Will homeowners support a new special tax district?

River Place HOA supports establishment of Limited District following annexation to the City of Austin By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities   Austin’s recent annexation of the River Place subdivision has temporarily shifted certain maintenance responsibilities from a Municipal Utility District (MUD) to a Limited Improvement District (LD). In River Place, the HOA and LD serve different functions, as explained here. In short, the LD provides maintenance of recreational areas and facilities and waste removal. Continue ReadingWill homeowners support a new special tax district?

Cinco Ranch community faces post-Harvey challenge

How to navigate its complex governance hierarchy to address sewer plant failure In the past 20-30 years, local governance for communities has become a complicated hot mess. That is abundantly apparent following devastation caused by Hurricane Harvey in southeast Texas. Cinco Ranch, a Fort Bend County association governed community of 8,700 homes for 12,000 households serves as a troubling case study of unnecessary bureaucracy and poor developement planning. According to a recent investigative report written Continue ReadingCinco Ranch community faces post-Harvey challenge

Census reports many layers of government, HOAs not counted among them

US Census data on Special Districts helps explain why your taxes are so high By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities   The U.S. has continued to add additional layers of local government, even though industry trade group Community Associations Institute (CAI) estimates there are more than 340,000 association-governed communities now in existence. Ironically, when CAI was established in 1973, the claim was that planned communities organized as HOAs were supposed to reduce the need for Continue ReadingCensus reports many layers of government, HOAs not counted among them

Bozeman MT considering Special Parks District that may include HOA parks

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities Today’s blog serves as a reminder to readers that you do not need to buy into a homeowners association in order to enjoy recreational amenities. In fact, the photo above was taken last spring at a public walking trail not far from my home. See the caption of the photo for more information about the Rail Trail and a full array of recreational facilities within a mile or two Continue ReadingBozeman MT considering Special Parks District that may include HOA parks