Community Bulletin Board
YOU ARE INVITED! -- Meet the Candidates
Meet the Candidates running for the 2019/2020 Board of Directors on April 14, 2019 at 12 noon in the Clubhouse.
The Candidates will be available for you to meet informally, get to know who is who, ask questions, and learn where they stand on issues that concern you, so you can make informed choices when you receive your ballot.
The Candidates are:
Charles "Butch" Wienhold
A Message from the President -- 01/23/2019
In November,in an attempt to find a source for emergency water; we contacted Artesian Resources. They were presented with three questions:
1-Do they have the ability to furnish Swann Keys with water in case of an emergency?
2-Do they offer water treatment center management?
3-And finally, out of curiosity, is there a way to distribute treated water to all of Swann Keys' lots?
Attached,you will find the proposals Artesian presented to the Board of Directorsfor your review. In the coming weeks we are planning an informative educational seminar. This will assist you in making a decision as to what you feel is most beneficial for Swann Keys’ future. After the session,you will receive a ballot in the mail. If you have questions, please forward to the Office:firstname.lastname@example.org
Your comments will be distributed to the Board for review.
Click here to read Artesian Resources' proposal for water system services
A Message from the President -- 09/18/2018
Last week, an owner felt the need to post a note of concern on Swann Keys Nextdoor. Please let me remind everyone that the Board of Directors does not respond to questions that are posted on that site. We do post “Alerts” because of our responsibility to try and keep you informed as much as possible. The official Website for SwannKeys is swannkeys.org and in addition to this; emails that are sent to the office [email@example.com] are distributed to the Board of Directors.
Now let me review last week’s problems with our water system: #1- An electrical problem with #3 Pump caused the pump to flip the circuit breaker; we distributed water but it was from the Reservoir Tank which recently has been completely reconditioned. The “Alert To Use Water Sparingly” was to assist you in ensuring the 25,000 gallon tank supported us for more than six (6) hours. We are happy to report the electrical company responded within four (4) hours and all problems were averted; #2- Then on Wednesday, the iron level in the water spiked-problem was identified as a floatin #2 Brine Tank malfunctioned and brine was not distributed to #2 Softener-thus unacceptable water was distributed but within two (2) hours; this was rectified.
The water system has worked well with the changes and updates we have made this summer. As we continue to update our Well System, there will be some problems. Our emphasis is on minimizing the effects on our owners. Last week, we had electrical and mechanical problems. We have delayed the complete renovation of the filter and softener tanks until October to ensure minimal disruptions. Maintenance flushes the streets on three (3) week intervals. If a malfunction occurs, they will be flushed that day.
Always remember we are operating a Water Plant and not a home well system. Feel free to call Butch or myself and we would be more than happy to show you the system and explain how it functions.
George Kirkley, President
Sharp Water Culligan Report -- 04/17/2018
A Message from the President -- 01/14/2018
Swann Keys has been seriously affected by unprecedented snow and extreme cold. If you anticipate not living in your home for an extended period during the winter months, we strongly recommend that you winterize your home and call the office to request that your water be turned off at the street. To have the water turned back on the day before you plan on returning, call the office during regular hours:
Monday through Friday: 9am-2pm | 302-436-5111
The water piping in front of your home has been installed below the freeze line; thus the possibility of a problem with the valve is doubtful. Valves were originally identified by a white pipe which must be visible at all times. If for some reason you do not see the pipe, please place something that would identify the location during snow. In the last week we have located valves buried under 7 inches of dirt and snow; this makes it impossible to assist you in your time of need. All of the call-outs recently have been frozen pipes under the home; we cannot assist with frozen pipes - You will need to call a plumber. Due to extremely unusual water usage (140,000 gallons per day as opposed to the usual 30,000 gallons per day), we rode by each property looking for major leaks and turned off water at the street. If for some reason we have closed your valve due to leaking, you have been notified by the office.
As many of you may already know, we experienced a rash of burglaries during November and December. We have had the total support of Delaware State Police. With the information from our camera system they have been able to identify the intruder and issue warrants. With the assistance of Maryland State Police, I am happy to report that the perpetrator is now in custody; many thanks to Chuck Der and Ron Young who assisted the police.
On behalf of the Board of Directors I would also like to thank our community volunteers for their exhausting assistance during this crisis.
End of summer update George Kirkley, President -- 09/18/2017
Maintenance - with generous assistance from the Sports Club and Ladies Auxiliary, we mulched the playground area, hung new swings, added two new park benches and replaced some chairs and umbrellas at the pool. We completed the paving of Mallard Drive and Swann West. The parking lines and STOP and SLOW street markings have been repainted. The Boy Scout bus stop now has a new seat for the children. The trees and bushes in our community common areas have been trimmed for the year.
Water system - all water filters have been repaired and re-bedded with new media. The softeners have had the internal material replaced and the outside support structures fixed. The Well pumps will be pulled and cleaned in late October (date TBD). As of September 10, 2017 the water system is functioning properly. We are now anticipating the review and recommendations from the contracted Water Engineer.
Security - We have received reports of people breaking into houses and physically staying in the house for days. There have been reports of seeing someone riding up the canals in a boat in the middle of the night shining a flashlight on homes. Secure your property - Lock your cars - Please keep an eye on your neighbors property.
Rental Properties – Per the Swann Keys Rules and Regulations: Lot owners are responsible for the actions of themselves, renters, children and guests.
Requirements for Lot owners who rent properties
Post the SK Rules and Regulations, pool rules and the trash/recycle schedule in the rental property.
Overflow trash must be placed in heavy duty BLACK trash bags.
It is your responsibility to provide your pool pass to the renter if they are going to use the pool/clubhouse. The office cannot issue pool passes to the renters. Secure your pool pass with a deposit from the renters to insure its return.
Remember – your renters become part of our community when they are here. Give them a copy of the SK Newsletter for community information.
It is required that you report your renter’s information to the office in case of an emergency.
Infrastructure Update from George Kirkley, President -- 08/07/2017
Trash Removal - We were on the phone for hours trying to contact someone local who could/would take care of the problem. All local telephone numbers we had went to an out-of-state call center or the sales representative's voicemail. We found out later that, even though his voicemail was still active, he no longer works for the company. Board Director Diana Shade, who negotiated the original contract, also spent hours on the phone trying to reach someone local. She then rifled through her old files and found a name and number of the Regional Manager, which turned out to be a good number, and she was contacted. I understand trash has been picked up today. Beverly is checking on the recyclables.
Water - The Chairman of Maintenance and the Water Committee has spent over two weeks attempting to fix the system. It looks as though our contract with Sharp Culligan does not contain a preventive maintenance clause. Thus, minimal if any corrective actions have been taken since the last major repairs in 2012. Currently, the problem was pinpointed to be in the filter tanks, which filter iron from the raw water coming from the well. We have three filter tanks, of which, only one is functioning properly. Sharp Culligan ordered the parts on August 1st for filter #3, which is being repaired today. On Sunday, filter #1 clogged with stones, which is being corrected today. After consultation with our water engineer, I have requested a rebuild on all 3 filter tanks
Some of the issues we have been dealing with since June 1st: Stones in the softener tank, failure of small well pump, stones in filter tank #3 followed by #1; test on #3 well shows need for acid wash and cleaning, legs on #3 softener tank collapsed, stone blocking brine intake to #3 softener, elbow on #1 softener needed to be replaced, meter recording number of gallons per day clogged,
The Water Committee has had face-to-face meetings with the owner of Sharp Culligan and C. Shultes Wells. C. Shultes Wells feels it would be better to wait until the end of September, when there are fewer people in Swann Keys, to pull the 25 horsepower pump and clean the well. The reasoning for that delay is we will be operating on our 20,000 gallon reserve tank intermittently during their three days of repair. All the meeting discussions and repairs have been shared with our contracted Engineer. He is withholding his review and recommendations until the system is operating properly.
Please know your Board of Directors is working hard to correct problems and are dedicated to improving our infrastructure.
Individual Household Water Recovery -- 06/10/2017
We have engaged a professional engineer to analyze our system and offer recommendations for future improvements. He has in his possession the last six months repair activity and a list of questions that have been presented to the Board. We will experience water system problems intermittently, Sharp states our levels are not harmful to your health.
To assist owners in recovering from excessive iron in the water system we have established the follow recommended process.
You will be notified by email and the front board if we are aware or anticipating a problem.
The iron will accumulate in your hot water heater. Turn off the circuit breaker to the hot water heater and let it empty. When water becomes cool turn off and allow to refill. Turn power back to tank.Turn on water and let run for five minutes. This should empty your internal pipes. The Maintenance dept will be emptying the outside lines at the same time.
The Board apologies for any in hard ship this may cause. We are on a well system as is everyone else in lower Delaware. The iron enters our system at 11 parts million and exits the system at a range of .10 to .17. Well below the industry standard of .30.When iron is in system it has to drain out.
***A note from the President George Kirkley***
[October 26, 2016] Boat Parking: ‘Sussex County has an ordinance on the books that states you cannot park a boat, trailer, or camper in front of your house’. There was a complaint registered by one of our homeowners and the County visited the office to meet with our President. After much discussion, the homeowner withdrew his complaint. If no one else complains, the County will leave us alone. If they have to come back; they will send you a letter first, then a fine.
D.N.R.E.C,Yard Waste Disposal
We had a friendly visit from Sgt.Trimmer D.N.R.E.C. .He was concerned about resident dumping of yard waste in waterways and marshland adjacent to Swann Keys property owners. There is a minimum $500.00 to $1,000.00 fine if you are cited.Yard waste may be disposed of at any Delaware Solid Waste facility.If the amount is small enough to be bagged you could put it in your trashcans for Monday pickup.
NOTICE -- 06/01/2017
NEXTDOOR SWANN KEYS is a valuable site for general information exchange, however; everyone should realize that the ONLY OFFICIAL WEBSITE for Swann Keys is swannkeys.org. This site is not for discussing the BUSINESS of Swann Keys. Please use this site ONLY for: selling items; looking for an item; lost and found items; recommendations for workers, etc. Ronnie Young, President