Anthem Council vs. Anthem Communities

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Anthem Council vs. Anthem Communities

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    Rana Goodman

    Over the years I have commented to almost every board of directors as they served in SCA about the way the landscape is maintained in the loop surrounding the entire Anthem communities, or lack thereof.

    To bring any relatively newer neighbors up to speed, Anthem Council is responsible for maintaining the landscape from just before the entrance from Eastern Avenue onto Anthem Parkway, including the areas almost all the way around through Sun City Anthem Drive and part of the median toward Inspirada on Volunteer, all in all, a little over 9 miles.

    Their budget is shared between Terra Bella, Sun City Anthem (SCA), Solara, Anthem Country Club, Coventry Homes down at Reunion & Anthem Parkway and Anthem  Highlands.

    SCA’s share of the tab is 52%. Sun City Anthem owner’s assessment is due to increase in 2022 from $88.65 per lot per year to $129.65 per lot per year. It is interesting to note, Between 2010 (when AC transitioned to HOA control from developer control) and 2020, SCA only paid a little over $6M.

    An example of the “lack thereof” can be seen with ease as you drive down Anthem Parkway from Wild Iris, (an entryway to Big Sky Village) towards Albertson’s shopping center. There are weeds like dandelion and wild Bermuda grass growing with furor over much of it.

    Head in the other direction on Anthem Parkway towards Anthem Country Club and you will see wide open areas with nothing but rock, then a few lantanas, then untrimmed trees with dead branches that should have been pruned away years ago.

    Could it be that the new landscape company Anthem Council finally switched to wants to make all the repairs/improvements/changes at one time? When you throw around figures in the millions of dollars it sure seems so.

    Many of the tree choices made by Del Webb when the communities were being built were poor decisions, pine trees for example. While Olive trees were one of the best choices in my opinion since they stay green all year, and hundreds of them were planted by Del Webb, we in SCA are forbidden to have them, why?  because our CC&Rs say they are allergens.

    However, I don’t accept that non-fruit bearing Olive trees are since I am very allergic to many plants and have lived around these beautiful trees since I came to Las Vegas as a pre-teen..

    In the Anthem Council’s report to SCA, posted in the August Board Book of this association, it states “most of the plants are dead or dying, inappropriate for our climate, and poorly located.” I beg to differ!

    Those of you who drive the Anthem Parkway route no doubt noticed after the recent rains, the magnificent abundance of lavender blooms from the Texas Sage, perfect for our climate. As is Rosmary, Lantana and many of the other plants which are not dying at all. Neither are the palm and cactus type plants already there.

    Part of Art Shuetz, the council’s treasurer’s reasoning for the council to plan of spending millions of dollars for more drought tolerant, low water plants, new or up-dates watering systems etc. is for the Anthem communities to share the cost as our CC&Rs mandate.

    However, I must ask, is it our fault that the council didn’t make sure the prior landscape contractor they used for years did a proper job maintaining all nine plus miles of responsibility? And First Residential, their management company didn’t make sure that the council built a sufficient reserve to cover up-grades such as these?

    One other BIG question is why are new streetlight/poles included in the proposal at $87,000 ? We all live in the city of Henderson and since the only gated communities in Anthem sharing these costs are Anthem Country Club and Pinnacle who own their streets. Thus the rest of the streets in Anthem belong to the city, thus the city should be providing street lighting..

    Jeff Varnes

    Rana, would love to learn more about this. Can you offer potential options or solutions to this proposal?


    I have also noticed that there are many street signs now obscured by common area / island / etc. trees that have not been trimmed. Additionally, lawn areas at the entrances to some villages, usually where the village name wall is, are not being reseeded or patched in dry areas or where there is dog damage.

    A company getting a sweet contract to do landscaping for a large community should have a number where residents can report areas needing their attention.

    Rana Goodman

    Jeff, thank you for asking that question. Since the statement was made by the landscape contractor, per Art Shuetz, “that most of the plants are dead or dying” I would ask for specifics. I took a slow drive down the hill this morning and 90% of the plants I saw looks very healthy, were blooming and full. Hardly the look of dying plants.

    My suggestion, were I on the Council board, would be to place priorities on the work. The trimming of the trees, repair to any sprinkler lines etc. should come first. With a quote in the millions, in my opinion, a plan needs to be made in order of urgent priorities and spread work out over a reasonable time period.

    I would like to know why the Council board only meets 4 times a year and how many of them have taken a good looks at the areas they are responsible for.

    Stephen Anderson

    I wanted to clarify the last part of a great article regarding the $87,000 for light poles. What has been explained to me is that Del Webb insisted on having the concrete aggregate light poles that now exist all around the Anthem loop.  The agreement then with the City was that they would maintain the street lights as they would on any other public roadway.  However, because the street poles that Del Webb insisted on were not standard for the City to install, the deal made with the City is that Del Webb would supply the light poles and the City would maintain them and install them.  This deal then fell to ACC.  Most often the poles need to be replaced when a vehicle crashes into them.  If a police report is filed and the driver is known an insurance claim will be made for the cost of the pole.  Thus, ACC will be reimbursed in this manner for most of the poles that are lost due to this reason. My understanding is that the City’s inventory was down to about 3 or 4 spare poles and their inventory needed to replenished.  The bottom line is that the City is supplying the street lighting but because of the special poles required by Del Webb, ACC now is obligated to buy the poles for the City.

    Rana Goodman

    It should be noted that Anthem Council is asking the six HOAs that comprise AC for $15 to $20M to complete this maintenance/repair project. Given that SCA provides 52% of AC’s budget, we, the homeowners, will have to pay between $7.5 and $10M. This is an outrageous sum of money for plants and bushes.

    I agree 100% with Peter’s comments, but this has been the standard operating procedure for the past 10 years, and will continue until we, the homeowners, make it perfectly clear to this board that we will no longer tolerate being puppets to the AC.

    As for Mr. Anderson’s comments, I have never seen or read such misguided and out of touch comments.  I will finish by simply saying that Del Webb has been out of the picture since January of 2010, and the City of Henderson has abdicated their responsibilities to AC. There is absolutely no  rule, law, or obligation for SCA to pay AC one penny. If AC wants SCA to pay, then let them sue us. If anyone would like additional information or ask me any question, please call or send me an email.

    Tien H Cheng

    I agree with Rana’s and Nelson’s thoughts 100%.   Since over 70% of Henderson City’s budget (i.e. our annual real estate taxes) goes to pay for education, and since none of the Anthem Sun City inhabitants have any school age children, we should seriously consider forming a small city within the Clark County.  We do not even need AC to be part of our small city. We can hire our own police force, which can be better staffed than what the city of Henderson gives us.  The property tax can be cut 60%.

    Is there any way we can bring my thought into the agenda.




    Stephen Anderson

    I am pleased that Rana’s column has generated this interest in the Anthem Council.  No matter what you believe about Anthem Council, it is important that residents understand what Anthem Community Council is about, how it is a legally structured, and the relationship of it to the six HOA’s that contribute to the Council.

    The council has seven directors of which there is one for each of the six HOA’s and one director who is a member-at-large and can be from any of the six communities. Art Shuetz is the appointed SCA Board representative to the Anthem Council.  This SCA Board has expressed confidence in him due to his work in getting an advisory board put together (mostly SCA residents) and in bringing greater planning and forward thinking to the ACC.

    There are those that urge us to bring a legal lawsuit against them to make changes, allow us out of the organization or for us to just stop paying dues.  However, we would pay for all of our legal fees and 52% of their legal fees.  We have explored that with our legal counsel and he advises not only would it be expensive, but it is a case we most likely would lose.  That does not mean we could not do it, but it would be costly.

    The ACC plan will be developed into phases and will be based upon priorities established before implementation.

    If Mr. Orth thinks my comments on the light poles are misguided or out of touch, I am happy to stand corrected.  I admit that I can be wrong at times.  However, based upon what I have been told I believe my comments on why ACC buys the light poles for the City is correct.  Does this mean that ACC could not try to change its agreement with the City of Henderson?  Certainly they can try as that is their decision to make.

    ACC is one of the largest expenses to the residents of Sun City Anthem and I am happy to see this interest.  As a director on the SCA Board, I am always open to hearing your ideas on this subject and in looking at what SCA can do within the law.



    What I find interesting in Steve Anderson’s second comment is that he is telling the members of SCA that, “ We have explored that with our legal counsel and he advises not only would it be expensive, but it is a case we most likely would lose.  That does not mean we could not do it, but it would be costly.” 

    If Steve considers all advice from our present legal counsel to be perfect and not laced with personal bias, then why is the board looking for a new attorney for our next legal counsel????? 

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