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Sunday, April 20, 2008
New Coto de Caza Survey Simply a Ruse?
A government which robs Peter to pay Paul can always depend on the support of Paul. --George Bernard Shaw
April 20, 2008
From California to Florida and from Los Angeles to Santa Margarita, state after state and city after city are reporting budget shortfalls, consequently government officials scramble to figure out which services to cut – apparently not so in the CZ Master Association.
Whereas in Laguna Woods Village residents have long worked with the notion of shared costs, where residents equally share the cost of community facilities with certain exceptions such as the use of the stables, golf courses and garden centers where users pay part of the tab to either control use or the cost of maintaining high cost facilities, the CZ Master Association continues to subsidizes the horse trails, the sports park and the Estates and Villages associations.
Former CZ board member Joseph Morabito has volunteered to conduct a professional survey nominally worth some $25,000, gratis. However, the CZ board not only has refused to consider Mr. Morabito’s offer, but also has decided to conduct its own survey – online. Given the CZ board’s track record, including the recently mangled elections that would have brought the association’s CC&R in compliance with state law, it is highly likely that said survey will be used to maintain the status quo – All we need to do is look at any political survey to see how the incompetent or the unscrupulous and take an otherwise good process and bastardize it.
But all is not lost – in the recent CZ Newsletter, the president is asking residents to volunteer their email address to save on expenses, say some $1,500 on postage, whereas the association could save $25,000 using the Morabito’s solution, and residents could be sure of the quality of the results.
As --P.J. O'Rourke (Civil Libertarian) might say: Giving money and power to government is like giving whiskey and car keys to teenage boys.,
To be clear, I have shared the last survey document with the current Board. They have the model we used last time. And, there is technology today including Zoomerang and other sources that we use too for survey implementation that is much cheaper and easier to use. The only question is does it provide the cross referencing that we could do in the past using paper surveys and manual input to get the tabulation. Matter a fact in meeting with our Consulting Group recently, I asked the very same question because we have switched to this new technology. Without the cross referencing of data to see who is saying what when surveys are done anonymously, the data is less valuable. Each year, I get a form from my HOA in Reno asking me to update my contact information including e-mail address so the Association can communicate without postage. That is smart since stamps now cost 41 cents for a simple letter and I understand postage is going up again. Joseph Morabito
P.S. The subsidy issue is real which is the reason why Woodbridge in Irvine, one of the nation’s biggest HOA’s, charges fairly high user fees for everything; otherwise their dues would go through the roof which will happen in CZ if we don’t do the same
Conducting a survey without cross-referencing, as you noted, invariably yields results lacking a call to action and is as relevant as the coverage of the local media of the CZ CC&R amendments that would have led directly to Direct Popular Elections, or as useful as the reading of the UPS status and the CHP report during the CZ board of directors open meetings: Much Ado about nothing.
We contend that for a nation to try to tax itself into prosperity is like a man standing in a bucket and trying to lift himself up by the handle. --Winston Churchill
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