An Apology to Tony & Lisa Free
As this Web site continually grows illustrating points and my disgust for the Creek Pointe HOA, it appears that Tony & Lisa Free are implicated and in multiple ways with all the wrong doings over the years. Nothing could be further from the truth. The fact is, they are very new to the HOA and had nothing to do with any of the past transgressions against my wife or myself.
In fact, Tony and Lisa Free have truly made a strong and sincere effort in attempting to calm down this gate/camera issue and in allowing me to talk to them in a friendly manner. In the past eleven years, Tony Free has been the only HOA person to stop and help when I was broke down with my trailer on the seven-mile road into Creek Pointe about a couple of months ago. I did not know who Tony (or Lisa) was back then when he stopped and offered his help. My wife and I have had car trouble before on the seven-mile road and had members just pass by, never offering any help. I don’t expect any help from others after all the past fighting in Court. The few in number without hate or dislike became even smaller in number since the latest Creek Pointe gate and camera issue. So out of caution, I quickly and perhaps coldly shrugged off Tony’s offer of help not even knowing if he was an HOA member or not. And in this same tone, probably wrongly on my part, I no longer seek out socializing inside the HOA even with new lot owners. In fact, I actually tremble with the thought as past friendships turned sour due to prejudicial enforcement of HOA rules and regulations. As the years have gone by, it seems like each HOA Board has sought more control over homeowners’ lives and property. Sometimes it was regarding logging rules, sometimes it was about methods for enforcing unpaid dues, sometimes it was Architectural Committee nonsense, and on and on and on.
I don’t believe Tony and Lisa are controlling in this way, and they probably have good intentions of trying to make sure the road is maintained. I believe Tony mentioned in our conversation that he didn’t really care much one way or the other about the gate, but overall I received the impression he was trying to placate the Board and have a gate established. I suppose Tony and Lisa were basically trying to keep peace with the other Board members who desire a Creek Pointe “gated community”. Over the years, I have found that keeping the peace means I usually get stepped on by over lording Board members. Again I do not mean that Tony or Lisa Free are this way. Although, a “George Bush type” philosophy of “you are either with us or against us” or in this case “with me or against me” is not a good philosophy to hold in one’s heart, I find HOA fights always end up this way. Unfortunately, in HOA litigation, parties are often forced to join in litigation and forced to take sides. Again, my disgust for the whole situation, along with past emotional scares, drives me away from friendships in an HOA. My apologies to Tony and Lisa Free for not being clear, and they probably don’t even wish to embrace the power that Board members hold over their neighbors. But that power is there. After years of litigation, years of lawyer bills, and literally years wasted out of my life, I was hurt to the bone to hear no condemnation of past HOA actions and that Tony and Lisa desired only to put the gate issue “on hold”. And I was hurt to find the general concept of HOA’s embraced. In my mind, this basically means years and years of more petty HOA disputes, where the HOA is always too eager to sue, with funds too easy to divert, along with additional funds too easy to assess. And of course, the slander of a member when sending out the meeting minutes or in an HOA newsletter is a favorite trick.
In summary, I figure it is easier and less hurtful for Nancy and I to continue our lives alone than waste days on end playing politics for power where nothing is gained but further hurt feelings. I would rather pay more lawyer bills than feel anymore pain and hurt playing political football with neighbors who were once friends or could have been under a different environment. About ten years ago I remember a Creek Pointe HOA couple from Massachusetts who received much rebuke before I became the target. In fact, I remember distinctly a heated argument the very first President of Creek Pointe HOA had with this couple. This Creek Pointe HOA President concluded the argument by calling Creek Pointe nothing but a “snakepit” (the two legged type) and sold out within a blink of an eye. There will always be someone for people to hate in an HOA. I just make it easy for them to hate me – probably because I prefer the hate right from the start then the treachery that so often develops behind ones back in an HOA. I can never be a willing part of a concept that destroys people’s lives and homes. I have seen the tears from hundreds of people as they told their sad stories, one after another, each story seeming worse than the last. For two long days in Nevada Senate hearings I listened and talked with young hard working people, and far too many actually lost their homes over petty disputes in HOA’s.
- Rick Happ