President’s Letter – March 2017
By: Bart Rovins, President, Taberna Master Homeowners Association and
John Serumgard, Adjudicatory Panel Chair
As part of the HOA Board’s efforts to keep the community informed, I have asked John Serumgard to share this space with me to enlighten the community on how we are able to maintain compliance with our Protective Covenants. As space and events allow, I plan on featuring our other committees in future newsletters.
First, here are a couple of quick updates.
Taberna Sidewalks – In January we submitted to the City of New Bern a survey of the sidewalks along Taberna Way and Taberna Circle. We are now waiting on the City to respond with their plan to make repairs.
Taberna Entranceway – It appears that there will not be a delay on installing yellow warning lights on Route 70 on both sides of our entrance and modifying the traffic pattern leaving Taberna to allow left turns from the middle lanes. This work is now scheduled for March.
Annual HOA Dues – Annual dues and assessments were due January 31st. If you somehow overlooked making these payments, please do so immediately. This will save you and the HOA additional costs.
Adjudicatory Panel Procedures, by John Serumgard
At its January meeting, the Taberna HOA Board reviewed and approved a revision to the Adjudicatory Panel and Procedures document, part of our rules and regulation. The revisions were prepared under the direction Monte Starr, who served as chair of the Adjudicatory Panel for the last three years. The procedures had last been revised in 2004 and the current changes reflect the procedures we now use with the management company (CAS) to help us administer our community.
So what is the Adjudicatory Panel you might ask?
Under the North Carolina statute which governs Taberna, if the community wishes to enforce its covenants, rules and regulation through the imposition of fines, it must provide a notice and an opportunity to be heard to any alleged violator. This is contained in NC Statute 47F-3-102 (11) & (12), for those who want to look it up. The Adjudicatory Panel is comprised of three (3) residents and alternates, and is the mechanism that provides any home owner or resident the opportunity to be heard concerning any alleged violation.
The current revisions deal with notices given concerning alleged violations, and reflect the standard practices used by our management company and give residents more notice of alleged violations.
Potential Covenant and Rules violations are usually found by our community manager, who conducts a survey of Taberna approximately every two weeks. In addition, any resident who sees a possible violation can contact the community manager or any member of the Board. For any alleged violation, an initial “courtesy” or First Notice letter is sent to the home owner by the community manager acting for the Board. The alleged violation is identified and the recipient is asked to remedy the violation. If it remains uncorrected after 10 days, a second notice – a Notice of Violation – is sent, with specific information about the violation, what needs to be done to correct it, and what the possible consequences might be, including the possibility of fines. Our previous procedure did not have these two initial notices.
If the violation remains uncorrected after 10 days, a third notice – a Notice of Hearing – is sent both to the alleged violator and to the chair of the Adjudicatory Panel. This hearing is where the Adjudicatory Panel enters the scene, and the chairperson sets the time and date of the hearing within 30 days of this Notice of Hearing.
At any hearing, a Board member presents the case for the alleged violation. The homeowner then may present his or her case. The process for the hearing is set forth in the revised procedures. Following the hearing, the Panel will convene privately and will render findings of fact and a final decision, within 10 days. After a finding of violation, the panel may impose fines up to $100 per day for each day more than five days after the decision that the violation occurs.
Finally, under state law, the home owner may appeal to the full HOA Board by filing a notice of appeal within 15 days of the Panel’s decision. A hearing is then held before the full Board which can affirm, modify or vacate the prior decision of the Panel.