I received the following email from Tony Wee who has granted me permission to use it for this post. Tony is a street representative for GCROA and his email gives me the opportunity to update GCROA members and others on the issues he has raised.
The contents of Tony’s email are in italics.
1. Is there any indication of the estimated charges residents have to bear for security and maintenance once GCROA takes over? I fear that some residents will not agree to an increase if the amount is substantial.
The proposed new charges shall be ready by the first week of June. Residents should not pretend that they do not know that what we are paying now is well below the norm for a gated and guarded community. GCD had left the rates unchanged for years and they could afford that. The new management company, whether it is under the GCROA or any other company will have to deal with current market rates. Thus we have to look carefully into the manning levels for the number of security guards and review the deployment the guards over the 100 plus acres to give residents adequate protection while being conscious of the costs at the same time. Plus we have to select a new guard company that understands what Standard Operating Procedure means. For grounds maintenance, we are looking into the supplementary services required to augment the limited services we get from MPK.
If residents do not like the figures presented, there will be no choice but to scale down the expectancy. There will be no free lunch.
As an indication, we hope the increase will not exceed RM100 per household per month. There will be measures to curb non-payment and I am not talking about taking residents to court, at least not initially. These measures will also presented to the residents for their support and endorsement.
2. GCROA must take over a start from a clean slate.
I believe Tony is referring to the unpaid dues by a number of residents. We have said all along that GCD will have to collect the debts owed to the company on the crossover date.
3. I still hold the view that every resident must be given access cards to come and go (nos. per household can be worked out). If they do not pay, then sue them with costs. If the terms are watertight, GCROA should not lose a cent in lawyer’s fees.
Most families have an adequate number of access cards for the vehicles that they have. The House Rules that were never adopted by GCD provide for a Residents Card for every person living in GC above a certain age. This card will have a picture of the resident so that it can be used for identification when the need arises, such as, access to the shop lots or use of the clubhouse.
Legal suits take time and are expensive and we’ll get back the costs if we win the case. In the meantime our smart watertight lawyer must be paid or he or shee will not hold our hands in court. And do not forget if we lose the case, we may have to pay the defendant’s legal costs as well. Taking legal action against some residents may be unavoidable so, regrettably, there will be a provision for legal expenses in the budget. Sad to say this, but it really amounts to responsible residents having to fork out money to sue the freeloaders. Hence, I would hope that residents will be supportive of the measures we have in mind in (1) above.
4. I understand Nicky Ooi has a good “TnGo” system where the monthly fees can be uploaded at a kiosk which can be set up at the clubhouse or some convienient venue. I’m given to understand the system will not cost more than 15K.
We may check this suggestion when we have the RM15K to spend. Meanwhile Nicky Ooi should contact Santok Singh who is handling the handover issues for maintenance matters.
5. I gather many residents are vary of GCROA taking over and running the clubhouse … whats the feedback from the majority?
I am not sure of the reasons for the wariness and who are these “many residents”. If they are GCROA members they would have contacted me, as members often do. So it is likely to be non members of the GCROA, in the main, and described to me by a a fellow committee member as, ” the several people who have been moaning to me about all sorts things and when i say come and help up they Dont want to know”.
GCD owns the clubhouse and it has proposed that the GCROA, through its wholly owned management company (to be known as GC Management Services Sdn Bhd, if the name is approved by the ROC) become the operator.
The Clubhouse has a swimming pool, two saunas, a gymnasium, two suraus, and a small pantry for the café operator. It will also be equipped with certain fixtures and fittings.
Let us look at the rocket science an operator needs to know to run a simple and small, but nice, clubhouse.
The operator’s task is to make sure that the clubhouse will be run as a clubhouse for the enjoyment of residents and their guests and for no other purpose (no illegal activities like gambling, strip club, massage parlor, etc). Set opening and closing hours will apply. The operator will hire a caretaker to keep the facilities clean and tidy daily. The caretaker has to supervise that air conditioners and pool equipment are serviced per schedule(s) set and he must possess the common sense to switch off the power in the gym and saunas when not in use by residents or their guests (something the last resident could or should have done or simply does not care to do). The caretaker must be a person who can figure out that the heater in the sauna may be faulty or the air conditioners are not blowing cooled air like it used to do. Problems that need fixing are reported and attended to immediately and not days or weeks later. How hard can the job be?
Sure there is a risk for the GCROA to undertake the clubhouse operation but the level of financial risk is small change compared to security and maintenance.
What if the level of delinquent debts increases to the point that we cannot pay the service providers? Unlike GCD, we do not have a papa to run back to when there is a shortage of funds to pay the contractors. We have to be serious about residents who do not pay their dues. We have no choice but to adopt measures to discourage these people.
The GCROA Committee is answering a call by its members to take over things in GC. Whatever the GCROA does affects non-member residents and we need to listen to them because this is their home too. If the Committee is afraid of the challenge ahead they could all resign and let others step in or they could ask GCD to continue providing the services until their obligations run out under the Deed of Mutual Covenants. GCD in turn could find other contractors and we may well have Chapter 2 of the same things again. What would residents prefer?
We will have no choice but to cut things down if we reach a point where there is no way we can afford to pay the contractors for their services in full. Otherwise we would have to keep raising the level of dues on those who are willing to pay while the freeloaders continue to enjoy the services. We can also consider a full shut down and hand things back to GCD so they could continue to provide for P2’s security services until 31 December, 2015. We are so spoil for choice!
Sniping from the sidelines is of no use to anyone. Thus if there are so many residents who are wary that the GCROA Committee is unable to grapple with the rocket science needed to run the clubhouse, then by all means ask GCD to choose another operator and see if the company is willing to do that. Or ask GCD to run the thing. Meanwhile I will put on hold the help I have agreed to give GCD in respect of the operating budget and the operating/tenancy agreement. Act fast because the clubhouse will soon be in use!
Residents should know that the GCROA has no profit element in undertaking the tasks ahead. I hope any financial interest in a proposed operator, by any resident, will be fully disclosed.