Attention Fellow Members and Neighbors- Follow Up
KSAT 12 recently reported on the results of the Villages of Westcreek Owners Association’s appeal process regarding the flag pole request by one of our residents. The news reporting has helped highlight some of the lack of awareness about the Architectural Review Committee (ARC) and the process for obtaining approval of changes to our properties, as well as the appeal process when the ARC denies a request. The KSAT reports have given us an excellent opportunity to address that process.
The appeal process provides an avenue for homeowners to meet with the ARC to discuss the reason that their Proposed Improvement Application did not meet with approval. The reason for the ARC decision is provided to the homeowner and possible alternative options for meeting the Standards are discussed. Exceptional facts that would support a variance from the existing Standards also are examined.
In this case, the appeal process was somewhat circumvented by the news story, but the process still progressed and the homeowners met with members of your ARC and discussed the flag pole. The homeowners agreed the height of the flag pole must be limited to 20 feet as stated in our Standards and that the size of the flag must also meet the size specified in our Standards. The pole height is regulated based on the Texas Property Code and the flag size is limited due to the sound of the flag when exposed to wind and being so close to neighbors’ homes and (especially at night) bedrooms. The location for installation of the flag was already discussed by the ARC and a variance to allow it to be placed in the back yard was approved. This was because the homeowner’s lot is on a cul-de-sac and there is a heritage tree in the front yard that prevents the installation of a flag pole. Typically the back yard is not an option because you would be “hiding” or placing the flag in a less respectful location. In this case, the back yard abuts a major street and the flag pole would be visible to passing motorists and pedestrians. The ARC decided to approve the request and the homeowners agreed to abide by the Standards with a variance approved for the location.
A valuable lesson here for all of us is to address concerns through the ARC’s formal appeal processes before resorting to other actions. KSAT’s editing of their first report gave the impression to listeners and readers that the Villages of Westcreek disapproved the flying of the American flag intended to honor the service of a member of the military—Westcreek never disapproved the flying of an American flag. (In fact, we have one proudly displayed at the Community Center.) The issue all along was the height of the flag pole and the fact the Standard clearly states the maximum height and the request exceeded that height. Simply sitting down and talking between members of the ARC and the affected homeowners, a solution was reached through the established process.
Westcreek appreciates KSAT 12 following up on their initial report and clarifying that Westcreek never disapproved the flying of our American flag and that our appeal process works.
- Previous Town Hall Meeting March 15, 2013 at 7:00 p.m.
- Next Board of Directors Meeting Thursday March 21, 2013