Details on Pool Closure
The Board members have received several inquiries from homeowners regarding the decision to close the pool for the season. Some homeowners are in support of the decision while others expressed their disappointment. The Board wants you to understand all the factors that led to our unanimous decision. On Monday, June 15, 2020, several members of the Holiday Heights (HH) Board of Directors attended a Coalition Meeting / Webinar hosted by Holiday City South. There were more than eight surrounding HOA communities present and the focus of the meeting was “Opening the Community Pools.” This was the second webinar the HH board members participated in. The webinar included professionals from Taylor Management Company, an Insurance carrier, an Attorney, and a Pool Management Company. Taylor Management Company manages HOAs when a community lacks elected volunteers to serve as Board members. The main question we discussed was “We Can Open….But Do We?” Our attorney was also present for this meeting.
The COVID-19 crisis has placed everyone in uncharted waters. Insurance companies are not committed to providing liability protection in our coverage. In November of 2019, Holiday Heights voted to contract Carmona Pool Services for the maintenance, care and personnel needed to manage our pool for 2020/2021 seasons. All service providers who perform work for our community are required to provide a Certificate of Insurance, unfortunately Carmona Pool Service is unable to properly insure his staff while working at HH from contracting COVID and HH would be required to assume the liability for his staff as well as our patrons of the pool. Our HOA attorney strongly advises against such action.
The CDC and Board of Health requirements include hiring a Pool Ambassador (cannot be a resident or a volunteer) to enforce social distancing and reporting violations to the local police (security personnel is recommended) and a second employee for cleaning handrails and restrooms after use. Restrooms are required to be open. Reservations to use the pool are required for patrons, COVID screening that includes temperature checks and documenting results, as well as obtaining contact information (photo ID, name, address, phone #, email) for tracing purposes are just some of those requirements.
The building blocks of protection include Policy, Documentation, Communication and Enforcement. Weighing the risks, costs and liability is our fiduciary responsibilities to the entire HH community. The board has given careful consideration to all the operational concerns; balancing risks and benefits, the liabilities and the lack of insurance coverage. The cost of defending frivolous lawsuits could bankrupt our HOA.
As we have said before, this decision was made only after speaking with professionals in every area, Insurance, Legal, Pool Management and HOA Management. We recognize the social aspect and enjoyment lost by keeping the pool closed and we are equally upset and disappointed, we are homeowners too.
As you can see while the Governor stated simply, pools can open on June 22, the risks outweigh the overall benefit, especially since we are the at-risk population the dangerous COVID virus affects most seriously.
We are all in this together and hope these details help you better understand the decision that was made and reasons behind it. Protecting our community is our utmost responsibility.
Last modified: June 19, 2020