Regular board meeting held on Saturday, January 29, 2008

Regular board meeting held on Saturday, January 29, 2008


A regular board meeting was held on Saturday, January 29, 2008 at the Cholla Community Center. The meeting was called to order at 9:00 AM by Vice President Pat Sledge with the following members present: Helen Dahlstrom, Alan Peterson, Steve Lee, Tom Clark, Lew Felton, Pete Pisciotta, Gene Court, Bill Drake, Ken Goodin, Shirley McDonald, Mexican Representative Valente Cornejo and Delegate of Vigilance Gerry Nelson.

Absent: Michael Dugan, Jim Niblack, Don Schmidli and Don Vawter.


The board had previously received minutes of the regular meeting held on December 31, 2007. Mr. Sledge asked if there were any corrections or additions. There being none, motion was made, seconded and minutes approved.


Treasurer Helen Dahlstrom passed out the report showing income and expenditures through December 31, 2007. Mr. Sledge asked if there were any corrections or additions to the report. There being none, he asked for a motion to approve. Motion made, seconded and report approved.

Treasurer asked Committee Chairmen to turn in budget requests so their figures can be included in the proposed budget for the coming year.


There are 722 members paid in full, 102 that are not current, 3 Mexican Members who are not required to pay but did, for a total of 827. There are 156 memberships who have an unclear status. Lew Felton asked why the unclear status is so high and Gretchen Ellinger said there are several reasons, one of which is that some just refuse to pay dues. There was a long discussion regarding how to handle those that don’t pay.


Mr. Sledge had concerns about some of the height restrictions in the proposed CC&RS
involving sloping lots which could push future structures right to the road. Steve Lee,
who is involved in the regulation process, said it would be better to let things proceed to
fruition and then look at making changes. Stopping the process could take it all the way back to square one.


Chairman Pat Sledge said Rick Dahlstrom has an opportunity to get some 6″ fire sprinkler piping which could be grouted solid and used as pillars spaced 10′ apart with 2 cables run from pillar to pillar to make a wall around the perimeter of the Clubhouse property. There was a discussion about selling sections and owners could put their names on that section. He suggested putting a section in from the NW corner of the Clubhouse to the first power pole to the north to see how it would look. He will follow up with Mr. Dahlstrom to see about getting it done.


Mr. Sledge reported that Gretchen Ellinger sent the board an email that she might resign and suggested that her assistant be considered to take over the job. It was discussed at the Executive Committee Meeting and it was decided that the committee needs to look at all the things that are going on and plan accordingly for the future of Cholla. There is also conversation about a city manager down the road so there are a lot of things to be considered.

Mr. Sledge asked the board for a motion to give the Executive Committee, if need be, the authority to make decisions with regard to Gretchen’s position and move forward . Motion was made, seconded and approved.

The Committee is looking at a long term plan and Mr. Sledge told the board they would be kept abreast of what is going on with the position that might be vacated and how we would intend to manage the community of more than 900 homes.


In the absence of Chairman Don Schmidli there was no report. Mr. Felton brought up the possibility of having a Vecinos garbage can that actually belongs to the Vecinos but would be “leased out” to the homeowner through payment of their dues. If dues are not paid there would be no can and their garbage would not be picked up. Mr. Sledge and Mr. Felton are to look into the purchase of cans.


There was discussion as to pick-up times and the setting of a firm schedule so homeowners know when to put their garbage out.

There was also discussion about construction garbage. Shirley McDonald is to take pictures and she and Valente Cornejo will go to the City Engineer for help in handling this problem.


Chairman Pete Pisciotta is trying to get a figure for the budget next year and looking to have some type of contract for the water and grading. He also reported that the Company is okay with the Vecinos wanting the new gate at the entrance of Cholla rather than the present location and they will put a cable fence from that area to the mountain. He does not yet have the cost for building the new entrance which will need to be in the budget for next year.

Mr. Pisciotta is still looking into street signs and “No Parking” signs for the Clubhouse property.


Chairman Gene Court said the new trees are trying to get started but a couple may need to be replaced. He also wanted to know if anyone knew anything about the skateboard ramp that appeared in the park. He is checking with Jessie and he hopes to have it out by that afternoon.

The free playground equipment he was hoping to get did not materialize. It will have to be budgeted for next year. They are replacing equipment next year but has concerns about getting it across the border. Mr. Peterson said, if notified, it is possible the city will handle the problem at the border.

Mr. Sledge said if the pipe works out at the Clubhouse, Mr. Court might want to use that to replace the “fence” now surrounding the park


Chairman Alan Peterson reported that due to changes in Penasco and not enough personnel in Cholla, there are times when the police are patrolling and no one in the office. The police have a marine radio and it had been used but with new people it is back to square one.

Mr. Peterson said he has been working with the Penasco Fire Department. One person he worked with in the past wanted to set up in Cholla and they are still interested in doing so but he has to get back with them and he feels the time might be right to do that. There are several things that need to be provided such as living quarters, a pick-up truck, etc., since they would be in Cholla 24 hours a day.

Mr. Sledge urged Mr. Peterson to pursue the possibility of having full time rescue services in Cholla to be available to everyone. With the growing population and the ageing of many of them, medical services are needed.


No Report.


Mr. Peterson gave a report on whether or not an FM3 is, or was, needed in order to get a trust and he was told at the beginning it was not necessary to have an FM3 unless the person is doing business in Mexico.

He did report that anyone buying property from the Company is responsible to pay taxes from the date a Bill of Sale is given to a buyer. He is concerned that if people have not continued to pay the taxes, it could put them back to square one on getting their trust. He feels the Vecinos have an obligation to let people know that non-payment of those taxes could hold up the process.

When the re-surveying is completed, the Company forwards large packages of paperwork for a lot of trusts to the bank, who then sends it to the state property registrar, Mexico City to get a foreign relations permit and all the other necessary stops for whatever is needed. In checking with the bank, Mr. Peterson was told that they package up trust documents for many people and forward them but make no list of who is included in that package. He is concerned that when people try to check on the progress of their trust procedure, no one knows where that particular paperwork is sitting.

There was a long discussion regarding paperwork being lost, stuck on a desk somewhere and not continuing to the next step. There was a horror story from someone in the audience about their application sitting in one place for a year.


Former President Bucky Maud attended the meeting and commended the board for
improvements to Firecracker Park and the remodeling of the Clubhouse.

There was a long discussion regarding a training session on Defibrillators, when it could be held, etc. Tom Clark will work to set up a session and demonstrate the use of it. He said he could also bring training material down from the fire department. It is tentatively scheduled after the next board meeting on February 15. Locals will be notified to see if they are interested in learning to use the machine. Mr. Clark said the machine currently in Cholla would probably need to have batteries replaced and it should be done yearly.

It was also suggested that the Defibrillator now in Cholla should be placed at Gretchen Ellinger’s house for availability, if needed.

Shirley McDonald brought up the need to again publish the list of English/Spanish phrases that were included in the Newsletter of May, 2006. A homeowner had a heart attack within the last month and the wife was unable to get immediate help due to getting non English speaking people on the phone. Phrases that would have helped her were on the list and it should be re-sent to homeowners to be placed near a phone.

Steve Lee reported that in changing his electric pole, it was discovered that the old pole was disintegrating. It was replaced with a wood pole. Mr. Lee is concerned that all concrete poles are eventually going to fall apart.

Helen Dahlstrom asked for approval to purchase some heaters for the clubhouse to use during board meetings. Discussion followed. Motion was made to allow spending $150 for heaters, seconded and approved.

Lew Felton brought up the elections in April. Secretary is handling Nominations. There are three (3) board positions only to be voted on along with the budget.


Mr. Sledge allowed the audience to participate prior to getting the meeting started and with a recent death in Cholla, there was a lot of discussion regarding Defibrillators. There is one in Cholla and a future training session will be planned.

One person complainted that there are too many realtor signs and was told that the Vecinos have no control over the signs. It was suggested that he approach the different realty associations in the area but needs to be aware that not all realtors belong to any of them.


There being no further business to discuss, Mr. Sledge asked for a motion to adjourn. Motion made, seconded and meeting adjourned at 10:15 AM.

Future Meetings:

Saturday, February 16, 2008 @ 9:00 AM
Saturday, March 15, 2008 @ 9:00 AM
Saturday, April 26, 2008 @ 9:00 AM General Meeting
Sunday, April 27, 2008 @ 9:00 AM Regular Meeting
Saturday, May 17, 2008 @ 9:00 AM

Respectfully submitted,


Shirley McDonald