District serving Lakewood Ranch's Country Club West adopts Inter-District Authority as manager

nwilliams@bradenton.comOctober 10, 2012 

LAKEWOOD RANCH -- As expected, supervisors representing Community Development District 6, which serves the Country Club West neighborhood of Lakewood Ranch, unanimously voted to adopt the Lakewood Ranch Inter-District Authority as its district manager.

The vote occurred during a public board meeting at Lakewood Ranch Town Hall on Tuesday.

The IDA already manages four other Lakewood Ranch community development districts: District 1, serving Summerfield and Riverwalk, District 2, serving Country Club and Edgewater, District 4, serving Greenbrook, and District 5,

serving Country Club.

Under the IDA's management, Country Club West will receive the same services as the other districts.

Country Club West was developed by home builder Pat Neal and was served by an outside property management group. Districts 1, 2, 4 and 5 took similar paths to transition from developer to resident-controlled districts.

"In the scheme of things, this is where we were going," said Richard Williams, a district 6 supervisor and the district's representative to the IDA.

District 6 supervisors terminated contracts with its current district manager consulting firm, Development Planning & Financial Group, and property manager, CMS Property Management, prior to hiring the IDA Tuesday. The change will take effect Jan. 1.

Residents will know there is one place to go instead of going to Neal or to a consulting firm in Tampa, Williams said.

When the IDA becomes the district's manager, District 6 will see savings up to $3,000 per month for nine months beginning 2013 by terminating those contracts. "The money we save will go into a reserve fund," Williams said. "Right now, it's very minimal."

District 6 already contributes to the Lakewood Ranch interlocal agreement, an agreement with all districts that covers landscaping services and maintenance for all districts the IDA manages. The district pays a pro-rated share to lease Town Hall, and for operations and maintenance to the IDA totalling $170,270. The district also pays $77,000 for gatehouse security services through a contract negotiated by the IDA.

The switch will not require the district pay additional fees to the IDA but will require an amendment to the 2010 inter-local agreement.

The district board also voted Tuesday to hire Jensen and Group for $12,400 to conduct an independent engineering study on the district.

"We want some fresh eyes to look at the district," said district supervisor Bob Burstein. "We hope nothing is wrong."

Two-developer controlled seats in District 6 will be vacated this November. Residents living in Country Club West interested in becoming a board member should email Burstein at bobburstein@hotmail.com.

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