P.O. Box 2631
Monument, CO 80132
I wanted to bring you up to date from the Board of Directors (BOD) meeting held Monday April 9th concerning the water issues we have in Bent Tree.
There are two issues at hand; either can put our water use in jeopardy. One is we are reporting a rise in water usage based on the Water Court mandate to monitor Lots 197 to 232 inclusive; which shows we are at 96% of available allocation. This is an average, some residences are way over and some are under, and there are only 34 of the 36 lots built out. The point is, the trend over recent years is consistently going higher at a rapid rate. And if we go over the 100% mark we will then be on the radar for State action. This is something we must avoid. Your BOD and our resident engineer are or will be working with each of the 36 monitored properties to hopefully reverse this trend or at least hold it steady. Additionally we know it is not the inside use of water that is causing problems, it is the outside irrigation that causes the overage.
The second issue is we have a covenant mandate "... the decree requires that an annual survey be made of the actual irrigated acreage upon each lot in BENT TREE. " And there is to be no more than 2000 square feet of irrigated acreage on any one property (NOTE: this was established by the 1985 State Water Court decree when Bent Tree was initially developed, not by BOD members). Jerry Lopez, our resident professional engineer and Chairperson, BTPOA Water Augmentation Committee, has provided great background information, which you may read at the Bent Tree web site at www.btpoa.org. No one likes the big brother syndrome, and since it was an unpopular action it was set-aside in the past because we were reporting well below the allocation for the 36 monitored lots. With the trend going up and two lots not built yet, and with an active and proactive Board of Directors we are taking some actions to more accurately determine our usage, help our owners to comply with the Water Court rulings, be good citizens, gather much needed data, and hopefully stay out of trouble.
BTPOA needs to establish that Bent Tree is in compliance with water usage, irrigated acreage and the amount of irrigation we are using. This will answer some questions and give us information that we can use to determine our course of action. The Water Augmentation Committee can determine what can be done about problems that arise. Answers to what can we do about issues like new plantings, use of different grasses that are drought tolerant, xeriscaping, and rain gauge control on sprinkler systems, etc. The list will continue to grow. But first we need to find out how big the issue really is.
Here is how you can help us. Before the end of April, I request that you draw a sketch of that part of your lot that is irrigated and identify and measure all of the areas that you are irrigating and the surface area of any ponds and water features. Irrigation means any watering, even if it is with a hose, bucket, sprinkler, any type of watering on any area, including bushes, trees and the natural growth. There are a blank grid page and a completed sample on the web site for your convenience. We will randomly check some of your measurements to ensure measuring is accurate and we are consistent in our reporting. Send this information to BTPOA Post Office box 2631 Monument, CO 80132. You may also email a PDF image of your sketch to DuaneFitch@earthlink.net. We need a reply from every property. If you do not irrigate at all, or if your lot does not have a well on it please let us know. Please identify the property owner, lot number and lot address on any communication.
Next, if you have over the 2000 square feet of irrigated acreage, you will be required to submit a plan that will get you back into compliance. You may submit your plan with the sketch or submit separately by the end of May. The BOD will take all of the plans under advisement and work with all homeowners to develop Rules and Regulations with some logic that seems to have escaped the Water Court rulings.
We are taking this action because if we run over the Water Court allocation and are over in any lot of the 2000 sq. ft. of irrigated acreage we will not have data or a leg to stand on to fight the State Engineer’s office. The result could be disastrous for our community, whether it is legal work with assessments on property owners to pay the fees, decline in property values, all homes required to get meters, or revoked well permits. Other subdivisions have activity with the State--they are active.
This letter is not intended to be alarmist. We are not in trouble—yet. But it is a call for action. With everybody’s individual compliance, we will not have a problem. We thank each of you in advance for your cooperation and prompt reply to the irrigation survey.
We, the BOD, are your Bent Tree neighbors; we are working with you to protect our Bent Tree well permits. This issue affects everyone directly. If you have suggestions or comments, please contact any Director or join our community deliberations at BOD meetings on the second Monday of each month. All of our phone numbers and email addresses, as well as announcements of Board meetings, are available on the web site.
We could use some help with this project; if you would like to give back to the community in the form of helping the water Augmentation committee with tracking, compiling or validating the irrigation survey, it would be most appreciated.
Thank you in advance for all your help in helping all of us.
1430 Burgundy Ct.
Monument, CO 80132
P.S. If the snow cover or pace of life kept you from surveying your Ponderosa Pine trees for beetle infestation, please do so now. The time of year when the beetles travel and find new trees is just about upon us. For more information, see the letter from John Anderson, Chairperson of our Forestry Committee. The letter was mailed to everybody in March and is also available on the Bent Tree web site.
Also if you have not moved your trash disposal to Tri-Lakes Disposal yet please consider doing so. A simple call to them at 495-8652 will start the service. Note that there is a coupon for Tri-Lakes Disposal on page 26 of the April 7 issue of Our Community News. Thanks for making Bent Tree safer and more attractive.