Governing Documents update, he urged Covenant members to review the latest red line documents by visiting the Association website and downloading the redlined bylaws.

“We want as much participation as we can get,” said Wasserman.

Changes to the bylaws are intended to bring the Association’s governing documents in line with the Davis-Stirling Act and simplify the voter registration process. An October 16, 2015 letter was sent to residents which outlined the prospective changes.

Comments from members are due back to the Association by April 15 and the Board indicated it will likely hold another community meeting to discuss the bylaw changes in greater detail.

Submit comments before April 15, 2016 by:

  1. Fax to 858-756-9814 Attention: Governing Documents
  2. Writing to Comments, RSF Association, PO Box A, 17022 Avenida de Acacias, Rancho Santa Fe, CA 92067
  3. Email to GovDocs@RSFAssociation.org.

Subdivision Projects Reconsidered

A complication with multiple proposed projects came to the fore at the end of March when an Association investigation into the projects couldn’t immediately determine whether or not all of the required approvals and notices had been followed according to Association documents. In light of the Board’s commitment to transparency, President Boon summarized some issues related to a development project by the Inn at Rancho Santa Fe.

The project involves the required notices related to an intention to subdivide the property and adjust the property boundaries by the Inn and Rancho Santa Fe. Boon stated that there was an isolated incident that appeared to be a procedural misstep and that no other projects appear to have been affected.

According to Boon, members brought their concerns to the Association and a preliminary review of the project’s approval records appeared inconsistent and incomplete. She noted that although both projects were considered by the CDRC, materials associated with one project were interspersed with materials for the other and it’s not clear whether or not nearby property owners were properly noticed.

“At present there is no indication of a widespread problem” Boon elaborated. “Rather, this appears to be an isolated incident, likely related to confusion arising from inconsistent identification of the projects."

While the Association’s investigation is ongoing, Boon added, inconsistent record keeping on the part of a former Association staff member seems the likely culprit.

To remedy the situation, consideration of the projects will be reset so that all of the Covenant approval procedures can be followed correctly including notices to surrounding property owners. Accordingly, the project will be reconsidered by the CDRC at its upcoming April 26 meeting and new notices will be sent to neighboring property owners.

Rumors of the oversight drew petition signatures from several hundred residents which listed multiple requests, including appointing an independent commission to further investigate the issue.