June Newsletter 2017

North Riding Property Owners’ Association, functioning for many years in the area, ceased to exist at the end of 2016 when Lloyd Irving as chairperson and Cathy Adam as stand-in secretary (the last two committee members still functioning) simultaneously resigned. A community meeting was called on 23 March 2017, at which the majority of residents present were in favor of reforming the organisation. This was further communicated to all on the previous committee’s database and a show of interest via email confirmed the same.We have reformed the residents’ association for the area of North Riding Agricultural Holdings,

We have reformed the residents’ association for the area of North Riding Agricultural Holdings, including all residents on Valley, Spionkop, Olievenhout, Aureole and the Lane, over 18 years  of age and interested in being part of the Association. We have changed the name from the previous organisation to be more inclusive, and have chosen a slogan “Preserving our country  lifestyle” and logo.

The current committee of the organisation consists of:

  • Monica Hepplewhite – chairperson
  • Cronje Kriel – Legal
  • John Crain – Marketing / Engineering
  • Kobus Opperman - Finance
  • Neil McMullen - Security

The purpose of the Association is stated as “A single voice into and out of the community on matters of common concern”. It is staffed entirely by volunteers and will be operated as a non-profit organisation. For the time being, until the current committee has taken over all previous organizational matters from the previous committee, no call for contributions, other than responses to email, attendance at general meetings (at most twice a year) and volunteer time at community functions, will be called for.

Our first AGM (annual general meeting) is scheduled for 26 July 2017 – venue and time to be confirmed closer to the time.

In the meantime, we have created a web page for the Association, which is being populated, with items of interest to the residents and businesses operating in the area. It is envisaged that this will be the primary place for news to be published and concerns to be raised.

Some items of interest the committee want to give feedback on:

  1. The contract with UTM came to an end at the end of 2016. Residents who have still been contributing will be contacted individually.
  2. Johannesburg Water’s “air holes” on Spionkop Road have been repaired after more than a year – thanks to all concerned who assisted in resolving this.
  3. Olievenhout Road rehabilitation between Quorn and Valley – a meeting with JRA representatives and ward councilor was held and assurance was obtained that this project, in progress  now for more than a year, will be finalise din the next 2 months. That was 2 weeks’ ago and no progress has been seen, both JRA and ward councilor has been prompted this week to  provide feedback – thanks, Alan Smith, for your assistance in this regard to all of us.
  4. Concern has been raised around the number of heavy vehicles on Olievenhout Road, turning into Impalalelie to access the Celebration building project. A suggestion was received to change the current T-junction at Quorn to a four way stop, but unfortunately the road surface of Olievenhout at that point was not designed for heavy vehicles and the full stopping and pull away of heavily loaded vehicles will lead to heavy erosion there. Celebration project management has agreed to erect warning signs for heavy vehicles of the change in road surface / steep downhill / sharp turn into Impalalelie.
  5. We have received an enquiry as to the building activity at the Nigerian Church site, given the fact that their zoning application was  withdrawn after opposition from the neighborhood. From what we can ascertain, the building activity is contained to perimeter walling, which is not subject to zoning ruling. The committee has been pursuing some other avenues of opposing this zoning application, mostly based on the increased traffic and the environmental impact as there is no existing sewerage connection for the property. There are some further developments on this and we will communicate as soon as possible.
  6. Forest Estate proposal as presented earlier his year by Russell Upneck – the Equestrian portion of North Riding has been excluded for now. The Conservancy area is apparently interested and is working with Russell Upneck. Wetland and flood plain plans have been received and Russell is working on a sketch plan of what financial impact / advantage for current residents will be. They are working towards another meeting but no date has been set yet. The committee has requested them to specifically address potential financial impact, in terms of levies for security arrangements and possible property price fluctuations, to be addressed.
  7. A security questionnaire has previously been distributed to members currently on the RA mailing list. This was re-sent by Monica and feedback from residents was collated and distributed – 18 households responded, agreed that:
    1. One company for the area makes sense, with current security to be moved to this company.
    2. Services agreed as important are:
      1. Radio links for armed response
      2. Pro-active patrolling - 18h00 to 06h00
      3. Pro-active patrolling in river area – 18h00 to 06h00
      4. Escort in

Proposals already received from security companies were compared and comparison played back. It was agreed that all companies to be contacted again to quote for items as per majority vote above, and that the following also to be approached for a quote:

  1. ADT – majority company in the area from respondents
  2. Londoloza – very good feedback from adjacent suburb Sundowner
  3. Thompsons – as used by Olive Crest, who will possibly also contribute as they used to contribute to UTM

The outcome of the comparison of proposals received will be played back to the community at the inaugural AGM at the end of July.

Thank you for reading this, and we encourage you to reach out to us if there is anything you want to bring to the community’s attention.

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