|House||Agreed to pay||Payment Amount||House||Agreed to pay||Payment Amount|
|Currently YES=42 No=10|
|TOTAL PAID BY 41 RESIDENTS||96,500|
|TOTAL FROM SAVINGS||13.700|
|GRATIS FROM SEVILLANA||15,500|
|PREPAID FUTURE YEARS URB FEES||6,300|
|STILL NEEDED (As at 03 Apr 2010)||0.00
On Saturday the EGM took place to agree that the Urbanisation would go forward with the proposed new electric network using Inbradi as the installer. It was passed after an extended meeting. So, if you are in favour, please pay your 2250 Euro into the special bank account. details of which can be found HERE.
The other 3 proposals were also passed however the legality of the proposal to use existing community funds to offset the NO voters was challenged by the proxy representative of CB1. The Committee had taken specialist legal advice prior to the meeting and believe that all proposals were legal. The representative was therefore asked to put down her position on paper and a second visit would be made to the solicitors at yet more expense.
There are 13 people from the urbanisation who were not represented at the meeting by presence or proxy. There will be a list of the names and house number published shortly within the meeting minutes. But please, if you know the contact details for any of these, contact them and let them know how important it is and if they want the new installation, for them to pay the money into the dedicated urbanisation bank account before the 24th November.
One point that was not brought out at the meeting is that should the project go ahead and after the responsibility for maintenance has been passed across to Sevillana, applications for connection would be with Sevillana and therefore subject to their standard connection charge plus the 2250 euros urbanisation charge.
A couple of people have asked questions about the quotations we received. So here they are to download for any one who wants. CLICK HERE
Gavin had a the good idea of putting a picture of one of the manholes on the internet so here it is. CLICK HERE.
Some questions from Eva Wern-Edvardsson CB 30
There is some talk in the Swedish community that has to be addressed at the EGM.I have tried to summarize.
- The period for paying is very short. Some people have a problem with the yearly fee and how can they be expected to pay with such short notice?
- As we all have to pay before Nov. 24 some say that means that the urbanisation has to pay the contractor up front and not in instalments according to finished jobs and that is a reason for not voting yes. If the contractor goes bankrupt we all will lose our money.
- Why pay so early when we have not yet gotten a time schedule for the work?
- If the majority votes yes to the project, how can the urbanisation finance the properties that have not paid. In the end they will have to pay, but during the time, what will the urbanisation do? And if the urbanisation finance the project for the lacking properties with bank loans, what about interest? In the end they will have to pay that too, but will it now be taken from the yearly result or will the amount appear on the books as a liability for each property that has not paid?
Response to Eva from The President – Jo Taylor
- That is rather unfair, the matter was muted at the AGM and a maximum amount of 3000 euros was identified. This gave people time to organise their finances and in addition the actual EGM calling papers will have been in peoples hands for 2 months before the last payment due date.
- The urbanisation does not have to pay the contractor up front, he will be paid in the normal stage payments as is common practice in Spain. The reason why the money has to be paid up front is that we can not commit to the Installer until we know we have the money to pay him. If we allow the residents to pay in stage payments and anyone failed to pay their instalments, the legal responsibility for the outstanding debt would fall to the President and we could not allow that to happen.
- We are unable to get a time schedule, until we commit to the Contractor and as explained in (2) above, we haven’t the money to do that.
- One of the ways to finance a number of the properties that don’t pay is by using existing excess community funds and on the second agenda there will be a proposal for this to be allowed. The number of residents that this will cover is increasing as more funds are received for this year’s community fees and an up to date number will be given at the EGM.
The bank has been approached to see if they would lend the Urbanisation Community a loan. This is not possible as the Urbanisation Community has no assets and could be disbanded at any time, leaving the bank with no means of recovering their money. However, we have discussed the possibility of individual residents taking out a loan at preferential rates, whether or not they bank with Unicaja and the Unicaja Bank Manager will be giving a presentation of example costs over a varying number of years, i.e. 1 year, 2 years 5 years etc. The Bank Manager from Unicaja will explain what is involved at the EGM prior to the voting of any proposal, so the residents fully understand the implications.
If anyone has any questions for the Bank Manager, it would be useful if they contacted a committee member now and ask these, to ensure they get a full and final answer. If preferable, please contact Noellia (Bank Manager) at Unicaja La Trocha.
Some questions from Gavin Ross EG20
Regarding the www.caballoblancoyelgato.com Blog dated 13 Sept 09 and subsequent call EGM call papers, I have a couple point requiring clarification regarding various Blog entries relating to the electrical installation:
- Blog entry for 3-Apr-09 makes reference to the letter signed by Jo Taylor and John Newton addressed to Sevillana-Endesa (S-E).
Blog entry goes onto state that representatives for S-E “explained that in law they were only bound to take over and accept private electrical works after 1982”.
My question is was this explanation given verbally or was it stated in writing?
If it was stated in writing can the letter please be posted on the Blog prior to the EGM.
- Blog entry 21-Apr-09 refers to 4 companies having been identified for the presupuesto.
Blog entry 28 May indicates that all 4 presupuestos had been received and that of Inbradi had been chosen.
As the whole matter of the electrical installation was directed by all members at AGM, surely it is a matter of all members in EGM to decide which contractor to proceed with, if any, at all.
Indeed the Minutes of the AGM do indicate that “An EGM will be called once all costs are known” – the clear implication being that it would be for all members to decide the way forward.
The Agenda for the EGM is worded as follows:
1. “APPROVAL FOR NEW ELECTRICAL INSTALLATION”
2. “ELECTION OF PROJECT INSTALLATION MANAGER”
When the Committee has spent 4,500 Euros of community funds to obtain these presupuestos, being asked to only consider 1 quote and the manner in which the meeting agenda is worded presents more of a “fait accompli” than something the members are being asked to consider and vote upon.
Surely, members should be entitled to see all quotes and make their decision based on all of the available information. Indeed, following the debacle concerning the amount of money spent on the new post boxes, the powers of the Committee to decide on any matter involving a capital cost were restricted to those not exceeding 1,000 Euros otherwise the decision to commit to teh capital cost had to be decided by all members in AGM/EGM.
- Blog entry 10-Aug-09 refers to a possible joint initiative for the roads and the electrics to be done at the same time under the PGOU plan. Relating to this matter, the entry goes on to say that “We will keep you informed of developments prior to holding a general meeting to decide on the way forward”.
The recent Minutes indicate that is not going to be possible prior to teh EGM but with the matter having been perviously mentioned in teh Blog as something tahtw as going to happen I think it would be helpful for all concerned that teh Blog also makes mention of it.
- On a separate but related matter – if there are indeed problems with the supply due to overloading then this situation has been exacerbated by the approval of past committees to allow new houses to be built on the urbanisation.
It seems entirely unfair that the majority of us living in what are the original houses comprising the urbanisation should be penalised by being asked to pay out to increase the potency of the supply to cover such additional usage caused by new housing.
I appreciate that the letter to S-E referred to above re Blog 3-Apr-09 touches on the matter of S-E having connected 3 new houses to the existing supply, however it seems to me that S-E cannot have it both ways – they cannot say it is a private urbanisation installation and refuse to send engineers to repair it BUT also connect new houses to it.
This point takes me back to the AGM held on 14 February 2009. Myself and Max Oberg moved that the committee take legal opinion to clarify the position. This is referred to in the minutes of the AGM (albeit that only Max Oberg’s name is mentioned in this connection).
I clearly recall expressing the view that S-E is responsible for the supply up to the point it enters the meter supply box for each individual property (this point was agreed by Max Oberg and Dee Riccio, Sheila Buckle and others)
At the AGM it was suggested that it would be best not to rub up S-E the wrong way by introducing lawyers into it and the counter motion made, and agreed, that estimates of costs be obtained and once it was known what these costs were then a decision could be taken as to what to do i.e. to proceed with the installation or not as the case may be and consider again the possibility of taking legal opinion.
The Minutes of the AGM are very selective on what was discussed and present a somewhat skewed view that everyone was happy.
Holder of Power of Attorney for Mrs M.L. Ross
Response to Gavin from Project Manager – John Newton
Hello Gavin – Thank you for your comments, it is always good to keep the committee on their toes, although I am surprised you did not bring up these points shortly after each Blog entry, rather than wait up to 6 months to comment. Especially, considering I visited you on two occasions to discuss the project and indeed asked you for advice on any possible installers to request a quotation from and no mention was made of any of these points. It would have been much easier to respond at that time and perhaps include additional actions to satisfy your requirements. In fact I would have been delighted of your help with the project.
The answers are as follows :
- There is no written documentation only verbal confirmation from a very senior member of S-E.
- I do not believe this would be practical to have everyone decide on which contractor to use. In effect everyone at the EGM will decide if the contractor that has been chosen is acceptable by approving or not approving the proposal. Also S-E would not consider contributing to the materials until we had certified which contractor we were using as they had to be S-E approved. If unapproved, S-E would not have considered offering the free materials, which in turn meant we could not get to the actual cost per household.
With reference to your point in the AGM Minutes stating “An EGM will be called once all costs are known” – that is indeed what we have done, an EGM has been called because ALL costs are now known. You, along with anyone else are welcome to see all the quotations at any time and have been since 28 May (If you CLICK HERE you will be able to download a zip file).
This is not a “fait accompli”, as by definition that would mean people have not got a choice, they have a choice and it will be a democratic vote. I also hope you will put yourself forward as the project manager to take the installation forward (if it is approved) as I am about to start a major house reform and feel it would be a good project for you
- On the PGOU plan – There is nothing else to report as I understand it has still to be approved by the Town Hall. The Blog is there to give information; at the moment there is no further information to give.
- Indeed I agree it is unfair, but I can not answer for the actions of previous committees and defend the position we are now in, we are only trying to put things right and move forward. But do remember the current supply network is in a very poor and possibly dangerous state. I believe the problems at Sheila Buckle’s house were potentially very dangerous had Sheila been using something electrical at the time of the electrical back serge. We can go over and over old points but ultimately something needs doing to safeguard the residents. Maybe take 5 minutes and lift the lid on the man hole in the garden of EG No 14 by the entrance and you will see the state of the cabling.
I believe we said at the AGM that we would state our case in writing to Sevillana and this could then possibly be used to base a case for taking legal action against them after the installation was complete. You may be willing to slog it out in the courts with S–E, at great expense and indeed this option is still available and could be put to the AGM next year should the installation then be finished and a committee is voted to serve who would be willing to manage this. But, I and hopefully enough people on the Urbanisation want to take away the possible danger and allow everyone to use whatever modern equipment safely in their houses without affecting others as soon as possible.
Response to Gavin from The President – Jo Taylor
Thank you for your email of points for clarification regarding the forthcoming EGM and the electrical installations.
It is a shame you have not been able to be more active on the Urbanisation Committee, as I am sure your presence at meetings might have made you more confident that our deliberations were extensive and undertaken with the best of intentions for the residents of Caballo Blanco and El Gato.
John Newton and a small group of other interested people had lengthy negotiations with Sevillana-Endesa and various firms to sort out the best way to go forward with a proposal for the electrical project. During this time they also spoke to various interested residents, and I believe the project to date has been conducted openly and within the guidelines agreed at this year’s AGM.
Nothing is as yet laid in stone, and the project will be put before the EGM, not as a “fait accompli”, as you might think, but rather as a recommendation of the Committee after a year of intensive work.
If the Committee had not brought the project to this point, with costs compared; required presupuestos sought, and a realistic plan ready for the consideration of the residents I do not believe we would have ever had a chance of moving forward with the horrendous and potentially dangerous electrical problems we have faced in the past. The logistics of asking all residents to consider and choose would not have been practical, and essentially beyond the understanding of many residents. As it was, the Committee considered in depth the advice of those familiar with this type of project and now bring their recommendations to the EGM. I am confident that this should be seen as the role of an elected Committee.
Further, the AGM (2009) passed a motion (Item 14 a) that 4,500 Euros be spent on the survey for the electrical up-date. In questioning this, I was a little unhappy that you referred to a “debacle” in relation to the letter boxes, which was another considered Committee decision made after numerous complaints and problems, and at that time within the remit of the current Committee.
As with any consultations with the Ayuntamiento, we are never privy to their time-line for the implementation of their projects. I have visited the Town hall at least twice a year since I have been Urbanisation President, spoken with the Mayor on each occasion, been promised all sorts of things that never eventuate and have learnt that despite my friendly relationship with him and his Councillors, our Urbanisation has to wait its turn.
Finally, it has never been the right of this or any other Urbanisation committee to approve the building of houses on private land. If a person owns land in an Urbanisation, I regret that they are entitled to build on it whether we like it on not, just as they are to undertake renovations and alterations. We do have the right as neighbours to ensure that they no not encroach on Urbanisation land, but that is all. How I wish it was otherwise. Similarly, Sevillana connects them to the electricity supply without any consultation with us. The trying and virtually impossible task of taking the giant Sevillana-Endesa company to task in court is beyond what I feel able to do, and I would suggest beyond the financial capabilities of our Urbanisation when such meagre fees are paid annually. It was not discussed by the Committee.
Our minutes accurately reflect the meetings we hold. We are all unpaid volunteers and most of us do not have the skills to navigate the minefield of litigation or nor even do we possess the technical expertise required for this project. On behalf of the residents we seek advice, and present the advice we are given, in good faith.
I wish you would consider bringing your obvious expertise to the Committee as a member in future. You might find it a thankless task, as I often do being the elected “janitor” but no more. My powers are limited and the work stressful and difficult. We need more expertise and would welcome it.