by Jan Ek
We have ended our third quarter well within our operating and capital budget. Repairs and maintenance expense has a positive variance from budget of $952,569, however, we have $1,001,242 of budgeted but uncompleted repair and maintenance projects year-to-date which will eventually be completed. Utility costs have exceeded budget by $183,336 due to the cost of the initial start-up of the solar systems, which will be recovered in the overall picture of the solar savings. Due to the participation of RCSC in other energy savings programs thanks to Jim Wellman, we have recouped almost 75% of this overage in rebates from APS this year. We have managed to operate through September 30, 2013 with a positive variance from budget of $356,948 in wages, taxes and benefits and a $287,111 positive variance from budget in general operating expenses which should translate to the bottom line at year-end. We use these savings we are able to obtain in our operations in next year’s and future year’s budgets to reduce the amount of increase required in annual property assessments. Note that I said reduce the amount of increase, not eliminate it. Although we are constantly seeking ways to effectively reduce our operating costs as much as possible, the fact is that the cost to operate and maintain all of these facilities continues to rise. However, if we can continue to accommodate those cost increases with small increases to our annual property assessments, I believe we have won the battle. Remember, we operate the most facilities of any other Sun City in the world for the least annual property assessment. Also remember that I have never come to you and asked for a raise in RCSC’s debt ceiling because we have no debt!
RCSC will be hosting several bowling tournaments beginning October 26, 2013. The first tournament will be the Valley of the Sun Senior Tournament on the weekend of October 26th, followed by the Maricopa County Senior Tournament on the weekend of November 1, 2013. The Arizona State Senior Open Championship tournament will be held for two weekends beginning Thanksgiving weekend. The Arizona State Senior Tournament has participants from almost every city in the state of Arizona; this tournament is usually hosted by RCSC Bowling every other year and produces approximately $8,000 income. All upcoming tournaments and tournament results are listed online at www.sunaz.com, click on the bowling tab.
Lakeview Lanes will be hosting the annual New Year’s Eve party again this year. The party is sponsored and organized by the Sun City Bowling Association. Signups will begin on November 1, 2013 and the cost is $20.00 per person.
The payments on past due assessments were slightly less in September and were equal to the monthly average over the past year. The trend for the last 5 months has been payments at or above the monthly averages for the past year. August billings went past due at a rate of 6.9%, slightly lower than the monthly average rate. July balances went over 60 days past due at monthly rate of 4.5%, which is consistent with the average. Outstanding balances related to property transfers decreased by 2% in September and represent 53% of all receivables due and 51% of past due balances.
We have had some transition with our outside collections firm over the past several months. The transition was completed in September and we expect to see the payments on past due accounts improve over the coming months.
Trustee sale notices on Sun City properties reduced slightly to 47 for the end of September. The number of properties owned by lending institutions reduced down to 79 this month. These numbers are following the national trend of reduced foreclosures.
The Preservation and Improvement Fees collected in September were $603,600 which is 59% more than budget. Year to date PIF fees are $5,341,040, which is 2.6% above the fees collected for the same year-to-date period in 2012. Remember that we intentionally budget the Preservation and Improvement Fees very conservatively to ensure that we have sufficient funding when long-range PIF projects are planned.
Last month we reported on the rollout of the new RCSC Web Portal. To date we have over 1,000 portal users with that number growing each day. We have had one training session with Cardholders this month and have two more scheduled next month. These sessions are focused on assisting Cardholders who would like some additional information to feel comfortable with the new web portal resource.
In order for RCSC Members to vote in this year’s upcoming Board election, each Member must initiate their RCSC Web Portal account. Your first step is to confirm with Cardholder Services at the Lakeview Recreation Center via email email@example.com that you have the correct email address for each individual. Your RCSC Cardholder record will be updated and you will be emailed an initial password to access your account online.
Then go to our website www.sunaz.com at the top of the page and click on “Web Portal – New!” This page contains information and a link to the web portal, as well as a complete and detailed user’s guide for using the web portal.
To help you with the process please pick up the “Getting Started on the RCSC Web Portal” flyers available for you at any of the RCSC facilities. For those seeking additional assistance, there will be web portal training sessions as follows:
Thursday, November 7 1:30pm Marinette Auditorium
Wednesday, November 13 10:00am Fairway Arizona Room 1
An independent audit of the financial statements of RCSC’s Employees 401(k) Plan for calendar year 2012 was conducted this month by Woods & Dwyer, CPA. The audit was positive and HR filed the IRS required Form 5500.
The value of employees’ accounts in the 401(k) Plan increased from $827,775 at the beginning of 2012 to $1,008,311 at year end. As of October 2013 the value is $1,105,109. Employees contribute on a pre-tax basis and RCSC matches contributions of up to $500 per year.
We have received all but two of the third quarter club membership rosters. As we all continue to acclimate into this new procedure, we want to thank all the clubs for their cooperation.
The Arts & Crafts Fair is scheduled for Friday and Saturday of Thanksgiving weekend, November 29th & 30th, at Sundial.
The Farmer’s Market began its fall season at Bell on Thursday, October 17th. Many new vendors and clubs participated. The market will run every Thursday from 8am–12noon. The last day of the fall market will be Thursday, December 21st.
The November 3rd Sun Bowl show “George Strait Tribute” starts at 6:00pm. The Tribute to our Veterans on November 10th is an afternoon event and will begin at 2pm. Food trucks will be in the food court 1½ hours before every show.
Sun City Idol has completed its first preliminary round. Six acts, along with a wild card act progressed to the finals. The last preliminary round will be on Monday, November 4th at 7pm in the Sundial Auditorium. The finale will be Wednesday, November 13th in the Sundial Auditorium at 7pm with a special performance from Guy Pennacchio and the Realtones. NBC’s Today Show will be here to film the Sun City Poms who have made it through the first preliminary round.
ABBA FAB show is Wednesday, November 6th at Sundial at 7pm. This is an incredible show with tickets on sale for $13 which are selling fast! Contact the Lakeview Clubs and Activities office to get your ticket.
Detour Company Theatre is presenting Seussical Jr. The Musical, Sunday, November 17th in the Sundial Auditorium at 3pm. Detour Company Theatre provides authentic theatre experiences for adults with developmental and other special needs (deafness, blindness, autism). Detour is an educational partner with the Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts and launched earlier this year with an important message about the “different abilities” in all of us. This is a free show and a must see!