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June 2019

Sierra los Pinos
Property Owners’ Association
950 Forest Road 10
Jemez Springs, NM 87025

Need to contact us? Send us an e-mail at or the individual e-mail below.

Judy Kilburg, 829-3544

Vice President
Harold Corn, 829-3636

Jeremy Oepping, 575-829-3136

Geraldine Burnworth, 575-829-4008

Water System
Harold Corn, 829-3636

Water Compliance
Tamara Weary

David Stuedell

Architectural Control / Parks
Paul Lisko

Paul Lisko

Paul Rightley

Address Change?
June/July 2019

The intent of this newsletter is to highlight major accomplishments and issues. New developments are posted regularly on the website at If you would like to be on our immediate notification email list, send an email message to


SLPPOA has signed an agreement with NMBGMR to fully participate with the Groundwater Level Monitoring and Aquifer Mapping Program. One of our wells will be equipped, at no cost to the members, with a sonic measuring device to constantly monitor the water depth. This will help us determine water level drawdown during the pumping cycle as well as longer term aquifer water depth and overall health. Already each well’s static water level has been manually measured and recorded (by Scott Christenson with NMBGMR) as a February 2019 baseline:
• Aspen - 315.45 ft
• Meadow (FR 10) - 244.87 ft
• Hovenweep - 200.45 ft
SLPPOA’s participation in this NMBGMR aquifer monitoring program should prove to be a great benefit to our community.


On April 24, 2019, five water volunteers (Mark Stanley, Max Otero, John Fredland, Peter Veverka, and Harold Corn) spent the day isolating and testing the System 1 Main and Branch Line infrastructure. The well pumps were shut down, homes and service lines were turned off, while each section was isolated, starting at the far end of System 1. A meter loop water rate was monitored and recorded for a baseline (5.16 gpm) as was each subsequent section. Several sections of the System 1 main line have been replaced in past years. This diagnostic test confirmed two additional sections of main line pipe with excessive leak rates:
• Unit 1 section of Hovenweep Loop, that has not been replaced (3.1 gpm)
• The section of Ashley Lane from Mimbres to FR 10 (1.8 gpm).
SLPPOA plans to replace both of these suspect sections ASAP this summer. The first section above should start late July or early August. The second section should be replaced 60 days later, as per New Mexico drinking water mandates. As time and volunteers come forward, it is planned to diagnose System 2, similar to System 1 described above.


Our water metering system has a built-in “LEAK FLAG” notification system when a meter registers greater than 1 gal. per hour, every hour, for 24 hours. This does not quantify the leak rate, but is just the threshold at which the FLAG is set. Once the leak is fixed or drops below that factory set level, the LEAK FLAG will be reset. Further quantification of the leak rate is possible by closely observing the meter rate of use. For the month of May 2019, System 1 had 12, and System 2 had 9 LEAK FLAGS identified. Each member can check their USAGE and LEAK FLAG status monthly online by knowing the ENDPOINT number of their meter. Simply register for a SLPPOA.ORG online account. Request your ENDPOINT number at


For the month of May 2019, System 1 had 10 members, and System 2 had 6 members use >7,000 gals of water. Some households had LEAK FLAGS and some did not. At some point in the near future, the membership will vote to decide if a surcharge will be assessed for members whose monthly water usage exceeds the 7,000 gals. Finally, it is extremely important to wisely use the water we have, especially during our drier summer months. Other than delivering a constant, consistently safe, supply of water for SLPPOA domestic purposes, retaining a water reserve storage supply for emergency fire protection is one of our highest community goals.
Harold Corn, Water Chairman


Everyone has busy lives with work, family, and taking care of our homes. Living in Sierra los Pinos comes with responsibilities and challenges. This community is run by volunteers, as are other homeowners’ associations; but one major difference is our water is provided to you by volunteers. Oversight of road maintenance and snow removal is managed by volunteers. We recently lost two very active Board members, Max and Lorraine Otero, due to the sale of their home. These individuals played critical roles for the Board and the community. We want to thank them very much for all they did to support our community. Two long-time Board members have terms that will end this September and they won’t be running for another term. We were able to recruit two interim Board members to fill positions until September. Hopefully they will agree to run for Board term positions. There should be nine board members, but over the last few years we haven’t been able to get enough volunteers to run for Board positions.
Please seriously consider volunteering for a position on the Board. Maintaining the quality of your community is at risk. Contact any Board member as soon as possible or email us at Remember – this community is NOT going to run without volunteers! The continued lack of volunteers will necessitate having an HOA management company assume more duties, which in turn will necessitate an annual dues increase.
The election committee will also be making contacts. Nominations can also be taken from the floor at the annual meeting, although you must be present to accept the nomination. This is your chance to put some of your expertise to good use within the community. Ballots must be mailed to members by the end of July, so please let us know as soon as possible to allow time to get your name on the ballot. We also ask that you provide a brief write-up as to why you would serve on the Board of Directors.
2019 general Meeting and board elections

The general meeting of SLPPOA will be held the second Saturday in September. This year, the meeting will be held on September 14, 2019 at 2:00 p.m. at the Fire Station in Sierra los Pinos. There will be a potluck lunch beginning at 1:00 p.m. Please bring a dish to share and a folding chair. SLPPOA will provide the drinks and table service.
The agenda for the meeting will include the reading and approval of last year’s general meeting minutes, officer and committee reports, and old and new business topics. The meeting will also include the election of new Board members.
Eligibility to vote for Board members requires that the member be in good standing (i.e., assessments are paid in full). Each lot owner is allowed one vote for each board vacancy per lot owned. This year you will have a TOTAL of 5 votes if you own one lot, and the few members who own two lots will have 10 total votes. Your votes can be distributed among the candidates as you desire (i.e. you can give all your votes to one candidate, one vote for each candidate as long as you don’t exceed required maximum number, or any combination).
Assuming we get more candidates to run for the Board, the three candidates with the largest number of votes will assume the three, three-year positions and the remaining two individuals will fill the two one-year position. Any others on the ballot will serve as alternates in the event a board member isn’t able to complete their term.
Please note that ballots will be counted in a manner that allows for secrecy.
To ensure we have a successful election, it is essential that we have a quorum of eligible ballots returned by ballot counting time at the meeting. Please do your part by voting, attending the general meeting, and running for a Board position.

Sign up for CODE RED (REVERSE 911) - go to – system used to telephone residents about emergencies such as evacuation notices, road closures and neighborhood emergencies.

Fire Potential/weather/restrictions
Southwest area 7 day Significant Fire Potential:
Accurate fire and restriction information for whole state:
Southwest Fire Restriction Stages:
Smoke density health effects:
Santa Fe National Forest Fire Restrictions and Closures:
National Weather Service, Albuquerque Office:


Just a reminder to all residents that, in accordance with the SLPPOA Restrictive Covenants, no building or structures shall be erected, placed or altered on any lot until it has been approved by the Architectural Control Committee. You can find the Architectural Control Policy and Home Improvement Approval form on the SLPPOA website under Menu/Residents/ Documents.  If you have any questions, please send an email to


Fire season is once again upon us. Fire mitigation, or creating defensible space around your home, is a risk reduction strategy that aims to reduce the likelihood of home loss or damage from wildfire. Risk reduction actions are taken close to a structure in “home ignition zones” to protect the home. Vegetation within 100 ft. of the home, or more if on a slope, should be thinned to disrupt fuel continuity in order to keep approaching fire on the ground and out of the tree tops. Prepare your home to withstand a fire even if no one is there to defend it. The closer you are to the house, the more you should think about which trees to remove. Keep ladder fuels away from your home. Ladder fuels are low limbs, underbrush and vines that will carry fire from the ground to the tree canopy, or the siding and roof of your home. Ground fuels and debris, pine needles, dried leaves, mulch, grass, weeds, shrubs or anything that will carry fire across the ground. Clear ground fuels from within 3ft of your house and rake away dried needles and leaves. A 3 ft strip of gravel around your home will break up fuel continuity. More information can be located on our website at


Winter conditions always take a toll on our roads, and this winter was no exception. Our Board member in charge of roads is actively working the issue. The roads are to be graded by RL Leeder & Co. in the month of July, most likely the third week in July 15-19.  The roads will be graded and material will be applied in several areas. RL Leeder & Co was used last year for our road maintenance and did an excellent job.

We ask that each of our members make sure to keep your bar ditches and culverts along your property lines clean and well maintained. This is the responsibility of the property owner. Well maintained bar ditches and culverts will keep the water flowing off from the roads. Clogged bar ditches and culverts causes our roads to wash out and maintenance is very expensive. Let’s all pitch in and help eliminate these problems. 


As you are all probably aware, the SLP Board of Directors was sued by, initially four, but later three members after one removed herself from the suit. Plaintiffs claim the SLPPOA Board of Directors have failed to enforce and comply with certain provisions of the Association Bylaws in which they have been denied certain financial and operational information.  Essentially, they believe they should have full access to member financial/payment information and other financial records not specifically called out in the Association Bylaws and/or the New Mexico HOA Act. They also claim that the SLPPOA Board of Directors has failed to substantiate their statutory authority to convene executive session to discuss members delinquent account information.

The plaintiffs pleaded their case on February 3, 2016. The Board defended their case on July 12, 2016, and the judge ruled in favor of the Board of Directors. Plaintiffs filed a Request for Reconsideration on August 4, 2016, followed by SLP filing a Motion to Strike on September 7, 2016. A hearing was held on all matters on December 12, 2016. The judge ruled again in favor of the Defendants, the Board of Directors. We then filed for Judgement for Costs, which was objected to by the plaintiffs. Ms. Suzanne Star then filed a Notice of Appeal of the original ruling. Because of their Request for Reconsideration, this made them open to be charged for costs, which was approved by Judge Davis. The plaintiffs disagreed with this ruling, and a hearing was held on May 23, 2017. Because the lead plaintiff, Ms. Star, filed an appeal on December 30, 2016, the judge would not make a ruling on costs, so a hearing on the matter will be held after the appeals court ruling. The appeal is pending a judgement by the panel of judges. Total cost of the lawsuit as of June 2019, is almost $53,000.00!

LATE BREAKING NEWS! Just before print we received word that the panel of judges upheld the decision of the District Court, Judge Davis. We won the appeal. More details will follow at the July Board meeting.


This year our new governor signed into law modifications to the HOA Act. Some of the changes have an impact on the privacy of each and every homeowner’s association. The Board of Directors for Sierra los Pinos has taken member privacy very seriously, but now that may be compromised with the changes to the law. Another notable change is that when a property owner sells their property, the disclosure documents are only valid for 60 days. There is now a limit set at $300 for the cost imposed to the member for the preparation of the disclosure certificate, but if the home doesn’t close within 60 days, the owner will be charged another $300 for a new set of disclosure documents. There is now a section on enforcement of covenants and several other notable changes. Our management company is researching to determine further impacts. The new Act is posted on our website at