Residents highlight areas of concern and praise

Posted November 12, 2012 at 4:59 PM, Filed Under: Community News, Front Page, Village Mill

Pools
To the editor:
I attended the September 25 NRC meeting where Director Livingston made an informative presentation on the future of the three Brandermill pools. While the presentation discussed several options, the focus was skewed toward Universal Pool Access (UPA).

In his presentation, Livingston compares the current state of our pools with visionary “pool resorts” as outlined in the 3-year-old Master Plan, and the current state-of-the art pools in competing neighborhood communities such as Magnolia Green.

• In spite of all the issues facing our community, the pool issue is considered the “Board’s Strategic Goal Number 1.”

• Residents (3,700+ homes per lots) are already paying $30 per year toward the maintenance of the pools in the annual assessment. As I consider UPA a tax (ala Obamacare), the Universal Pool Tax would begin at an additional $79 per year per residence, and that would only grant you access to the pools. This figure does not include any improvements to the pool facilities, furniture, ADA compliance, improvements to parking, etc.

• The total capacity (water surface area) of all three pools is about 740 people. This represents only 6 percent of the community’s population (12,000+). It wasn’t fully explained how this would work if more than 740 showed up at the pools at one time, such as the Fourth of July or Father’s Day.

While this has not happened under the current membership model, it may very well change under UPA. Livingston admitted that if the pool is at capacity, you would be turned away.

• When asked about a September 2008 draft referendum ballot to vote to institute UPA, Livingston explained that if a referendum were offered, the Brandermill commercial businesses would be required to participate, and thus skew the results not to institute the UPA.

• The last point is crucial and troubling, as Livingston has said more than once that the board can make a unilateral decision making UPA a reality by merely ‘making it a line item in the budget.’

While I am not in favor of eliminating the pools all together, I don’t want to pay for something that I would not use, nor would I expect others to subsidize my own personal interests.

Universal Pool Access is not a neutral issue. Considering the community’s emotional attachment to the pools going back to their original purchase, it would be well advised for the BCA Board to use caution when navigating this ‘third rail’ of community consensus.

John Borden
Bayport Landing

Good Neighbor Award
To the Editor:
A hearty thank you goes to Chesterfield Berry Farm Market, our new neighbor in Market Square. Those who have visited the CBFM, owned by the Goode family know what a bounty of fresh fruits, veggies, jams and jellies, meat, flowers and plants they have to offer our community. As a frequent customer this summer, I was blessed with a generous outpouring of free tomatoes, green beans, squash, and the best corn I’ve ever eaten.

As many may know, on weekends this summer, customers were treated to delicious samples of beans, squash, tomatoes, cantaloupe, and watermelon. The high point was a corn festival which featured roasted ears of corn, corn fritters, a corn salads, and free veggie
recipes.

The Goode family has gone the extra mile in helping families in need with food on a frequent basis. I agree with the staff who described the Goodes as people “with heart” who want to serve their community.

I hope all who have bene-fitted from our “good neighbor” will continue to support them and be inspired by
their model of generosity.
Betty S. Waller
Litchfield Bluff

Out of this world oops
Dear Editor,
Please forgive my using the classic Ronald Reagan debate comment to call your attention to a small but repeated error in The Village Mill. The October 8 edition notes that Fall is a perfect time for outdoor activities. Under the subheading of Free Fall Sky Watch you have again noted that telescopes are provided by the “Richmond Astrological Society.”

As an avid reader of our beloved community newspaper—I sincerely mean that—I wish to point out that the correct terminology is “Astronomical,” not astrological. The thought of viewing the heavens through the cloudy haze of “Jupiter aligning with Mars” harkens back to my university-Bill Clinton-ish “I never inhaled” days. 

I am sure the Richmond Astronomical Society got a good chuckle out of this, now twice repeated, misnomer.

Keep up the good work — I love The Village Mill! 

Best regards,
Rusty Gilfillan
Poplar Grove

Editor’s note: My stars, thank you for pointing out the typo in the October issue, and apologies go to members of the Richmond Astronomical Society. Unfortunately, due to uncooperative weather, the Sky Watch had to be
cancelled.
Letters to the editor are welcome. Letters may be edited for length, grammar, spelling and clarity. Letters can be e-mailed to editor@brandermill.com.