2015 Annual Meeting

Merifield Acres Landowners' Association
39th Annual Meeting Minutes

The 39th Annual Meeting of the Merifield Acres Landowner's Association was held Saturday, September 26,2015 in the Oak Park Stable, Merifield Acres, at 1:00 pm, following the potluck picnic which began around 12:30.

Call to Order was at 1:30 PM.

Attendees: there were 35 attendees at this years’ meeting.

Approval of Minutes from the 38th Annual Meeting (posted on www.MerifieldAcres.org) was moved, seconded and passed without dissent.

Treasurer's Report for 2015 (to date), was provided by Chair Annie Hensley: As of September 25th, the checking account with Bank of America was $82,391.60 and the investment account with Merrill Lynch was $137,950.47. The report was moved to be approved, seconded and passed without dissent.

Old Business

President's Comments – Chris Crouse thanked everyone for coming, thanked the board members for their service and thanked Greg Sansing and Kathy Compton for doing the audit. He also mentioned this was his last meeting as President.

Tennis Court – The painting of the tennis court has already been contracted and will be completed when the weather permits. Kevin Hensley also mentioned that a new gate and fence with new hardware will be approximately $500.00. It was approved, seconded and passed without dissent to add this additional work to be completed.

Foot Property – There was discussion again in regards to the Foot Property and if MALA should hire another County Attorney (Suzanne Hinger) to address the issues of concern on this property. It was approved, seconded and passed without consent to authorize $1,000 to see what outcome she may be able to deliver to the Board for discussion.

Committee Reports

Appearance and Beautification – Chair Butch Cheatham thanked everyone who volunteered to help control the weeds, tree debris, and trash along the roads in Merifield, with a special thanks to:

  • Chip Overton for volunteering to chair the committee for 2016. Jo Anne Gilmore, Pat Furrevig, and
  • Kent and Sheila Galvin for volunteering to help maintain the traffic island at High Point and Lake Point Drive.
  • Jim Burke for his help maintaining the second traffic island on High Point Drive.
  • Shar Cheatham, Annie Hensley and Joe Dehorty for their help with the area at the front entrance.
  • Kevin Hensley for his help controlling the litter in and around the front entrance.
  • Larry Robbins for helping maintain the area around the tennis court.

Architectural Committee Report – Chair Kevin Hensley reported: “8 requests for Architectural approval were submitted for review this last year. All were approved. The previous year there were 16. To summarize there were: 2 houses; 3 garages; 2 sheds; and 1 deck. No Requests for Approval are currently being reviewed. No written complaints, comments or questions were received last year. No issues are currently being investigated.

Aviation – No Report.

Common Areas and Facilities – Chair Allen Wymen reported that there was one request this year to use the Oak Park and everything went well. He also mentioned the painting of Oak Park was also completed and looks good.

Deer Control – No Report.

Roads and Maintenance – Chair Mike Gupton reported: “Thanks again to all the volunteers who helped clear and remove trees without any cost to MALA. Any money we save with volunteer labor is that much more we will be able to use for road maintenance. He also mentioned that there have been some issues with water during the storms and some tree damage as well.

Security – Chair David Hammer reported: There were only two reported incidences to security during the past year:

  1. Accident at the entrance to Merifield. On April 5, 2015 Security received a phone call that someone had hit and dislodged several of the railroad timbers at the entrance in the early morning. There was minor damage to three timbers, reflectors and rebar anchor studs. Repairs were made and the timbers reset.
  2. Accident near the entrance of Merifield. On Sept. 16, 2015, Security was notified that a resident had run off the road and hit a tree on the left side of the road while exciting Merifield. State troopers were on the scene. No further action was taken.

Welcoming – No Report.

Communication

Email/Newsletter – Chair Cindy Meadows asked for feedback on the eNewsletter she’s been sending (which solicited a big round of applause for here great work). If anyone has anything to be included in the monthly newsletter, please contact Cindy at cindymeadows62@gmail.com . The committee decided to combine the “Welcoming” Committee with the “Email/Newsletter” Committee to make it more efficient when sending out communication to the new people moving into Merifield.

Website – Susan Warren is going to contact Hal Norman at the end of October to help assist with enhancing the website which she will also manage and maintain going forward. She will also ask that Cindy Meadows and Nola Adler be present for the meeting.

New Business

The FY 2016 Budget was approved by the membership vote.

Election Results for the MALA Board of Directors and the Architectural Committee are as follows:

reelected to the Board from the 2015 Ballot were: Chris Crouse, Mike Gupton and John Stinson. Kevin Hensley was reelected to the Architectural Committee. The new Board Members elected were: Kent Galvin, Paul Starzynski and Emily Claire Howie.

In the board meeting after the annual meeting, Butch Cheatham was elected as President, Chris Crouse was elected as Vice President, Annie Hensley was reelected as Treasurer, and Susan Warren was elected as Secretary.

Joe Doherty handed out brochures for the upcoming First Annual Paws and Claws SPCA Event being held on October 10, 2015 at the VFW. All proceeds go to the SPCA. Please come and enjoy great music and food – all is welcome!

Adjournment was at 2:30 PM.

MALA – Issues for Discussion

I want to thank each of the MALA board members, committee members and residents who volunteer their time to help keep Merifield the best place to live on Kerr Lake. It really is. The video cameras that Rick Baldwin donated and installed at the front entrance have, as of today, eliminated home break-ins in our neighborhood. Considering the small budget he has to work with, Mike Gupton is doing an exceptional job maintaining our roads and managing the removal of the trees endangering our roads.

We owe thanks to Cindy Meadows, whose MALA newsletter keeps our residents and our board in touch. That is extremely important.

We thank Kevin and Annie Hensley for opening up their home for the board meetings. In the upcoming months we have some recurring challenges for which we will need our residents’ help to address:

  • Trees that endanger our roads: Please help Mike Gupton identify trees that endanger our roads. We greatly appreciate our residents who volunteer to help manage tree debris. The April storm a couple of years ago was a good example of neighbors helping neighbors. That mindset is what makes Merifield a great place to live.
  • Speeding: The speed limit in Merifield is 30 MPH. We have received complaints from some of our residents about drivers who speed through our neighborhood. A neighbor recently had to jump into a ditch to keep from getting hit by a speeding truck. Speeders create an unsafe environment for our neighbors who walk and bicycle on our roads, and that needs to be addressed. There were two one-car accidents at the front entrance in 2015, causing major damage to the vehicles. Fortunately, there were no pedestrians or bicyclists in the accidents, and the drivers didn’t sustain major injuries. It could have been very different. The problem will not resolve itself. I am in favor of first trying the least disruptive option, in which we ask our residents to identify the dangerous drivers so that we can address the issue with them. We need to be proactive rather than reactive about the issue. We certainly don’t want our neighbors injured by dangerous drivers.
  • Litterers: The third challenge, though not a danger to our residents, is to deter litterers who detract from the beauty of Merifield. I have some ideas to discuss with the board regarding that.

The board will continue to do our best to meet our residents’ needs while staying within our budgetary restrictions. We strive to maintain a safe and enjoyable community with as little disruption as possible.

We do need your help to identify the people who are speeding and littering in Merifield. Please email, call or text me with your input and I will address the issue with the people who are endangering our neighbors and those who are detracting from the beauty of Merifield with their trash.

Thanks in advance.

Butch Cheatham,
MALA President

919-618-1917 (C), email: malaissues@gmail.com