GTA Senior Staff Report

Important topics review: June 2018
By JOE MATTINGLEY, General manager
The Galena Territory Association tackles a number of large-scale and small-scale projects on a monthly basis. Our goal is always to make sure our property owners are informed about all that is going on with the GTA and in The Territory. The following is a synopsis of some of the major issues and projects the GTA is involved in, or will be involved in, and it follows the objectives of the GTA Strategic Plan. An updated synopsis will appear each month in the Territory Times. This information is current as of May 10. Check the GTA website, the GTA Facebook page and our e-blasts for updated information on these topics.

PRESERVE AMENITY VALUE

Amenity master planning

Long Range Planning Commission Chair Sandy Bury shared a presentation about amenity master planning at the Annual Meeting Feb. 24. Her presentation touched on the reason for amenity master planning, outlined the process, shared the vision, theme and focus for each of the amenities and described the project principles.
The commission is at the point where it can send out Request for Proposals for amenity projects. Amenity master planning will likely start at the Marina, as much of the supporting infrastructure (parking, etc.) is already in place.

Wetland mitigation

Vegetation management is focusing on herbicide application to spring species, such as reed canary grass, poison hemlock, and several invasive mustard species.

Thunder Bay Falls Park pavilion and improvements

The locations for the pavilion, council ring and observation area will be staked after the spring prescribed burn.

Brodrecht Refuse Center

Modifications to the Brodrecht Refuse Center have been completed. The contractor has determined the transmission problem between the proximity card reader and the controller was caused by a faulty switch from the factory. This project is now complete.

Trail improvements

Investigation of the trail continues, which includes finalizing the route and cataloging (mapping, photographing and measuring) areas that may need improvements. We are working our way through the Thunder Bay 4 area.

Dredging update

Tim Petitgout with Frentress Lake Marine is dredging the Marina basin.  Progress is being made and as of May 3 the E, F, G, H, and I docks are available for renters to occupy. Remaining docks will become available weekly. 
Tim will continue work by dredging a channel from the Marina, west out to deeper waters, and finish this summer’s project in Plum Cove. Be cautious while boating as the dredge pipe will be floating at or just below the surface in the vicinity of the dredge and near the south shore leading to Plum Cove.


FOSTER OPERATIONAL EXCELLENCE

Emergency planning

Developing a comprehensive emergency management plan will be a multi-year project. The emergency notification system is in place. Plan development will begin in the second quarter of 2018 and may be a multi-year project.

Review and update Employee Handbook, administrative procedures

Staff has received several recommendations from its insurance agency’s human resources department for changes to the Employee Handbook. Staff reviewed those recommendations and is proposing a number of additional changes as well. The Executive Committee of the Board of Directors has now assumed responsibility for this task along with an evaluation of total compensation and job descriptions.
Administrative procedures are the steps used by staff to implement Board policies. Each procedure will be reviewed to make sure it is current and will be revised as necessary. Due to time constraints with several other projects, this project will be completed in the second quarter of 2018.

PROTECT AND PROMOTE OUR UNIQUE LIFESTYLE

Natural gas to The Territory

Nicor (the potential natural gas supplier in The Territory) is holding an informational meeting for property owners on Saturday, June 2 at its Naperville, Ill., office at 1844 Ferry Road, lower level. 
A voice over presentation of the April informational meetings Nicor held at Eagle Ridge Resort & Spa can be found on the Association News page at thegalenaterritory.com. 
Property owners are encouraged to sign up for the service. The GTA website contains information to provide a notice of interest for natural gas service and GTA staff have additional information available at the Administrative office, which includes the intent of interest needed for Nicor. Nicor needs 851 property owners to sign up for gas service before they will be able to install natural gas infrastructure in The Territory.

Water/sewer utility district

The GTA continues to work with a consortium of homeowners associations and a municipality to combat rate increases proposed by Utility Services of Illinois (USI). The consortium’s initial testimony was filed April 2. USI is responding to the testimony. Rebuttal testimony was to be provided by the consortium by mid-May.
There are two primary ICC staff components being worked through, the elimination of utility availability fees for non-developed lots (The Territory does not have these fees, but others do) and USI is pushing back on the ICC’s position to not raise the monthly utility customer charge primarily because of the reduction in the federal corporate tax rate. The consortium will continue through the process.

Real Estate Ad Hoc Group

The Real Estate Ad Hoc Advisory Group made two presentations at Board of Directors meetings. They have completed their work.

Marketing The Galena Territory

The Marketing Ad Hoc Advisory Group met April 20 and May 4 to begin the process of marketing The Galena Territory. The group plans to tackle two immediate needs, a new landing webpage for the public to better tout the lifestyle of The Galena Territory and having The Galena Territory Association become more involved with local and regional marketing groups and efforts.

Fiber optic to the home

The Fiber Optic Sub-commission continues to work with Sand Prairie and GTA staff to encourage property owners to express their interest in fiber optic internet service. Property owners are encouraged to go to connectsp.com/check-availability to share your name and address with Sand Prairie. Sand Prairie will be holding a town hall meeting on Saturday, July 14 at the Owners’ Club Social Hall at 9 a.m. Property owners who cannot attend the meeting will be able to call in and listen.