November 2021 Email Newsletter

Table of Contents

Board Meeting Highlights & Activities

October 28, 2021

Rancho Vistoso Boulevard – Over-Head Lighting Study
The Board approved a proposal to have an electrical engineering firm diagnose the scope of the electrical problems for the entire length of the boulevard lighting infrastructure. The report is intended to assess the extent of the electrical issues and help the Board make decisions to implement an improvement plan.

Shredding Documents 
The Board wanted to remind residents that document shredding will occur Saturday November 13th at the VCA Onsite Office parking lot from 8:00am-12:00pm (or until the truck is full). The office is located at 945 W. Vistoso Highlands Drive Oro Valley, AZ. If you have any questions please call (520) 354-2729.

Preserve Vistoso/Conservation Fund Donations 
Residents wanting to donate to the purchase of the former Vistoso golf course for open space and a nature preserve can make check donations to the following address: The Conservation Fund Vistoso Project, 1655 North Fort Myer Drive Suite 1300, Arlington, VA 22209. Checks should be made out to The Conservation Fund and note that it is for the Vistoso Project # 27053. Credit or Debit card donations go to the website: PreserveVistoso.org.

Golder Ranch Fire Department/Aviva Children’s Services Toy Drive 
The Board approved to support the Aviva Children’s Services Toy Drive with the Golder Ranch Fire Department. Residents are encouraged to participate in the toy drive effort by dropping off new/unwrapped toys at Golder Ranch Fire Station #375 located at 12125 North Woodbourne Avenue. The drive runs November 15th-December 13th. (See more info below)

Arizona House Bill: 2395 
The Arizona Legislature passed House Bill 2395 requiring residents not to have their vehicles extend over or on the front yard sidewalk. Local police departments will ticket the vehicle owner, and will be subject to a $250 fine.

Vistoso Community Association – Call for Candidates 
In early December, residents will receive a “Call for Candidates” notice for the upcoming annual Association Board election.  Four Board seats will be open to fill in the election. Association member residents interested in being a board election candidate, please contact the Association’s site office for details at 945 W Vistoso Highlands Drive, Oro Valley, AZ, or call the office at (520) 354-2729 to pick up a candidate application form.

December 9 – Last Board Meeting of the Year
The next general session Board of Directors meeting is scheduled for Thursday, December 9, 2021 at 5:30 PM via Zoom. This will be the last Board meeting of the year.

Siena Residents – Sealcoating

UPDATED – Due to mechanical issues, the Siena Sealcoating Project has been rescheduled for November 30th and December 2nd.

Sealcoating Siena streets is scheduled for Tuesday, November 30th and Thursday, December 2nd.

Trash Pickup – Will be completed by 6:30 AM
NO Mail Deliveries on BOTH Days

*Refer to map for access
If you should require any additional information, please
email Anthony Martin at Anthony.Martin@fsresidential.com

17 Signs it’s Fall in Tucson  

Happy fall, Tucson!

While the rest of the country is wearing sweaters and jumping in crunchy leaves, desert dwellers are enjoying 80-degree days (OK, temperatures are still in the 90s sometimes) while drinking prickly pear margaritas out on the patio.

Since it’s really hard to tell when summer ends in a place where almost every day is a good day for shorts and flip-flops, here are a few indicators: Read the full article online HERE

The Conservation Fund Needs Community Support

After more than three years of intensive effort and support from you and the other members of Preserve Vistoso, The Conservation Fund (TCF) signed the contract to purchase 202 acres of the Vistoso property. We now need to raise $1.8 million by December 15, 2021 for TCF to complete the purchase of the property. 

Click Here to learn why we need your help to save 202 acres of Sonoran desert for the entire community to enjoy.   

Preserve Vistoso has committed to raise $1.8 million by December 15, 2021 and needs help to reach this goal. To learn about making a voluntary contribution go to www.preservevistoso.org or contact locally, Gerald and Karen Bren, email gcbren@gmail.com call 612-834-8891 or 612-209-7347.

Design Guidelines

Architectural Landscaping Review Submittal Form

The Vistoso Community Association oversees the administration of the community’s Design Guidelines, which entail standards to maintain the Lots and Parcels at a consistent level within the association community. Prior to the construction or implementation of the original scope of work, improvements of any residence within the association, including landscaping must be submitted on an Architectural and Landscaping Review Submittal form, commonly known as an ARC form, prior to the construction or implementation of such contemplated work. To learn more about the Architectural and Landscaping Review Submittal form, click HERE.

Honing your skill in completion of the Architectural & Landscaping Review Submittal Form will allow the Architectural & Landscaping Review Committee (ALRC) to process your request without unnecessary delay. Attention to detail, and completion of all fields, will allow the Committee to proceed without the need to communicate with you for any missing or unclear information.

Click here to go to Vistoso Community Association ALRS Form. 

You’ll begin the form by placing a check in the fields for Sub-Associations and Community Neighborhoods, respectively. 

Next, add the date of your request, and complete all fields in Sections 1. and 2. Please provide a phone number at which you can easily be reached, and an email address.

Section 3. Requires a “detailed description” of work to be done. The more information you provide, the easier it will be for the Committee to consider your project, without the need to table it until additional information is provided by you.

Section 4. Is self-explanatory. Again, more is more. 

Section 5. Please use the commercial color names for the project when possible.

Section 6. Use this space for any additional information that may be used for the approval of your project. And be sure to follow the important guidance at the end of the form. You may submit this form by emailing it to AskVCA@ranchovistosohoa.com.

As a reminder, your Sub-Association form must be submitted to your HOA management company and architectural/landscape committee first, as your submittal needs their approval prior to being sent on to the Master Association (Vistoso Community Association).

Water Conservation – HOA Landscape Maintenance Best Practices

The Vistoso Community Association will continue to share water conservation-related information throughout the seasonal year. The emphasis will be to inform the residents and sub-associations to be mindful of implementing water conservation measures within their community and individual residences to reduce water consumption. The University of Arizona Cooperative Extension Services provides an extensive amount of water conservation information as well as provides educational programs related to water conservation best practices. Learn more click on the following link:

U of A – Landscape Maintenance Considerations for Homeowners Associations 

Why Our VCA Committees Are So Important

Did you know that the Vistoso Community Association has seven volunteer committees? Everyone one of these committees is critical to the efficient operation of our Community plus the aesthetics and value of our properties. Rather than explain how all of these committees are so valuable to us, let’s review why two of them, the Architectural & Landscaping Review Committee (ALRC) and the Finance Committee are of great important to us as members of the VCA.
 
Most of us haven’t thoroughly read the VCA Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions (CC&Rs) document that are recorded on our properties, but this document makes it very clear that our landscaping and architecture needs to be “consistent with the character of the native desert environment surrounding Rancho Vistoso”. The CC&Rs also state that the ALRC is responsible to assure that this requirement is fulfilled. Thankfully a committee of our neighbors who personally and directly care about our property aesthetics and value are in place to best assure that our private property and the common area retain our beautiful native desert character. Also, fortunately the CC&Rs and the ALRC provide for a consistent desert character appearance while also allowing considerable diversity in color and style that is in keeping with our natural environment. In other words, our properties maintain a desert theme yet our structures have a variety of color, various architectural styles and numerous different landscape designs.
 
Although very different than our ALRC, the Finance Committee provides incredible value to the VCA Membership. Not only does this Committee of volunteers review the extensive details of our monthly financials statements to best assure our money is appropriately and wisely used, but the Committee also plays a huge role in the development of the VCA annual budget and reserve study/fund. It is true that our management company does a good job overseeing the financial operations of our Association. However, it is so important that a group of our neighbors commit their time to also keep a close eye on our financial affairs. Simply put, this valuable Committee greatly helps assure that we are getting the best value for our money. This translates to money well spent to keep our community operating efficiently plus our Community aesthetics and our property values at a high level.
 
Although only two committees were outlined as to their importance, every VCA committee in its own way provide incredible value to us, the VCA members and every one of our committees and volunteer committee members should be appreciated.

Why VCA has a Reserve Study & Fund

Every year we pay our Vistoso Community Association dues and a chunk of that money is for the purpose of conducting a reserve study and setting aside money in the reserve fund. So, what is this all about and why is part of our dues being spent this way. 
 
Before going into the “why”, let’s look at what a reserve study and a reserve fund are. Simply put a reserve study is an analysis of an HOA’s large components/assets that determines how long it will be before these assets need repair/replacement and the cost of such upkeep. Once the analysis is complete, money is set aside for future repair/replacement which is a reserve fund. The reserve study and fund should be reviewed annually to make sure they are up-to-date.
 
So, why go through all of this instead of just paying for these repairs/replacements as they come along. One huge reason is that no one likes a surprise bill (special assessment). This sort of assessment too often occurs when a large, expensive asset needs to be replaced unexpectedly. Special assessments can be in just about any amount and often are thousands of dollars per HOA member.
 
When money is not available through a reserve fund or a special assessment to replace or properly repair major assets of an HOA, the needed work is often postponed or the work is completed in a cheap manner. The end result of delays and shortcuts is increased expense in the long run. You might recall the old ad “Pay me now or pay me later”. We all know this means keep things properly maintained or you’ll pay more in the long run and/or you’ll have run down looking property.
 
In summary, homeowner associations that don’t regularly perform reserve studies and that don’t properly fund reserves nearly always have very unhappy members who have to pay that unwanted special assessment. The other alternative when a plan is not in place is that the common areas are poorly maintained or simply not functional. The end result when this occurs is the HOA members’ property values are diminished. Fortunately VCA isn’t one of these HOA’s as we have a plan and funds in place to best assure our many valuable common area facilities are properly maintained and replaced when needed. This means no special assessments for us and well supported property values.