At the latter part of every year, as new Directors join, the Board meets to outline the topics/priorities that should receive particular attention in the coming twelve months and beyond. These are items that would be in addition to the normal ‘operations’ of the Board and community. Those items, along with brief descriptions, are captured below. There are two groupings, those items that are already underway and those that will need more development. Said differently, the first group is already inflight to some degree, while the second group needs more shaping before moving forward.
- Beachfront Clubhouse – Property owners have been talking about the need for a clubhouse for many years, and the idea under consideration is a reimagining of the Dunes House as part of a collaborative effort between the PDPOA and Greenwood. The proposal under consideration includes tearing down the current Dunes House and rebuilding it as a two-story building, with a rooftop lounge. The first floor would be a commercial dining operation run by Greenwood, and the second floor and rooftop lounge would be restricted for use by Palmetto Dunes property owners.
Discussions commenced with Greenwood earlier this year and then took a hiatus due to COVID. We are optimistic that we will have an update for the community in the later part of the first quarter.
- Short-Term Rental (STR) PP&G’s – In short, can we agree to a simple set of guidelines for how rental properties will operate in our community? Last year, the Board of Directors approved numerous motions regarding short-term rentals. As a result of these motions, the Palmetto Dunes Short-Term Rental Policies, Procedures and Guidelines (PPG’s) were established. The objective of this document was to gather all short-term rental related policies (including long-standing and newly enacted) into a single, convenient owner-friendly document. The PP&G’s were approved by the Board back in December with an effective date of April 1, 2021. Communication and implementation efforts will occur in the first half of 2021.
- Architectural Review Board (ARB) PP&G’s – How do we evolve one of our key governing documents in a way that’s easier for all to understand and use? Our ARB Policies, Procedures and Guidelines (PPG’s) help to ensure that residential construction, remodeling, and landscaping are designed and built to high aesthetic standards consistent with the wonderful character, overall ambiance, and natural environment of Palmetto Dunes. The current document has served the community well for many years, and this is an opportunity to bring it up to date with current best practices. If the PP&G’s are approved by the Board, then implementation efforts will need to occur in the first half of 2021.
- Deer Management Program – Since at least 2014, concerns regarding our deer population have been presented to the Association. Owner concerns include damage to ornamental plants, large gatherings of deer, vehicle and bicycle collisions, potential spread of disease, and feeding of deer. The Association will work with a new vendor in late summer/early fall of this year to obtain a new, validated deer density metric, including a current observable acreage measurement for our community. Until then, the revised report prepared by Folk Land Management is now available on our website along with a comparison of the prior deer density metric and updated deer density metric.
Topics Requiring Further Development:
- Long Term Master Plan – ‘Palmetto Dunes 2050’ – What are we going to look like in 2050? Who is going to live and visit our beach community in 30 years? What demands are going to be placed on our infrastructure, technology, and environment over the next quarter of a century? These are all great questions that we as an organization should start planning for.
- Improved Cell Service – As PD continues to be a highly desirable place to live and visit, what technological advances do we need to tackle to meet the needs of our residents and visitors? There is continued concern about adequate cell service and bandwidth in the north eastern part of Palmetto Dunes. Reliable service and bandwidth are a critical necessity as potential buyers and visitors explore the various options for retirement and destination planning.
- Employer of Choice 2.0 – Many employers on Hilton Head continue to struggle to attract and retain qualified staffing, which PD is not immune to. Given the growth of Bluffton over the last ten years and the upcoming plans to replace the bridges to Hilton Head, how are we going to meet the needs of the Association with appropriate staffing levels? How do we maintain our competitive edge to attract and retain a workforce to meet the needs of the organization? The Association undertook an Employer of Choice initiative 4 years ago. It’s time to revisit the challenges we continue to experience with turnover, the impacts from COVID, and the flexibility to work remotely. Management needs to embark on a comprehensive review of employee compensation, benefits, and staffing levels so PD will continue to be the most desirable place to work on Hilton Head.
- Role of Security – The department provides a very important service to the community. However, over the last few years, the needs of the community have evolved, and the Association is taking a more proactive role in enforcing our covenants and governing PP&G’s. This is an opportunity to re-evaluate the functions of the security department and determine if our resources should be allocated differently.
- Governance/Engagement Framework – As we continue to advance our values of transparency and accountability, we would like to adopt a community engagement framework that clearly articulates the role of the community, the Board, and management. This framework will provide clarity on the decision-making process and when the Association will seek community feedback and/or vote on an issue.
- New Owner Welcome – Given the ever-changing demographics of the community, how do we develop a better sense of community, a sense of place? Many new owners purchase property in the community without knowing any other residents or what activities/events are available to meet their neighbors.
- 7 Lee Shore – Path Forward – Attention has been on other amenity and infrastructure topics such as the Beachfront Clubhouse and Sea Lane repair/replacement, and the Board has had 7 Lee Shore ‘on hold’ for most of the past year. The Board will need to take a new look at this in 2021.In 2019, the 7 Lee Shore Redevelopment ad hoc committee did some excellent work in framing the ‘art of the possible’ for this land. Their work – and any new idea/thoughts – will need to be reconsidered as part of an effort to define a proposal for a path forward. It’s likely a beach front amenity would not come to fruition until mid-2023 and the amenities that the beach front property will provide may impact the direction for this project. It may be time to revisit what options the community may want to consider in redeveloping this centrally located property on the lagoon system. The redevelopment of this property will give the community a much-needed passive park, along with access to the lagoon system for all owners and their accompanied guests.