After a call for open discussion with owners, the meeting of The Regency Tower Board was called to order at 7:02 p.m. on Thursday, November 13, 2003 in the Meeting Room of The Regency Tower by the President.
Roll Call: The roll call showed the following board members present: Iris Anastasi, Eric Berkowitz, Louise Collins, Dott Nicholson-Brown, Fern McBride, Joshua Parker and Pablo Verol.
Reading of Minutes: The minutes of a regular meeting of The Regency Tower Board of Directors held on September 18, 2003 were read. Iris Anastasi made a motion to approve the minutes as read, seconded by Eric Berkowitz, unanimously approved.
Minutes of a Special Meeting held on October 3, 2003 were read. Eric Berkowitz made a motion to approve the minutes as read, seconded by Louise Collins, unanimously approved.
Minutes of a Special Meeting held on October 27, 2003 were read. Louise Collins made a motion to approve the minutes as read; seconded by Joshua Parker, unanimously approved.
Budget Presentation: This meeting is primarily to present the budget which will to be mailed to all unit owners on November 14, 2003. The budget will be voted on at the December 18, 2003 Board Meeting.
A. Recommendation - CY2004 Budget: presented by Joshua Parker
1. Administration: Salaries and Benefits - The committee expects a decrease in salaries and benefits from $442,590 to $441,776.
2. Insurance & Taxes: The committee expects a decrease from $149,575 to $131,788. This decrease is due to the elimination of taxes for the previously Association-owned unit and the hard work of Wiley Cotton regarding insurance.
3. Utilities: The committee expects a decrease in utilities from $128,400 to $128,000.
This is primarily due to less gas consumption.
4. Contracted Services: The committee estimated an increase in service contracts from $114,834 to $135,230. This increase is due primarily to an increase in legal fees and the need for landscape maintenance.
5. Operational Expenses: The committee expects a decrease from $133,751 to $108,937. This reflects a significant decrease in operational reserve (contingency).
6. One Time Expenses: The decrease from $154,000 to $78,687 is due to the completion of a significant portion of the one time projects.
7. Revenue: The committee recommended an increase of approximately nine (9) percent in quarterly maintenance. The remainder of the revenue to balance the budget would be obtained by increases in miscellaneous items. Quarterly Maintenance without reserves is listed in the budget packet. Quarterly Maintenance with reserves is listed in the budget packet and would result in a 30% increase. The amount requested for CY2004 reserves is in the budget packet. The President was informed today that the driveway has a 20 year life expectancy, therefore, the driveway request for CY2004 is is also listed in the budget packet.
B. Recommendation - Insurance: presented by Wiley Cotton
The second largest item of our budget is insurance. It takes seven different insurance policies to cover all necessary areas. We have an insurance value on our property (see budget packet). This figure needs to be increased. Our own homeowners’ policies would take care of inside our apartments and contents. Regarding the annual expense for next year, due to hard work by our Finance Committee and our insurance agent and rising stock market prices by the insurance companies, we will have better coverage at lower cost. Our umbrella policy has been significantly raised at a lower quote. In total, with the exception of Workers’ Compensation, which is a separate situation, last year we paid out (see budget packet.) Next year we will have better coverage for less money, resulting in a savings.
C. Comments by President: The President thanked the entire Finance Committee, which consists of Wiley Cotton, Josh Parker, Martha Sellas, Bill Tennenbaum, Dott Nicholson-Brown.
In connection with Revenue, there are several miscellaneous fees that will change as of January 1, 2004.
Fern McBride moved that the following miscellaneous charges be approved, all to be effective January 1, 2004, except the move in/out deposit should be effective immediately.
1. An administrative late fee in the amount of five (5) percent of amount due will be charged for Quarterly Maintenance received after the 15th of the month due.
2. Resident Repairs will increase from $20 to $25 per half hour.
3. Motorcycle Rental Space will increase from $15 to $25 monthly.
4. Auto Storage will increase from $30 to $45 monthly.
5. Move in/Move out Deposit will increase from $200 to $500 per move (EFFECTIVE IMMEDIATELY).
6. A fee of $100 will be charged for each Estoppel letter upon request.
The motions were seconded by Iris Anastasi. Motions were unanimously approved with the exception of one “no” vote for Item No. 2 by Pablo Verol.
Iris Anastasi made a motion that In view of the imminent purchase of new key fobs the Key Fob Policy be changed as follows:
1. Any renter/lessee desiring an outer door key must purchase a Key Fob at $100 per key.
2. All owners will receive a like exchange of Key Fob for any Medeco Key on record as belonging to that owner. Additional keys may be purchased at $100 per key.
The motion was seconded by Fern McBride; unanimously approved.
A motion was called for regarding auctioning the Association-owned garage parking space No. 159 located in the southeast corner of the garage.
Pablo Verol moved that Space #159 be auctioned beginning at a minimum bid of $16,000 with preference to those owners currently without a garage space. Josh Parker seconded the motion; unanimously approved.
Board Vote on CY2004 Recommendations
Eric Berkowitz moved that the recommendations made by the Finance Committee for CY2004 be accepted; seconded by Iris Anastasi, unanimously approved.
Adjournment: Iris Anastasi made a motion to adjourn the meeting at 7:45 p.m.; seconded by Eric Berkowitz, unanimously approved.
Fern McBride, Board Secretary
“I do not know the key to success but the key to failure is trying to please everyone.”
Aloha , The above quote is by a man whom I greatly admire. My failing is that I continually forget to keep it in my consciousness as I allow grumbling and complaining by a few to have an affect upon me. Sooo, I am turning over a new leaf as I ask the grumblers “do you want to be part of the problem or solution?” Those who grumble are missing a wonderful opportunity to be part of the solution. If there is to be joint ownership and sharing, we will also need to have a sense of caring, pride of ownership and respect for each other.
Would you agree that the Board has a duty and responsibilities to properly operate and maintain this condominium? Operations of a Condominium Association are like a business or government. It is managed and operated by a selected few on behalf of the many. Each of us serves as a “fiduciary” of all of you. That is a position of trust. Our goal is to create a culture that projects honesty, integrity and trustworthiness. While on the subject of agreeing, (notice how I slipped that in) would you agree the Board is obligated to establish proper budgets to meet future expenses? If so, how can we do that without proper funding? We should all have our budget packages by now. To those complaining about the 9% increase in quarterly maintenance, be reminded that the last increase was four years ago – which averages out to 21/4% per year.
The Board has maintained your quarterly maintenance without operating at a loss any year since we’ve been in office. And remember, Directors are subject to the same budget, fees, special assessments, rules and policies as everyone else. We’re one of you. We may at times look as if we come from another planet but that’s due to fatigue. Honest, we’re not aliens – no matter what you hear. We are fortunate to have a Board (unlike several other condos) who put aside any childish bickering and act congenially when dealing with the business of the condo. The “can-do” spirit of the Board Members creates and is matched by a “can-do” spirit of the employees and committee volunteers. Our buildings and grounds are shaping up. The Maintenance Department, under Shorty’s supervision, is keeping the exterior and interior looking good even with all the construction equipment and workers present. I think that when everything is finished in January you will agree that we have the most beautiful building on the Galt Mile. I particularly find it pleasing to look down from my balcony at night and see the pool with the lights in the water for the first time in many years. It’s a lovely sight. This Board doesn’t just talk. We repair. We replace. We do.
Round Table: The Round Table met on Thursday, November 6th at 10:00 a.m. Attendees were Dee Lanzillo, Tom Griffin, Howard Hirschman, Shirley Hopkins, Martha Sellas, David Tinsley, Joe Anastasi, Dr. Morris Wiener and Laszlo Bandi along with four Board Members. Dee commended the security force on their new “professional” look with shoulder epaulets and neck ties. Dee also mentioned that residents are leaving the lights on in the trash room on several floors. Discussion ensued with several suggestions to correct the problem. Iris was asked to get the price of signs. Louise and Fern will get the price for sensor switches. Afterwards, Maintenance will install the preferred choice. Howard Hirschman requested that corrective action be taken regarding the metal strip at the edge of the front entrance tile due to a tripping hazard. Eric was later requested to take care of correcting the problem with our driveway contractor. Dr. Wiener stated that a light is out at the exit area of Galt Ocean Dr. He also asked if there were enough funds for the additional cost of installing a well to correct the drainage problem. He was told "there are" due to the inclusion of contingency funds in the assessment. Martha Sellas commented on the timing of the pool and upper deck lights. Joe stated that they are working on it. Laszlo stated his car was immersed in water from the heavy rain water at the west end of the garage. It was pointed out that is why we are installing a new drainage system which are currently only in newly constructed buildings. Shirley had questions regarding the new key fob system, which were clarified.
Circuit Breaker Inspection: The electrician was able to inspect 202 out of 203 units or 99%. Our association attorney is handling the one disgruntled owner who refused entrance to the electrician. The purpose of the inspections was to check for loose and/or corroded wiring. This defect in just one unit caused a serious fire in another Fort Lauderdale Condominium. Remember, it only takes one unsafe unit to endanger us all. We are delighted to report that the electrician found only four units requiring corrections. Those will be corrected by the owners and if not within a reasonable time period, by the Association with the owner to be assessed the costs. Thank you Rafael Alleguez and Tom Griffin for continuing to bring this to our attention until action was taken.
Unit Values: Now that we have put so much money into improving our property, our units have increased in value and will continue to do so especially after completion in January. So, do not sell your unit below its value which in our opinion is approximately $100,000.00 - $150,000.00 more than just one year ago. Therefore if circumstances cause you to sell, hang on until we finish the improvements. Let’s all give a huge thanks to the Beautification Committee for the outstanding work in beautifying our property and giving us a “First Class” look.
AED CLASS: Ten persons attended an AED Training class on October 7th from 12 noon to 4:00 p.m. which was presented by the Fort Lauderdale Fire Rescue Unit. The attendees were Dott Nicholson-Brown, Fern McBride and Eric Berkowitz representing the Board of Directors, Jim Edmiston, Pat Reardon, Shorty Strong and Cindy Hanus representing the employees and Tom Griffin representing the owners. All attendees earned certificates.
RAPHAEL ALLEGUEZ & HENRY KAPLAN:In appreciation of their years of service, dedication and support to The Regency Tower Association, the Board of Directors and two members of the Round Table treated Rafael and Henry to lunch at the Sea Watch Restaurant. They were later presented with a "Star" of Appreciation plaque with a removable star. Thank you Henry & Rafael.
Happiness: After I finished writing this report to you, I ran across the street to get some ice cream. Ed and Pam Cavka of #611 had just arrived and immediately began complimenting the way the building and grounds look. I said “yes, it’s looking good”. Pam responded “better than good. It’s a rebirth, what a difference in the last few years.” That made my day, my night, my week and my month! Thanks Pam and Ed. I’m happy again!
Beautification - Louise Collins reported that many projects are taking place, one being landscaping. The major portion is coming to an end. The building has been enhanced with plush plantings and strategically placed lighting. It has been exciting to see this transformation taking place. It’s as though the building is now engulfed on a tropical isle.
We purchased and Shorty installed a motion sensor switch in the sixth floor trash room as a test case. It works great and motion sensor switches will be installed in trash rooms on all floors. This will result in a savings on our electric bill.
We bring to your attention items left in storage rooms. Only items that fit in your locker bins are allowed. Items left on the floor outside of your locker will be discarded.
The waterfall in the entrance alcove is in the developing stages. Several adjustments are being made. We are sure you will be pleased with the final result.
The building is shaping up and we thank you for your patience. It will be a pleasure to say “I live at The Regency Tower.” Thanks again to my wonderful committee.
Construction - Eric Berkowitz reported that the South driveway and South garage are 98% complete. The Patio Deck looks like a beautiful resort as does the Swimming Pool Deck. The Easternmost side of the building is also completely rehabilitated. The greatest advantage to the pavers is one that can’t be seen. The cost of maintenance will plummet because replacing a cracked paver is less expensive than replacing a section of cracked concrete. Dozens of concrete repairs were made to the columns in the South garage, the deck and the expansion joints. The interior drainage system was replaced. The South Driveway deck passed multiple water tests. The drainage system that services our swimming pool deck, the shower by the pool, the deck drains and lines under the swimming pool and the swimming pool interior lights have been repaired. Those areas that are prone to ponding on the South driveway and in the front drive-through will be re-graded when the pavers are installed on the North driveway.
Structural cement repairs are underway in the North garage. Cracked columns (which support the building), deteriorated expansion joints and dozens of deck repairs are being accomplished. The beam over the North entrance of the garage elevator lobby requires attention. The North entrance cupola had to be removed. After the waterproof membrane is installed, the cupola (and the adjoining fire exit landing) will be replaced. The vent housing on the Northeast corner of the North driveway is being removed to prevent trespassers looking for a short cut to the beach. The area will contain a planter.
The engineer has recommended the complete replacement of our existing drainage collection system and has created a two-part plan of action. The first step will be to reposition and reinstall our catch basins. The second step is to build a gravity well that will completely dispense with our rainwater accumulation. This type of well generally accompanies new construction. The gravity wells are about 100 feet deep and require permits from Broward County and the Florida EPA in Tallahassee. We have received the green light from Broward County and await the final nod from Tallahassee. We anticipate the construction of the new well to coincide with completion of the Western section of the North driveway toward the end of the year.
As per our contractual warranty, Aqua-Shield repaired 11 balcony railings and procured approval to effect a cement repair on one balcony.
Maintenance - Under the supervision of Shorty Strong and Joe Anastasi, the following items were accomplished: Repaired all lights under carport at main entrance; painted carport and main entrance; repaired front entrance/carport drains; painted North and South entrances; installed light sensor in 6th floor trash room; took down walls of old lunch room; installed new drains at pool area; repainted benches by beach shower; installed partial drain lines by pool shower and beach area and cleaned lines out; repaired/replaced pool lights. For the first time in many years, our pool is lit at night. The interior of the pool was recoated with Diamond-Brite.
Screening - Iris Anastasireported that since our last regular Board Meeting we have had two leases and three sales. Lessees are Connie Kier (1208), Steven Lichtman and Errol Scott (605) . Sales are Chris Hammers and Maricele Mendez (309), Myra and Jim Sullivan (1509) and Jim Jackson (1906). The Board would like to welcome our new neighbors and wish them happy times at The Regency Tower.
Security: Joe Anastasi reported that the Security Guards have been given a new professional look with epaulets and tie.
Social: On October 31, 2003 Halloween Hour was held from 6 - 7 p.m. in the Rendezvous Room. Cider, donuts, cookies, candies and sodas were served. We were pleased to have our Residents stop by and delighted to have some of the younger “trick or treaters” join us. Michael Hahn, our youngest toddler of nineteen months attended, as well as the Tinsley children, Bailea, Matthew and Gracie. Their costumes were awesome!
October: Henry Kaplan (510) taken to Holy Cross Hospital; suffered a heart attack; note on bulletin board, card sent. Went to rehab; fruit basket sent upon his return home.
Yolanda Zabal (1406) taken to Imperial Point, tests done, returned homed; note on bulletin board, card sent.
Tom Abdallah (503) was in hospital; note on bulletin board, card sent.
Madge Brooks (409) was not doing well; note on bulletin board, card sent. She is with daughter up north.
Irene Buschinsky (1210) was at North Ridge; note on bulletin board, card sent.
Pablo Verol (1707) had surgery; note on bulletin board, card sent and fruit basket sent upon his return home.
Josie Greco (905) was in hospital; note on bulletin board, card sent, plant received.
Bessie Giardiello (311) was in hospital; note on bulletin board, card sent, plant received.
November: Madge Brooks (409) passed away; note in bulletin board, family received notification that trees were planted in her memory. Our sincere condolences to her family and friends. She will be missed by all who knew her.
Thalia Parker (1502) was in hospital; note on bulletin board, card sent.
Bruce Butler (708) taken to University Hospital; note on bulletin board, card sent.