Getting involved with the community is an available option for owner-members in Sun City West and while nine volunteers sit on the Recreation Center of Sun City West Governing Board, the opportunity at the committee level is very much open.
While committees have already been established, new members can be added and owner-members who are interested in joining have to complete a committee application form online at suncitywest.com. The committees include Properties, Chartered Clubs, Budget and Finance, Sports Pavilion and Bowling, and Golf.
New board member Roberta Davidson is the Properties Committee chairwoman. She said most people believe this committee points out what needs to be repaired, but that’s not the case.
“Staff comes and shows us maintenance issues that are needed and deferred maintenance and we also work with any of the clubs that want to expand and that comes through properties as well,” she explained. “Right now the priority is what do the clubs need and are they willing to help pay for that. Some of the clubs say we have no money.”
She said the Stained Glass Club is a good example of clubs getting involved. After the space utilization study in 2017, club members wanted to change the space and had no money. But members got together and raised funds and have a new space now that fits their needs.
“It was a combination of priorities and them coming to the table with some funds to help make it go forward,” Ms. Davidson said.
She added collaboration is key and she is looking forward to working with each club.
Another new board member, Anne Brown is the chairwoman for the Budget and Finance Committee. The panel reviews financial reports each month. But Ms. Brown explained it’s not the job of the committee to nit-pick every line of the budget, as RCSCW Chief Financial Officer Pete Finneli and the accounting department don’t need the committee telling them how to do the job.
“I have a great committee with three returning and three new people with good financial backgrounds from a variety of industries and people who can all look at things with open-mindedness and good eyes,” she said.
Ms. Brown said the board ultimately approves what goes forward with the budget and it’s the job of the committee to look at the big picture of what has to be done to keep Sun City West as a viable, vibrant, welcoming community where people want to live.
“We want to stay fiscally responsible and have the reserves at a point where special assessments are not necessary,” she said. “We are hovering above looking down on the whole picture. Where the people involved in day-to-day operations are keeping track of the mechanics of running and keeping bills paid and doing what needs to be done.”
Ms. Brown encourages residents to get involved, especially those constantly criticizing the community. She added there is always room for critiques, suggestions and improvements.
Member Bob Carneiro is the new chairman of the Golf Committee. After reaching out to former chairman Tim Hurley, he said there are several important topics this fiscal year, including golf fee increase, golf course alterations, Arizona Department of Water Resource mandates, golf policy changes and possible changes due to COVID-19. With golf being the second largest generator of operational revenue, the number of golf rounds and revenues will be monitored by the committee.
“In the months and years ahead, the golf operations will be dealing with two major projects. The golf courses are all getting older and the irrigation systems at the courses will not only need everyday repairs, but will need major replacement,” Mr. Carneiro said. “At the same time the Arizona Water Authority is changing the rules for groundwater use, which will mean we may be limited in the amount of water that can be used for irrigation. With this in mind there may have to be alterations done to landscaping on each course.”
Mr. Carneiro said it’s important for the community to stay involved in the decisions that have to be made so people making the decisions know the concerns, needs and wants of the community.
Board member Donna Maloney is the Chartered Clubs Committee chairwoman, which is the link between the 104 chartered clubs and the association administration.
“We are the clubs’ first resource in all matters,” Ms. Maloney said. “The committee reviews and makes recommendations for updates to the rules, regulations and procedures for chartered clubs. We are fact finders and oversight.”
On this year’s plate includes capital projects, membership, financial contracts, accompanied guests and virtual meetings.
The Sports Pavilion and Bowling Committee is led by chairwoman Sue Fitszimons. The committee is a liaison between the governing board and bowling members of the association, as well as other users of the Sports Pavilion. The committee reviews and makes recommendations regarding the general maintenance and operations of the facility. Additionally, recommendations have to be made to RCSCW General Manager Bill Schwind with potential changes of bowling fees.
“The committee will revisit the plan for a ‘gathering place/game room’ located in the current shuffleboard room,” Ms. Fitzsimons said.
She agrees community involvement is extremely important in what type of usage is wanted inside the community room and not solely for an individual club.