June 2014 Trustee Meeting Minutes

Hillcrest Park Condominiums

Trustee Meeting

June 18, 2014

In attendance were Trustees Leonard Finkowski, Gail Chadwick, Debby Houlberg and Jody Babilonia.

A motion was made by Debby Houlberg to call the meeting to order, the meeting began at 6:33 pm.

1. A motion was made by Gail to accept the minutes of the meeting that was held May 20th, 2014. It was seconded and the minutes were accepted. The minutes will be posted on the web site and are available at the office front door.

2. Report on Maintenance Granby Tree Service had been asked to look at the tree branches hanging very low in back of Buildings 1 and 2. He will remove the branches that were almost touching the ground.  He also stated that we have a lot of poison ivy growing in the wooded area and there are many vines growing on the trees, pulling them to the ground. We can expect to see even more branches being pulled down. He suggested that we have him return in the fall and give us a quote of cutting back the wooded areas by several feet, getting rid of the hanging branches, poison ivy and vines. The cutting would take place in early Spring 2015. The Trustees discussed his proposal and will have him give us a quote.

Phil Biggs will be asked to inspect the boot vents on our roofs that are crooked and give us a quote on repairing them.

Paciorek Electric will make several repairs around the complex. There are lights over hatchways that aren’t working, one of the pole lights needs repair and the control boxes to the fountain will be changed from dial meters to digital meters. There are two cement blocks in back of Unit 48 and Unit 27 that were at one time, many years ago,  pole lights. Bill would like to remove one of them because it is already crumbling and then put perennial plants around them to make the area look better. Paciorek Electric will make sure no electricity is running to those blocks before Bill begins work.

There have been complaints about bees around Building 9 for several years. Last year there was treatment done around one of the units but the problem has returned again this year. Debby proposed that Minuteman be asked to look at the entire building and submit a quote to treat the front and back of the building. The vote was 5-0 in favor of having Minuteman quote for treatment of the building. The residents will be asked to remove all items from their patios for the day of treatment.

Building 10 was under contract with Orkin but the contract lapsed several years ago. During the annual inspections done this year by the companies that have our buildings under contract, Orkin was asked to give us a quote to get Building 10 back under contract. The building would need to be inspected and treated. The cost would be $995.00. Gail suggested that we get quotes from at least one other company. During the annual inspections Minuteman was asked to give a quote on Building 10 but they have not submitted one and it’s been several months. Debby will make contact with Minuteman and Terminix to obtain additional quotes.

Barnish Landscaping will begin trimming the bushes along the back of all the buildings; mow the back of the dam, the barrier along the pond and below the fence area behind Building 3. There are areas of soil erosion behind Building 1 and 2 that occurred when Verizon replaced their cables last year. Barnish will bring in some sod for the worst areas and seed the rest.

3. Office

The handicap ramp will be painted again this year. Michelle informed the office that the sign “Handicap Parking Only” has become very faded. A new sign will be ordered.

Contact Information pages were given to all owners and residents so the office can update the information kept in the office. About half of them were returned. A second request for information will be sent. It is important that the office have contact information for each resident, emergency contact numbers and vehicle information.

4. Review of Accounts

A print out of the checking account, cash account and capital reserve was provided to each Trustee. They were able to review each account.

The next meeting is scheduled for July 15th at 6:30 pm.

A motion was made by Gail to adjourn the meeting, it was seconded and the meeting ended at 8:35.

Agenda for July 15th Trustee Meeting

Hillcrest Park Condominiums


July 15, 2014

1. Acceptance of the minutes of the June 18th meeting.

2. Maintenance

Handicap ramp repair

Back of dam, small sink hole

Hydro Pro – change controller and check sprinklers

Aquatic Control, aerators in pond

Minuteman – Building 0

Gutter cleaning

3. Office

4. Other Business

5. Review of Accounts

Checking Account

Capital Reserve

Cash Account

Agenda for Trustee Meeting June 18, 2014

June 18th, 2014 

Trustee Meeting Agenda

1. Accept the minutes of the May 20th Trustee Meeting


2. Report on Maintenance

Trees behind Buildings 1 and 2

Phil Biggs Construction – Vent Boots

Electrical Repairs Needed

Granby Tree – Removal of Trees

Minuteman quote for Building 9 – Treatment of Bees

Orkin quote for Building 10 – Restore Contract


3. Office

New sign for Handicap Ramp

Second Request for Owners Contact Information


4. Other Business


5. Review of Accounts

Checking Account

Capital Reserve

Cash Account


It’s Almost Summer

HillcrestPark Condominium 

“It’s Almost Summer” Newsletter

Summer will be here soon but the Trustees felt we had enough information to share in another newsletter. Why wait for Summer! With the recent weather, lots of residents have been walking the complex and enjoying the warm temperatures. The Trustees have received many compliments on the appearance of the complex.

Owners are also making improvements in and around their own units. A new deck will be installed in back of Building 5. The owner attended a Conservation Meeting, complied with their regulations, and received permission to install the deck even though it is in close proximity to the pond. An owner in Building 2 is repairing, sanding and re-staining his deck along with installing stairs from his deck to ground level. It will be necessary to remove a bush in order to make room for the stairs. The Trustees feel the need for the steps is greater than the need for the bush, so permission has been given for the bush to be removed and the stairs installed. The owner is complying by filling out the necessary forms given to him by the office and he will also be contacting the Conservation Committee.

Check out the “looks like new” steps in front of Unit 2. The owner found a repair and restore product at Home Depot and the steps look like newly poured cement. A request form has been prepared and will be available in the office along with the product name if you also want to enhance the look of your steps.

Unit 58 installed an awning on their back deck. There aren’t any large trees to block the sun in back of their building and the brick really absorbs the heat during the summer. The awning looks great, shades their deck and cools the living room. A form has been created for anyone who would like to install an awning on their back deck. We will restrict the color to the ‘brick red and off white” like Unit 58 installed in order to have conformity. Sorry, no orange/green/pink awnings will be accepted, just in case you had your heart set on that combination of color.

Michelle knows how to re-screen windows and doors. She is really good at it too! Several people have asked her to do it and she is willing, but the Trustees agree that she should charge a nominal price, as compared to a hardware store, as this is not a job that the office would normally assign her to do. The front door and screen belongs to the owner of the unit, not the Association, so this is a service that the Trustees are willing to allow Michelle to provide. The prices will be $10.00 for a window screen, $15 for a front door screen and $20.00 for a sliding glass door screens. This allows Michelle to provide a service and get paid for it. You can leave a message at the office if you want to contact Michelle.

Several unit owners have fire pits of various sizes and shapes on their decks. Although there aren’t any rules in the Rules and Regulations Handbook regarding fire pits, we would encourage people to keep several common courtesy thoughts in mind as they use them. Please do not place the fire pit close to the dividers or anything else that is flammable. Be mindful that the smoke from the fire rises and easily goes into your neighbor’s open upstairs window. People usually don’t mind the smell of a fire for a while, but many hours can be a little too much. Please be considerate of your neighbors and the smoke from your fire pit.

The office has been made aware that several garden unit owners have been storing trash on their patios. The heat from the afternoon sun can make the trash smell and bring unwanted ants and other animals to your deck to check out that smell. Garden unit owners can keep trash in the basement of the building in a barrel with a lid. Please put your unit number on the barrel and put it in the basement within easy carrying distance to the basement door. If you have any questions about where to store trash, please call the office.

In past newsletters, the Trustees have reminded owners to check their smoke detectors and make sure they are in good working order for your own safety and for the safety of your neighbors. At this time, we would like to remind all unit owners that you should also periodically check your hot water tank. Many of the hot water tanks have dates on them or as an owner you know the year it was replaced. Hot water tanks have varying life expectancies depending on the size and brand. If your tank is over 20 years old, you should be looking for any signs of rust around the bottom of the tank, rust on the top of the tank or around any pipes that come out of the tank. We have seen hot water tanks that look perfectly new after 20 years that stop producing hot water, or let loose and has water pouring out of them. If your tank should start leaking, you have an individual water shut off to your unit in the basement of your building. This bank of water meters may be along the basement wall or in some buildings, it will be in a room marked “Meter Room”. Your individual meter is marked with your unit number. You should familiarize yourself with its location in case of an emergency. Water Meter rooms are not for storage of any type as the room needs to always be accessible in case of an emergency

The Trustees have seen an increase in unit owners making improvement to the inside and outside of their units. These improvements make your living space more enjoyable and enhance your unit. The Trustees appreciate the cooperation of all residents and owners as they make these improvements. As Trustees, our purpose is to manage the complex, keep it looking as good as possible and address safety concerns to protect everyone. If you have a question or a concern, please contact the office.

Have a safe and enjoyable Summer!

The Hillcrest Park Trustees


Trash Pick Up

Two weeks ago Building 8 was totally missed when trash was being picked up. One of the owners in that building called the Town to have them return to pick up the trash and got no results. Bill, our maintenance person, had to take it all to the dump the following Saturday. This week when trash was being picked up I was able to have a conversation with the man who does our complex. His name is David and he provided me with is phone number. He said if there is ever a problem, call him directly and he will return to take anything that was missed. David is with Republic Trash, contracted through the Town of South Hadley, his phone number is 978-895-0504.

New Requests Forms

Check out what some owners have done to make improvements around their units. #17 is removing the trees at the end of her deck and is having a new deck installed over the old one. She attended a Conservation Meeting and obtained the necessary forms because of her proximity to the pond. Unit 2 found a re-store product and their front and back steps look like newly poured cement. Unit 58 installed an awing on their back deck. They don’t have any trees to provide shade like most of us do and the awing makes their deck more usable and the first floor cooler. If you would like to consider an awing, we ask that the color be the same as Unit 58 for uniformity.  Unit 49 will be installing new stairs off their deck.  Home improvement inside and outside make your living space more enjoyable and increases value. Request forms are available at the office and we do require Certificate of Liability and License Numbers from all contractors.

Agenda for May 2014 Trustee Meeting

The May Trustee Meeting will be held on May 20th beginning at 6:30 in the office conference room.


May 20th, 2014

Trustee Meeting Agenda


1. Accept the minutes of the April 15th Trustee Meeting

2. Report on Maintenance

Results of the Trustee Walk Around

Replacement of old dividers on patios/decks

Wireless sprinklers installed

Building 6 – needs second sump pump

Alberta Spruce have been replaced

Installing stairs off their deck for townhouse units

Repair/ patch of front steps by owners

Fire pits on decks – rules to follow

3. Office

Unit 30 update

Comcast Land Grand request

Collection Laundry Money

Vote on adding 10% assessment on unpaid fines


4. Other Business


5. Review of Accounts


Capital Reserve

Cash Account

Wireless Sprinklers

Hydro-Pro will be in the complex on Thursday, May 15th, to install wireless sprinklers. They will be installed on the roofs. This will prevent the sprinklers from going off while it is raining.

This past winter was very hard on our landscaping. 15 Alberts Spruce have been pulled out and replaced. We are now counting the number of Boxwoods that didn’t survive either. The Trustees are looking at what might be a better bush to replace them with.

Sidewalk Replacement

This summer we will be replacing four sidewalks as we make improvements in the complex. The sidewalks that will be done this year are;

Units 11 and 12

Units 27 and 28

Units 7 and 8

Units 17 and 18

The owners of these units will be notified in advance of the work being done as they will have limited use of their front entrance for a few days.

Shrubs in the Complex

During the Trustees Annual Walk Around of the complex, we noted many shrubs and bushes that will need to be replaced. Throughout the complex there are 16 Alberta Spruce that will be replaced in the next couple of weeks. Last year the Rose of Sharon did grow like they should have, many not even producing leaves. After speaking with Tarnow Nursery, we found that Rose of Sharon all over the region were not growing well and many were lost. They advised us to give them one more year to see if any would return. This year we will be looking at the Rose of Sharon in our complex to see which ones show some signs of growth. Other are already to the point that they need to be replaced. The Trustees are looking for a suitable replacement plant for these areas.  Even a few of the Boxwood plants, which have been in for several years, look like they will also need replacing. This was a very cold winter and we can see the effects it has had on our landscaping. The Trustee are working on replacing the shrubs and bushes to maintain the landscaping of the complex.