The Plantations Board of Directors

18395 Plantations Blvd.

Lewes, DE. 19958


March 21, 2011


Reminder: 2nd Quarter Payments are Due on April 1, 2011


Dear Plantations Owner,


As you can see from the note above, the 2nd quarter payments are due on April 1st.  Unfortunately, due to expenses realized from the ongoing litigation filed against the Plantations Owner’s Association, the Board was forced to authorize a dues increase for the Owner’s Association of $35 per quarter.  In order to provide ample time for this adjustment in payments to occur by residents, late fees will not be applied to 2nd quarter dues until after April 30, 2011.  If you utilize online banking, please make sure you adjust the payment amount appropriately.  An invoice has been enclosed with the new amount of the quarterly assessment for the Owners Association (Condo dues remain unchanged). 


The expenses that the Owners Association pays for the maintenance of common areas which normally are shared with Sandie LLC, are still occurring, but the payments from Sandie are being placed in an escrow account by the courts while the case is litigated.  Add to this the legal fees which are being occurred as a result of Sandie filing suit against the Plantations and this increase is unavoidable.  In an effort to limit the amount of the increase, the Board also authorized a number of cost saving measures.  The trash dumpsters in the parking lot are only being picked up once a week, the cost of street lights will be paid through the condo association, the storage unit where tools are stored after we were no longer able to store them in the shop will now be paid for by the condo, and we have discussed deferring payments with some of our vendors.  In order to collect the monies already owed to the Association, the Board has also authorized the community attorney to file in JP Court against owners who are behind in their payments.


The Owners Association is aware that this presents a challenge for some in the community, for this we are truly sorry.  However, this situation has been thrust upon all of us and the cost of losing this suit would be far greater than $35 per quarter.  We invite any owner who has questions to speak with us or SeaScape so they can be fully informed on this subject.


At the meeting on March 19, 2011, the attorney for the Association, David Hutt, spoke to the Board and Owners who were in attendance and brought everyone up to speed on the court proceedings.  It is estimated that the case will be heard by December of this year.  We are currently in the discovery phase and the attorneys are exchanging and answering interrogatories. 


In other news around The Plantations…


At the March Condo Association meeting, the Council approved the remediation of several additional crawl spaces.  The contractor has identified crawl spaces in buildings 7, 20 and 24 which will require attention.  This work includes the sealing of the crawl space vents, installation of new vapor barrier, and the additions of a sump pump and dehumidifier.  We will be in contact with owners directly affected by this work.


It was also decided that the cement board on buildings 1 and 14 will be removed and new hardy plank will be installed along the bottom half of these buildings.  If you are not sure how the final product will look after this is completed, we invite you to look at building 6 (18480 Carter’s Grove Circle).  This work was performed on that building a couple of years ago.  Right now the tentative start date is set for late May, but notices will be posted at each building prior to the commencement of construction.


Currently, the installation of a new roof on building 22 is being completed.  This makes the second new roof installation of the last 6 months.  The Board and management will monitor the remaining roofs for the possibility of a 3rd roof being re-shingled in 2011.


Rebuilding of several sets of steps has been completed at buildings 9 and 13.  This has eliminated some very serious safety concerns.  Several other buildings have also had their steps rebuilt over the past few months.  This project will be completed this summer, when the newly installed lumber is stained to match the existing wood steps in the community.  Again, notices will be posted at these buildings so owners will be aware of the impending work.


As if all of this work weren’t enough, we remind owners that Buildings 2, 14, 15 and 22 will be painted this summer.  The tentative schedule calls for this work to commence on or before the end of May.  The work will most likely start at Building 14, as they are going to have new hardy plank installed along the bottom of the building and it will need to be painted shortly after installation.


One important item, which owners should be aware of is the new laws passed by the state of Delaware concerning trash service.  This mostly affects the single family homeowners in 2011, but will become applicable to the condos starting in 2013.  First, the state will no longer be picking up recyclables, as their program has been abandoned.  The new law mandates that private trash haulers perform this work.  In Plantations this means, Rehoboth Home Services who picks up the trash in the community will now be in charge of collecting recyclable material.  If you are in the single family homes, they will be delivering a new toter for you to place your recyclable materials in.  THIS MUST BE STORED IN YOUR GARAGE AND CAN NOT BE PLACE OUTSIDE EXCEPT ON COLLECTION DAYS.  Pick up of recycled material will occur every other Monday morning starting on April 4th.  If you live in a condo and wish to recycle, you must contact Rehoboth Home Services and contract for this service independently.  In 2013 however, it will become part of the normal trash service for condo residents, as mandated by state law.  One final component to this very confusing issue is yard waste.  Yard waste will no longer be picked up as part of the normal trash service.  Any owner with yard waste must contact a private hauler to remove the material.  Rehoboth Home Services will provide this service for $7 per bag.  Owners must contact the company themselves and are solely responsible for the expense.  Please feel free to contact SeaScape with any questions you may have, as this is obviously a new law and can be confusing to understand at first.  It is important to note, the normal trash pick up is unchanged and not effected by the new law.


While we wish that was the last bit of information to relay to everyone, it is not.  As many of you have undoubtedly read in the local newspapers, YMG (the sewer service provider for the Plantations) has recently been fined well over $200,000.  These fines are the result of a leak in the liner of one of the storage ponds at their facility adjacent to the Plantations.  As a result, three of the monitoring wells have tested higher than acceptable for nutrients over the past 7 years.  The Plantations Board and Council, as well as the Board of Plantations East, have been in communication with YMG and their attorney.  They claim that DNREC is being unfair in their dealings and the fine is excessive.  A hearing is in the process of being scheduled.  This issue is of concern to Owners in both communities, as the repairs and fines may result in YMG seeking a rate increase in front of the Public Service Commission in order to pay for these costs.  We will provide Owners updates as events necessitate.


The Plantations Owner’s Board of Directors

The Plantations Condominium Council


NOTE: We have enclosed a document prepared by Plantations Resident, Dino Costas related to Water Rates.


Top Of Page