Boy Scouts of America Centennial Day of Service this Saturday October 7th

Boy Scouts of Bellingham’s Troop 4019 and community volunteers will be participating in the Boy Scouts of America Centennial Day of Service.  Community service projects include cleaning and maintaining trails and campground.  This year’s projects include cleaning the Sudden Valley Campground and the Am/PM Trail adjacent to Lake Whatcom.  Assistant Scoutmaster Stan Godek coordinated the event with community volunteer Sue Noyes Nuyda and Sudden Valley General Manager Mitch Waterman.  Boy Scouts and community members will meet at the old Sudden Valley campground office near Gate 13 on Lake Louise Drive at 0800, this Saturday, October 7, 2017.  The event will be conducted rain or shine, so appropriate outerwear should be worn.

Traffic Update

When?             10/4/17, from 8am-10:30am

Where?           Rocky Ridge, near southern section of Sudden Valley Dr (low numbers)

What?             There will be partial blockage to the road.  Please follow signs and directions from flaggers while a new home foundation gets poured.  Thank you for your patience.

BOD President Addresses Rescinding of BOD “Policy”

On Thursday, September 28th, the Board of Directors voted to rescind a policy regarding Non-Emergency Spending Limits. The following information was fully discussed at the meeting, which was recorded:

  • The 2010 policy “requiring” a member vote on, or delay until the next AGM of, non-emergency spending over $35,000 was poorly worded, especially in that the meaning of “true emergency” was undefined & could only be interpreted by a Board;
  • It was made by a Board and could be changed by a Board;
  • It has not clearly applied to any significant Board spending decision made during the 6 years I’ve lived here and has never once during that time, until this month, been cited as a limitation or requirement by any Board or community member, including folks who wrote it and still live here;
  • It clearly violated the Bylaw/RCW-required budget approval process;
  • It clearly violated the Bylaws-specified Board responsibility to protect assets, and its full, independent authority to borrow;
  • It may even have been an unlawful shifting of RCW-required Board corporate fiscal responsibility & decision-making authority.

The whole document needed serious reworking, perhaps even Bylaw changes, if its intent were to be implemented rationally & lawfully.

-L.W. Brown

President’s Letter – 2017 In Review

Much more CRRRF repair work, and more upgraded levels of maintenance, will still remain unfunded even if both proposed ballot measures pass this November, but we have had great success this year using the funds we already receive:

  • Roads construction is almost final, and we will be able to return 100% of the $43,397 contingency to the Roads Capital account. The project also came in substantially under-budget, which will provide an additional return of funds to Roads Capital (exact amount not yet final, but expected to be tens of thousands). The worst failed portions of roads were repaired (Gates 2, 3, 5, 9, and 13), in addition to hot-patching the “worst of the worst” potholes. Stop signs are now easier to notice with new striping. Where road painting was found unacceptable, touch-up painting has already started—at contractor expense.
  • “Daylighting” (replacing part) of Culvert 19A is on schedule, within budget, and the area will be hydro-seeded and replanted in October. This project was imposed on the Association by the state and county, and – since it involved a culvert – was funded from Roads Capital.
  • However, another unexpected, potentially expensive, road issue is being assessed at Gate 28: stabilization of the near-vertical hillside along the roadway that had a rockslide over the winter.
  • Roadside vegetation work in Gate 5 is nearing completion, and cut areas have already begun looking better after summer growth. In fact, several areas that had been scheduled for reseeding did not need it due to heavy natural regrowth. Approximately 18,000 square feet of road side areas in Gate 3 and 5 were hydro-seeded in mid-September (with forecasted rain).
  • An arborist report for Treehouse Park and elsewhere in Gate 3 lead staff to suggest removal of all trees Hazard Ranked 8 and 9 (the worst we still have)—an unusually large number are in the Treehouse Park neighborhood. The county has accepted a single permit application for removal of these 53 trees, saving on permit costs, however the poor quality timber will be of low value.
  • The County made a preliminary decision not to require a rain-water management system for the proposed Temporary Storage Structure replacing Barn 6, saving the Association about $40,000.
  • Design Contracts have been issued for the Removal of Barn 6 plus installation of the Temporary Storage, as well as for Soft Armoring the Marina Spit (now almost half eroded) and Marina Fire Standpipe (newly required by the Fire Marshal, though not yet officially “noticed,” giving us more time to prepare), plus new Gangways (in part to support the new fire system).
  • Preliminary analysis of ground water samples from Area Z is promising, and further analysis of soil and water samples is due soon: it appears probable that additional, expensive clean-up measures can be avoided.
  • As of August 31st, the Association is net cash-positive in operations by $12,000 (after UDR funding). We are now expecting to finish 2017 with an operational profit—much better than our spending plan that had projected a loss of $27,000. This is the second year in a row we will have finished profitable despite a conservative estimate of loss. We are managing our money tightly since the recent spending-plan estimates have been conservative. Increased profitability is also directly tied to improved collections and increased home building.
  • Golf revenue through September 14th is $652,151—2% over the $641,458 earned in 2016. A very busy late August and early September dramatically reduced our green fee shortfall.

Despite these successes, we do still need the Special Assessments to pass this year in order to fully fund the roads as our Covenants require, and to improve the maintenance of our common areas, especially including parks, that is also required.

Thank you for the opportunity to serve.

-Larry Brown, SVCA Board President

2017 AGM Ballots Mailed

The Ballots and the Measures & Candidate information packet for the 2017 Annual General Meeting were mailed to members on Friday, September 29th. Please keep an eye out for a white 6″ x 9″ envelope with Sudden Valley logo, and ‘Official Ballot’ stamped on the front.

Just a reminder that ballots are to be returned to the locked ballot box outside the admin area.

Please contact with any questions.

Pothole and Repair Status

Members may notice quite a few Grey spray painted areas on roads areas that still require repair work.  All damaged road areas through out the Association were marked that way early this year. The potholes rated as the most hazardous requiring immediate repair have now been repaired. Those that remain were not slated for repair in this round of road work.  The work completed this year sets the stage for micro sealing roads next year if the Roads Measure on the November AGM ballot passes.  The remaining areas marked in grey will be repaired with the micro seal, and some pot holes will be repaired before a micro sealant is applied.

Please contact Mitch Waterman if you have questions or desire to discuss.

Candidate Forum Clarification

SVCA held two candidate forums, on 09/23 and 09/27. The Candidate Forum was a space for Candidates to gather and community members to listen to the responses to a pre-determined set of questions regarding our community. Each Candidate answered the same questions. The audio and video to the 09/27 forum can be found here: 

The Association would like to provide clarification on three items that were incorrectly stated at the forum:

  • Inaccurate candidate statement: The 2018 Operations Budget is not balanced
  • Accurate response: The 2018 Operations Budget is balanced with no additional funding from UDR (Undesignated Reserves Fund) as shown on page 6, column 2 of the 2017 Annual General Election Booklet (

A balanced budget, means the amount of income and expense anticipated is the same, so net income is zero.


  • Inaccurate candidate statement: The UDR fund is where monies go into that have pre-allocation to either operations, CRRRF, or Roads.
  • Accurate response: The Undesignated Reserve Fund, UDR, is where money collected in the current year for prior year operational dues is deposited. Money spent from this account must have prior approval by the Board.  It is a Board designated operations fund.


  • Inaccurate candidate statement: It is in audited financial statements that we have to get a vote of the membership to borrow.
  • Accurate response: This is the opposite of what it states in the audited financial statements. The 2016 Audited Financial Statements, Note 7, “If additional funds are needed, however, the Association has the right to borrow funds…”. This verbiage has been included in the audited financial statements for at least the past 10 years.  Copies of the 2015 and 2016 Audited Financial Statements can be found here:

Candidate Forum #2 Video

The Communications Committee experimented with live streaming last night at the Candidate Forum. Community members were notified of the live streaming event via our email newsletter (“E-Blast”). If you do not receive these emails, please subscribe at

The video can be seen below. Thank you for your patience as we work towards improving both our communication and our streaming capabilities!

Traffic Update:

When?             9/29/17, from 12pm-6pm

Where?           Valley Crest Way at Sudden Valley Dr

What?             Please use the access near Ridge Crest Way to get to Valley Crest Way.  We appreciate your patience while a new homeowner works to get equipment onsite to complete the building of their home.