US Courts have repeatedly ruled that personal blogs are Constitutionally-protected expressions of free speech.
This is a personal blog.
Some points below might be wrong, because the board refuses to allow me to build the GFA a website (for free) where the correct information could be preserved, and because the GFA President Steve Rodriguez (Lot 301) ignores or otherwise refuses to cooperate with most of my attempts to just gather correct information. The Shadow Pond Debacle is one part of a large, complicated and mysterious land purchase we are committed to, so I apologize for the length of this entry:
We are allegedly under contract with The Nature Conservancy (TNC) to purchase several parcels of land adjacent to our Flow.
As near as I can calculate, some of these purchases have been pending for a staggering 13+/- years.
Several of these parcels were once part of our lease, but the board lost about half our lease years ago, and these lands became the property of TNC.
One of the parcels includes Shadow Dam itself. If the relevant pending parcel purchase ever closes, we will eventually own Shadow Dam. TNC currently owns it.
In 1989, there was a once-in-a-millennia tremor which caused Shadow Dam to be damaged, and some fill had to be trucked in. Additionally, a culvert was installed at a lower grade than the then-used Shadow Dam spillway to allow the level of Shadow Pond to be lowered and the pressure on Shadow Dam to then also be lowered.
30+/- years later, without putting it to a vote by the GFA lot owners, the board decided to drain Shadow Pond - apparently because the board suddenly thought that there would be a liability issue if another tremor occurred and the GFA would potentially be on the hook for it because (in theory) we will own Shadow Dam someday.
A lot of outside heavy machinery was brought in, our periphery road was closed with no prior notice to the Flow lot owners nor emergency services, and the driftwood which had accumulated in front of the culvert which serves as the outlet for Shadow Pond and runs under Shadow Dam was cleared.
Prior to this work, myself and several other Flow lot owners cautioned the board that Shadow Pond is filled with literally thousands of pieces of deadwood left over from the logging days, and that this driftwood removal was a dangerous fool's errand because more deadwood would simply float down and re-obstruct the culvert. The board dismissed all our cautions and proceeded.
Removing the driftwood which had been partially obstructing the culvert meant Shadow Pond was drained into a smelly swamp, which the board euphemistically and falsely labelled as a "beaver meadow".
The following Spring, our repeated cautions to the board came to fruition, and more deadwood simply floated down and partially re-obstructed the culvert - resulting in the return of our Beloved Shadow Pond.
This time, the board engaged a respected fellow Flow lot owner with some relevant experience and equipment to once again undertake the incredibly dangerous task of removing this "new" deadwood in order to drain Shadow Pond once again.
The following Spring, our repeated cautions to the board came to fruition once again, and more deadwood simply floated down and partially re-obstructed the culvert - thankfully resulting in the return once again of our Beloved Shadow Pond.
My 0.02 Worth:
This is precisely the kind of problems which arise when a governing body exists which insists on 100% conformity, and actively works to quash any differing input. A literal once-in-a-millennia event is ignored by the board for 3+ decades (because it was a fluke), but once the board thinks they might be held accountable for something, they procced with just about the worst "solution" to a non-problem possible. Removing this driftwood is arduous and incredibly dangerous work, and could have easily resulted in injury or death - which I do not know if we are even insured against. The board was cautioned repeatedly against this folly, but undertook it anyway, because that is what the currently sitting GFA board does. And that is why we need to elect to the board some fellow Flow lot owners who are willing to look at all the input, not be a sheep, and simply stand up and politely oppose the wasting of our resources and the endangering of your neighbour's health and safety - especially over incredibly futile and wildly ill-advised projects such as this.
There will be an interesting slate of candidates for board seats at the 2022 AGM - I hope all Flow lot owners will . . . .