Laguna Woods Board of Directors considering more active approach to clubhouse maintenance – Orange County Register

The Golden Rain Foundation Board of Directors unanimously approved a motion last week that would direct staff to develop a clubhouse maintenance program.

Currently, the aesthetic elements of these buildings are only maintained on an irregular basis — every 20 or 30 years, council chairman Bunny Carpenter said during a meeting on Tuesday, May 3.

“GRF, as an administrator, is not living up to its responsibility by abandoning maintenance,” Carpenter said.

The proposed program would include recurring feasibility studies to determine necessary construction and maintenance, Carpenter said, which can be as simple as a paint job or replacing ceiling tiles.

“We should keep (the pavilions) up to date all the time,” she said. “(It would) be a change in the way we do business.”

Director Jim Hopkins said GRF is currently completing its first reserve study.

“With this report, we can begin the journey towards how we should attack the maintenance program,” the council treasurer said. “It will change the profile of reserves versus operations (in the GRF budget) – but it is the right thing to do.”

Principal Debbie Dotson, a member of the pavilion renovation committee, agreed that a regular maintenance program for the pavilion should be put in place.

“Our pavilions are our flagships – and they’re not that hot,” she said. “Let’s do what we have to do.”

Village Management Services CEO Siobhan Foster said that operationally maintenance of the pavilions is on track, although a comprehensive approach including aesthetics is needed.

Staff will provide an update on the current plan at next month’s GRF board meeting, said Manuel Gomez, director of maintenance and construction.


The GRF Board of Directors accepted the allocation of $97,625 for the replacement and repositioning of 40 benches throughout the community.

Staff received a request in December from members of the Vision Club, who said the benches obstructed their path when walking on sidewalks, according to a VMS staff report.

“The benches make it very difficult for the visually impaired,” Carpenter said.

Through a third-party contractor, the old white benches will be replaced with modern, green ones and set back a few feet onto the adjacent lawn.

The project, which will cost $58,000 for labor and materials and $39,625 for the benches, is expected to be completed within a year, according to the staff report.

The board unanimously approved the resolution. It must now meet a 28-day notification requirement for member review.

Broadband reconnect fee

If a resident fails to pay for their unit’s broadband connection and it is subsequently disabled, the reconnection fee will be the responsibility of the resident, as decided by the GRF in a new resolution.

The Broadband Division’s cost to restore service is $52.50 — a fee that many residents don’t pay, resulting in a bad debt for the foundation, according to a staff report.

VMS reported a total cost of $3,742 in reconnect orders from March 2021 to March 2022, representing 77 service calls.

The board unanimously approved the resolution. It must now meet a 28-day notification requirement for member review.

Donation policy

The GRF passed a resolution that will adopt an updated donations policy, streamlining cash and gift donations in a transparent manner.

The changes include eliminating a $100,000 cap on cash donations, allowing sponsorships and transferring responsibilities from the chief operating officer to the chief service officer, according to a staff report.

Additionally, circumstances where a donation or sponsorship requires VMS to acquire community space elements or maintenance costs to be funded by the donor may be waived “in certain cases.”

“An example would be an extremely large donation,” Foster said. “If someone donated a building, for example – would (the board of directors) refuse a $5 million donation because (they didn’t want to) pay $50,000 a year for maintenance ?”

The board unanimously approved the resolution at second reading. The resolution takes effect immediately.

COVID-19 Update

Public health officials reported another increase on Tuesday, May 10 in the adjusted daily rate of COVID-19 cases in Orange County, now at 7.5 new cases per day per 100,000 population, according to the OC Health Care Agency.

The test positivity rate – the number of swabs and sputum tests that come back positive – rose to 3.3%.

The health equity rate – the test positivity of disproportionately affected neighborhoods – is 1.4%.

In the city of Laguna Woods, public health officials reported 1,105 cases of COVID-19 so far Tuesday. There have been 77 residents who have had deaths related to COVID-19.

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