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AROUND THE HOUSE

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eNEWS
News of Greater Sun City Center by email
Founded in 1998 
 Volume 17, Number 25               May 18, 2015

Memorial Day
You may want to take part

     We all will celebrate Memorial Day next Monday, May 25, and there is a major event taking place to honor our military heroes, living and dead.  Everyone in town, ex-military or not, will want to come to the Borini Theater in the main clubhouse at Kings Point for the program that starts at 10 o’clock that morning.  In fact, the doors open at 9 am for free seating in that large room.  
     The featured speaker will be Col. Mike Escudie of the US Central Command. Colors will be presented by the East Bay High School Jr. ROTC. The formal program will feature music by the Trinity Baptist Church Choir and Friends, directed by Rev. James Feist. The Living Flag Ceremony pays individual respect to military retirees of the Sun City Center area who have passed away in the last 12 months. Following the indoor program, the Grand Marshal, Col. Roy Conklin USA (Ret.) will be placing a wreath at the flagpole outside the auditorium.
     Men and women of the audience can take part in the Living Flag ceremony. As each name is called a flag bearer rises, turns and faces the audience. When all in a row have stood and turned, the entire row sits and flag bearers in the next row prepare to stand for each name.  It is truly a moving few minutes; there are 184 names to be read this year.  If you would like to take part in that ceremony, please write to:  msudman@tampabay.rr.com.  He would love to hear from you this week so he can plan your seating.
     For further information, Paul Wheat at 634-7777 or pawheatjr@aol.com.   

Photo Club Contest

   Calling all Sun City Center photographers – the Sun City Center (SCC) Community Association (CA) has partnered with the Photo Club to run a seven month long photo competition.  The goal of the competition is to get new and exciting photos of SCC’s lifestyle to put on the website and thereby attract new CA buyers.  You can win the $100 monthly 1st place prize, or one of the five $25.00 runner-up prizes being offered.  It all starts on June 1.
   If you are interested, please reply to jbowker@tampabay.rr.com and I will send you the instructions and regulations.  (Thanks, Madlyn)

Library Closed 

  Somehow, our library on North Pebble Beach Blvd didn’t make it on the CA’s list last week but indeed, the CA Library will be closed next Monday, May 25 in observance of Memorial Day.

/John Bowker  
  Reply to me at:  jbowker@tampabay.rr.com

eNEWS
News of Greater Sun City Center by email
Founded in 1998

Volume 17, Number 24              May16, 2015


Memorial Day Closings 

  The Community Association office at 1009 North Pebble Beach Blvd will be closed on Monday, May 25 in observance of the Memorial Day holiday.  Other CA facilities will remain open.

  The majority of Hillsborough County offices and facilities will be closed on Monday, May 25. County Regional parks and dog parks will be open that day.  

Closed County facilities include:

  • The administrative offices of County government, all libraries, recreation centers, Head Start/Early Head Start centers, senior centers and nutrition sites.
  • All disposal facilities, including the Southeast County Landfill, Northwest and South County transfer stations, Resource Recovery Facility, community collection centers, and yard waste processing facilities.
  • The Sunshine Line transportation service.
      A complete list of closed county facilities is available on request from jbowker@tampabay.rr.com


New Taxi Service
Will Be Available Nights

   Starting on June 1st, Sun City Center is going to have local, affordable, readily available transportation.  The organizers are the Always Best Care Senior Services and they are known to provide innovative solutions to meet Sun City Center residents' unique needs.  
   Starting at 4:00 pm, and for as little as $13.85, the new service will provide car transportation within Sun City Center and the surrounding area within just a few minutes.  You can even have a friend or family member ride with you for just an additional $3.00.  No tips are ever accepted.  
  Their trained staff are CPR and first-aid certified.  Their drivers are caregivers and they will watch out for you from the moment they pick you up until you reach your destination.
 
You can get more information by calling  813.324.8989


Free Classes for Senior Citizens at
Hillsborough Community College

  Students 60 years of age or older who have resided in the state of Florida for 12 consecutive months are eligible for a fee waiver program to audit classes without paying registration, application, or related fees, provided that conditions are met.  The HCC SouthShore Campus will be enrolling students on May 18 and 19 from  8:00 a.m. – noon.  Seniors who audit the classes will not receive credit as a part of the tuition waiver.
  If you want to see the registration application and learn about what classes are available, please request one from
jbowker@tampabay.rr.com.  

 Population Density

  My clever wife found a way to count all the dwelling units in Sun City Center today.  A dwelling unit is a home .. a house, condo, apartment, etc. in the property area where residents are required to be members of the Community Association.  Her count is 6,853 and the data was derived from October, 2014 information in the Membership Directory.  The number of residents living in those dwelling units at the end of October was 10,725 according to eNEWSThat means we had 1.565 people living in each dwelling unit.
  Earlier this week, it was announced that there are 5,595 condos in Kings Point.  Assuming the lifestyles of residents in our two communities are the same, that would suggest the population of Kings Point is 8,756.
  So we have about 19,400 total population in these age-restricted communities.  Why is this important?  I just wanted to know, that’s all.
  Someone once said we need about 25,000 population to attract a really nice commercial restaurant to the area. I am betting that, with the Villages at Cypress Creek, Valencia Lakes, and the two new developments now being built next to Walmart and just down US-301, we will soon have that magic number here.  

And, in Closing,

  • Effective Monday, June 1, ClubLink is closing the Caloosa Greens and King Point executive golf courses.  Letters have been sent to all members of those courses explaining how their memberships can be transferred to other ClubLink courses.
  • During April there were Capital Fund Fees received by the CA on the sale of 37 houses. That brings the total re-sale homes sold in 2015 to 140.
  • At the end of April, there were 10,633 residents in Sun City Center
  • Remember all those chairs I told you were being sold by the CA over the past several weeks?  They have all been sold.  The CA announced this week that a church bought them and will be shipping them to Haiti
  • Wi-Fi is being installed for service within all the CA buildings and in the open areas on the two campuses.  It turns out the buildings are so well built, there is a need to have repeaters added to get the signal through some of the walls and to the outdoor areas where people tend to use their tablets and “i-phones”. It is all coming along fine, they tell me.
  • The new rocking chairs just outside the new Information Center are proving to be a popular addition to the premises. Next will be more walkways from the building toward Swan Lake and around the premises.
  • Please cooperate with the monitors at the pools and other amenities when they ask to see your CA Badge. If you have a guest, that’s fine, but please arrange to have a guest pass to show the monitors. The monitors are instructed to check on each person using the pools, fitness center and other CA amenities and they don’t want any unpleasantness.
  • If you are retired military, I urge you to get in touch with Debbie Caneen to arrange for a (free) video interview she is helping arrange to capture as many stories about your service. The videos will all be collected by the Federal Government to assure that nothing gets ‘lost’ about our wartime experiences. You can reach Debbie at sccfreeads@tampabay.rr.com
  • Next time you get a chance, take a look at the new colorful trim work on the CA office at 1009 North Pebble Beach Blvd.  They are taking steps to ‘brighten up’ the CA buildings and decided to start with their own office to see what the reaction would be.  Notice the red door and the cream trim on the windows .. good start?
 / John Bowker 
  
Respond to me at:  
jbowker@tampabay.rr.com

eNEWS
News of Greater Sun City Center by email
Founded in 1998
Volume 17, Number 23               May 11, 2015

(Editor’s Note:  The following is an email message sent to me regarding a recent action by the Community Association.) 

To Sun City Center residents,
     You may have read in recent news reports that the Sun City Center Community Association Board has temporarily suspended the Performing Arts Club’s privilege as a club in Sun City Center, citing “irregularities” in the club’s operation. 
     First, we wish to advise you that PAC Board of Directors is taking immediate steps to work with the CA board to alleviate the concerns that lead to the suspension and is fully committed to continue working toward its mission of providing quality entertainment at a reasonable price and in a convenient venue for Sun City Center residents.
     Second, we can assure you that none of the issues we are addressing involve theft of funds.   Rather the concerns center around the manner in which PAC has documented its expenditures and recorded its board decisions.   The CA auditors have expressed the view that PAC should be incorporated under Chapter 617 of the Florida Statutes; while there is some debate about whether incorporation is necessary, PAC is taking steps to comply with that recommendation by the CA.
     Finally, PAC continues to be recognized by the IRS as a public charity under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code and is properly registered with the Florida Department of Agriculture as a charity in the State of Florida. 
     We look forward to promptly resolving the issues with the CA and resuming our work to entertain Sun City Center.
     Sincerely,
       The Performing Arts Club Executive Board and Board of Directors
          Lew Resseguie, President, Don Churchill, Vice President, Barbara Brtva, Secretary,
          Judy Brown, Treasurer
          Jim Smith, Ellen Kleinschmidt, Carlyn Laurent, board members

Chairs for Sale

     Continuing with their plans for renovating our Community Hall on South Pebble Beach Blvd, the CA is offering the chairs that have been used for events in that building for several years for $5.00  One day sale:  Tomorrow, Tuesday from 9 to noon.  Come into Room 3 directly from the parking lot.

 / John Bowker
Respond to me at:  jbowker@tampabay.rr.com


eNEWS
News of Greater Sun City Center by email
Founded in 1998
Volume 17, Number 22            May 7, 2015


For our Snowbirds
(Editor’s Note:  The following is a verbatim copy of a front page story in today’s SCC Observer newspaper)

P.A.C. Lite Summer Variety Series canceled; club suspended.

     If you were among those looking forward to The Performing Arts Club’s summer lineup of comics, singers, magicians and more, you will be sorry to hear that the variety series has been canceled.
     The Performing Arts club has been suspended by the Community Association board.
     According to David Floyd, board president, a routine audit “discovered a number of irregularities regarding accounting, CA policy and possible legal questions.”
     Floyd went on to say that when PAC resolves these issues, “they can be reinstated as a club.”
     Visitors to the PAC website were greeted by a single message: “It is with deep regret and due to circumstances beyond our control that The Performing Arts Club of Sun City Center will no longer be putting on shows at the Rollins Theater beginning with The PAC Lite Summer Series.  After 12 successful years in the business of show, we have closed the curtains and turned out the lights of the Rollins Theater for the last time.  Many thanks for your patronage and support.
     Goodbye ….for now!”

Final Meetings on County Roads

      A number of us have attended one or more of the county meetings where thoughts about how to improve our roads and other transportation questions have been discussed. A final set of workshops, is aimed at finding consensus related to which new revenue sources should be used to fund the changes that citizens have made clear they want. The closest remaining meeting will be held on Monday, May 11 at 6 p.m. at the Bell Shoals Baptist Church, 2102 Bell Shoals Road in Brandon.

And, in Closing,

  • The meeting by the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office on scams and fraud that was scheduled for the Security Patrol Board Room for second Wednesdays starting in June has been changed to second Thursdays starting at 9 a.m.
     (Thanks, Carol!)
  • Remember all the fun we have getting things set up and running for the community breakfasts in July and December?  We have another one coming on July 4th and NOW is the time to tell jsudman@tampabay.rr.com that you can help!  Joanne Sudman and husband Sam will need people in the kitchen, in the dining area and out front all morning so if you can help, indicate what time of morning you want to work.  She will confirm her needs back to you promptly.

John Bowker
Respond to me at:  jbowker@tampabay.rr.com


eNEWS Supplement
Volume 17, Number 21a               May 4, 2015

New Program Series
Scams, fraud, and what to do about them

     The Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office is offering a monthly open forum on Economic Fraud and its growing trend with the advancement of technology.  
     Beginning in June, the Sheriff's Office will conduct a presentation on a different economic fraud topic each month. These forums will identify new and growing economic frauds occurring here and will include strategies for preventing fraud and identifying resources available to victims. 
     Each presentation will be conducted three (3) times a month at different locations in the area: 
     KINGS POINT:  The second Tuesday at the Ripple Room in the North Clubhouse at 1:00 p.m.
     SUN CITY CENTER:  The second Wednesday at the Security Patrol Boardroom, located at 1009 N. Pebble Beach Blvd, Sun City Center, at 9:00 a.m.
     SUN CITY CENTER:  The third Wednesday at American Momentum Bank, located at 131 S. Pebble Beach Blvd at 2:00 p.m.
     The June presentations will be about Technology and Social Security Number fraud. 
     Each seminar is open to the public and will be sponsored by various businesses that will provide resource materials and refreshments. 
     If you have any questions or comments please contact the Sun City Center Community Resource Deputy Jeff Merry at 813-672-7817.
     The Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office is committed to serving, protecting, and defending the community and this new series is a fine demonstration of making that happen.

A Tradition is Changing
Computer Club Has New Meeting Time
 
      One of the more popular meetings in town each month is the Computer Club meeting on the first Wednesday in the Florida Room. But starting this month, the starting time has been changed to 7:00 p.m. after a resounding vote.  
     On May 6, they are offering a double program:
     Our own Phil Sorrentino will present a program on Tablets and Smartphones in conjunction with Cloud Computing, touching on hardware, operating systems, basic operations, and some of the all important apps.       
     Special guest will be Jere Minich, a member of the Board of Advisors, Region 5 State of Florida of the Association of Personal Computer User Groups (APCUG), will give us a presentation on how to cut the cost of printing and ordering ink.

Neighbors Helping Neighbors

     Members of Beth Israel Congregation on East Del Webb gratefully thank the anonymous citizen who called the Security Patrol on Wednesday, early morning, to report water gushing out of the building and lights flashing on in the building.  Due to his/her sense of responsibility for taking care of each other, major damage to the building was averted. 

John Bowker
Reply to me at jbowker@tampabay.rr.com


eNEWS
News of Greater Sun City Center by email
Founded in 1998
Volume 17, Number 19               April 14, 2015

If you are printing this out, please use the .pdf attachment to save paper

Please Greet Deputy Jeff Merry


Effective yesterday, our new Community Resource Deputy reported for work in Sun City Center.  Jeff Merry comes to us with some very appropriate background in white collar crime in Hillsborough County plus a decade in law enforcement in Georgia before coming here.  He is particularly interested, he told me, in scams that can befuddle seniors, and looks forward to communicating his findings to the residents while running down the local perpetrators when possible. (Thanks, Eileen!)

Ann Marie LeBlanc Room

     The new signs are now up showing where everything will be when the new buildings are finally occupied by their planned clubs and organizations.  We have known about all of them for several months, but the front part of the ‘old’ Information Center at 1002 Cherry Hills Drive will become home to the Men’s Club LifeLine organization the DAV transportation service, and the large room in the back will now be known as the Ann Marie LeBlanc meeting room.  Ann Marie was a community leader here for a decade in the early 2000s.  I’m delighted. 

And, in closing,

  • In a recent eNEWS I referred to our snowbirds in a stupid way.  In describing the more relaxed traffic situation in town during the summer months my closing remark was “but they will be back.”   Gosh.  I hope so.  We’re all in this together so I apologize for the insensitive remark.   (Thanks, Mary!)
/ John Bowker
Respond to me at:  jbowker@tampabay.rr.com

eNEWS Highlights
from earlier editions

Throwing Out Your Heavy Trash

     Trash disposal at the Wimauma Collection Site will be reinstated on the third Saturday each month, starting April 18.
trash, electronics, tires, and other large County residents may use the free collection site at 16180 West Lake Drive in Wimauma for disposal of bulky household items.

     The Wimauma collection site will be open from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. on April 18, May 16, June 20, July 18, August 15, and September 19. Residents may dispose of items at no charge by showing valid identification such as a Florida Driver’s License, Florida Vehicle Registration, or a utility bill.

The following items may be placed in the dumpsters:

furniture
junk
trash
debris

metal
electronics
tires (limit 5 per residence)

Items that will not be accepted for disposal:
commercial trash and debris
tree debris
commercial vehicle tires
hazardous chemicals

CA Maintenance Department Change

     Phillip Bennett is the new Chief of Maintenance for the Community Association. Michael Chute will be Supervisor of Maintenance, Ryan Cronin is Asst. Supervisor Central Campus and Sam Soria is Asst Supervisor South Campus.  This way the CA will spread the administrative and work-a-day duties so as not to overwhelm anyone.  We expect Phillip to pick up his duties next week.

 
Room Requests for 2016

     The Community Association has sent out instructions and forms for all clubs and organizations to use in organizing meetings in any of the CA meeting rooms on the Central or South Campuses.  Some of the key points include (1) there are no automatic renewals of room assignments from last year, (2) only room requests signed by the organization’s current president will be accepted and (3) completed Room Assignment Request forms must be handed to the Receptionist at 1009 North Pebble Beach Blvd during the month of April, but not before 8 a.m., Wednesday, April 1.  Rooms will be assigned on a first come, first served basis.

Someone to Talk With

      Jim Clarke lost his wife earlier this year.  It has been a very sad time for him.  Recently, however, he found a source of helpful information - "all meat and potatoes" as he put it without any fluff.  There is a real need he points out, to be with people who will just listen and let you get your grief story out.
     He'd like to form a men's Wellness Group that meets regularly for coffee. The primary goal would be helping guys alleviate some of the burden encountered during the grieving process which is varied and lengthy. The 2 basic ground rules would be, being willing to listen to others and share your story.  If you think a meaningful chat with Jim and others about what you have gone through, he would like to hear from you by email at jclarke32@tampabay.rr.com.  

Book Donations

     When you go into the county library on 19th Avenue (“South Shore Regional Library”) you may have noticed a large cabinet in the lobby on your right with a slot for your donations of books. that support all the free programs put on by the Friends of the Library there.  Donations are tax deductible.   
     If you would like to support that work, just put your books (carefully) in that slot or, if you have them in a box, put them under the table just beside the donation cabinet.

/John Bowker

Hospital Expansion
South Bay to add 26 Rooms


     This is the latest artist’s rendition of changes now planned for our South Bay Hospital.  The expansion will be built over what is now the parking area in front of the existing building (shown as the back part of the building in this drawing).  A new parking lot will be built in the area now occupied by the Sun Hill Medical Center – that is the building just to the east of the hospital.  The existing Sun Hill building will be demolished to make room for that parking lot.
     I expect we will see work starting here in early May and I am told the new facility will be opened in August, 2016.  There will be no interruption in services at the hospital during construction.  When finished, South Bay Hospital will have 138 beds for patients.

John Bowker
Respond to me at:  jbowker@tampabay.rr.com

New Water Pipe to be Installed

     Hillsborough County will be installing 26,000 feet of 4 and 6 inch PVC pipe in Sun City Center in 2015.  This is due to new county standards for the spacing of hydrants. 173 new hydrants will be installed here and in the Villages of Cypress Creek in the next development to our west.
     The only areas of our community to be affected lie north of SR-674.  The work will start in January; this will involve marking many properties to indicate where there are existing pipes to be avoided.  The actual laying of new pipe will start shortly after and continue through the year with an expected finish in November. After that, testing and decontamination of the new pipes will take another 2-3 months. The old pipes will remain in place filled with sand or capped off.
 
    The new pipes will be located 3 feet below the ground surface and will be installed using a “horizontal trenching” technique to minimize the disturbance to the surface around peoples’ homes.  At each house, there will be a connection made from the new pipe to the water meter.  They will advise home owners “a couple of days in advance” before they come to disturb your property.  The house water will have to be cut off briefly for the installation.  They assure that any driveway blockage would be finished within one day. 
     Below is a map of Sun City Center showing where each of the new hydrants will be installed; you better know your way around town because the streets are not named on the county map.  Each little green dot is a new hydrant.