Vol. 8 No. 2
Late Summer 2013
Summer Pool Party! More photos inside...
By Clare Bennett, President I thought I would have difficulty in coming up with a topic for my message this issue. However, the topic pretty much fell into my lap based on recent events and activities. I am dismayed at the increase in poor behavior, acts of vandalism and theft, destruction of property, and disregard for the wellbeing and safety of other members - especially our children. In just less than one month, we have received reports of individuals on mini-bikes and ATV’s tearing up our roadways, beaches, playgrounds and baseball field. We had speeding vehicles, including a vehicle speeding in and out of the main entrance with no regard for the safety of the children in the area and the adults that tried to stop him. We received complaints of vandalism on members’ homes and property. We have had theft of flowers and flower pots throughout the community, an entrance gate and camera was purposefully vandalized and destroyed. Individuals are throwing stones over the fence into our newly renovated pool and the newly purchased teeter totter has been damaged. It appears that some members think “oh well, it has nothing to do with us – the Association will pay for it.” WE ARE THE ASSOCIATION – EACH ONE OF US. We all pay for these acts in one way or another. Every time we have an act of vandalism we have to submit a report to the insurance company. This can, and has in the past, resulted in a significant increase in our insurance rates. It results in other extra costs; repairs require materials, time and labor. Every time we have to investigate and record an incident it takes us away from other necessary business functions. Every time maintenance has to respond and act upon any incident it means they lost that time to pursue regular maintenance duties. In some cases when we identify the culprits they will be held directly financially responsible. But in all cases these extra expenses have to come out of our budget. When expenses increase, so do our dues. So, I repeat, we all pay for the poor actions of a few. Any of you who know me know that I care deeply for this Community. Therefore, on a personal level, I am reaching out to the Members of Birchwood for your help. What can you do to help? Report incidents to the office and, if you can, help identify the individuals responsible for these acts. Maybe you know the kids in some of these incidents (we know it is not all kids) but you don’t want to report them to the office or police – maybe let the parents of those kids know what is going on – they may not be aware of what their children are up to. Talk to your own children and/or grandchildren about appropriate behavior and about the rules and regulations of the Association. Respect for people and property appears to be becoming a thing of the past. Finally, on a similar note, I would like to remind you all that our staff works very hard for the Association. We have a small staff and they are kept on their toes every minute of every day attending to the needs of the Association and its Members. I have had reports, or witnessed firsthand on occasion, members who are verbally abusive or harassing, including towards our young lifeguards. They don’t deserve to be treated in such a manner and, thankfully, it doesn’t happen too often – but it shouldn’t happen at all. If a Member has an issue or complaint I ask that they follow procedure and fill in a complaint form, which will be handled through the appropriate channels. I know that most of you, like me, care deeply for the community we live in and for our neighbors and friends. Let us not allow those few disrespectful people ruin it for us. Let us show them that we won’t stand for their behavior, so that we call all enjoy the beauty around us. Enjoy the summer. We have a beautiful pool renovation completed and lots of summer activities. I hope that you get to attend some of them. Because of Birchwood and family obligations I haven’t had too much of an opportunity to get out yet to our activities, but I do hope to soon and look forward to seeing you throughout the summer.
Birchwood Lakes Community Association 212 Aspen Road Dingmans Ferry PA 18328
Stroudsburg, PA 18360 PERMIT NO. 42
PRSRT STD U.S. POSTAGE
By Clare Bennett, President Below is an update on some of our activities. If you have any questions about any of these projects or any other activity in Birchwood please do not hesitate to call the office. 739 Entrance – The Board of Directors distributed a letter asking for volunteers who use the main entrance gate Monday through Friday, between 4:15pm and 6pm, to have their gate card access blocked during this time period. Unfortunately, we did not receive enough volunteers to make this approach feasible. We sincerely thank those members who did volunteer. Therefore, the Board of Directors will move forward with a plan that will meet the traffic reduction requirements imposed on us by PADOT and that will be most cost effective to the Members. The plan, which goes into effect October 1, 2013, will block 50% of members in good standing, 50% of renters and 100% of members not in good standing, from using the main entrance gate during this time period. Those members will be able to use the other gates. Blocking will be on an 8 month rotation alphabetically and for only that Monday through Friday, 4:15pm to 6pm time period. Pool – The pool renovations are completed and the pool opened Memorial Weekend, on schedule. The Board of Directors will be asking the Membership to approve reserve money in the amount of $10,000 to replace the existing fence around the pool and, if funds permit, to extend the fencing to include grassy seating areas within the pool area. Salt Issue - Monthly field and quarterly lab testing continue and these results are being closely monitored by our hydro-geologist. The exploratory well at Ivy Court underwent an 8 hour pump test and static water level testing was performed throughout the pump test on some of the surrounding wells to monitor water yield and any potential drawdown of the surrounding wells. We await the results of that testing. The maintenance yard well was modified by installing a packer to separate the good strata from the bad. The well will be monitored and tested to see how successful the placement of the packer is and to determine if it will be a viable option for some of the impacted wells in the area. If these tests are successful our hydro-geologist will submit a plan to the PADEP for their review and approval before we can proceed. A meeting will be held with the area homeowners on July 20th at 1pm, followed by a community wide meeting at 2:30pm to update the members on the salt issue. Upper Birchwood Lake Dam Permit – The permit application was submitted in September and the PADEP requested further surveying. The surveying was completed and revealed that in one portion of Upper Lake we will be required to build a berm or sea wall due to low lying properties. We have approved additional surveying required by the engineer so that he can develop the specifications for the berm and we await more details at this time. The Board of Directors is asking the membership for a reserve vote item of $25,000 to be applied towards a bond for Upper Lake Dam. See more details in the Reserve Vote article. Roads – Major drainage work has begun by Wayco on the upper part of Butternut and Basswood. We are still working on the specifications and permit for the drainage work on Old Oak Court. We continue to fill potholes in-house but they are developing faster than
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Late Summer 2013
we can address them. We have received estimates from a couple of companies to do these road repairs as well as additional repairs on Butternut and Basswood. The Roads Committee will need to review and prioritize based on funding available. Delinquent accounts – The Board is pleased to observe that collections efforts are showing good progress. We continue to seek judgments on delinquent accounts and we are following through on liens and sheriff sales where necessary. If you are in arrears and wish to make payment arrangements please contact the office as soon as possible to avoid legal action. Office Building – Work has begun on repairs to the exterior of the office building. We will be replacing the roof, windows, doors and siding and repairing the foundation. Work is expected to be completed by the first week in August. We have removed the carpet and put down a new sub-floor in the main office area. We have also created custom built desks in the main office area to accommodate our Collections Clerk and Recreation Coordinator. One of our members has generously offered to donate paint to paint the office interior and we are looking at flooring options to replace the carpet. If anyone would like to donate flooring for our office please call us. Landlords/Tenants – New By-Laws and Rules and Regulations are in place relating to rental properties. Please review and observe the new By-Laws and Rules and Regulations if you have not already done so. All homeowners who rent out their home (unless it is a family member) MUST have a one year lease, insurance and registration form on file with the office. NO EXCEPTIONS. Citations will be issued if found in violation. Badges & Decals – The 2013/2014 badges are now available at the office. All Members are reminded to wear their badges when using any of the common areas, and when attending meetings and/or recreational events. Lifeguards have been instructed to ask to see everyone’s badge so please display them. Anyone without a badge will be asked to leave the common area or will not be admitted to meetings or events. Please also make sure you have your vehicle and boat decals. Public Safety is issuing citations for non-compliance. Gates – PLEASE BE ADVISED THAT ALL OUR GATES ARE ON TIMERS. DO NOT DELAY ENTERING ONCE THE ARM IS RAISED AND DO NOT TAILGATE SO AS TO AVOID POTENTIAL DAMAGE TO YOUR VEHICLE.
From Our Recreation Coordinator
By Chrissie DeCola On behalf of the Birchwood Lakes recreation staff, I would first like to thank all of our volunteers and community members for their support in making our functions up to date a success, especially Clare Bennett, Vinnie Flatt, and Joanne McInerney. Our community members have been great in involvement and attendance, and a special “thank you” to all of the new faces I have seen so far! All of our functions are designed to make the members of Birchwood Lakes feel even more part of our community, so come and participate, “the more, the merrier!” Thus far, we have had a party to celebrate the reopening of our beautiful new pool, our annual 3K walk, the Independence Day pool party, and a teen night at the clubhouse, among other events. On a weekly basis, we have children’s arts and crafts, bingo, and morning exercise swim sessions for adults. With respect to future events, we have an upcoming Ice Cream Social on July 26th, the kid’s fishing tournament on August 4th, and (my personal favorite) our annual Adult Dinner Dance on August 17th. This year’s Adult Dinner Dance will have an 80’s theme, so be sure to remember your hairspray, banana clips, and parachute pants! Please register in advance with the office- admission for members is $5, non-members is $10. Entertainment will be provided by Joe McKenzie, so you’re guaranteed to have a good time (thanks, Joe!). As many of you know, our lifeguards not only supervise our pool and beach areas, but they also play a heavy role in organizing and bringing our events together. I would like to commend two of these guards for their outstanding performances. First is our Assistant Head Lifeguard, Miss Erin Marron, who made a water rescue at the pool on July 3rd. Aside from being an alert and responsible role model for our new lifeguards, Erin is one of our most energetic and creative guards, and is a true asset to the recreation staff. Secondly, we have our Lifeguard of the Month—Head Lifeguard, Alex McGinley. I have received countless compliments regarding Alex’s execution of his duties as Head Lifeguard, his projection of authority in the swimming areas, and his advocacy for safety. On July 23rd, Alex will be leaving Birchwood Lakes for basic training with the United States Navy. It is with his final award as Lifeguard of the Month, that I would like to wish him luck in all of his future endeavors, and thank him for his dedication to the Birchwood Lakes Community Association. We will miss you! To reiterate, we still have many upcoming events— keep your eyes open for flyers, or pick up an event calendar from the mailboxes! I hope to see you all at these functions!
Late Summer 2013
Route 739 Entrance Plan to Go Into Effect October 1, 2013 Dear Fellow Members, As most of our members are aware, the Board of Directors has been grappling for some time with the problem of how to reduce incoming traffic into our main gate, specifically traffic that is traveling North on 739 during the 4:15 PM to 6:30 PM period, Mondays thru Fridays. If we cannot make substantial reductions in this incoming traffic (approx 40 left hand turning cars per hour), PennDot will require that Birchwood put in a Left Hand Turning Lane, estimated to cost BLCA at least $250,000. Recently, the Board of Directors tried a voluntary approach, whereby members who agreed would have their gate card access blocked during the problem period. While the Board greatly appreciates those members who did volunteer, we unfortunately received commitments from only 25 members, many of whom do not routinely use this gate or use it minimally during this timeframe. The reduction in incoming traffic would have been minimal. Several other plans have also been considered, including opening up an additional entrance at Maheli, moving the guest gate to Doolan, and even closing the gate to all traffic during the problem period. These plans did not meet the traffic reduction requirements, were too restrictive, and/ or were felt to be too costly for the membership. The Board of Directors is now ready to move forward with a plan that will meet the traffic reduction requirements and that will be cost effective, but that will also require some inconvenience during the problem period. The details are as follows: • The plan will go into effect October 1, 2013. • 50% of members in good standing, 50% of renters, and 100% of members not in good standing will have their main gate access blocked and be required to use the other three entrances at Doolan, Silver Lake, and Church, during the 4:15pm to 6:30pm period, Monday through Friday. • Members in good standing and renters will be divided alphabetically into two groups, A to K and L to Z. Each group will have their main gate access rotated from blocked to unblocked, and vice versa, every 8 months. The 8 month rotation will force each group to share the inconvenience during subsequent winter and summer periods. • If your last name falls into the A to K grouping, all gate cards in your household
will be blocked, effective October 1, 2013, and will stay blocked for 8 months till May 31, 2014. • On June 1, 2014, the groups will be rotated. The A to Z group will be unblocked and the L to Z group will be blocked till January 31, 2015. The 8-month rotation will continue thereon. • 100% of all members and their households with account balances of $1 or more will have their main gate access blocked for the problem period and it will stay blocked until their balances fall below the $1 threshold. Once these members are in good standing, they will be placed into one of the two groups, based on their last name. Members who stay current on a yearly payment plan will fall into one of the two alphabetical groupings; members who do not stay current will be blocked till they become current. Members who have arranged for multi-year payment plans through the Board are considered “not in good standing” and will be blocked until their accounts meet the threshold. The Board of Directors understands that this plan will be an inconvenience to the membership, but other options were not acceptable and the only way to achieve the Left Turn Lane suggested by PennDot would have been to place another assessment on the members. The Board did not want to do this since an assessment will definitely be needed for the Upper Lake/ Crossing Road Dam project currently under review by PADEP. The Board thanks you for your full cooperation and assistance in the implementation of this plan.
Yours truly, The Birchwood Lakes Board of Directors
Welcome New Members
During the months of February thru May, 2013, several homes were sold within the community. Birchwood Lakes welcomes the following new members into our community: Caldwell, Wilson, Bianco, Sandor and Martin.
Board Meeting Minutes
(These minutes are brief highlights. Complete minutes are available on our website or at the office)
April 12, 2013 Approved total write offs for $963.14. Collections – 17 court hearings, 9 judgments, 3 certified judgments, and 4 liens and 4 payment plans initiated. Lake Management Committee - The aerator compressor is to be replaced at a cost of about $700. Activities related to the grass carp trial in Middle Lake will be proceeding this coming week, including completing the application. The Catch and Release signs are posted. Plans are under way to have another seminar in September highlighting our lakes. Salt Update: Two exploratory wells dug at Ivy Court and at the corner of Barberry/ Spruce. We will be modifying the maintenance yard well with the installation of a packer. Last quarterly data showed no major changes. Awaiting estimates from Moyer on several projects. Once additional tests are done, another community meeting will be scheduled. Board approved amendment of Section 98-10-10 Rentals and Leasing providing for a citation for each infraction. Each violation will be a fine of $300 for the first month; $100 every month thereafter. Approved Strand Pool Proposal of $3,315. Palms Grant: We received $18,000 in grant money but we must spend $6,000 of in-kind money from the upcoming budget. EcoSolutions will do the bulk of the work, supplemented by in-house maintenance. (1) a riparian buffer along 450 ft of shoreline near the pool. (2) a new swale and rock filter at Beach 3 on Lower Lake near the boat launch and the accumulated sediment in the lake removed. (3) sediment and rocks brought into Lower Lake by last season’s hurricane at the mouth of the seasonal stream removed and a rock filter and riparian buffer installed at the lake edge. (4) An additional rock filter and riparian buffer constructed on Lower Lake as part of the Old Oak Court project. We will see if Joe Gallagher is willing to run a trial of the DINO 6 on the Middle Lake to see if the machine can reduce the size of the peat bogs. Additional uses of the DINO 6 on other lakes by lakefront property owners will need further review by the Board. Swim team requests various dates for reservation of clubhouse for fundraising events. We do not charge for rental, but do take cleaning deposit from the league. We generally give three dates to the Swim Club. Right now they are asking for 9 fundraisers in a two month period which may be problem with other activities or homeowner’s use of clubhouse. It was decided to continue with our policy of allowing swim club to use the clubhouse free for three occasions, but the other dates they will be required to pay a fee. Historically, we give the swim team the free use of pool, lifeguards, clubhouse electric, heat, insurance and $500. It was decided to allow them the three free dates with security deposit only, a rental fee of $100 for all other fundraiser at the clubhouse, with an advance two week notice confirming availability of clubhouse.
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Late Summer 2013
May 10, 2013 Administrative Costs: Payment Plans administrative fees are $25. Two payment plans, current and arrears, which requires a great deal of administration. Treasurer Livingston is recommending that the Board ask By-Laws to review the fee schedule and amend the schedule to reflect a $25 administrative fee for each payment plan. The Board referred this to the By-Laws Committee. Rules and Regulations – Director Martin indicated that the Committee reviewed the area of fines as it relates to untidy properties offering some changes to current fines imposed. The Committee recommends that the Board amend Section 98-50-12 relative to imposition of fines for untidy properties, noting if violation is not resolved within 30 days, fine would be $50 per week instead of $25 per day until addressed. Board approved to amend Section 98-50-12 relative to imposition of fines, noting if violation is not resolved within 30 days, fine will be $50 each month for the first two months and the third month and thereafter it will be $100 a month until resolved to the satisfaction of the Association. Lake Management –PALMS Grant - stated that he will be starting on the riparian buffer at the pool area in a few weeks. A list of plants will be sent to the Lake Management Committee for review before purchase. Lake Management and Beautification Committee members may volunteer to help plant and their time could be included w/ in-kind expenses. Joe Gallagher also stated that he believes that the Old Oak Ct survey expenses can be included in submissions to PALMS as an in-kind expense, but that the appropriate area within the grant must be referenced. As to lake treatments he confirmed the use of more expensive and more effective herbicides (Aquathol and Navigate) this season, focusing on East Lake, the northern cove of Lower Lake, and Middle Lake, if needed. Office Renovation Proposals-Office: Approved Diamond Homes at a cost of $29,925 for the external office renovations, subject to submission of a signed contract, references, and insurance certificate, as well as verification that all permit fees included in cost proposal. Salt Update: President Bennett updated the Meeting on the salt problem. She stated that we recently approved several Actions Without A Meeting to move ahead with further testing of the exploratory well at Ivy Court to determine water quality, yield and static water levels of surrounding homes. This testing will provide the information we need to confirm the viability of that site for the communal well. We also approved modifying the maintenance well using a packer to determine if we can separate the good strata from the bad, thereby, obtaining clean water from that well. President Bennett informed the meeting that we are looking to haul water internally to fill the water tanks at BL-3 and BL-4 and once we have everything in place we will complete a test run to determine its feasibility. Quarterly lab testing will be mid-June; field testing next week. The Board approved some slight modifications to two of the wells we need to test. We are looking to host another community meeting in late June, depending on the completion of the above testing. Once we determine if Ivy Court will work as the communal well site, Brian Oram and Cornerstone Engineering will submit a plan to DEP. We will not be able to do anything with this well until we have DEP approval. President Bennett informed the meeting that she will be sending a letter to the homeowners surrounding the Ivy Court exploratory well, explaining what we are doing and seek their permission for various testing. 739 Entrance: The Board discussed the options presented by Directors McConnon, Ritson and White. These options are contingent on not getting enough volunteers to meet our decreased left hand traffic requirement into the 739 entrance. Director Ritson had offered to review the gate access reports and the traffic study that was completed a couple of years ago. He determined that we need to decrease left turn entrance anywhere from 52-66 during this period of concern (4pm to 6:15pm) listed. The group presented some options to the Board for consideration. After further discussion the Board agreed to initially issue a letter explaining the situation as asking for volunteers. The letter will be distributed in the mailboxes, handed out by Public Safety at the 739 entrance, placed on our bulletin boards and our website and included in the next newsletter. If we do not receive enough volunteers to satisfy the requirements of the PADOT the Board will proceed with the plan outlined in the letter. Deadline date for volunteering will be June 1, 2013. Pool hours: Board discussed extending pool hours on weekend. The Board agreed to change the pool hours as follows: Monday thru Thursday 12-7; Friday 12-8; Saturday 118; Sunday 11-7 from June 15th. Reserve Vote - Board approved to accept the Reserve Vote consisting of: Road work ($175,000); extended fence by 7’ ($10,000); CD requirement for Upper Birchwood Lake ($25,000). The total reserve vote will be $210,000. In addition, wording will be added for approval to consolidate the following reserve accounts under one fund name for each project (combine highway traffic occupancy permit and traffic study and entrances as Entrance Permit) and (spillways/dams/bridges, Upper Birchwood Lake Dam Permit and Upper Birchwood Lake dam, as Upper Birchwood Lake Dam).
Late Summer 2013
Birchwood Lakes Community Association Congratulations to our 2013 high school graduates!
DATES to NOTE: For a full listing of activities see our calendar on the website or pick up a copy at the office. Check with the office for any changes or new activities that may be added throughout the summer.
JULY July 26
Ice Cream Social (adults $2, children $1)
Call the BLCA Office or visit our website for pool and beach hours.
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June 14, 2013 Director Ritson volunteered he will head up the Upper Dam cleanup/removal of weed and bush growth and debris with Lake Management Committee to save monies on clearing away the area. Concerns voiced on lack of attention by security to violations of untidy properties. Director White repeated we should ask our attorney how we can take these types of violations to civil court since the fines and lack of compliance with clean up creates more problems for community. Public Safety - We need a Rowboat at each beach. It was suggested we buy one each year. It was recommended we throw out any damaged, unclaimed, boats that are stored in maintenance yard. Make complaints on public safety issues less complex. Things like potholes, fallen trees or wires should be addressed easier and faster. A call in/email system should be instituted. The Board endorsed an “If You See It, Report It” campaign. Board approved revised mission statement as follows:“The mission of the Community Safety Committee (CSC) is to research, assess, and recommend improvements to the BLCA safety program in the areas of equipment, procedures, and personnel. Recommendations will focus on protecting our common areas and amenities and making them safer for members and guests in accordance with the BLCA governing documents.” Salt Update: Moyer was approved to modify a couple of wells we needed to access. The Maintenance Yard well was modified, installing a packer to separate the good strata from the bad. This well will be purged and monitored to see if the packer system is a feasible solution for some of the other wells. Quarterly testing was performed and the results should be available in about three weeks. Letters were sent to the homeowners surrounding the exploratory well on Ivy Court to gain permission to do static water level testing of their wells as well as water quality testing. To date we have received permission from four of the homeowners to perform the testing. Mr. Oram and Moyer will be conducting an 8-hour pump test on the exploratory well as well as the static water level testing to determine quality and yield and to see if there will be an adverse impact on surrounding wells. 739 Entrance- A letter educating people was distributed at the entrances and by Legion. We received 25 volunteers but this number is not near enough to meet the demands of PADOT to reduce the traffic during the peak times. The Board agreed to block the gate cards for 50% of the members, 50% of the renters and 100% of all members not in good standing. A letter will be included in the Membership mailing in July and distributed in the mailboxes. The Board agreed on an 8 month rotation cycle would be on an 8 month cycle and the blocking would be done alphabetically. The blocked time at the 739 Entrance will be 4:15pm to 6:30pm Monday through Friday. The Board will evaluate if the process is working by reviewing the gate card reports immediately prior to implementation and the again following implementation. If the program is successful PADOT will be provided the documentation supporting this plan. The Board approved this plan. Upper Birchwood Lake Dam Permit Additional Surveying - Last month we reported that 40 properties were surveyed at the request of PADEP. The surveys revealed that in one particular area of the lake we will be required to put in a berm or sea wall. Gary Flood has submitted an estimate to perform additional survey work so that Chuck Givler can provide exact specifications on this potential berm for Board and Member discussion. Board approved Gary Flood Surveying proposal for $1,000. R&R 98-50-22-Temporary Structures – Currently only one temporary structure is allowed on a homeowner lot. Discussion ensued on seasonal structures like screened tents. It was decided that citations should not be issued for these types of temporary seasonal structures and to tell public safety to hold off on issuing citations for these types of structures at this time. Referred to Rules and Regulations Committee.
Fishing Tournament at Beach 3 Vote Hearing Deadline for submission of ballots in the office Adult ‘Eighties Theme’ Dinner Dance (Members $5 – Non Members $10) Annual Meeting Pancake Breakfast Pool Party
C E L
Board Meeting Minutes cont.
Aug. 03 8am 9am Aug. 16 3pm Aug. 17 7pm Aug. 24 9am Aug. 25 9-11:30am Aug. 31 1-5pm
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The Lily Pad
Issues and activities on our lakes and in our environment By Chas Ritson It is now almost the middle of summer and it is time to give our members an update on the state of our lakes and several of the programs that have been implemented under the guidance of the Lake Management Committee: Lake Treatments • East Lake - was treated on June 5th along the eastern shore and in the east cove for Naiad. It will be treated again week of 7/1 or 7/8, weather permitting for watershield, the one to two inch oval lily pad like plants and spatterdock, the yellow flowered invasive lily with large, almost circular leaves that can grow to 6-8 inches; the focus of these treatments will be the numerous patches along the western shoreline and near the pool. In addition, blatterwort, which has become a real nuisance this year, will also be treated where it has “floated up” and been driven by the wind along the eastern shore and cove. The lake is currently not in good shape, but these new treatments should significantly improve conditions. As our largest and shallowest lake, East Lake is always going to be problematic, but the current state of the lake is not acceptable. • Upper Lake - was treated for patches of filamentous algae on May 15th and on June 28th for watershield and spatterdock. An additional treatment is scheduled for week of 7/1 or 7/8, weather permitting, using a back pack to get to the shallowest areas of the lake for watershield and spatterdock that were not treated on 6/28. A treatment for Naiad and other pondweed will likely need to be performed in the inlet and eastern shoreline areas before the end of July. This lake is also not in good overall shape, particularly in the shallow areas along the eastern shoreline. These new treatments should markedly improve conditions. • Middle Lake – was treated for pondweed on June 28th. The lake is in generally good shape and this recent treatment will further improve conditions. Spot treatments around docks for spatterdock and native water lilies may be necessary later this summer. • Lower Lake – was treated on June 20th for spatterdock in the northern cove and along the adjacent eastern and western shorelines where patches are becoming larger and more frequent. The remainder of the lake is in good shape. Geese – depending upon your perspective, the addling program was either highly successful or was somewhat disappointing. While the LMC volunteers were able to addle a record 39 eggs, the presence of at least 8-10 goslings was surprising. Discussions with USDA indicate that the goslings and their parents may have been “walk-ons” from other local areas, not necessarily missed nests. In any event, we’ll have 39 fewer year-old geese next year, which is a good thing. The LMC is also considering a “geese roundup” next year by the USDA that would dramatically reduce the size of our resident flock, which now appears to be about 40. This activity would take place in June when the geese lose their flight feathers for about 4-6 weeks. Aside from reducing nuisance goose poop, having less geese should reduce the possibility of closed beaches. Lastly, the LMC will be using pyrotechnics again this summer and fall in order to harass the geese and make it so uncomfortable that they’ll leave. So, if you hear loud “booms’, that’s more than likely LMC volunteers doing work for the community. And lastly, all natural GooseStopper is being sprayed on all beaches and surrounding grassy areas each month this summer to make these “hot spots” less desirable. Grass Carp in Middle Lake – the small grass carp trial is about to be initiated. We have received approval from PA Fish & Boat to stock a small number of hybrid carp, the outlet on the lake has had the appropriate screening installed to prevent “escape”, and we are about to pick-up the carp from a little hatchery. The LMC has decided to limit the initial stocking to 12 eleven inch fish, with additional fish added over the next year or two. These fish will grow to 30 pounds or more and will be used as a biological control on pondweed, Naiad and other soft stemmed/ leafed aquatic plants. Invasive Plants – the LMC urges all members who use their boats in water bodies other than the four Birchwood lakes, to thoroughly clean their electric motors, boats, trailers and other equipment to try to reduce the risk of introducing water chestnut, didymo (“rock snot”), and Eurasian milfoil from lakes and rivers in northeast PA, northern NJ, and nearby NY that have problems with these organisms. Please note that the Delaware River is a prime concern.
Late Summer 2013
Letters to the Editor RE: Flowers & Flower Pots In the Community BIG THUMBS DOWN to the individual(s) who stole the flowers and flower pots that are placed throughout the community to help make it a beautiful place for all to enjoy. Just a few people are giving their time to do this. To plant and water in the extreme heat, and then to have someone come along and destroy and steal is really sick. You have to realize you are stealing from yourself, as your dues pay for most of these plants, soil, mulch and food for the plants. You should also know that some of us have paid out of our own pockets and deeply resent this unlawful act. I hope that you do have a conscience and that you feel guilty every time you look at what you have stolen. It would be a nice gesture if you put them back. You can also join the Beautification Committee and see how hard they work.
Sincerely, The Beautification Committee
RE: New Safety Warning Dear Members, We were informed by the State Troopers of a recent incident that took place in Birchwood. It appears that a young man who was visiting a friend was stopped by three men in a vehicle. They told him their vehicle had broken down and asked him to give their battery a jump. The young individual agreed and got out of his vehicle to assist. Once he got out the three men accosted him and took his wallet and phone, they then quickly removed the jump leads, got in their car and took off. They were not residents and we have been unable to identify how they gained entrance. The State Trooper informed us that this is a new scam and that they have had other reports of similar incidents throughout their jurisdiction. Please help get the information out. Warn your children, parents, grandparents, family and friends about this scam. If you see a suspicious situation, do not hesitate to report it to the authorities. Under no circumstances should you stop to assist. If in doubt call the police – it is better to be safe than to be sorry.
Sincerely, Clare A. Bennett President, Board of Directors
RE: Reminders from our BLCA Administrative Assistant Dear Members, I’d like to take this time to thank the Community of Birchwood Lakes for making me feel welcome in my new position as your Administrative Assistant. As a first time community office worker, I’ve come to understand the dynamics of how a community works. It has been and continues to be my pleasure meeting the residents of Birchwood. Being the Birchwood Lakes Administrative Assistant for the last six months, and the first recipient of member phone calls, there are a few reminders I’d like to share with the Community to keep it safe for all. Please keep all pets on a leash. Loose dogs have been our top complaint. If your animal is loose, you may be subjected to a citation. Next complaint – speeding! Please keep to the speed limit. It is very dangerous to be speeding in a residential area, anything could happen, wildlife, children or other vehicles could dart out at any time. Staying within the speed limit will allow you to react to these situations appropriately. Untidy Properties is way up there on the complaint list! Do your best to keep your property tidy, we are pursuing untidy properties and issuing citations. It is our goal to keep Birchwood a safe and pleasant community to live in. Lastly, ALL complaints should be filed in the office using a complaint form. If you cannot get to the office, please go to www.birchwoodlakes.net, where you will find any of the forms you may need. Once again, I’d like to thank the residents of Birchwood for the opportunity to serve your Community.
Sincerely, Kim Carrozza BLCA Administrative Assistant
Late Summer 2013
Do You Love Your Pet?
Here we are again with summer already here with the beautiful weather that allows us to open our windows to let the fresh air in and hopefully not the constant barking of dogs. It is impossible to even relax in your yard, or on your deck, or try to read a book. Now, back to loving your pet. Do you think that you pet is happy to be tied up all day and to be alone? They bark because they are lonely and bored. Our pets should be part of the family and treated as such and not left out in the extreme heat or cold. Please think of your pets and your neighbors comfort and use some common courtesy.
2013 Septic Reminders
Postcards were mailed out January 2013 to those members who have had their septic tanks pumped/inspected in 2008. This is a reminder that you need to provide the office with documentation before December 31, 2013 to avoid receiving a citation.
Payment Plan Requests
If you plan on requesting a payment plan for your dues, you will need to write a letter requesting it and stating a simple reason why you need to go on one. You also need to include a check for $25.00 to cover the administrative cost. If do not enclose a check for $25.00 and/or a reason why, a payment plan will not be provided.
must be visibly present when using your boat, canoe or kayak on Birchwood Lakes. Guest boats are not permitted (see Invasive Plants section in “The Lily Pad” page 6).
By Joanne McInerney, Recreation Committee Chair The annual Birchwood Lakes Dinner Dance will be held this August on Saturday the 17th. The dance will have an 80’s theme, featuring music from the 80’s presented by one of Birchwood’s own members. We hope you will come and enjoy the evening out with friends old and new. The Summer Kick-off Party was a great success; the weather was great and lots of people attended and enjoyed a day of fun in the sun with good food and friends. Arts and Crafts started up again on July 2nd with a nice turnout. The kids enjoyed creating starburst decorations. Arts and Crafts for Kids is free to members and their families, and takes place at the clubhouse every Tuesday and Thursday from 11.a.m. until noon; we hope you will join us! In addition to the fun activities we have every summer; we have decided to add three Kid’s Nights into the mix. These will be advertised as to the dates and locations, and we hope you will encourage your kids to come and enjoy a fun night out. Remember to check your calendars for upcoming events.
It has been brought to the attention of the BLCA Board of Directors that motorcyclists are circumventing the entrance gates to gain access into the Community. The purpose of the gated entrances is to prevent illegal entry into our Community by people who are not residents or the guests of residents of Birchwood Lakes Community Association. Please help keep Community safety a priority - Members are required to use their gate cards at the entrances and we request that your motorcyclist guests are instructed to use the guest callbox to gain entrance.
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The Theme for this Summer is to Keep Cool! When the summer solstice hit on June 21, with it came our first heat wave. If you’re feeling the heat, so are your family, friends and neighbors too. And with these warm, muggy days, some of us know the challenge it is to sleep cool. If you’re too uncomfortable, it can mean a long restless night of tossing and turning. So a little preparation before bed may help you sleep like a log all through the summer. Central air and window air conditioning units do a great deal to keep homes across the world cool. But for those of you that don’t have one, let’s look to more traditional means. Sleeping in a hot room at night is one of the more common complaints from families. If you are without central air, or if your air conditioning system malfunctions during the summer, you must know how to cool yourself down at night with different means. Cool a room without air conditioning by first filling an empty plastic gallon jug with water at least 4 inches from the top of jug. Freeze overnight until water is frozen into a solid block of ice. Remove the frozen water jug from freezer. Carefully cut the plastic jug from the large block of ice with a utility knife. Place the block of ice in a bowl that is setting about waist level in the room. (You may need to place the bowl on top of a stool for maximum room coverage.) Set up a fan directly behind the bowl and turn it on. Feel instant cold air which can last for several hours. Isn’t that cool?
Late Summer 2013
Summer Attitude of Gratitude
There’s a famous Dr. Wayne Dyer quote that says: “When given the choice between being right or being kind, choose kind.” As a parent, the simple gift of kindness is not only something you can practice, but a level of selflessness you can teach your children. This summer, cultivate an attitude of gratitude with 10 random acts of kindness you can encourage your little ones to do this season and all year round. • Helpful acts like holding the door open for someone with their hands full is the right thing to do, according to RandomActsOfKindness.org. If your daughter sees you open the door for a fellow shopper or a mom pushing a stroller, she will remember to do it the next time you run errands together or even the next time you come home with your arms full of grocery bags. • Children know about gold stars, right? If they do well in school, the teacher rewards them with these significant little symbols of encouragement. If you ask a kid how it feels to get gold stars, he will tell you it feels good. That’s when you let him know that paying people compliments for their spiffy outfits or, better yet, good deeds makes people feel good, too. • Being a big brother means more when a boy helps his younger siblings. But helping those who are smaller, younger or less experienced doesn’t stop with sisters and brothers. It’s a kindness children of all ages can extend to friends and even fellow children at the playground or pool. • Pint-sized bakers can add their own personal touch while telling the elderly woman two doors down that she’s loved. All they have to do is bake cupcakes or cookies. They’re fun and easy to make and that special neighbor will feel honored. • Children outgrow clothes and toys in what seems like the blink of an eye. Turn this transition into a bonding and charitable moment. Let your child sort through and donate old pants, shirts and shoes that no longer fit. The same goes for toys they no longer play with or want. • Take pride in the places where you live and play by keeping them tidy and clean. Teach kids civic responsibility and kindness by not littering, and by picking up potato chip bags and candy wrappers discarded at the playground, park or the beach. Let your children do the same. • If you let the stranger at the grocery store get in front of you in line, and your child sees this, she will learn this is a tender-hearted act. In turn, she will let a classmate get in front of her at the water fountain one day.
Camping at Home
Camping at home is a fun activity for kids and a great way to entertain kids during summer. Build a campsite on your porch or deck, in a spare bedroom, or in the backyard. This fun activity creates a place kids can call their own and parents know where the kids are and what they are doing. Campsite on the Porch or Deck - The porch or deck is a perfect spot to set up camp. It is a defined area that can be decorated to resemble an actual campsite. • Pitch a tent and use the patio furniture to create living quarters. • Have a pool in the yard for the kids to play in and hang a clothes line on the porch to hang wet suits and towels. • Drape an outdoor string of lights on the railings to add ambiance to the camp site.
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Reserve Vote 2013-2014
This summer the Board of Directors will be asking you to vote to approve several projects to be funded from our reserve funds. As you are aware, the reserve portion of your dues (25%) is put aside each year to fund major projects. This money is already available and is not an extra assessment to our members. The projects we are seeking your approval on are as follows: Contracted Road Work ........................................... $175,000 The Board of Directors, in response to the recommendation of the Roads Maintenance & Construction Committee, is seeking to continue contracted roadwork and improvements in the community with the flexibility to prioritize roadwork and road improvements in the spring based upon current road conditions, the road/drainage study, needs and available funding. Pool Fencing ............................................................... $10,000 The renovations of the pool have been completed. The Board of Directors is now seeking funds to replace the existing fencing with a functional yet decorative fence that will enhance the pool area. If funding permits, it is the intention to extend the fencing to create more seating room within the parameters of the pool. CD Requirement for Upper Lake Dam Permit......... $25,000 PADEP requires Proof of Financial Responsibility for the Upper Birchwood Lake Dam for the continued operation and maintenance of the Dam. They have set the amount of the bond for Upper Lake at $50,000. The Board of Directors is asking the Membership to approve $25,000 to be placed into reserves for half of the bond money required. The additional $25,000 will come from existing funds in reserves for Upper Birchwood Lake Dam. Camera and Gate Upgrades ..................................... $10,000 We are in the process of reviewing our gates and cameras with a view to upgrading and/or adding additional security options.
Grand Total......... $220,000
At this time, the Board of Directors requests that Members approve the consolidation of the following various restricted reserves approved in prior years. By doing so, each specific project will be funded under one account:
• Combine Highway Occupancy Permit, Traffic Study & Entrances (PADOT) under the project “Entrance Permits.”
• Combine Spillways/Bridges/Dams, Upper Birchwood Lake Dam Permit and Upper Birchwood Lake Dam under the project “Upper Birchwood Lake Dam.”
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How to Be a Good Neighbor
In his poem, “Mending Wall,” Robert Frosts writes “Good fences make good neighbors.” So what happens when neighbors share more than just a stone wall and conflicts arise? Most of us have to deal with neighbors. You’d probably be surprised how far common sense and simple manners can go toward keeping up good neighbor relations. In addition, there are laws that govern many of the ways we use our residential property and how we relate to our neighbors. Treat your neighbor as you would like to be treated is wisdom that is thousands of years old. And it may be more important than ever in today’s litigious society where a growing number of Americans -- nearly 80% -- live side-by-side in rural areas, in many cases separated by little but landscaping or a boulder wall. Between sharing driveways and fences to sharing the beautiful, or not-so-beautiful, sights and sounds of a neighborhood, conflict is bound to happen from time to time. Excessive noise, pets off their leashes, unmaintained lawns, trespassing, an illegal home business – are just some of the most common complaints that can come up between neighbors. When these types of things go unresolved, frustration turns into angry unfriendly neighbors, sometimes resulting in phone calls to the state police or filing complaints with the association. Findlaw.com, an excellent resource website, lists tips on how to avoid earning the scorn of your neighbors and being the subject of a complaint or possible lawsuit: 1. Get to know your neighbors. Make time to get to know your neighbors. Learning the basics of why they choose to live in your neighborhood, what they desire in a great neighborhood, what they do for a living, what they enjoy doing for fun, and even the names of their kids can pay dividends in avoiding conflicts down the road. 2. Courtesy call. Open communication is an important part of home ownership, and can help prevent future problems with your neighbors. They are more likely to be supportive with your projects if they know what’s going on ahead of time. If you are planning a major landscape or remodeling project, let your neighbor know in advance. And if you’re going to have a party that could create some unexpected noise, don’t just tell your neighbors about it, invite them. 3. Maintain your property. Think about the way your property affects your neighbors and imagine the view from their side of the street or fence. Many neighborhood associations and cities maintain covenants or have regulations about property maintenance, according to Findlaw.com. Not adhering to these standards can get you in hot water with more than just your neighbors. 4. Respect property lines. Check all local community rules and zoning laws before landscaping, adding a fence or tree, or launching a remodeling project, such as adding onto your home. If you’re building or landscaping near the property line, make sure you’re in compliance with local codes. If you share a property line, such as a shared driveway, work closely with your neighbor to find solutions that work for both of you. If necessary, consult a lawyer to draft an agreement on how to handle present and future actions with shared property. This saves you a lot of grief
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Late Summer 2013
in the future and/or if you sell your home. 5. Fences. Fences make for good neighbors, but make sure that before you build one, you follow local codes regulating the height, location, material used and appearance of a fence. The finished side of a fence always faces your neighbor’s property. If it is a property-line fence, neighbors have equal share in the future of the fence and must agree in remodeling it. This also means that both neighbors are responsible for maintenance of the fence and need to split all costs for the preservation. If there is a common fence, you and your neighbor should again do up an agreement reflecting maintenance responsibilities etc. 6. Trees, Shrubs & Flowers. The tree and/or plant owner is responsible for the maintenance of their plantings. They are responsible for the maintenance of the tree and any damage if the tree falls on a neighbor’s lawn or house. If a thunderstorm or other natural disaster forces a tree to cause damage, then the tree owner is no longer responsible. Neighbors are able to trim others’ tree branches if infringing on their property; however, if they harm the tree, they could be sued so before you do anything that may be questionable, confer with your neighbor, local zoning and/or your attorney. Remember to trim overgrown hedges, bushes, trees so that this does not create future problems. 7. Keep pets in control. Pets are free to roam on their owner’s property if they have a fence set up, but if the animals escape and cause damage, it is the pet owner’s full responsibility. Most neighborhoods and parks have leash laws and require owners to clean up after their pets. Pet owners will also be responsible if their pet bites or harms another person. If a neighbor has too many pets, then they could be violating a zoning, health code or noise ordinance. 8. Don’t be a noisy neighbor. Loud noises aren’t only a nuisance, but also a potential health hazard. Exposure to sounds of 115 decibels for 15 minutes a day can cause hearing loss, according to the League of the Hard of Hearing. As a reference, a noisy restaurant is about 80 decibels and live rock music is 130 decibels. Almost every community prohibits excessive, unnecessary, and unreasonable noise (including excessive dog barking). 9. Seek mediation. Filing a lawsuit should always be the last resort. Before you get there, speak with your neighbor about the problem. If it’s an issue that affects many neighbors, team up for more support. (Collegecentral.com) A final note: in lake communities such as ours, it is difficult to clearly define your property line. Your survey should show if there were stakes mounted by your surveyor when your survey was initially done. If so, then locate these monuments (might be a small pin in ground/may be a metal stake/may be an orange or pink flag). Make sure these stakes are not overgrown with grass/weeds, etc. If your property was not staked originally at the time of original survey, and a boundary dispute arises between neighbors, there is nothing BLCA can do to resolve this type of situation. In order to resolve this types of neighborhood dispute, you will need to obtain the services of a surveyor to do a new survey and provide the stakes and/or monuments delineating the boundaries of your property.
Rules and Regulations
Section 98 - 20 - 9 Careless driving - Amended effective 9/8/06 A. Any person who drives a motor vehicle in careless disregard for the safety of persons or property is guilty of careless driving and a citation shall be issued. B. If the motor vehicle operator has committed two (2) or more moving violations at the same time, which requires a traffic stop by the B.L.C.A. Public Safety Department, the motor vehicle operator shall also be guilty of careless driving. C. The driver of a motor vehicle shall not follow another vehicle more closely than is reasonable and prudent, having due regard for the speed of the vehicles, the traffic volume and the conditions of the roadway. D. A trailing vehicle shall maintain a minimum following distance from another vehicle of at least one (1) car length for every ten (10) miles per hour. E. The fine for violation of Section 98 - 20 - 9: A or B shall be $100. The fine for violation of Section 98 - 20 - 9: C or D shall be $25.
Late Summer 2013
Recipes Easy Fruit Pizza the Kids Can Make
1 package Sugar Cookie Mix 8 ounces Cream Cheese, softened 1/4 cup powdered sugar 1 teaspoon vanilla Enough bright, colorful fruit to cover your pizza. You can use fresh or frozen. (Just thaw frozen fruit before you place on pizza) Crust: Preheat oven to 350. Slightly grease the bottom of a pizza pan. Prepare sugar cookie mix as directed and spread evenly on the bottom of pizza pan. Bake at 350 for 8-10 minutes or until slightly brown around outside of crust. Cool completely. Cream Cheese Layer: Beat cream cheese, confectioner’s sugar & vanilla until smooth & creamy. Spread on cooled cookie crust. Fruit: Wash, dry & cut fruit as necessary. Arrange on top of cream cheese layer in a circle pattern, starting from the outside and going in.
Zucchini Macaroni Salad
10 oz uncooked mini bow tie pasta 3 tbsp Cooking Oil 2 medium zucchini,ends trimmed off 1/4 cup Light Mayonnaise Dressing 2 tbsp cider vinegar 1/3 cup sliced black olives 1 tbsp fresh oregano 1/4 tsp garlic powder salt and pepper to taste Recipe Steps Cook pasta in salted water according to package directions. Drain and place in a large bowl, drizzle with 2 tablespoons of oil. Cut the zucchini into quarters, lengthwise. Brush with remaining oil, then season with salt and pepper. Prepare the indoor or outdoor grill to medium to medium-low heat. Grill the zucchini on all three sides until nice and tender, careful not to burn them. Remove the zucchini and set aside on a cutting board. Cut into 1/2 inch slices and add to bowl with pasta along with mayonnaise, vinegar, black olives, oregano and garlic powder. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Seniors Section Eating For One
Restaurants love to target seniors for their deals and steals. From discounts on coffee and desserts to elaborate senior menus offering great options, many empty nesters find it convenient and easy to eat out often. However, pocketbooks and waistlines can be quickly stretched if you continually frequent restaurants rather than learning how to cook for a much smaller household. Fortunately it is easy to cook for one or two people, especially if you prepare meals using the tips and tricks below for your inspiration. Best of all, you will stay on budget and reap health benefits at the same time. First, take advantage of a slow cooker or microwave. Crock pots in particular allow you the luxury of wholesome, home-cooked meals with little effort. Start something in the morning, and go about your day without worrying about dinner that night. Then, enjoy a hearty stew, soup or a healthy and delicious casserole. Best of all, there are plenty of crock pot recipes designed for small families – often providing you with enough for two plus a bit of leftovers. To eat more vegetables, which are important in a senior diet, chop up twice what you think you’ll need for whatever dish you are preparing. Then, bag these up and stick in the fridge for the next day for a quick salad or snack. If you get bored with salads, try a cookbook at your local bookstore or online that is specifically designed for small meal preparation. Many websites also allow you to enter your favorite recipe and convert it into a smaller serving size if you have a favorite dish you’d love to make, but have fewer mouths to feed now. This can help you eat more healthy and at home more often. For adults over 50, the benefits of healthy eating include increased mental acuteness, resistance to illness and disease, higher energy levels, faster recuperation times, and better management of chronic health problems. As we age, eating well can also be the key to a positive outlook and staying emotionally balanced. But healthy eating doesn’t have to be about dieting and sacrifice.
Summer Pool Party!
...and finally filling the pool!
Late Summer 2013
Late Summer 2013
Arts & Crafts
Seeking Local Candidate for Military College Scholarship
By Rosemary M. Brown, State Representative of the 189th Legislative District I am currently seeking a worthy student from the 189th Legislative District to participate in the Valley Forge Military College Legislative Appointment Initiative. This is a wonderful opportunity for a student to attend one of the premier military colleges in the nation and receive a high-quality education from an outstanding faculty. Any student is eligible for this appointment, not just those pursuing a career in the Armed Forces.
Just a reminder: If you are encountering an issue with state government, please feel free to contact my district office. We are here to help you with the following services: • Driver’s license and vehicle registration applications and renewals • Assistance with PennDOT paperwork (lost cards, changes, corrections, special registration plates, vanity plates, and temporary placards for disabled persons) • PACE and PACENET applications for seniors • Property Tax and Rent Rebate applications • Voter registration forms and absentee ballot applications • State tax forms • Student aid applications • Free State maps, state park information, and PA Vacation Guides • Copies of legislation and tours of the State Capitol • Referrals to agencies to resolve state-related matters.
Pro-Veterans Legislation Heads to Full House My legislation to waive a peddler’s license fee for veterans recently passed in the House Veterans Affairs and Emergency Preparedness Committee and heads to the full House for consideration. This legislation will provide an additional benefit to veterans as they establish a business opportunity.
Let’s Get Connected For more information, or to sign up to receive my weekly legislative email newsletter, visit my website www.RepBrown.com. My door is always open to hear from you regarding any questions or concerns you might have about state-related issues.
November to be “Carbon Monoxide Awareness Month” in PA I am pleased that the House of Representatives recently passed my resolution recognizing the month of November 2013 as “Carbon Monoxide Awareness Month” in Pennsylvania. Carbon Monoxide is a highly poisonous and deadly gas that has no color, taste or smell and can be produced by appliances that use gas, wood, oil or coal.
Senior Expo Slated for July 22 I will be hosting a joint Senior Expo with Rep. Mario Scavello on Monday, July 22, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., at the Pocono Mountain East Senior High School. Please help us spread the word and make this year’s Senior Expo the best yet!
Notices Building Permits
BLCA Rules and Regulations (Section 98-50-19), in accordance with the Association’s Covenants and Restrictions, require members to obtain a BLCA permit prior to moving to, constructing, or erecting any structure or building within the community. There is no fee for obtaining the permit. Additionally, permits are needed for septic repairs and tree removals. For more information, contact the BLCA Office at 570828-2111.
BLCA has a curfew of 10:00p.m. Sunday-Thursday and 11:00p.m. Friday and Saturday. As a courtesy to other members, please observe the curfew hours.
Right of Way Notice
All property owners are hereby put on notice that the Association has a right of way on each roadway. Any personal property placed in the right of way is not the Association’s responsibility and will not be held responsible for any damages incurred to said property. All property owners are to refrain from placing personal property within the Association’s right of way. The Association does not permit encroachment of any Association property, which includes roads or right of ways, common area or any other location, which is BLCA property.
Late Summer 2013
BLCA Boat Registration
A note to boat owners, especially our lakefront owners: Many of you may not have applied for or registered your boat(s). It is important to do so! All boats in the community must be registered and decals applied, including paddle boats. This season may be close to an end, but the BLCA will be addressing lack of compliance with registration of boats as part of its regular enforcement program. If you need more information, contact the office for details.
We’re Going Green
The Birchwood Voice is published in print, electronically at our website at www.birchwoodlakes.net, or in pdf format via email. We have recently had to revamp our mailing and email lists for the newsletter in response to member complaints that they had not received recent edition(s) by mail or email. We are asking all members to complete the form below, indicating your mailing preference and return the completed form to the Office. It can be mailed to Birchwood Lakes Community Association, 212 Aspen Road, Dingmans Ferry PA 18328 or it can be returned in person to the office. Alternatively, we have made the form available on our website at www.birchPLEASE CUT OUT AND MAIL OR DROP IT OFF TO THE OFFICE woodlakes.net. You can complete the form electronName: ___________________________________________________________ ically and email to editor@ birchwoodlakes.net. Unless Date: _______________________________________ by submission of this form you indicate otherwise, a Lot ________ Block _________ Section ________ hardcopy newsletter will be mailed to the address we have Mailing Address: ___________________________________________________ for you on file at the office. Members with tenants, _________________________________________________________________ please advise your tenants that if they would like a copy of Email:____________________________________________________________ “The Birchwood Voice” they can pick one up at the Office ___I prefer to receive a hard copy of The Birchwood Voice in the mail. or obtain it from the BLCA website. ___I prefer to receive The Birchwood Voice in pdf format to my email address. Your email address will be added to our database. ___I prefer to read The Birchwood Voice on the Birchwood Lakes Website at Please be assured that it www.birchwoodlakes.net. will be used only by BLCA to distribute the newsletter Note: If you change your email address from one listed above, please remember and any pertinent Associato notify the office. tion information.
Late Summer 2013
Birchwood Lakes Community Association Board of Directors
President..................Clare Bennett Vice President.........Joanne McInerney Secretary.................. Treasurer..................Marcella Livingston Carl Fredrickson Leonard Glamann Carolyn Martin Thomas McConnon Charles Ritson
Standing Committees BLCA Property Development Chairperson Carl Fredrickson Co-Chair open By-Laws Chairperson Joanne McInerney Co-Chair Carolyn Martin
Capital Projects Chairperson Clare Bennett Co-Chair Charles Ritson
Finance, Budget, Contracts Chairperson Marcella Livingston Co-Chair Charles Ritson
Roads Maintenance & Construction Chairperson Leonard Glamann Co-Chair Louis Freeman
Rules & Regulations Chairperson Carolyn Martin Co-Chair Joanne McInerney
Voting & Elections Chairperson Marcella Livingston Co-Chair Carolyn Martin
BLCA Property Beautification Chairperson Carl Fredrickson Co-Chair Linda White
Community Affairs Chairperson Linda White Co-Chair Clare Bennett
Community Safety Chairperson Thomas McConnon Co-Chair Chas Ritson
Lake Management Chairperson Charles Ritson Co-Chair Thomas McConnon
Recreation Chairperson Joanne McInerney Co-Chair Adrianna Freeman
Contact Information BLCA Office: 570-828-2111 Public Safety: 570-828-6009 800-916-7501 (Dispatch) Website: www.birchwoodlakes.net E-mail: email@example.com BLCA Board of Directors Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Birchwood Voice Editor Email: email@example.com Police, Fire, Ambulance: 9-1-1 When a call comes in for emergency assistance (ambulance, fire, police), it is difficult for the Association to offer assistance in leading the emergency volunteers to your home if it isn’t clearly marked with a 911 address. Make sure your sign is visible from the road. If you need information on your 911 address, contact the BLCA Office 570-828-2111
Upcoming Board Meetings June 14, 2013 @ 7:00pm July 9, 2013 @ 7:00pm August 13, 2013 @ 7:00pm ANNUAL MEETING: August 24, 2013 @ 9:00am
2013 Dates to Note
See separate item in this issue NEWSPAPER DEADLINES: Fall: September 25, 2013 DUES DEADLINES: Dues Mailing - early March Early Payment - March 31 Payment Plan Request - April 15 Dues Payment - May 1
Do you have a question about living in or visiting Birchwood Lakes?
Go to www.birchwoodlakes.net or call the office at 570-828-2111
Check out our community website for updates and information Volunteers are always needed to join our committees. By joining you will get a better understanding of how your community works. Consider volunteering your time to help Birchwood move forward. The form for volunteering can be found on our website at www.birchwoodlakes.net or is available at the BLCA Office.
The state of Pennsylvania provides several veteran benefits. Below are a few that you may find helpful Pennsylvania Financial Assistance Benefits. Persian Gulf Conflict Veterans’ Bonus Program Pennsylvania voters gave overwhelming approval to funding for the Persian Gulf Conflict Veterans Compensation Program at the general election on November 7, 2006. This program will provide payments to veterans of Operation Desert Storm and Desert Shield (August 1990 to August 1991). Veterans Emergency Assistance Provides financial aid in an emergency and temporary basis (not to exceed three months in a 12-month period) to veterans, their widows, infant children or dependents who reside in Pennsylvania for the necessities of life (food, dairy, shelter, fuel and clothing). An honorably discharged veteran must have served in the Armed Forces of the United States during established war service dates or during peacetime hostile fire or terrorist attack as determined by the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs. Pennsylvania Education Benefits Payment of educational gratuities are for children of honorably discharged veterans who have been certified by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs as having wartime service-connected disabilities rated as totally and permanently disabled or children of veterans who die or have died of war service-connected disabilities or died in service during a period of war or armed conflict. Children must be between the ages of 16 and 23. Visit the Pennsylvania Dept. of Military and Veterans Affairs website for contact information and benefits assistance.
570-828-2306 800-634-5964 1506 Route 739 Dingmans Ferry PA 18328
Serving Milford Dingmans Ferry and Pike County Pennsylvania
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