They’re Concerned? Well, they’re wrong!

I received an email signed by three Sea Pines realtors that included a letter (also mailed to many homeowners) from a small group calling themselves The Concerned Majority of Sea Pines Homeowners. Referring to The Alliance for Sea Pines Future, they stated, “we must defeat these members of the destructive group of owners who call themselves the Alliance.”  The email and letter were sent to many local realtors (such as me) and vacation rental companies and encouraged them to contact their clients and tell them to stop the Alliance and vote for their slate of candidates.

Interesting that they would call upon the business community to help them influence an election in a private community.

There are numerous gross misstatements of Alliance positions in the “What the Concerned Majority of Sea Pines Homeowners Stands For” section of the letter. The letter also included two pages of sloppily researched and error-ridden “Facts You Should Know in Evaluating CSA/ASPPPO Candidates’ Positions.” The following contrasts the most egregious statements found in those pages with corrections to help set the record straight.

 

ERRONEOUS STATEMENT & ASSERTIONS

By the “Concerned”

SET THE RECORD STRAIGHT

Residential property owners do not “pay” for the trolleys. Since 1997, the trolleys have been funded out of a $2.00 portion of the gate fee.

Fact: Yes, in 1997 CSA voted for the creation of the trolley system using $2.00 of the gate fee.

Fact They Did Not Tell You:

The 1974 covenants state in Article II, section 11, the gate fee is to be used only for community services. So, if the trolleys are funded from gate fee revenue and CSA has deemed it a community service, we are paying for it.

The new 2018 Gate Fee Agreement makes clear what goes into the Marketing Fund.

Fact: The Gate Fee Agreement has been withheld from RPOs by a CSA decision. Among the “Concerned” signers are CSA Board members who approved the new agreement.

Fact They Did Not Tell You:

Remember all the letters we get from Bret Martin and Mark Griffith about being so transparent? OK, so you tell me why CSA is keeping the terms of the agreement secret from the RPOs? CSA refuses to publish the deal for you and me to read.

The purchase of Sea Pines Associates (SPA) was subject to all applicable covenants.

The Resort believes it has made all payments to CSA as required by the current covenants.

Fact: yes it was supposed to be.

Fact They Did Not Tell You:

The purchase of SPA by the Resort was and is subject to the increase in their annual assessment to 1%. See 1974 Covenants, Article III section B, 1, d-last paragraph (4).

But your elected representatives of CSA have never billed them for it and ASPPPO has never enforced the covenants. Since the Resort believes otherwise, it will take an expensive lawsuit to settle this, so ASPPPO & CSA do nothing.

Why is this so important? Read next.

We support candidates who will stabilize Sea Pines finances and maintain and improve our aging infrastructure, thus ensuring our property values remain high.

Fact: The Alliance Financial Plan is viable and doable. Please read it.

Fact They Did Not Tell You:

Our current boards show the 2018 budget negative $1.2 million. It is on the CSA website if you want to check it out. Search “budget.” Yet, they incurred a new debt of $1.4 million to buy property for future gate pass sales & distribution. They will be coming to us to pass a referendum so they can pay their bills. And yes, most of the money generated by the referendum will come from residential property owners. Is this the kind of financial stability you want to continue?   

The “Alliance” is openly hostile to tourists. They will pursue policies that will make Sea Pines less attractive to short term renters…

Fact: The Alliance represents all classes of residential property owners —permanent, second home owner and vacation rental. How do I know? Because many on the board of Alliance are second homeowners and rent their properties.

Fact They Did Not Tell You:

Alliance would never support a move to make short-term rental homeowners unequal in any way as has your CSA Board. CSA requires that any home/villa owner who does not rent through the Sea Pines Resort pay $15.00 per week per pass for entry to your home.

…and ultimately make all Sea Pines residences less valuable, but more expensive to own.

Fact: This is a subjective opinion unsupported by any data.

Fact They Did Not Tell You:

What determines value is the buying market. During our recession, we went through nearly 10 years of downward trending in median home prices in Sea Pines. 2017 and now 2018 are showing increases in median prices. Nothing that anyone or any company has done has affected it. It is the economy! We appreciate all the Resort does to improve their properties, just as we do all property owner improvements.

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