By John Bowler
>Ranch annual meeting Aug. 25
This year's Crooked River Ranch Club and Maintenance Association annual meeting will be a bit of a departure from previous meetings, which traditionally have been held over Labor Day weekend, the first weekend in September.
The 2012 version has been scheduled for the last Saturday of this month, Aug. 25, at MacPherson Park.
Association President Ben Johnson said last week that one of the functions of each annual meeting is to schedule the date for the next one. Last year's board, which included members who stayed on through this year, did their duty and scheduled this week's meeting.
Johnson went on to explain that changing the date was primarily an attempt to increase attendance at the meeting. In recent years, attendance at the annual meeting has been less than robust.
The underlying theory was that a number of Ranchers take advantage of the three-day Labor Day weekend to travel away from the Ranch and thus are unable to attend during the first weekend in September.
Ironically, previous homeowners association boards had kept the Labor Day weekend for the annual meeting because they felt many absentee member property owners took advantage of the three-day weekend to visit the Ranch to get updated on what was going on that might affect their property or plans to build and move to the Ranch.
Of course, both theories are partially valid; it's just that nobody has taken the trouble to find out which group is larger -- residents who travel away from the Ranch over Labor Day or absentee owners who travel to it. Maybe the upcoming meeting's attendance will shed further light upon the answer to that question.
The other scheduling change is the meeting will start at 9 a.m. instead of 10 a.m., which was generally the previous starting time.
There is little change in the agenda of annual meetings from year to year, as is the case for 2012. The agenda's available at www.crookeddriverranch.com under "Annual Meetings."
There will be one new wrinkle: the presentation of the Employee of the Year award to Brie Cisneros of the CRR Maintenance Department -- this year's honoree. Also instead of hotdogs and cold drinks being served as in recent years, Ranch Administrator Judy LaPora has arranged for hot coffee and water served with donuts and pastries which will be available during the proceedings.
Jefferson County Commissioner Mike Ahern is expected to attend to represent his colleagues according to Commission Chairman John Hatfield. County Sheriff Jim Adkins said that, circumstances permitting, he will be on hand, too.
Both Johnson and LaPora urged all Ranchers to attend the meeting, which will have an open forum for questions, opinions and suggestions by those willing to voice them. They said it is an excellent opportunity for give and take between Ranchers and their HOA board as well as county officials and Ranch staff who may attend.
Johnson added that one of the HOA board's objectives for the coming year will be to increase Ranch cooperation and interaction with Jefferson County officials at all levels.
He stressed that was not implied criticism of the County Commission or any departments. "I just think that both county and Ranch would benefit from a closer working relationship," he said.
For example, the Ranch Architectural Committee has requested assistance from the County Community Development Department in enforcement of Ranch codes, covenants and restrictions relative to issuance of county construction permits to Ranch residents.
The complex issue has been challenging to both entities. The enforcement of other Ranch CC&Rs, which don't fall under county code are similarly difficult.
The CRR Water Co.'s annual meeting will start upon conclusion of the HOA event.