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Should the city of Chaska release the Jonathan Associatio... by
I think they should. When the Jonathan Development was forming, the Jonathan Development Corporation and the city of Chaska executed an agreement to address lots and outlots within the Jonathan Development. A copy of this agreement is available on my jonathandocuments.com site under ‘Agreement Between the City of Chaska and the Jonathan Development Corporation—July 24, 1968.’ According to this agreement, the outlots were to be used for the actual benefit of the residents, and could be used for utility development, pedestrian or other transportation ways, buffer or screening areas, or recreational use areas. In return, Jonathan was to, at all times, keep and maintain any developments so as to (i) effectuate the general purpose for which the development is made, (ii) so as to not constitute a nuisance, and (iii) so that all structural improvements thereon are kept in a safe structural condition and in good repair and fully operable. I do not believe the Jonathan Association has been maintaining Lake Grace in a safe structural condition or in good repair for a number of years. Unless there have been some major changes, I believe the Lake Grave Pavilion has been a storage facility for several years, and even in the years before this, it was an older decaying building. The Lake Grace Pavilion no longer meets one of the four uses criteria. The Jonathan Association has been real good at accepting trails, tot lots, and places like Lake Grace for many, many years. What they have not been so good at is replacing these items when they begin decaying. In most instances, the Jonathan Association has only made ‘band-aid’ type repairs or removed the decayed items. I have two examples of this in the photograph section of my jonathandocuments.com site. If you look at the photographs contrasting the small and large pine trees, you will also see shoring up of some of the hillside trail. I presume the trail started sliding down the hill. Another set contrasts the shore of Lake Grace near the canoe rack. You will notice the earlier photograph has a nice dock and paddleboat. The dock is no longer there. I presume this was removed some years ago. I can only speculate as to why it was not replaced. I think the Jonathan Association has reached a point in time when it can no longer maintain all it has acquired. The costs have continued to grow with every ‘band-aid’ fix and item removal, and now the costs are just too great for its membership. While I understand the city of Chaska cannot take back all of the Jonathan lots and outlots it has given to Jonathan over the years, I think the city of Chaska should take back the Lake Grace area. The Jonathan Association clearly has enough work just maintaining all of its other lots, totlots, trails, and houses. What do you think?
Apr 07, 2009 | 2687 views | 22 22 recommendations | email to a friend | print


To the best of my knowledge
by Debbie Boe
 in response to Should the city of Chaska release the Jonathan Association from its Lake Grace obligations?
Apr 21, 2009 | 9 9 recommendations | email to a friend | print

To the best of my knowledge the Jonathan Association needs $880,000 for tot lot maintenace or repairs. That was the number stated during the 2009 Annual Meeting. I have no reason to doubt that number. I presume the number refers to repairs that are needed today. I too find it shocking.
As to the dues, I believe the Jonathan Associaion can only raise the dues a small amount each year. I want to say only five percent per year. The current yearly dues are a little over $200. (I do pay my dues regularly, but cannot recall the amount I paid this year) I believe the dues amounts were based upon factors that no longer exist today, like presumed growth and the large amounts of money the Jonathan Development received from HUD. HUD in one way or another paid for most of what the Jonathan Association owns today. Had things went as planned or HUD continued to provide large amounts of money, the Jonathan Association might not have found itself in the state it is in today.
There are clearly some major financial issues within the Jonthan Association and they did not appear on the horizon yesterday. There are some that like to hang all the blame of the JRG, but when you look a little deeper it becomes apparent these issues predate the JRG’s presence on the Jonathan Association Board.
On another note, Forums are meant to be used as an avenue for the public to have a discussion about a given issue or topic. We all know people have a variety of perspectives and opinions. I want to thank you for your ability to disagree in an adult manner. I appreciate it.

So, to summarize, the
by seano
 in response to Should the city of Chaska release the Jonathan Association from its Lake Grace obligations?
Apr 21, 2009 | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print

So, to summarize, the Jonathan Association hasn’t been doing its job in managing the commitments it has taken on for itself. And now, you want to pass the multi-million dollar bill to the City.
If the Association is really almost a million dollars behind in tot lot maintenance, that’s really shocking. For comparison purposes, the new playground at Veteran’s Park has $50,000 in equipment and installation expense plus the cost of preparing the site. So for the cost of updating your tot lots, you could build 8-10 new parks from scratch.
I definitely would be opposed to paying for items that the Jonathan Association should be taking care of itself. Why is it right for me to pay increased taxes because the Jonathan Association hasn’t done its job?
And why is a special assessment required to raise revenue? Isn’t there a process for the Association to raise fees across the board? Dues are low, aren’t they — in the neighborhood of $200 a year according to what I have seen. That’s just not enough to support the infrastructure the Association is repsonsible for.

Not sure I have the exact
by Debbie Boe
 in response to Should the city of Chaska release the Jonathan Association from its Lake Grace obligations?
Apr 20, 2009 | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print

Not sure I have the exact answers you are seeking, but here goes:
As to the Jonathan Association and its known expenses related to renovation, repair or replacement, during its 2009 annual meeting they stated it would cost $880,000 to fix the tot lot items listed in a recent tot lot assessment. I believe someone else mentioned 20 miles of trails, many of which could use replacement. I heard a number of over $20,000 for 400 feet of paved trail in Outlot B in the Clover neighborhood. Presuming there are 20 miles of paved trails, at $20,000 for 400 feet, the costs for their replacement (without removal costs related to the old paved trails) I come up with 5.2 million dollars for trail paving. With the addition of the $880,000 to repair the items needing repair at the time of the tot lot study, the costs climb to 6.1 million dollars. Then there is the Lake Grace Pavilion, the Lake Grace area, the Eitel House, the Karen House, the proposed maintenance shed, etc.
In my opinion, the Lake Grace Pavilion needs to be removed and replaced. I believe the exterior is clad in a plywood type material rather than some sort of longer lasting siding material. When I toured the interior of the Lake Grace Pavilion a few years ago there were issues with the concrete floor. There were either inch-plus gaps between the squares of concrete flooring or the concrete was poured with two by fours between the concrete squares. Either one creates an above average trip hazard. I also do not recall seeing any handicap accessible bathrooms. While I am not a construction expert, I do work in a law firm and have reviewed a number of construction related remediation estimates for various litigation matters. Removal and replacement of decaying facilities is not cheap. I believe access to the Lake Grace area could also create additional expenses related to the movement of materials in and out of the Lake Grace site. I just do not see how construction vehicles can travel to the site without some special roads or bridges being constructed for their use. I estimate the costs of removing and replacing the Lake Grace Pavilion and its benches, etc. at a half a million dollars, and my estimate is probably on the low end.
In an effort to try to present some sort of a financial picture of the Jonathan Association, I located the Jonathan Association financial statements for the years 2001, 2005, 2006, and 2007. I should also mention that I am not a financial expert by any stretch of the imagination. About the best I can offer are sets of financial statement numbers from year to year.
Total Assets (year in parenthesis): $889,789 (2000) – $862,532 (2001) – $924,833 (2004) – $824,885 (2005) – $947,496 (2006) – $957,314 (2007)
Restricted Use for Future Replacements: $177,198 (2000) – $190,544 (2001) – $257,781 (2004) – $406,136 (2005) – $414,978 (2006) – $398,414 (2007)
Payroll Expense: $179,349 (2001) – $188,371 (2004) – $172,441 (2005) – $131,401 (2006) – $134, 598 (2007)
Repairs, maintenance and landscaping: $34,682 (2001) – $89,228 (2004) – $122,734 (2005) – $122,144 (2006) – $124,225 (2007)
Major Repairs and Replacements: $50,225 (2004) – $100,600 (2005) – $2,288 (2006)
I have also found a copy of the Capital Improvements Plan 2002 – 2012. It designates 15 items for capital improvement. The list does not list anywhere near what is owned by the Jonathan Association or all that needs to be maintained by the Jonathan Association. It does, however, list amounts of around $100,000 to be earmarked each year for these 15 items. Since the replacement amount for the year 2000 is only $177,198, I assume this was all that was collected or all that remained from monies collected for capital improvements between 1968 and 2000. It looks like the Capital Improvement Plan started out very, very short of funds.
When I compare the actual dollar amounts to the amounts needed, I see a substantial shortage of funds. I read this to mean the needed amounts were not estimated properly or the expected repair / maintenance / replacement costs increased at an unexpected rate.
The Jonathan Association does have the right to assess its members with special assessments. However, that opens another can of worms concerning who should have to pay for the assessments. While no surprise, I would definitely be opposed to paying for items so far removed from where I live. It just isn’t right for me to have to pay for a place like Lake Grace when I have to get into my car, drive over there, park in the Kindergarten Center lot (and hope others are not vying for the same parking spots), just to walk down the hill to use my share of the Lake Grace area.

I think there are a couple
by seano
 in response to Should the city of Chaska release the Jonathan Association from its Lake Grace obligations?
Apr 20, 2009 | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print

I think there are a couple of reasonable questions to be answered here:
1.) How much is required to renovate these facilities?
2.) Why has the Jonathan Association not maintained a reserve fund for the maintenance of these facilities? It’s not a secret that the Association was on the hook for this.
3.) Why is it impossible for the Association to come up with the required funds on its own?

A note to all participating
by Mark Olson
 in response to Should the city of Chaska release the Jonathan Association from its Lake Grace obligations?
Apr 20, 2009 | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print

A note to all participating in this discussion: Please keep your comments respectful, or I will need to shut down this thread.
Thank you,
Mark Olson, editor

And for the record...I'm not
by Luke
 in response to Should the city of Chaska release the Jonathan Association from its Lake Grace obligations?
Apr 20, 2009 | 9 9 recommendations | email to a friend | print

And for the record…I’m not a PBJ Member. Talk about anger. Not all residents who disagree with you and your actions while on the board, are PBJ members. I believe the results of the election in 2008 prove this out.

Same old neglect from former
by Luke
 in response to Should the city of Chaska release the Jonathan Association from its Lake Grace obligations?
Apr 20, 2009 | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print

Same old neglect from former board member Boe.
There’s zero anger here and I’m not sure what you wish to portray to the readers as “twists” But there is no need to answer legitimate questions or be accountable. The record speaks for itself.

Section D.3.e.4 of that
by seano
 in response to Should the city of Chaska release the Jonathan Association from its Lake Grace obligations?
Apr 20, 2009 | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print

Section D.3.e.4 of that Chapter states that “General maintenance such as seal coating, patching, etc. shall not typically be
assessed.” It’s only major reconstruction of streets that is assessed. I suspect that the roads in Clover Ridge are a long ways from reaching that point.

Same old PBJ aggression.
by Debbie Boe
 in response to Should the city of Chaska release the Jonathan Association from its Lake Grace obligations?
Apr 20, 2009 | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print

Same old PBJ aggression. Anger, twists, and accusations … that is all you folks write about. I have no interest in answering nor any duty to answer any of your questions.

Waste, waste, waste...how
by Luke
 in response to Should the city of Chaska release the Jonathan Association from its Lake Grace obligations?
Apr 20, 2009 | 10 10 recommendations | email to a friend | print

Waste, waste, waste…how about the waste of $200,000?
Why do you continually choose to ignore the questions some here raise? What have you done to address the problems and fulfill YOUR responsibilities to the homeowners? What bids did the board receive when you were on the board? And when Greg was on the board? Are you hoping these questions will just go away?
I will cite anything I want, thanks for your permission. But I guess since you were negligent with your “duties” as defined in the By-laws, you’re looking for “daddy” to bail you out – the taxpayers. Shameful!

Money, money, money … how
by Debbie Boe
 in response to Should the city of Chaska release the Jonathan Association from its Lake Grace obligations?
Apr 20, 2009 | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print

Money, money, money … how about the money? The Lake Grave Pavilion and the area surrounding it have been decaying for years and years and years. The Lake Grace area is nothing but the equivalent of winning a new car, always great at first, you know creating great memories. But then it begins to need more and more repairs. At first you might get your dad or your grandfather to help you change its oil, but over time, they too begin to look at you and say it is time to get a new car. The Lake Grace Pavilion and the area that surround it are very much like the new car. It is time for its replacement … and well, the Jonathan Association does not have the funds and will not have the funds any time soon.
As stated in my forum, the Jonathan Association has reached a point in time when it can no longer maintain all it has acquired. The costs have continued to grow with every ‘band-aid’ fix and item removal, and now the costs are just too great for its membership. Cite anything you want, it does not change the fact that the Jonathan Assocaition does not have the funds.

It's not that hard to
by Luke
 in response to Should the city of Chaska release the Jonathan Association from its Lake Grace obligations?
Apr 19, 2009 | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print

It’s not that hard to understand.
Debbie Boe, here are some “facts”…under “DUTIES OF THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS”, please see Article VIII, Section 2, (h) cause the Common Area to be maintained.
Let’s see…the Lake Grace beach and the Pavilion are “Common Areas”, correct? What did you do to make sure the Lake Grace area was maintained? Did you get bids? If so, when and what they. Did the board before you obtain any bids? What about when Council member Boe was on the board. Were any bids received? If not, why not? Were you meeting your duties? Were you planning to request a bailout from the taxpayers of Chaska to cover for your negligence? Was Greg?
Reasonable questions I believe.

Bids? How about sharing
by Debbie Boe
 in response to Should the city of Chaska release the Jonathan Association from its Lake Grace obligations?
Apr 19, 2009 | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print

Bids? How about sharing what you are referring too? Time frame of the bid(s)? Who submitted the bids? Who collected the bids? What the bids pertained too? Whether the bids were a board agenda item? How about some factual information instead of the accusatory words. That is, if you have any.

Bailout? Luke, I agree. If
by Kelster
 in response to Should the city of Chaska release the Jonathan Association from its Lake Grace obligations?
Apr 19, 2009 | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print

Bailout? Luke, I agree. If my friends are correct, the author of the initial post regarding making all Chaska residents responsible for the negligence of her and others on past boards did nothing to improve the Lake Grace facility. Is this correct Debbie Boe?
Don’t you believe it’s inexcusable to neglect your responsibilities and then ask for the tax payers to correct the problems you facilitated?
You asked Luke for a plan. Maybe you can share with the readers the bids the Association received under your watch so a plan can be discussed. Maybe Greg Boe has this information. Maybe he’ll share with the readers the bids the Association received under his direction. Hopefully you’ll ask so I don’t have to post to the weather blog.
It’s hokie politics like this which drove me out of Jonathan and move closer to the city.

While I am not an expert on
by Debbie Boe
 in response to Should the city of Chaska release the Jonathan Association from its Lake Grace obligations?
Apr 14, 2009 | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print

While I am not an expert on assessments, I was able to locate the ‘CHAPTER 14 – City of Chaska Special Assessment Policy’ online. It outlines who and when a person can be assessed. There were categories pertaining to roads and sidewalks. … I am confident the city will be looking in my direction when the time comes for replacements in my neighborhood.

The city of Chaska assesses
by seano
 in response to Should the city of Chaska release the Jonathan Association from its Lake Grace obligations?
Apr 14, 2009 | 9 9 recommendations | email to a friend | print

The city of Chaska assesses for normal road maintenance? Really? I thought they only did that for more substantial projects and intersection upgrades.

As an FYI, I do not believe
by Debbie Boe
 in response to Should the city of Chaska release the Jonathan Association from its Lake Grace obligations?
Apr 14, 2009 | 9 9 recommendations | email to a friend | print

As an FYI, I do not believe the Jonathan Association is respondible for any streets in the Clover Ridge neighborhood. I believe the streets are either city owned or owned by one of the other homeowner associations in the Clover Ridge neighborhood. Having said that, I believe my property will be assessed for replacement of both the sidewalk and the street when they need replacement down the road. I think that is comparible to you paying for your private streets.

I don't see how these things
by seano
 in response to Should the city of Chaska release the Jonathan Association from its Lake Grace obligations?
Apr 14, 2009 | 9 9 recommendations | email to a friend | print

I don’t see how these things cloud the issue at all. If the Association wasn’t putting away money to maintain the infrastructure they agreed to develop in the first place, that’s the Association’s problem. I’ll grant that Jonathan never fulfilled its original vision, yet even through foreclosure, agreements regarding Lake Grace and the like were not vacated.
Can outside folks come on to Jonathan land? Sure. Just as outside folks can come drive on the private roads in our neighborhood, and every winter a few irresponsible snowmobilers veer off the trail along Engler and onto our association-maintained land, sometimes causing damage. That’s part of the deal.
Are there some inequities as to how the Jonathan Association is structured or how it developed over the years? That’s not for me to determine. Clearly you have strong opinions on that point. As long as the Association is in place, though, it is responsible for living up to the commitments it has made.
I still don’t see a compelling reason why now would be the point where the responsibilities of the Association would go back to the City. If anything, the Association seems more capable today of taking on those responsibilities than a few years ago.

Yes and no. I believe those
by Debbie Boe
 in response to Should the city of Chaska release the Jonathan Association from its Lake Grace obligations?
Apr 14, 2009 | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print

Yes and no. I believe those involved in the creation of the Jonathan Development and the other involved persons had some big dreams of what the Jonathan Development would become. It was a product of the times. Had it formed as planned it would have included five villages spanning from near Victoria to the borders of Chanhassen, then north up to Highway 5 and south to Highway 212 or thereabouts. Having stated that, and noting that it sprung up in the middle of farmland that was a long way from city services, there were promises made about who would take care of what and what would happen if they did not take care of things. Unfortunately, the Jonathan Development did not form as planned. At the time of forclosure less than ten percent of its potential size had been developed. This clouds the 1968 agreement.
Then there is some language at the time of forclosure that states the next 889 housing units will be included in the Jonathan Development. I presume this was based upon a number of factors, one of which was the speculated number of households needed to support what was already in place, i.e. Lake Grace, etc. While I admittedly have very little knowledge of the Jonathan Associations books, I am not aware of any sort of savings plan being put in place to pay for the replacement of places like Lake Grace down the road or if there were it was not adequate. I suspect the Jonathan Association just continued to take in any neighborhood they could to keep themselves financially viable in the years since. This clouded the 1968 agreement even further, because neighborhoods just across Highway 41 were not required to be members, but yet lived alot closer to places like Lake Grace than many of the Jonathan Association members.
One of the biggest changes occurred when the city of Chaska grew up to and beyond the borders of the Jonathan Development area. At this point, the pieces of land that belonged to the Jonathan Association were no longer landlocked by the farmland surrounding it and were opened up to the rest of Chaska. Lets be fair, there is nothing to stop anyone from stepping on pieces of land owned by the Jonathan Association. This clouded the issues even further.
As an FYI, the Clover neighborhood where I live not only would have been in a different Jonathan Village than Lake Grace, had the Jonathan Development developed as planned, but it was also platted well after the 889 number was reached.

Didn't the Jonathan
by seano
 in response to Should the city of Chaska release the Jonathan Association from its Lake Grace obligations?
Apr 14, 2009 | 9 9 recommendations | email to a friend | print

Didn’t the Jonathan Association signed agreements with the city agreeing to take on those responsibilities, though? The historical documents on your website talk with pride about how Jonatahn would be self-contained? Isn’t that how the whole thing was set up in the first place — that it wouldn’t be as reliant on the city as other neighborhoods?
Now you have every right in the world to think that it was dumb for the Association to take on those responsibilities (and I might be inclined to agree with you on that point) but that still doesn’t mean that the agreements should be ripped up after 40 years.

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