Discovery Park Owners Association, Inc. Discovery Park Owners Association, Inc.
Discovery Park Owners Association, Inc.
 
 
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INSURANCE
Posted on May 11th, 2021 Comments (0)
In March 2021 our insurance company put together an introduction to insurance for Owners.  Click on the link below to read it.
 
HOW THINGS WORK IN DISCOVERY PARK
Posted on May 1st, 2021 Comments (0)
UNITS:  First it should be understood that, unlike a regular HOA, Discovery Park is a condominium community.  The Declaration does not refer to homes but to Units.
Declaration Section 1.48 Unit.  A physical portion of the Common Interest Community designated for separate ownership or occupancy, the boundaries of which are described in Section 4.2 of this Declaration.  A Unit within Discovery Park may be either an Apartment Condominium or a Single-Family Condominium Unit.
The “boundaries” described in 4.2 are what some call ‘stud-to-stud,’ that is, from the inside surface of the supporting structure to the inside surface of the opposing supporting structure.  So the wallboard and wall-finishing belong to the Unit Owner and may be changed.  The carpeting, hardwood, or laminate belong to the Unit Owner and may be changed**, including all things contained within the Unit. (NOTE: for the purpose of noise abatement the 2nd and 3rd floor ACU apartments must have carpeted floors, except for kitchen, bathrooms, and laundry room.)  But the structure and all things outside the structure belong to the Association and are maintained by the Association as what the State of Alaska Statutes call a Common Interest Community.  Yards, garages, shrubs and trees, streets, decks … all things outside are either Community Common Elements (1.14) assigned to the community as a whole (streets, curbs, walkways, green space, etc.) or Limited Common Elements (1.28) which are “for the exclusive use of one or more but fewer than all of the Units by the Declaration…” (yards, decks, garages, etc.).
IMPORTANT NOTE REGARDING REPAIRS:  Rule 1.7 states “Each Unit Owner shall keep their Unit and the Limited Common Elements that they are responsible to maintain, in a good state of preservation and cleanliness.”  Declaration 6.5 establishes that, while the Association handles most external repairs and replacements, damages caused by the Unit Owner or their guests, whether intentionally or through negligence, will be charged back to the Unit Owner.
THE MANAGER:  Obviously, the Manager is contracted by the Board to “manage” the day-to-day operations and affairs of the Discovery Park Owners Association.  The Directors are all volunteers with occupations, family and personal lives to manage.  A condominium association of 207 Units such as ours takes far more time and expertise to manage than volunteers are able to provide... thus the need for professional management!  ALL communications regarding maintenance, repairs, problems, or communication with the Board should go through the professional Manager whose contact information is always listed on the first page of each newsletter.  It might be good to cut this out and post it somewhere.
At regular intervals the Manager shall inspect the community and the ACU buildings to discover things needing repair or correction.  The Manager, under the authority of the Executive Board, is also the chief enforcement agent for the Rules.  Any violations noticed during these inspections will receive a notice (with automatic $25 charge) and given a reasonable time period to correct the violation before fines are levied.
THE WEBSITE:  The website (www.DiscoveryPark-AK.com) has a wealth of information including all of the governing documents, meeting minutes, articles, FAQ – Frequently Asked Questions, newsletters, financial statements and more!   When first going onto the website it would be good to register as an Owner/member so you can have access to all areas, public and private.  ALL Directors can be contacted as a body by going to the CONTACT page on the website.  Using this device, messages sent to the Board will be sent to each Director’s registered email.
NOTE:  When emailing on issues, please realize that matters that fall into routine maintenance or are handled in the governing documents may be answered within a reasonable time period.  However, matters that require a decision by the Board cannot be responded to until after the Board meets.  No Director, Officer, not even the President or Manager, has the legal authority to make decisions or commitments for the Board.  Only the Directors meeting as the Executive Board in a Special or Regular meeting are able to do that.   Decisions by email among the Directors can only be done on ministerial matters dealing with actions already approved by the Board.  New actions cannot be done by email because they are a violation of the open meeting provision of the Declaration which guarantees the right of Owners to attend and offer comment on pending business.  You can find the schedule of Regular Meetings listed in the website Calendar.
THE ARCHITECTURAL COMMITTEE:  To speed Unit modification requests, the Executive Board has established an Architectural Committee that has the authority to approve requests that fall within the established guidelines.  Unfortunately, the major delay on requests is incomplete applications.  Be certain to fill out everything including the contractor, their insurance and license information.  Requests that fall into gray areas or require some special consideration may need to wait until the next Executive Board Meeting for a decision.  Appeals to decisions by the Architectural Committee are handled at a properly called Executive Board Meeting.
Applications for Modifications may be downloaded from the website or received from the Manager.  ALL applications should be submitted through the Manager who will first review it for completeness and then send it on to the Committee.  If you have questions you may contact the Manager or go to the CONTACT page on the website and send an email directly to the Committee Chair.   Remember, all completed applications must be submitted through the Manager.
THE DIRECTORS:  The Directors are all volunteers, receiving no payment for their services.  At least two are elected annually at the Annual Meeting by the Owners, usually held the 3rd week of October (Art. 3.1 of the Bylaws).  Directors must be Owners and no more than one person from a unit or immediate family may serve at the same time.  There are six Directors in all and together they comprise the Executive Board defined and referred to so many times in the governing documents.  The Executive Board is the governing body of the Association, given broad powers by the Declaration and State of Alaska Common Interest Community Statutes in order to see that our Community is solvent and properly managed.  When a vacancy occurs, the Executive Board may fill that vacancy after a 14 day notice to Owners until the next Annual Meeting.  At that Annual Meeting that Director’s seat will stand for election by the Owners.
The Directors must meet and organize, setting a Regular Meeting schedule and electing Officers within 10 days of the Annual Meeting.   This is most often done immediately following the Annual Meeting, with the results being announced to Owners who have chosen to remain.
UNIT OWNERS:  Unit Owners meet in Annual Meeting during the third week of October where they receive reports, transact business, elect Directors (at least 2 annually for 3-year terms), and ratify the budget adopted by the Executive Board for the coming fiscal/calendar year.   Two budgets are presented, one for Single-Family Condominium Units (includes Duplexes) and one for the Apartment Condominium Units.  This is done because the expenses and services between the two styles of Units vary greatly.   Expenses for the two Unit divisions are paid for only by that division’s Unit dues.  SFCU dues do not pay for ACU expenses, nor do ACU dues pay for SFCU expenses.  To reject a budget adopted by the Executive Board more than 50% of the total number of Unit Owners in that division must vote it down (31 out of 60 for the ACU and 74 out of 147 for the SFCU). 
Section 3.4 of the Bylaws provides for Special Meetings of the Owners to be called by the President, a majority of the Directors, or 20% of the Owners.
We sincerely hope this helps you understand our Association and how it operates a little better.  It pays to review the Bylaws and Rules of Discovery Park every once in a while.  The Declaration is a little longer and more complex, but it is the foundation for the Bylaws and Rules, and thus our lives in Discovery Park.  All of them are available on the website.
 
Reviewed and adopted by the DPOA Executive Board, August 20, 2019
MOTOR HOMES, CAMPERS, BOATS, TRAILERS, ETC.
Posted on May 28th, 2020 Comments (0)
We have had questions/complaints about motor homes / campers / boats / recreational vehicles, etc. in the community. Parking rules are set forth in the Declarations and Rules of our Association. With the summer activity season upon us, we will highlight at least a few of the most frequent parking questions or issues.
Vehicles as described below include automobiles, trucks, campers, recreational vehicles, snow machines or other machinery.
Three Most Common Parking Rules
(1) No vehicles may be parked in the street more than 24 hours at a time, or more than 48 hours total within a 7-day period.
(2) Street parking on all Discovery Park streets is limited to parking on one side only as designated by signage. 
(3) Vehicles parked on the ‘No Parking’ side of the street are subject to towing without notice and fines.
Parking Rules Particular to Campers/Boats/Motor Homes/Etc.…
As to Single Family units, campers, boats, and so on,must be kept in a Unit’s garage. If they cannot fit into the garage (due to size), then they cannot be parked in the driveway either. EXCESS vehicles (that can fit in the garage) may be parked in the driveway. Clearly, this excludes parking of oversize (not fitting in the garage)vehicles in driveways except as described below:
The limited EXCEPTION is from May 1st through October 15th. During this limited time, campers, boats, and motor homes are permitted in driveways for periods of no more than two (2) consecutive days. However, if such vehicles do not fit in the driveway; then they are not permitted in the driveway. These vehicles are also not permitted to be parked in the street for more than (2) hours for loading and unloading purposes as regulated by Municipal Code, which is referenced by the Declarations and Rules of our Association.
It is understood that some may consider these parking restrictions an unnecessary inconvenience, but most people buy into an Association bound property precisely for the controls that assure the continued quality of their neighborhood. These parking restrictions are part of living in a community governed by a condominium owners’ association. All vehicle violations are $250 per incident. Fines are assessed directly to the Unit Owners account and are subject to late fees, collection fees, and legal fees if not paid in a timely fashion as specified in Article VII of the Rules.
For those who are interested, details about parking rules are available in the Declaration, Article IX, and in the Rules, Article VI. The Declaration and Rules are available on the Association’s website at www.DiscoveryPark-AK.com.
EARTHQUAKE INSURANCE
Posted on Jun 5th, 2019 Comments (0)
At the March 2019 meeting of the Executive Board the Directors adopted a motion to table any further action on earthquake insurance unless and until the Board receives contact from Owners representing 20% of the Units (42 out of 207).
The action to table earthquake insurance followed review of three quotes on insurance and participation in a discussion with a retired geotechnical engineer who lives in our Discovery Park community.  Should the required 20% request re-consideration, information would be reviewed, sent out, and a process developed to enable all members to vote whether in Special Meeting or by registered ballot.  The Board feels that a decision about such an important and expensive issue can only be made if it reflects the will of the Owners as a whole and not just a few.
 
WHAT CAN YOU DO?
Earthquake proof your Unit utilizing some of the suggestions in the February 2019 newsletter (available on the website).
Purchase your own “condominium” earthquake insurance to protect your personal possessions not covered by Association insurance. (Note:  ALL Discovery Park Units, whether Singles, Duplexes or Apartments, are classified as condominiums.)
Email the Secretary at everettfreed@gmail.com and let the Board know whether you are willing to pay for the extra insurance ($60-$137 per month based on coverage & deductions), would not be able to afford it, and any thoughts on the matter.
Links for further information:
 
EQ Primer            EQ Quotes Compared                Secretary's Report