A large group of Tellico Village residents were updated Thursday on a variety of pending and potential projects in the community.
The HomeOwners Association of Tellico Village held an open, or State of the Village, meeting at 4 p.m. Thursday at the Community Church at Tellico Village.
The church sanctuary was nearly full of residents who got information about the rebuilding of the Tanasi Golf Course Clubhouse and future goals for 2023. The event featured presentations from HOA President Mark Pantley, Sherry Le with Neighborhood Watch, Loudon County Sheriff Jimmy Davis, Property Owners Association Board President Marty Inkrott and Tellico Village Chief Executive Officer Chet Pillsbury.
“I want to be sure that you all understand that there is nothing that I do or say tonight, or any other time, that is not in an effort to benefit you as a community. Period,” Pillsbury told the crowd.
Pillsbury gave an update regarding the state of Tanasi and the Tanasi Restoration Committee’s timeline for rebuilding after the clubhouse was lost to a fire Aug. 27.
While most residents have suggested keeping one building at the location, Pillsbury emphasized all community input is being considered by the committee.
An architect who lives in the Village provided the committee free expertise to get the project started. The group is now developing project boundaries and a “wish list” that a paid architect can use to maximize the property available.
A projected timeline for the coming year includes reviewing architectural work with community members and later sending out construction bids.
“I hope by August that we’ve got a contractor and we’re arguing over schedule,” Pillsbury said. “That’s my goal. If I really had my way we’d be breaking ground in December, and is that aggressive? Yes, but I don’t think the community can go a long time without having another building back in place. So, we’re not playing. We are trying to get it done.”
Pillsbury showed draft drawings with more square footage than the previous clubhouse and a larger parking area that could accommodate up to 434 vehicles.
Draft designs of the bottom, interior and top floors include a deck for seating at least 100 people outside, a larger kitchen, golf space on the bottom floor and meeting spaces on the top floor with an elevator to access food service.
Residents inquired about building costs and money from insurance.
Insurance is projected to cover $3.9 million of costs, Pillsbury said, adding he has “no clue” on the total cost for replacing the structure.
When addressing other subjects, Pillsbury spoke about trash service and evaluating the contract between the POA and Republic Services. He said officials have evaluated a number of trash companies and their prices “are just insane.”
He said the Village will probably be with Republic for another year as the evaluation process continues and the POA finds a way to avoid non-compete clauses.
Pillsbury reflected on growth in the area, suggesting the pace had returned to levels experienced before the pandemic.
The POA continues to work on a water and sewer plan after Jacobs Engineering suggested a $13 million investment over the next eight years to upgrade pumps, add a pumping station and improve or add feeder lines. Changing main pipelines from 12 to 16 inches can reduce stress on other pipes with less likelihood of failures, he said. The presentation listed the cost of such an upgrade at $4 million.
The sewer project to implement a new pumping station, pumps and holding tank received a $2.1 million grant from the state to assist in the $5.4 million project. Pillsbury said the POA plans to spend $1 million in 2023 on that project.
A recent POA study about financial reserves needed for the Village was also a focus of discussion. Inkrott said the study found rebuilding Village amenities today would cost roughly $400 million.
Pillsbury said paying attention to financial reserves is the newest and likely the most misunderstood process in the Village. He said he has lived through seven hurricanes in one summer in a previous community and has had to rebuild amenities.
“I understand the horrible cost and impact of not having reserves and not being ready to take care of something when it breaks,” Pillsbury said. “Because you usually don’t get somebody running through the street saying ‘building’s going to burn down’ … Doesn’t happen. Yet, we had one.
“As we build these reserves and as we look at the reserve studies — and Marty gave you some pretty horrific numbers. They’re true. That’s how much we have in assets,” he added. “We need to keep in mind that these reserves are there to protect you.”
Pillsbury said the POA will be reviewing contracts with food services and Loudon Utilities Board. He also said he would like to improve signage in the community, create partnerships with Loudon and Monroe counties, examine employee payroll and benefits, review if the POA should become a corporation or a city and get one of the plans for land management off the ground.
Inkrott said 2023 goals for the POA board will be incorporated into the new CEO’s goals.
He reviewed the accomplishments of 2022, including the opening of the Pickleplex, a study of reserves and the addition of a new dock with 36 slips at Kahite. A new dock in Tanasi is expected in 2023, he said.
The finance advisory committee recommended an increase of the monthly resident assessment by 9.1%, which meant going from $153.83 to $167.85. Inkrott said the increase is needed because of economic uncertainty, the Tanasi rebuild, projected sewer and water projects and more.
Inkrott said the POA boasts $15.5 million in reserves, including $2.6 million in insurance money already received for Tanasi.
Pantley opened his presentation with the accomplishments of the HOA in 2022. He said membership is at 1,864 households, with 253 added in the last year. A focus on social events, Litter Angels and other topics were highlighted.
For 2023, Pantley said a state of the county presentation and other forums are being planned. He said the goal is to increase membership, support relaunching of the A&E (Aesthetic and Environment) Committee and evaluate HOA brand identity.
Le said 2023 goals for Neighborhood Watch included continuing to add residents to the Google Group and expanding the vacation/away program in the main Village. She said accomplishments for 2022 included fully launching in the main Village in May, working to have a “rest stop” for Monroe County deputies at the Kahite entrance building and setting up the Google Group email distribution.
Davis said he encourages those in the Village to join the Google Group for the Neighborhood Watch. He said the Loudon County Sheriff’s Office changed tactics last year to include overlapping patrols. He said the office designated in September to have at least one, if not two, deputies patrol Tellico Parkway and neighborhoods.
He said plans are to revitalize the COPS program, with a brunch planned for members.
One resident expressed concern about speeding in the area near Chota Recreation Center. Le said she would address the matter with Davis. Pillsbury recommended residents should simply slow down.
Another resident asked if an additional traffic light and turn lanes are being considered along Highway 444. Pillsbury said he intends to talk with the Tennessee Department of Transportation to request more traffic lights and will add turn lanes to the list as well.