Unapproved Board Meeting Minutes of

April 12, 2003




President Todd Graham called the meeting to order at 9:00 AM.  Present were 2nd Vice President Tom Dorcey, Directors Bob Adair, Chuck Bailey, Larry Franklin and Scott Hayer.  1st Vice President Marv Richardson was excused.  The meeting opened with a salute to the flag and a prayer.



Chuck Bailey moved to approve the February minutes as written.  Seconded by Bob Adair.  Motion carried.

Chuck Bailey moved to approve the March Minutes as written.  Seconded by Tom Dorcey.  Motion carried.

Chuck Bailey moved to approve the March 8th Closed Meeting Minutes as written.  Seconded by Bob Adair.  Motion carried.   



For the month of  March 2003 the Treasurer reported income of $221,612.12 and expenses of $37, 89.57.  Cash on Hand at March 31, 2003 was $220,987.16.  Larry Franklin moved to accept the Treasurer's Report.  Seconded by Bob Adair.  Motion carried.




Manger Search Committee Results:


In the absence of 1st Vice President Marv Richardson he has submitted a letter on behalf of the "Manager Search Committee" recommending that Mrs. Gail L. White be appointed as the General Manager of White Birch Lakes Recreational Association. Please see copy of letter attached.


Appreciation Presentation to Manager Search Committee members:

A second letter submitted by Marv Richardson addressed to the President expresses his appreciation for the dedication of those people who so generously gave of their time to serve on the "Manager Search Committee".  Appreciation awards for this contribution were given to Anne Hobart, Lot 454, Merle Harmon, Lot 29, Marvin Frayer, Lot 682 and Don Kuester, lot 656. Please see copy of letter attached.


Mrs. Obrecht, Lot #251:

At the March BOD Meeting, Mrs. Obrecht, Lot #251, presented a series of questions to the Board. These questions were researched and answered in a letter to Mr. And Mrs. Obrecht. All members are entitled to these same answers so copies of this letter have been made available and can be picked up from the White Birch office or from the table today.


Membership Cards must be presented:

White Birch Membership cards must be presented for access to our Clubhouse and pool areas. This has always been policy, but had grown lax in the past year or so. A maximum of 8 guests are allowed per member when using the pool, unless special arrangements are made in advance. Members in good standing who may not have a membership card should please contact the office.


Activities Committee Chair Change:

  Barb Adair, Lot #59, has submitted her resignation as Chair of the Activities Committee. I accept her resignation and thank Barb for the excellent job she has done. The new Chair of the Activities Committee is Shirley Brandt, Lot #685.


By-Laws Committee:


Immediately following this meeting is the final opportunity for volunteers to sign up to serve on the ByLaws Committee.  All volunteers will be advised if they have or have not been selected to serve on this committee.  After today’s meeting I will be verifying membership status and will send out letters this week to all who have expressed interest.


Birch Bark Committee:


To help assist the General Manager in the monthly publication of our Birch Bark Newsletter, a Birch Bark Committee will be created. The sign up sheet for members interested in serving on the committee will be posted here at the clubhouse until the next Board Meeting on May 10th. This committee will work directly under the supervision of the General Manager who will also be acting as Chair of this committee.


Nominating Committee:


Marvin Richardson will again be chairing the Nomination Committee. Committee members are Pat Zakalowski, Lot #1305, Anne Hobart, Lot #454, Faye Sanders, Lot #965 and Scott Hayer, Lot #538. As stated in our By-Laws, Article VI, Section 2, all members in good standing who are interested in running for a position on the White Birch Board of Directors need to submit a letter of intent to the Nomination Committee or the Secretary. Nominations will be closed June 1st and letters of introduction from each candidate published the third Saturday in July. There are four positions open for this election in the June edition of the Birch Bark. Elections are held at our Annual Meeting.


Suspension of Membership:

Effective immediately, Membership Privileges are suspended for all members who have outstanding lot assessments who have not agreed and adhered to a quarterly or monthly payment plan. These privileges include but are not limited to the use of the clubhouse, pool, lakes, campground and pavilion, serving on any committee, public comment during board meetings, voting during elections and permits for property improvements will not be issued. Suspension of membership will remain in effect until any and all lot assessments are paid in full or a monthly or quarterly payment agreement has been signed and adhered to.


As stated in the White Birch By-Laws, Article III, Section 4Suspension of Privileges of Membership - The Board shall have to right to suspend the voting rights, if any, the right to use and share in the Common Properties of the Association and the other privileges of membership of any Member or Associate Member.

            A.  For any period during which any Association charge, including fines, owed by the Member or Associate Member remains unpaid.


And White Birch By-Laws, Article XIV, Section 3 – Suspension - The Association shall not be required to transfer Membership on the books or to allow the exercise of any rights or privileges on account thereof to any Owner of a Lot or any persons claiming under an Owner unless or until all assessments and charges to which the Lot is subject to have been paid in full.



I realize some members may be wondering why the Board has chosen now to enact these Articles of the White Birch By-Laws and suspend the membership of those in violation. As of April 11th we have $808,963.11 of over-due unpaid lot assessments on the books. This Board had not been made aware of this until recently and action to correct this situation must be taken. Suspension of membership is the first step. We will be presenting an Assessment Collection Policy at the May 10th Board of Directors meeting.


There has been great concern voiced at the past few Board Meetings over the annual increase in our lot assessments. Collection of this past due debt will offer opportunities that may allow assessments to remain the same and cash flow to improve the quality of White Birch for all our members.


I ask our members who have taken pride in our community to encourage those with unpaid assessments to work with the Board to correct this situation as soon as possible





ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION COMMITTEE - Chairman Ron Tagg stated there were 2 lots approved for tree removal  and a new shed.  Violations continue to be issued for campers and cars left on lots.

FUTURE PLANNING COMMITTEE - Chairman Merle Harmon will meet with the Committee directly after the Board Meeting.  A meeting is set for Wed. May 7, 2003 at 7:00 PM. 

ACTIVITIES COMMITTEE - Newly appointed Chairman Shirley Brandt asked for volunteers. She announced that there are plans to start a White Birch Weight Loss Club.  If interested in any activities or have any ideas, please call her at 588-4213.

CAMPGROUND - Fred Witchell announced that the sewage system is now inoperative and the hot water heater is not repairable.  Since the campground will be opening about May 15, there is only a short period of time to repair or replace the sewage system and to replace the hot water tank.  Many of the damaged lights will have to be replaced.  All unmarked boats at the area lakes have been removed, locked and stored at the old maintenance building.  In order to retrieve a boat the owner must present evidence of ownership.  If you have a missing boat, please contact Fred at 989-588-6797.  A radio was given by Clare County to announce any severe weather warnings.  This radio will be installed at the clubhouse.   He added that he will soon need volunteers to help clean up beach areas, clean at the campground and outside the clubhouse and other various duties as needed.


MANAGER'S REPORT - Available  next Meeting

ACCOUNTS PAYABLE - Payables were reviewed and discussed.  Bob Adair made a motion that the bills be paid with a cap of $1500 on the cost of replacing the motor at the outgoing gate.  Seconded by Chuck Bailey.  Motion carried.



Action on the proposal for the addition to the manager's office is again postponed until the May Board Meeting.  At that time the request for bids will be closed.



Chuck Bailey moved to give the Board President the authority to enter into a contract with Gail L. White on behalf of the Association.  Seconded by Bob Adair.  Motion carried.  Mrs. White was asked to come forward to sign the contract.  The contract was signed and Mrs. White was presented with keys and a nameplate and given her place at the Board Table.  CONGRATULATIONS TO GAIL WHITE AND WELCOME ABOARD.


BUDGET SURPLUS - The Unaudited EOY Financial Statement shows a surplus at the end of fiscal year 2002-2003 in the amount of $20,045.26.  A motion was made by Tom Dorcey to increase the Development Fund Set Aside by $10,000, $1,000 to be added to the budget for a new item, Activities Fund.  The balance of the surplus is to be added to the Capital Improvement line item thereby increasing the total 2003-2004 budget by $10,045.26.  The motion was seconded by Bob Adair.

The Board will vote on this motion at the May 10 meeting since this is an amendment to the budget.


Marv Richardson has developed a letter to Lincoln Township and the Clare County Road Commission requesting that consideration be given to adding a left turn lane to the north bound lane of Old State Road when resurfacing is done this summer. After board review of the letter Chuck Bailey made a motion to submit the letter to the township.  Seconded by Bob Adair.  Motion carried.


The board having reviewed water heater bids submitted by Doug Lake, Chuck Bailey moved that the Board accept Doug's recommendation to purchase a water heater from Zinzer's at a cost of $1,113.00 plus 10%.  Seconded by Bob Adair.

Motion carried.


Clarification of Alcoholic Beverage Policy - In August 2002 a new policy  was made that "No alcoholic beverages may be served at any White Birch event".  Bob Adair moved to edit the existing policy to read "No alcoholic beverages may be served at White Birch Lakes business meetings".  Seconded by Chuck Bailey.  Motion carried.


Manager White has researched the possibility of adding a new computer and has recommended that we purchase a new computer which will be networked to the existing system.  She has requested an amount up to $1,000.00 for the purchase.

Scott Hayer moved to approve the purchase of a new computer.  Seconded by Bob Adair.   Motion carried.


The President presented a proposal to update the web site to allow members in good standing to access it so they can vote on line, fill out an absentee ballot and other issues requiring a vote of the members.  Everything can be verified on line in a secure environment.   Bob Adair made a motion that we accept this proposal at a cost of $600.00.  Seconded by Larry Franklin.  This motion is tabled until the next meeting.



Terry Obrecht, Lot 251, thanks the President for responding to her questions from last month's meeting.  She questions if the existing loan is re-financed will there be more money added to the liability as has been done in past years.  She continues her critique of perceived waste of funds and stated if she sees no improvement in the next year, and assessments continue to increase, she will pay an amount equal to this year's assessment and any increase will be deposited in an escrow account. She has stated that any new construction should be approved by a vote of the property owners and that the office addition should be approved by a vote of the members. Shirley Brandt, Lot 685, reviewed the history of the beginning of the Association at which time Dick Brandt was the first president.  At that time the board was elected by the members and the ByLaws gave the board the authority to make financial decisions.  The office addition has been under discussion for years and it is a necessary expenditure. Dave Obrecht, Lot 251, stated his opinion that notification should be sent to all property owners asking for their input before a commitment is made for any new construction.  Also he requests there be a cap on expenditures which the Board can approve for new construction. Anne Hobart, Lot 454, warned that the change in the alcohol policy should be examined so as not to permit the abuse of alcohol on the premises of the association.  She agrees that members should have privileges suspended for non- payment of dues.  However, she does not agree that it should apply to comments from the floor as it is a public meeting.

Joe Romine, Lot 542, asks are we going to do anything about the people who ride the ORV's?  He also recalled the problems encountered and the lack of membership interest when members were asked to reply their preference concerning the installation of the gate. Also the effort involved in trying to get responses from a majority of members in order to pass or reject the amended covenants and restrictions. He commended the board for all the improvements that have been made in recent years such as the new clubhouse roof, a new boiler system, a new pavilion, and a new truck.  He volunteers to run a committee to check out ORV's and to provide the drivers with correct driving rules.  He expressed his concerns about enforcement of rules at the campground.



Bob Adair made a motion to adjourn.  Seconded by Tom Dorcey.  Motion carried.