The Rancho Murieta Association board criticized Security services provided to the community and had a 10-minute exchange with a Community Services District director who said the RMA has improperly taken $88,000 from the community's parks funds.
CSD Director Dick Taylor took the podium at Tuesday night's RMA meeting to make a point he has been making for months, that the RMA took $88,000 from the community's parks funds to repay RMA legal expenses for the building of the community's new bridge and did so without a proper vote of the Parks Committee or the RMA board.
CSD Director Dick Taylor, left, discusses the RMA's handling of parks money with RMA Director Mike Martel.
RMA Director Mike Martel, visibly angry, said he wanted to discuss a bigger picture -- shortcomings by the CSD and ways in which the CSD benefits from the RMA's work and funds -- and offered to debate the issues with Taylor on television.
"I don't care to discuss whether or not the parks agreement is what Mike expects it to be," Taylor responded. "I'm talking only about the procedures for the handling of finances, which you people misused."
"This has been Dick's issue for 13 or 14 months," said Martel. He asked if Taylor had accused the RMA of something that was a felony or a misdemeanor.
"I'm saying we think the money was misappropriated," Taylor replied.
Board President Jack Cooper cut the conversation off after 10 minutes.
After the meeting, Martel said the issue would be addressed at next week's Parks Committee meeting.
The Parks Committee is made up of representatives of the RMA, CSD and development community. It manages funds -- from RMA dues and developer contributions -- for construction of parks facilities.
Questions about Security and enforcement
Director Dick Cox asked how the Compliance Committee penalizes members who are habitual violators of the traffic rules. Reading from confidential documents, he said one member had been cited three times -- for doing twice the speed limit and running stop signs.
Director Chris Pedersen, who chairs Compliance, said the offenders are fined, but the fines are the same -- not scaled to match the severity of the offense.
"The guy who's speeding at 60 mph, I mean, we need to change the way we're doing business here," he said. "We need to bring these people to light. We need to hit them in the pocketbook. We need to communicate to the community who these people are."
Cox also criticized Security Chief Greg Remson's approach to overnight street parking as too lax, which, Cox said, Remson decided to make policy without asking the RMA. Cox asked, "This is the age-old question -- does the CSD work for us or do they work for somebody else?"
Cox said he wants to see Remson and CSD General Manager Ed Crouse stand at the podium at an RMA meeting and answer questions about what Security can and cannot do for the community.
Cox said he believes Crouse "calls the shots and runs the board" at the CSD.
In other actions during the two-hour meeting:
- The board appointed new members to its committees -- Finance, Architectural Review, Communications, Compliance, Governing Documents, Maintenance and Recreation.
- The board approved Dick Silvis, who has served as RMA inspector of elections, as the ballot counter for the advisory vote on the future of the cable system.
- The board approved spending up to $10,000 for a land survey to establish the validity of documents found late last year that may say much of the undeveloped land in Murieta North has been annexed to the RMA. That would challenge plans to develop the land under a different homeowners association.
- President Jack Cooper said there will be a community meeting Feb. 21 in which a technology company will present ideas on how the community's cable system can be used going forward. Cooper said the ideas relate to selling or leasing the system or having it managed by an outside firm.
- The board approved spending $6,000 to $7,500 to explore the viability of changing the quorum requirement for electing directors from 40 percent to 33.3 percent. It's usually a struggle to reach the quorum of voters. The change would not affect votes on CC&Rs.
- Danise Hetland, assistant general manager, said the community's phone directory will be in members' hands by the end of the month after some delays due to technical issues with the publisher, Lincoln Media Group.