HI everyone: I missed you last month! I won’t take much of your time but there are a few important reminders:
WHERE IS SECURITY?
I’m sure you have noticed the friendly attitude of the guards when you enter any of the PGA gates. Well, that’s the ABM Security Services (also known as Elite Protection Services) crew. As indicated in the memo sent to all PGA residents with the annual assessment notice, the Board of Governors signed a contract with Elite as of July 1st. In addition to a nice savings which allowed us to keep the POA annual assessment at the same $700.00 as last year, Elite also brought a lot of technological advances to the community. All patrol cars have laptop computers so the guards on patrol can immediately look up information instead of having to radio the main Communication Center. Elite is also supplying new license plate recognition cameras at all gates and a number of improvements have been made (and will be made) to the access control software programs. There are quite a few improvements to the overall service that I can’t go into (in case the “bad guys” are reading this too) but suffice to say the Security Committee and Board of Governors did an excellent job with the bid process and selection/transition.
After Elite came on Board, a few residents called because they had not seen the patrol vehicles. They are still there but the cars are not as “bold” as the former G4S vehicles with the graphics on the windows and red stripes. There should be a photo here on the POA’s website and you’ll see the light bar on the top is a “low profile” with clear lenses (although the bulbs have color when the lights are on).
Due to the aforementioned improvements, the patrols are in the communities more frequently than in the past. All vehicles have GPS units so management can look at the computer and tell you exactly where any patrol vehicle is located at any given time.
The POA was fortunate to be able to keep some of the key personnel who were assigned to PGA National for many years which made the transition very smooth – but Elite also did an excellent job in communicating and holding frequent training and orientation meetings so the change was as seamless as it could be for a 5,000 home community that was with G4S / Wackenhut for almost 20 years. Our friends at G4S also did a great job and will be missed but I know you’ll welcome the Elite crew!
There have been owners who have found items stolen from their unlocked cars and there was one residential burglary recently. In the case of all the cars to date, residents left the doors unlocked and someone helped themselves to change and other easily taken items. In the case of the residential burglary, the owner DID lock the door and set the alarm but someone entered via a very small window and took small but valuable items. They were in and out within minutes so the only caution we can give you is to keep your eyes (and ears) open! If you see anyone suspicious, day or night, call security (627-1600). I’ve said it before: It doesn’t matter if security responds to 100 calls that turn out to be nothing and we would rather they do that than to miss the one that really is a legitimate suspicious person intent on causing harm or damage. There are a lot of workers in the community during the day but it is a popular time for break-ins. Here are some things to look for:
- Someone driving around a community perhaps passing by every few minutes
- Someone fishing inside a community (which is against the rules)
- Someone walking by a number of times (especially if they are carrying a large sack/purse or backpack)
- Workers who seem to be paying more attention to people coming and going than they are to their work
School is back in session. This means it is again time for the people waiting at the bus stop: both the young people sitting and standing at the curb waiting for the bus, as well as parents parked near the stop. Please use extreme care with your speed and be sure to pay attention when driving.
The Assessment payment to PGA POA was due July 1st. If you are reading this and have not yet paid the annual assessment, your account is past due and interest has been posted. The POA Board makes every attempt to work with owners who are having financial difficulties so if you cannot pay the assessment in one installment please call me to work out details.
Storms: Don’t forget that September is the peak of “H” Season…sorry we can’t use the “H” word but it means big winds, rain and damage. This website has a lot of helpful information on how to prepare before, during and after a storm. Don’t wait until everyone has purchased all the batteries, water, and other necessary supplies – buy them now.
Speaking of storms, I would say that for several years we “enjoyed” a drought but that would not be accurate as we didn’t enjoy the water restrictions and people and animals suffering from the heat without any relief from rain. We are, however, back into the usual pattern of afternoon thunderstorms. Many owners have discovered their roof needs to be replaced (don’t forget to get POA ARC approval first!).
You have probably also discovered that when the rain comes down hard and fast, the storm drains can’t keep up. This doesn’t mean the pumps aren’t working or they aren’t on; instead, one of the problems is the leaves and debris covering the metal storm grates. In mid-August, I was out in the rain (along with security personnel) clearing those storm drains along the main roads and inside many communities. Each owner should keep any drains near or on their property cleared. It is amazing to watch the suction on the water going down the drain once the debris is moved yet I still get calls to “do something” (like I control the weather?) when we get heavy rains. If you would be so kind as to help spread the word to your neighbors and management companies to keep the leaves and debris cleared off the top of the drain covers, it would help considerably (and I thank you!)
A FUN THING
Actually, two fun things. The Special Events Committee is trying to organize a “Concert in the Park” in Masters Park sometime between January and March. We don’t have details yet but “stay tuned”.
The Special Events Committee is also accepting applications for the 7th Annual Arts & Crafts Festival in Masters Park. If you, or anyone you know, is an artist or crafter, put them in contact with the POA office or look here on the website for information about the event. It is a one day festival on Saturday, December 8th from 10:00 am – 4:00 pm and even if you don’t know anyone who can participate, you should mark your calendar! In addition to food, music and a fun day, it’s a great place to pick up one of a kind unique gifts for yourself or others!