Introductory letter from the new president – 4-17-2018

April 17, 2018 Galen Schroeder 4 comments

To: Canoa Hills Townhomes HOA members

Subject: Letter from the new HOA President – 4/17/2018

Following the Annual Meeting on March 15, 2018, an Executive Board meeting was held to elect Board members to the officer positions for the coming year. Randy Borgwardt, our 9-year veteran, stepped down as president and I was elected to serve as your new HOA president. I am currently a seasonal resident living at 3591 S. Via del Picaflor with my wife, Mary, and our orange tabby cat, Mickey. Please bear with me as I learn to handle the position. Over time I look forward to meeting each of you.

As I begin my term and as the Board looks toward the coming year I would like to share some thoughts as well as some gentle reminders of member responsibilities. I look on this letter as beginning a series of ongoing letters from me to you. Fortunately, with the capabilities of our new website, these communications and your feedback should be easy. Please share your thoughts with me. Be assured I will listen and will carry your concerns to the Board. I can be reached at (701) 541-0055 (voice/text) or by email at

To begin, there are a number of concerns that I have observed or have been voiced to me.

  1. The Board Directors:
    1. As a reminder, we are an Arizona corporation and operate as a self-managed HOA with a Board of Directors elected by the membership. We can do so as long as members are willing to serve. Without volunteers we will be forced to go to a management company where the costs will be around $14,000 per year for an HOA of our size. That would result in a significant annual HOA dues increase to cover the added cost.
    2. Presently we need members to serve on the Standing Committees and it is always a problem finding potential new Board members. I ask each of you to consider whether you might be able to serve in some capacity. Please contact me or any Board member if you have questions about how you can help.
    3. The Board currently holds monthly meetings from November to April on the second Tuesday at 8:00 a.m. I invite/encourage members to attend. Time is allowed at the end of each meeting for member comments. Member concerns that are raised ahead of the meeting will be included as an agenda item if appropriate.
  2. The CC&Rs:
    1. Copies of the HOA legal documents are provided to the buyer before the real estate closing with the title company. It is an important requirement on the part of members to read them and understand your responsibilities when buying a home in the HOA. The documents include a copy of the Declaration of Establishment of Conditions, Covenants, and Restrictions for Canoa Hills Townhomes (the CC&Rs). If you did not read them at the time of purchase; or if it has been a while since you read them, I encourage you to re-read them so we can all be on the same page for creating a retirement community that provides a cooperative environment and friendly neighborhood relationships.
    2. If you cannot find the copy you were provided when you purchased, you can find the CC&Rs on the Canoa Hills website (
    3. For your information, the Board has begun a process for revising/updating the CC&Rs. It will be a lengthy process which in the end will require a vote of the membership for approval. I will provide updates as we progress and will seek your feedback.
  3. Landscaping of your own property:
    1. Please seek HOA advice and approval for your landscaping plans. The HOA has an excellent landscaping service that can help in selecting appropriate trees and plantings. If you have questions, contact Dick Anderson (402) 880-4353.
    2. Significant changes, especially the addition of trees or architectural features, need to have HOA review and approval. As an example, we currently have a homeowner who planted a tree species that will reach 40 feet in height; and it has a robust root system that will undermine walls and sidewalks. It will eventually engulf their entire front yard and will infringe on their neighbor’s views. The Maintenance and Architectural Committees will be dealing with the homeowner regarding removal of the tree; but it is an example of how a problem could have been avoided if the homeowners had followed the established CC&R approval process.
    3. Planting outside your patio wall, whether on your perceived or actual property, needs to have HOA review and approval.
    4. If you rent your property, I encourage you to review your current landscaping with an eye toward removing, or at least minimizing, your landscape maintenance requirements especially if you have planted outside your patio wall without HOA approval.
  4. Landscaping in the Common Areas:
    1. The landscaping service that maintains our Common Areas is supervised by the Maintenance Committee. Homeowners should not attempt to stop or interfere with the activities of the landscape workers. If you have concerns or questions over work being done in the Common Areas, please call Dick Anderson (402) 880-4353
    2. Homeowners should not plant in the Common Areas without approval.
    3. Dumping of refuse and plant waste into the Common Areas is not allowed. Place plant waste in your trash container for removal by the trash service.
  5. Pets:
    1. Most pet owners pick up their pet waste when walking their dogs; although there are exceptions. Please pick up your pet waste.
    2. Out of respect for non-pet owners and individuals who may have a fear of dogs, please observe the Pima County leash requirements.
    3. Be aware that a pack of 5 or more coyotes have been observed in the HOA area. Be sure to monitor your pets if you let them outside on your patio.

Thanks for taking the time to read this letter to the end. I’ll be following up with some additional thoughts soon. I wish you all a pleasant, healthy summer. If you haven’t done so yet, call the Social Committee to register for the April 25th Block Party. I’ll look forward to meeting you there.

4 Comments on “Introductory letter from the new president – 4-17-2018

  1. Nora Mena says:

    Nice letter Galen. Many thanks for reaching out out to everyone- and in such a pleasant matter. I guess I will need to meet with the architecture committee when we come back in the fall. I will respect the reminder that approval is needed for planting outside walls in our back yards.
    I’m so glad you have jumped in to the job with such enthusiasm! Many thanks.

  2. Jim Furber says:

    Thanks Galen for your letter of intro. Christie and I are only seasonal residents, about 5 months usually.
    We think CTH has made great improvements in the appearance of overall landscaping in the common areas.
    We’ve been winter visitors now for some 17 years and the “curb” appeal is the best ever.

  3. Patty Buksa says:

    Very nice introductory letter! Congratulations on your new position. There is a sense of comfort knowing the people in charge of the HOA are congenial, intelligent & enthusiastic as they enter into their leadership roles.
    I have heard of some horrific nightmares in regards to poorly-run HOA here & in Oregon.
    Thanks for taking on this responsibility

  4. Roberta Simon says:

    Our wonderful new web site has made it possible for you to share your friendly and informative letter of introduction with us homeowners. I live here year-round, and the improvements made to our common areas are, indeed, beautiful. I think our HOA is a wonderful community of people who love to laugh and love life! Thank you for taking on this responsibility.

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