HOA dues money at work: fact or fiction?

The SunBird Golf Club owns the roads within the community, including the parking lot east of the clubhouse, yet the SunBird HOA (Home Owners Association) pays for all the maintenance for them.

That is a partially true statement (please read the following):

In the beginning development of SunBird, Robson Communities as the developer, had the SunBird HOA and Golf Course operating as separate business entities, even though they owned both organizations at the time. Robson Communities created the Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions (CC&Rs) of the HOA, specifying what the HOA funds could or could not be used for according to Article 6.3(A) Purpose of Assessments… “(except for the golf course).”

It was determined by Robson Communities that the Golf Course needed more land to qualify for adequate well water rights to keep the beautiful green grass we all enjoy today. In 1998 when Robson Communities relinquished control and ownership of the HOA to the homeowners, an agreement was made with legal representation from both parties to address this and other matters. Legal documents between the SunBird HOA and the SunBird Golf Course were created, agreed upon and signed by both parties.

At that time, SunBird HOA already owned and had title to the roads and common areas in Unit 1A, clubhouse and sport courts/recreational areas, post office building and adjacent parking lot and a portion of the parking lot east of the clubhouse. Robson Communities retained ownership of the remaining roads and common areas in SunBird that were expected to be turned over to the SunBird HOA. However, these common areas were not given to the HOA, but were recorded as property owned by the Golf Course. The HOA agreed to maintain the roads and common areas that would have been given to them at the time of transition in 1998. Understand that this would have a huge negative impact on the Golf Course without these water rights that was made to benefit the Golf Course and not negatively affect the SunBird HOA. Part of the agreement was that the HOA had full rights as if they owned these properties and the water rights would remain with Golf Course owner. When you think about it, it’s a pretty small price to pay to ensure the Golf Course is able to maintain that beautiful green grass that we all love and to ensure our community has good roads and at least one plentiful parking lot for everyone’s use.

Another fun fact:

Robson Communities organized the HOA and Golf Course as separate entities and created from the beginning a Pro Shop Lease. The clubhouse is and has always been owned by the SunBird HOA, and the Golf Course did not have a pro shop building. As separate entities, Robson Communities, as owner of both at the time, developed the Pro Shop Lease to ensure the organizations were not comingled.

Why does the SunBird HOA “rent” space and not just grant use to the SunBird Golf Course? Again, on December 20, 1989, when Robson Committees took ownership of both the Golf Course and the HOA, he created our CCRs, and they were written to not allow HOA monies to go toward the Golf Course. That means we are not legally allowed to “give” anything monetary to the Golf Club, including rental of building space. However, he did create documents for the HOA to rent space to the Golf Course at the current market value.

These decisions were made almost 20 and 30 years ago. At that time, they were made because it’s what was right and what worked best for Robson Communities to keep the organization finances separate and clear.

Just over five years ago, SunBird HOA conducted a vote to change the CC&Rs to allow the HOA to give monies to the Sunbird Golf Club; however, by an extremely narrow margin, it did not pass.

Just to head off future rumors: Things are always changing. The Golf Course has indicated that they will be presenting sometime in the future another opportunity to vote to amend the CC&Rs to allow HOA funds the option of being used for the Golf Course, especially because a couple of the SunBird Golf Course members have mentioned the possibility of bringing a new CC&R revision to the table. If the SunBird HOA is presented with such a request, we will be sure to bring you, the homeowners, all the facts in advance so everyone can make an informed decision. This is a Big If, as the SunBird HOA has not been formally approached yet.

Again, please attend all fourth-Monday SunBird Board of Director meetings at 10:00 a.m. in the ballroom to hear and comment on facts fist-hand.

“Fact or Fiction” will be a new monthly article established to help to enlighten and educate our community about the many amenities and other financial operations of the SunBird Community.