Why this petition matters
On Friday, April 29th Etteridge Park Lakes East Board along with PMG Management hosted a Board Workshop in an effort to address the concerns of the homeowners within the community. This meeting was a follow-up to the TownHall which took place on Tuesday, April 19th at 6p.m. During this meeting homeowners expressed a series of concerns which many have shared over the last 2+ years via TownSq. Many of their concerns hadn’t been completely addressed with a sound resolution and in turn compounded with significant implications. Side Note: The Community has meetings hosted by Board Member/Homeowner Jared Gilmore. These meetings have continued to grow in participation to a point where some of the concerns have been echoed by other homeowners where some may have been more individualized in nature. Lastly, this method of delivery was suggested by fellow board member Linda Houston who expressed support of Rachel Gwin’s unique understanding of financials, amendments, by-laws, ACC guidelines, etc.
This letter is to inform you of our demand for the removal of Rachel Gwin from the Etteridge/Park Lakes East POA Board. Our documentation and reasoning are present in the following statements. Homeowners have now overwhelmingly shared their concerns with one particular Board Member, Rachel Gwin. She is in part, one of the main reasons for the emergency meeting called by myself which was deemed a Board Workshop. Note: At this meeting, Rachel Gwin after 45 minutes, stood up and made a statement expressing she does not desire to be recorded and does not give anyone permission to record her, before taking her time to pack her things to exit this Board Workshop. The Board Workshop continued as additional concerns were expressed on behalf of the Etteridge Park Lakes East Community. An attempt to document such concerns reflecting the observations of Rachel Gwin are as follows:
1. Rachel has made several conflicting statements in meetings, emails, etc. Her position as the Board President requires a certain level of factual knowledge, expertise and point of reference. Due to the inability to present consistent, factual information has negatively impacted the community’s ability to progress. Examples will be shared in great detail upon presenting these instances.
2. Homeowners have cited her lack of professionalism, boisterous tones and rude behavior in meetings. Homeowners have shared this observation from multiple meetings including the Annuals where Gwin can be seen/heard shouting over other board members and panelists when others have the floor to express stances on tough issues.
3. In various meetings, it was brought up homeowners feel targeted and refrain from making posts on TownSq to avoid the possibility of retaliation. Rachel Gwin spoke to this claim and said, it is impossible for Security, who doesn’t have access and are not associated with TownSq. However, this was found not to be true. It was discovered that Mr. House (owner) of Oscar Mike Security is associated with Etteridge Park Lakes East TownSq but is NOT a homeowner within the community. When this observation was made known in the Board Workshop (Rachel had exited by this point), Linda Houston saw the immediate conflict and suggested he be removed immediately which on-going discussions revealed this was a decision by Rachel Gwin to allow Mr. House access. Additionally, homeowners have shared documentation of social media engagement of a vendor and a board member, signifying bad optics and/or potential conflict.
4. In multiple instances, Rachel sites or references the by-laws. However, many instances have shown where the same expectation of following the by-laws for the builder or board isn’t followed. This may not be a sole responsibility of Rachel. However, in her position of Board President and Budget creator, following the rules governing solicitation of bids prior to the expiration of a contract was clearly overlooked as we were made aware, no bids for Security were gathered 60 days prior to contract end, consequently forcing month to month with a vendor the community overwhelmingly doesn’t want to renew or continue with their services.
5. Self-Reflection: During the initial Financial Committee, greater attention was placed on Rachel Gwin’s ability to address concerns presented by the committee members. Again, Linda Houston expressed the level of understanding and detailed skillset Rachel Gwin possesses which would be considered a loss if she were to be removed from the board. During this meeting, the committee was able to make the following observations after hearing on multiple accounts that Rachel creates the budget in July of each year, purposely to have 6-months data snapshot to tailor the budget. The findings and concerns discussed during the first Financial Committee meeting where as follows:
A. Improper Budgeting practices - There were key line items for Income that were misrepresented through possible miscalculations year over year. For example: BDS Alarm Assessment was over budgeted multiple years when it's a simple equation of revenue per home that applies and wasn't acknowledged until a committee member called it out.
B. Several static expenses that have exceeded year over year with the community's growth were not adjusted in accordance with actuals, even though income lines reflected growth. For example, water services exceeded the budget for every year reviewed, but continued to be budgeted at relatively the same amount. For 1 year the budget was reduced in spite of the prior year’s growth in expenses.
C. Many of the budgeting practices found were adverse to balancing a budget, warrants concern, and brings into question the ability of the person responsible for creating the budget.
D. At minimal, it’s a misuse of fund based on the fact the expenses exceeded year over year, yet the decision was made to remove a security group that was 30k and year to replace them with another for 60k a year with no provided justification or significant change in services.
These are just a few of the concerns where others have been documented. Again, great detail was placed on Rachel Gwin where this was her area of expertise but she refrains from answering many of the questions posed in this initial Financial committee meeting with the committee and POA representatives.
Towards the end of the Emergency Board Meeting, the question arose if Starwood Capital Group has any dealings or association with Etteridge Park Lakes East. Linda Houston made it clear there was no affiliation. In conclusion, there was an open request to meet directly with the owner, Al Brende of Land Tejas to address additional concerns. There have been multiple other displays of these unsatisfactory practices and unprofessionalism. We are ready to provide more explanations and documentation upon request.