Baca Grande Citizens' Action Network
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Friday, December 19 2014 @ 05:55 PM PMST

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Election Results

The 2014 Annual POA Membership Meeting was held November 5th at the POA Hall and the results of the Board Election were announced.

Here are the POA Board Election results for the 3 open seats:

Sugandha Brooks:  886 votes for a 3-year term

Joanna Theriault:  876 for a 1-year term and

Matie Belle Lakish:  859 also for a 1-year term.

Eric Karlstrom:  460

Steve Smilack:  257

The 1-year term amounts were to finish terms that had not been completed.

The 2015 budget and the issue of Hammersmith Management are yet to be determined.  

We’ll keep you posted.

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Local Property Owner vs. Absentee Property Owner Issue

This article is from the most recent POA Newsletter that should be hitting everyone's mailbox soon.

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The majority of your current Board has growing concerns about long-standing contentiousness with some local property owners who feel their interests are far more important and should carry more weight than the interests of other owners who do not live in the Baca, only live here part-time, or just own vacant land. 

These local owners feel they represent the Baca “community,” that they have more at stake and more of a commitment which should result in their votes carrying more weight than the votes of the rest of the POA property owners.  This would disenfranchise absentee members and deprive them of equal input about what goes on here. 

The best way to prevent this attitude towards absentee owners is for absentee property owners to get more involved in “their association.”  Everyone needs to participate in elections! Simply take the time to vote!  Don’t disregard the elections.  YOUR VOTE MATTERS A GREAT DEAL!

To give you a sense of what has been going on locally, on March 13, 2014 these members submitted a letter signed by about 90 property owners that included a list of “requests” to your new Board.  This letter is attached to the Board meeting minutes of 3-27-2014 and is available on the POA web site.  One section of this letter sums this issue up as follows:

          “The community perceives three levels of community investment, with the highest level being residence owners who also live here, secondly residence owners who rent to community members and thirdly, those who own undeveloped land. This is also validated by the state property tax valuation. Members who own homes and live here are most likely to be impacted the most heavily by wildfire and other natural and man-made disasters.

           The POA Property Owners who are more significantly committed to the community by full-time residence should be given greater consideration when there is physical risk to their homes and personal safety.

          Members request: The POA Board of Directors to form, support and empower a task-force of residential property owners to fully investigate a variable dues structure that will recognize varying levels of community investment.   Long-term planning should include a governing documents change to give weighted voting to local homeowners.”

 The Baca POA is an unusual type of homeowner association.   Most HOAs have the majority of members living in the development, so member participation in the affairs of the association is more easily accomplished.  As you know, it’s the exact opposite in our POA with the majority of members living outside of the Baca.

This situation creates problems when it comes to making any major changes to how the POA operates because it requires a simple or super majority of members to vote for changes.   

After reviewing past POA newsletters, it is clear that previous boards have routinely cut corners around these voting requirements in order to get what they wanted accomplished.  In other words, they didn’t meet the voting requirements they needed so they just said they did and proceeded to make the changes they wanted.     

The majority of your current Board doesn’t believe anything justifies violating our governing documents or state laws.  All property owners should be treated as fairly as possible and absentee owners’ concerns should be given equal weight to local members’ needs and concerns.  After all, this is the Baca Grande “Property Owners Association,” not the Baca Grande “Resident Owner Only Association.”

This local vs. absentee owner problem can be easily resolved if all members simply participate in your elections to make ALL your voices heard! 

As you will read in the next article, a few local members went through enormous effort, time and aggravation to secure a court order ensuring all members have fair and honest elections. (All told, it took them over two years and they did it without an attorney)  So please, don’t ever throw your ballots in the trash.  VOTE AND DO IT IN A TIMELY MANNER!  Your vote does matter and can make a huge difference in helping to keep things fair for ALL OWNERS!

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BACA Mutual Aid In Place For Years! Letter to the Editor from Fire Chief, Northern Saguache District (includes Crestone Station)

Editor Note:  The following letter to the editor appears in the February Eagle Newspaper and substantiates what BGCAN told everyone about how they were lied to on the day of the election to dissolve the CrESD with sign after sign falsely claiming things such as we would lose mutual aid without the CrESD and that "only public districts can get mutual aid"  Every single sign was a flat out bold-faced LIE.   SEE ALL PHOTOS OF THESE SIGNS HERE.


Those pushing the CrESD knew the Baca had mutual aid in place and flat out lied to everyone in order to convince them to vote to save the CrESD.  You really want people that would do this in charge of essential emergency services?





P.O. Box 556

Saguache, CO. 81149

I would like to take this opportunity to provide some clarification with regard to fire protection in the Crestone / Baca Subdivision area. My hope is to alleviate some to the communities concerns during this transitional time while more permanent solution can be found.

While it is true that several members of the Baca Grande VFD have resigned recently, for a variety of reasons, many of those also serve as volunteer firefighters with the Crestone VFD, which is part of the Northern Saguache County Fire Protection District (NSCFPD). Most were members of both departments because of their desire to serve the entire community and to make fire responses as efficient as possible no matter where they happened within the community. They assure me that they will still respond to any emergency in the entire Crestone / Baca community when called.

It is also true that the Baca Grande VFD (POA) was not included in the San Luis Valley Intergovernmental Agreement for Mutual Aid between Fire Protection Districts and Municipalities. That said the NSCFPD did enter into an Interagency Agreement for Mutual Aid between Fire Departments and a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for Automatic Mutual Aid Response within the Crestone / Baca area. These agreements were signed and became effective March 1, 2012. These agreements are still valid as neither the NSCFPD or the Baca Grande POA boards have terminated the agreement. Both of these agreements will be used during this trying time. I also want to stress that other Fire Departments in the San Luis Valley assure us that they will respond to calls for mutual aid in the Baca Subdivision if Command has been passed or assumed by an Officer of the NSCFPD and that request came from them. In the event of a large emergency event (wildfire etc.) which cannot be suppressed by the resources of the Baca Grande VFD and NSCFPD personne, Command is passed to the County Sheriff whom can then use the County's Annual Operating Plan and subsequent agreements to coordinate and receive help from our State and Federal Partners.

With respect to response times to the Baca Grande area there should be no change as both Baca Grande VFD and NSCFPD dispatch centers already automatically notify the other dispatch center of the call per the above agreement. If there is a delay it should be limited to the time for dispatch centers to notify each other and the extra time it may take some firefighters to drive by one fire station to get to the other.

Please be assured that both the NSCFPD and Baca Grande POA are working diligently to assure that services are not negatively impacted by recent events and will continue to work with all involved agencies in order to find long term solutions to all issues currently being faced.

Please feel free to contact me with your questions at or by calling 719/539- 6516

Wesley Moores
District Chief

This Letter to the editor was reviewed and approved for publishing by the Northern Saguache County Fire Protection District - Board of Directors at their Regular Monthly Meeting on January 6, 2014


Rod Sawyer, President                                                         Gerald Gray, Board Member

David Stagner, Vice-President                                              Buck Moores, Board Member

Mary Nelson, Board Secretary

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Sound Familiar? Palomar Homeowner Association, Arazona, Fraudulent Board Election

July 30, 2013


Election of February 17, 2010 for three new HOA board members was unethically (illegally) presented!  Association CC&R's were not properly followed.

Therefor the three people elected to the board (Richard Soger, Joy Lilga and Thomas Haroldson) was 'null and void'. When this was disclosed to the members at the meeting and a new properly conducted election be held, the HOA board refused and let the election results stand.

Petition of March 18, 2010 to throw out the February 17 election was properly taken resulting in more then required signatures therefor a new fair election was held resulting in only one of the three (Thomas Haroldson) elected in the February 17 election properly elected. Richard Soger and Joy Lilga were NOT elected yet refused to vacate their ill conceived board seats!

The than illegal board refused to recognize the proper petition, new fair election and continued to operate as a legitimate HOA board. The HOA management people (PRM) chimed in with the illegal board, hiring an attorney (Paul Rubin of PRM stated, "I found them this attorney") to write an opinion which favored the flawed election of February 17 as legitimate and demonizing the members pursuing the new fair election. The illegitimate board spent hundreds if not thousands of association dollars justifying their actions. Facing enormous legal expense to expose dishonesty and present the truth, the members fighting for justice (unfortunately) disbanded, For two years Palomar HOA operated illegally. Decisions of spending HOA funds, hiring vendors etc. Unfortunately for PRM, their efforts to protect the illegitimate board went south as the illegitimate board fired PRM and hired PDS as management. Only then did Paul Rubin (PRM) state the truth, "you needed a new election" (February 17, 2010).

Then came the election (February 22, 2012) for three new board members. While unethical activity may have been practiced again in the voting process, the only unethical (dishonesty) proven was the statement of qualifications by candidate Doug Batey. Batey's statement read in part, " I have several years experience as a good board member for a neighborhood HOA. As a prior board member, I would support the following: Batey lists several issues of Palomar HOA he would continue supporting which could lead a voter to think he was a prior good Palomar HOA board member. When confronted Batey stated the statement was a "typo" made by the management people (PDS) and not he himself. Note: A typo usually is a misspelled word, not a misleading statement. When this and two other qualification statements by Batey were misleading and unethical, he was elected to the board, Not serious enough to pursue. After one year on the Palomar HOA board, Batey's use of the word good is now questionable.

Most recent election, February 20, 2013 for two new board members resulted in only the incumbents running unopposed. Finally, a fair election??

Had their been in law, provision for the Attorney General of Arizona to investigate and bring charges of voter fraud and financial fraud these inept violators may not have been so brazen with their actions. As a Palomar HOA board member (Blaine Connerly) has stated, "You can do pretty much what you want on an HOA board. People will complain but do nothing". This is true and why is this true? People will understandably NOT spend the money for legal expenses, laws being so lax in protecting homeowners basic human rights in HOA's..

This is the reason HOA ABUSE-CORRUPTION organization has been formed (August 2012). Our primary goal: Better laws to protect the vulnerable against ego-maniac control freaks on HOA boards. Please encourage others to visit the webiste to learn more and how they can help.

For additional information please contact;

"Justice will not be served until those unaffected are as outraged as those who are".  - Benjamin Franklin 


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Crestone CO 81131

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