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Community association directors hold annual dues to small increase in 2013

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A combination of increased expenses and reduced membership have bumped up by $6 the proposed annual dues that retirees here pay for access to their elaborate amenities.

By MELODY JAMESON

SUN CITY CENTER – A combination of increased expenses and reduced membership have bumped up by $6 the proposed annual dues that retirees here pay for access to their elaborate amenities.

If approved when SCC Community Association members cast ballots during their annual election early in December, the yearly dues in 2013 will be $269 per person. In other area communities featuring far fewer recreational facilities, similar membership fees are paid by residents each month or on a quarterly basis throughout the year.

However, with the increase, the SCC Community Association’s $2,960,400 budget will be balanced in 2013, Neil Rothfeld, CA board treasurer, noted this week. The association nine-member board, along with a professional community manager, oversees the community’s common areas including three major campuses hosting a wide variety of athletic and activity-oriented, intellectual and entertainment facilities.

A 2013 fiscal snapshot projects total income of $2,877,000 and total expenditures of $2,960,400, producing a shortfall offset by carryover savings from the 2012 budget.

Rothfeld, a former corporate financial officer who has been handling the board’s budgetary business for several years, pointed out that the income and expenditures plan for the coming year must and does accommodate increases in the wages, taxes and benefits category, rising insurance premiums, costs related to maintenance and supplies as well as to maintenance contracts, plus administrative expenses.

All are basic necessities, imperative for operation, upkeep and protection of the swimming pools and ball fields, meeting rooms and club headquarters plus a multi-purpose community hall, that characterize the 50-year-old community.

Conversely, balancing the increased expenses are savings realized in several areas of the 2012 budget, including utilities, professional services and entertainment-related outgo.

The second aspect leading to the necessary dues increase is a reduced dues-paying membership, Rothfeld said. With greater frequency, SCC homes are being purchased and occupied by single individuals rather than a couple, with the result that a single dues assessment from the household accrues to the association rather than dues for two persons. In 2012, the CA individual membership dropped by 200 persons, compared with 2011, he added.

The new dues figure of $269 per individual member – or $ .50 per person per month - if approved, would be divvied up to support four different budgetary categories, the treasurer said. The largest portion, by far, - $231 – is applied to general operational funding while $30 goes to the replacement reserve , $5 is designated for the furniture and equipment reserve and $3 is set aside for the hurricane deductible reserve.

Another portion of the CA budget for 2013 shows that the Capital Fund, in which $1500 is deposited from sale of each SCC home to a first-time buyer in the community, will stand at slightly over $1.5 million on January 1, 2013. By the end of that year, the fund is projected to reach or top $2 million.

Community association members will vote the proposed dues increase up or down on December 4 and 5 when they also chose among four candidates to fill three seats on the CA board of directors.

The complete budget can be viewed on the association’s website at www.suncitycenter.org under the Sun City Center category on the left side of the screen, under Community Association on the next screen and then by accessing the CA budget meeting 2013 on the following page.

Copyright 2012 Melody Jameson

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