Does the embattled LHCC board of directors play fair? Is it dominated by people unduly favorable to Miller & Smith who will bend the rules to protect their entrenched positions? Judge for yourself.
On August 28th, the Board met to fill the vacancy created by the resignation of Jim Masland, whose term would have expired in October 2007. At this August 28th meeting, director and treasurer John Martel resigned. John Martel was then serving the term of former director Chuck James, who had also previously resigned. Martel’s seat would have been up for election in October of 2006 – just a few months away. Candidates for the Masland seat were instructed to submit their resumes with a deadline before the August 28th board meeting. In effect, either Martel was allowed to submit his name for the Masland seat after the deadline or he was allowed to submit his name without resigning his current seat. The LHCC Board then appointed Martel right back to the board from which he just resigned! In the process, the other directors protected Martel from facing a democratic election in October of 2006. This was clearly the goal of this gimmick – circumvent the democratic process.
Is circumventing democracy and extending the term of a director who was never elected in the first place playing fair?
The Board then had to resolve the problem created by the Martel gimmick: who should fill Martel’s just vacated seat? There could have been no candidates for the seat, because Martel just vacated it at the start of that very meeting. A certain Stephen Locke of Waterside Lane submitted his resume for the Masland seat. Despite the fact that Stephen Locke could not have tendered his name for the Martel seat, he was appointed anyway. Other members were not made aware of the opportunity to take the Martel seat or given the chance to step forward to fill it. A quick look at his resume provides the reason why the Board would skip those formalities. Stephen Locke says he:
would encourage a continued close working relationship with Miller and Smith….
Stephen Locke characterizes some members as “enemies.” Apparently he doesn’t adhere to that purpose set forth in LHCC’s Articles of Incorporation, namely “to promote the recreation, health, safety, and welfare of the members….” It’s difficult to promote the welfare of members when you think of them as enemies. Is this kind of language appropriate for any director, particularly one which conducts itself like a small government? Stephen Locke’s characterization of a member as an enemy is inherently discriminatory, especially in light of his favorable comments about Miller & Smith. Board members need to promote the welfare of all members. But instead of recognizing Stephen Locke’s expressions for what they are – discriminatory and inconsistent with the Association’s governing documents – the Board embraced them, since his resume was the document used to put his best foot forward for a board seat.
Stephen Locke parrots the Chris Allison lie that we are mounting an effort to spend homeowners’ dues to improve membership lots. We – and the overwhelming majority of fair-minded people – believe that a portion of the dues paid by membership lot owners should be used to improve their lots. We do not believe dues paid by existing homeowners should be used to improve membership lots. Despite the fact that Stephen Locke has never discussed our views with us, he professes to have a complete understanding of them. Is that a sign of a fully independent and fair-minded director? Shouldn’t directors have the ability to communicate with members and form independent opinions instead of being a puppet of the Chris Allison-dominated board? Apparently, Stephen Locke thinks that the dues paid by membership lot owners are his to spend as he sees fit. Perhaps membership lot owners should telephone him and express their views on how the dues paid by membership lot owners should be spent. He encourages such contact by including his phone number at the bottom of his resume.
The LHCC Board will discard fair play and deny other members the opportunity to serve on the board if they can bring in a director favorable to Miller & Smith.
Despite our criticism of Stephen Locke, we applaud his candor as reflected in the extensive alphabet soup that follows his name. He included the 2 most important letters in his self-description: “B. S.”