This Is our Village

Saturday, May 20, 2017

COMCAST MODIFIES OFFER - ATLANTIC BROADBAND PRESENTS RED LINED CONTRACT LEGAL MARKUP

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The Officers of UCO met with Comcast on Friday, May 19th. 2017. We were eagerly anticipating a major new offer. Guess what, one major improvement was presented, the Video Bulk rate was reduced one dollar to $28.99 - distinctly underwhelming!!
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We also have in hand the Atlantic Broadband contract, which has been redlined for legal issues. Additionally, a number of our concern's have been addressed. This redlined contract has been sent to 1000 unit owners by Email.
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As this contract will be presented to the Delegates at the June meeting, any Delegate needing hardcopy of the Agreement, may obtain it at UCO.
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Delegates, know the issues, read the contract, be prepared to vote. Of course, if we receive a Comcast redlined contract, it will be Emailed and made available.
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Dave Israel

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

OPPOSITION TO TWO SUGGESTED BYLAW CHANGES

This blog discusses, and opposes, two of the 22 “Olga's ByLaw Suggestions” listed on page A5, bottom, of the May UCO Reporter.

#4 “2 – 2-year term limits for all UCO officers and executive board members. “
I oppose for these reasons:
UCO officers and board members are volunteers, not politicians;
they are not compensated, and too often criticized;
they do not award contracts – the delegate assembly does
they form no political parties, but run on their individual merits
are nine month minimum residents of Century Village, an intimate part of the constituency that elects them;
are immediately approachable (you might have to sit and wait at the UCO office);
the CV president, unlike any state governor or the POTUS, has no veto powers;
any bylaw suggestion, like the two discussed here, must undergo a rigorous five-step process before becoming an amendment: the president has no input.
Officers and board members cannot be delegates – they have no vote at delegate meetings
all candidates – incumbents and challengers – are given equal space in the Reporter and equal time in the forums.
The delegates know the candidates, and voting is 100% - not the (approximately) 56% in the 2016 presidential election. A small but active group cannot depend upon the apathy of others to elect a niche candidate.

#9. “. No resident of Century Village shall be a paid employee of UCO “. I oppose for one reason, or person, resident Mr. Donald Foster, our current LCAM (Licensed Community Association Manager).
First, to obtain his license, Mr. Foster had to go through a five step state required process (see below), including paying license and criminal investigation fees, completing an 18 hour course, and passing a three hour test.
Second, on the CV Blog website, he has posted weekly LCAM reports, with pictures.
Third, because he is a resident, he knows about, and solves, local issues: (a) got a volunteer to paint “LAUNDRY” on the laundromat; (b) knew about pedestrian dangers at the East Drive/Century Boulevard 4-way intersection and posted two colorful “Fl. Law: Stop for Pedestrians in Crosswalk” signs; (c) put up warning reflective signs at the North/West Drive curve; (d) erected guard posts along the West Drive exit approach. His future plans include (a) working with president Israel on a 2018 UCO budget proposal to "refurbish and widen the heavily trafficked pedestrian walkway along the south side of Century Boulevard, connecting East Drive and Haverhill Road." (b) placing “Fl. Law” signs at all the pedestrian crossings, and (c) improving sight lines presently obscured by shrubs.
Mr. Foster's salary is less than half that of the previous UCO LCAM, who was not a resident manager, did not work on nights, weekends and Christmas, and put in half the hours that he does. As Mr. Foster notes, "Nobody expects me to put in a fifty or sixty hour week- I just like the work and the commute cannot be beat. I used to spend ten or twelve hours per week sitting on the Long Island Railroad or the E Train- now I am on the clock as soon as I exit my unit."


A committed and professional resident employee is a valuable asset for any association.

Richard Handelsman
166 Plymouth W

PS. In this week's (May 8) LCAM report (CVBlog), Mr. Foster notes that the “Leak at North Drive pump station was repaired on 5/4. Artificial hedges were installed over weekend.” Guess who installed those hedges, spending several hours under the Florida sun.


To receive a CAM license, Mr. Foster had to:
Step 1: Register for class: 18 Hour CAM License Course - $279 tuition. (Paid for by UCO) All applicants are required to satisfactorily complete 18 classroom hours of pre-licensure education
Step 2: State Application. a. Submit a license application to the Department of Business and Professional Regulation..include a fee of $223.50 payable to the DBPR. b. Register for electronic fingerprinting Cost of fingerprinting is $53.50.
Step 3. Attend the 18 Hour CAM License Course. The 18 Hour CAM License course must be completed in its entirety prior to taking the state exam.
Step 4: Submit your Course Completion Certificate
Step 5: Schedule and Pass the State Exam.The exam fee is $31.50 payable at the time of registration. A passing score is 75 out of 100 questions answered correctly.)








Tuesday, May 9, 2017

ADVISORY COMMITTEE MEETING - MAY 5, 2017 - LIVE IN CYBERSPACE


BROADBAND COMMITTEE MEETING - MAY 10, 2017 - CANCELLED

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Hi all,
I had expected the lawyer vetted and corrected Atlantic Broadband contract. Lacking this, I have cancelled the meeting. As soon as we have the contract, it will be distributed and a meeting will be scheduled.
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Dave Israel


Saturday, May 6, 2017

DELEGATE ASSEMBLY MEETING - MAY 5, 2017 - LIVE IN CYBERSPACE


Da 5-5-17-1 part 1, from David B. Israel on Vimeo. -
DA 5-5-17-2 Part 2, from David B. Israel on Vimeo. -
DA 5-5-17-3 Part 3, from David B. Israel on Vimeo. -
DA 5-5-17-4 Part 4, from David B. Israel on Vimeo. -
DA 5-5-17-5 Part 5, from David B. Israel on Vimeo.

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Thanks to John and Kitty Gragg for video conversion services.
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Tuesday, May 2, 2017

TRANSPORTATION COMMITTEE MEETING - MAY 2, 2017 - LIVE IN CYBERSPACE


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Dave Israel
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BUS SCHEDULE CHANGES - WITH IMMEDIATE EFFECT

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Dave Israel
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WHETHER COMCAST OR ATLANTIC BROADBAND: TWO THINGS TO KEEP IN MIND


Whether the Village finally selects Comcast or Atlantic Broadband to be its TV cable communications provider, the following are two things to keep in mind in deciding whether to take their Internet or telephone options:

1. Taxes and Fees:
If you are comparing rates with your current Internet/phone rates after taxes and fees, add 15 percent to the CC or AB offerings to approximately cover their taxes and fees. You want to be comparing apples with apples.

2. POTS telephone line:
There is a value, especially to the elderly, in maintaining a POTS telephone service. POTS simply stands for "Plain Old Telephone Service" and refers to the old phone service you may have had in the past with AT&T or Ma Bell or other such telephone companies when your single phone line carried BOTH the electrical current (at a very low voltage) and the phone conversation. Remember those days? Some of us still have such a POTS phone service.

An advantage to keeping a POTS phone service is that you are less likely to lose service in a storm. Were you here during the three hurricanes of 2004-2005? Many of us in the Village lost power for a week or ten days in two of them, but our POTS telephone service remained working. "But I have a cell phone and that works when the power goes off," you may say. Yes, it usually does for a while, but then the cell phone needs to be recharged, and how are you going to recharge it if you have lost electric power? Unless you have the right kind of battery backup device, you won't be able to.

Aside from storm damage, remember that we are in an age of potential cyber attack where the electrical grid could be down for days (and let us hope only days). Today even POTS is not 100% safe from failing, but it is the closest-to-100% way to stay in touch with your friends and the outside world.

One further point. If you have POTS and your telephone instruments are hooked up to answering machine devices, because these devices are plugged into electrical outlets, you probably won't be able to use the attached phones if you lose power. The solution is to have one of your phones connected directly into a telephone jack.



Friday, April 28, 2017

UCO REPORTER MAY 2017 EDITION - LIVE IN CYBERSPACE


MY CONCERN

As I see the proposals by Comcast and Atlantic Broadband drag out and seemingly never end, my concern is that we will be defeated by time.

I do not know what AB's real deadline for commencing work on getting fiber-optic to us is. They say they need 24 months prior to June 2019 (expiration date of our present CC contract), which would be this June. That would mean a final, signed contract, agreed upon in all points by both parties, done by then. Maybe they can plan on doing their fiber-optic work in less time, but then we are at more risk they will run short on time!

How near are we now to a real "deadline"? If the Delegate Assembly were to decide on CC or AB at the May Delegate Assembly, that decision, of course, is still NOT final. There would remain then many details, let us say maybe as many as thirty, to clear up with the chosen company and get into legal language agreeable to them and us. Let's look at two possible scenarios.

1. We choose Comcast at the May D.A. Comcast then drags its feet getting these details finalized while at the same time reneging on an important point or two we thought had been understood. The back-and-forth goes beyond the time when AB would have needed to start, so they are forced out of the running. Now Comcast has no competition, they are in the driver's seat, we find they renege on a lot (surprise, surprise), and we are stuck with an expensive bad contract.

2. We choose Atlantic Broadband at the D.A. We then get halfway through agreeing on the thirty details with them and ironing out an important point or two we thought had been understood but wasn't. It looks as though we will have an agreed-upon, final signed contract in time. Why on time? Because AB has no reason to drag its feet; it needs to get going. If this happens, all is well and good.

But what if two weeks after the D.A. vote, Comcast suddenly reenters the fray with an offer "too good to refuse"? What do we do? If we put AB on hold and get serious about the new CC offer, we may find ourselves a month later with CC having dragged its feet. SOME points have been resolved but not all. Another month is needed. You can see what I'm driving at: Comcast again accomplishes its goal of getting AB out of the running. Then, before there is a signed agreement, they can change their tune completely, and we are stuck with an expensive bad contract.

Perhaps at this point, having received many concessions from both companies, we should simply not be too greedy. Perhaps it is best we choose AB at the Delegate Assembly, and then, provided AB pulls no deal-breaker surprises, we should simply go with them rather than "take the bait" from Comcast. A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.



Thursday, April 27, 2017

UCO OFFICER'S COMMITTEE - APRIL 27, 2017 - LIVE IN CYBERSPACE


ELEVATOR AT THE CLUBHOUSE IS OUT OF SERVICE (9 AM THURSDAY)

Hi all,
We are advised that the elevator has been repaired:

Eva Rachesky
1:19 PM (12 minutes ago)
to Rhoda, me
 
Hi Rhoda,

The elevator was not working this morning and has since been repaired.


Dave Israel

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

OPERATIONS COMMITTEE MEETING - APRIL 25, 2017 - LIVE IN CYBERSPACE


CONDO LAW AND BOARD MEMBER CERTIFICATION

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PHYLLIS RICHLAND AND JENNIFER CUNHA
                          INVITE YOU TO A BRUNCH AND LEARN
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CONDOMINIUM LAW LEGAL OVERVIEW
and  BOARD CERTIFICATION FOR BOARD MEMBERS
May 24, 2017 @ 9:30-11:30am
Century Village Craft Room
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Breakfast will be provided!
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Seating is Limited - RSVPs required!
Please call 561.231.0640
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Jennifer may also be reached at:
Jennifer M. Cunha, Esq.
601 Heritage Dr., Ste 424 · Jupiter, FL · 33458
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Dave Israel
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Wednesday, April 19, 2017

ADVISORY COMMITTEE MEETING - APRIL 19, 2017 - LIVE IN CYBERSPACE

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NEW BUSES ARRIVE - GRAPHICS CONTEST TO BEGIN

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Here are pictures of the new buses. Note that there are two distinct sizes, the larger buses have built in cubby holes for grocery bags and storage for walkers. This Post is to announce a contest for graphics to appear on the bus exterior. Send your design to ucopresident@gmail.com, or bring it into UCO.
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To the left is the big bus, with built in cubby holes for grocery bags or other small items. Also, there is a special compartment for walkers.








Below is the smaller bus.
So, create a design for these new buses that is appropriate for Century Village. Something bright, and colorful.

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Dave Israel

Sunday, April 16, 2017

THE DECISION ON BROADBAND


HOW THINGS ARE SHAPING UP

It has been a long journey for the Broadband-Cable Committee and our residents in deciding which company to go with for the next ten years—now whittled down to  Atlantic Broadband (AB) or Comcast (CC). In the past 13 days since the March 3 Delegate Assembly a lot has changed. At that time, Comcast having finally agreed to allow Optional Internet, we thought the two Internet proposals had come near equalizing. They had not. See below.

On April 6, the Computer Club hosted a presentation by Atlantic Broadband, open to everyone, in Classroom C. This was followed by a "vigorous" discussion period, says one attendee. A day later, following the April 7 Delegate Assembly, there were consecutive presentations by AB and CC in the Party Room, which was packed with residents—and again, they were each followed by vigorous discussion periods. Comcast in particular was taken to task for (1) their insistence on charging about $60/month for Optional Internet if not signed up for at a unit owner's FIRST opportunity with no intervening opt-outs; (2) requiring UCO, the associations or their management companies to handle the record-keeping of the aforesaid opt-ins and opt-outs (an accounting nightmare for us);  (3) charging about $60 for many service calls; and (4) quietly increasing their monthly charge for TV so the difference between their charge and that of AB came close to $4.00.

After repeated assertions that these were Comcast's "bottom line" concessions, we found they were not! Comcast once again "sweetened the pot" somewhat with respect to items 1, 2, and 4 above—but not item 3, which has been a source of complaints with many people under the present Comcast contract.

The Reporter staff discussed the matter at their April 11 open meeting, and at the end took a vote. Not a single hand went up in favor of Comcast, while every hand went up in favor of Atlantic Broadband. It is unusual for the Reporter to take an editorial stance on an issue, but because this matter is so important, we may do so in the May issue.

Then on April 12 the Broadband Committee met once again. Despite the partial concessions Comcast made, the Committee voted unanimously in favor of the Atlantic Broadband proposal. There was a sense that the Committee was NOT happy with Comcast dragging out things, their unclear answers to questions, and pulling surprises—in contrast to Atlantic Broadband's straightforward, generous proposals and clear answers to questions. That was my take on things, at any rate.

Now the Officers will discuss the matter, then the Executive Board, and finally the Delegate Assembly—quite possibly at the May 5 meeting, where a final vote may take place. Time is of the essence, for Atlantic Broadband will soon be out of the running.


Saturday, April 15, 2017

Comcast has to go

This mornings internet outage convinces me even more that comcast has to go. along with billing issues.