I hope 2012 has been off to a great start for all of you. As we head into the second quarter, I wanted to take this opportunity to give you an update on the state of our co-op.
We have endeavoured to improve communications in the building through the formation of a Communications Committee of shareholders and board members, the implementation of the Complaints Policy, and through an encouragement of active dialogue between board members and shareholders. I have heard from many of you, and appreciate the feedback and the opportunity to assist any way that I can. Please do not hesitate to contact any of us on the board – our contact information can be found on the back of this Quarterly. Also, if you’d like to get involved, please drop me an email.
Early in the first quarter of 2012, the board unanimously approved the 2012 budget and plugged the gap in our operating budget with a 4.68% maintenance increase retroactive to January 2012. The budget gap is reflective of increases in our property taxes and energy expenses, as well as a decrease in the flip tax revenue as a result of the softer real estate market. We are actively seeking ways to reduce costs while still running a first class building.
I’m sure you’ve noticed that we’ve begun the facade repairs. The work is proceeding quickly thanks to the warm weather and we’re told they expect to be finished with the entire job by July 1.
The board voted to undertake the elevator modernization program. We are in the process of gathering bids and expect work to begin in the summer. We will be tapping into our existing line of credit to finance the project. Total cost is estimated to about $350 to $400,000.
The board is evaluating our options with respect to conversion from #6 oil heat to either cleaner oil or natural gas. Natural gas is a better choice environmentally and financially. It will result in cost savings on fuel and also on system maintenance. I will update all of you once we’ve finalized our decision.
The building will be replacing all smoke/co2 detectors this Spring. The cost of the units, $25, will be charged back the shareholder on your maintenance bill. This is an important precaution for individual shareholders and the building as a whole.
I look forward to seeing you on the 23rd.