Friday, December 21, 2012

Speed Limit Reduced to 15 mph

You may have noticed that the speed limit has been reduced to 15 mph, in response to our request that the County evaluate our traffic conditions.

Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

The Case of the Mysterious Night Visitor

Last month some of our residents reported mysterious nocturnal visitors who were leaving shallow cuts of rolled up turf in their backyards:

One of them sent the pictures to a friend who came back with the verdict: Raccoons!

Apparently, raccoons search for grubs under the turf, which we are particularly susceptible to because of the newly-laid sod. According to eHow:
"Raccoons enjoy eating grubs and worms. Consider raccoons as your pests if you know you have problems with grubs in your lawn. Shredded grass or patches of rolled grass are signs of raccoon activity."
Our lawncare contractor says, however, that the grubs are probably not near the surface at this time of year, and the animal is probably searching for where it has found grubs in the past -- and because it is not finding them, it is ranging over a wide area.

Although this specific issue belongs to the individual homeowners, we understand from those who have done some gardening that there are lots of grubs in our soil (probably from Japanese beetles), and that it won't be effective to treat only a small area.

Our course of action:
  • Next year we will add a couple of pesticide treatments for the entire community to the lawn program, which will help the roots of your grass, and follow up with annual applications each summer. Fortunately, this fell within the lawn maintenance budget as the mowing contract was lower than planned for.
  • In the meantime, putting the turf back in place and/or applying repellent will be up to the homeowners affected.

For those interested in the full recommendation from our contractor:

Monday, December 10, 2012

All Things Trash

Update 2/4/13: We've been asked to pass on some tips on how to secure your recyclables, because the loose trash is blowing around every Friday and being cleaned up by your neighbors:
  • Use an enclosed recycling container (free from Howard County). Please -- don't just place your recyclables on the curb in a box.
  • The small, skinny 35-gallon bins, however, are prone to tipping over on windy days. If you cannot use one of the large 65-gallon carts (upgrade is also free, see below) please secure the lid with a bungy cord. If need be, this will also let you lay the cart on its side.
  • Break down your boxes and if they won't fit into your bin, lay them flat on the ground with the cart/bin on top of them.
If you see trash blowing around, please help pick it up. Other suggestions are welcome. Thanks!

Some reminders about trash and recycling, which probably rank as your favorite subjects:

  • On Recycling Collection Days there has been a lot of recycled material blowing around the area near the small traffic island. We have been asked to suggest that:
    • Residents please do not overfill your recycling bins, and
    • If your bin is regularly overflowing, that you request a free upgrade from the County to a larger bin. (The largest size is 65 gallons and would cost $45 to purchase otherwise.) You can call Howard County at 410-313-6444.
    • (Note that some of the smaller bins in particular seem to blow over easily.)
  • Remember that with two holidays coming up, both trash and recycling will slide one day during the weeks of Christmas and New Year's.
    • Trash on Wednesday
    • Recycling on Saturday
  • If you have large bulk items to dispose of, you can contact Howard County to pick them up on your regular scheduled trash day:

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Autumn Walk Snow, Maintenance & Final Handover

Update 12/22/12: Howard County informed us that we are not on the dedication schedule for February, so it will be March or April before the County takes over maintenance of the street. So we have even more reason to be thankful to Miller & Smith for handling the snow plowing one last winter season!

Lots of news about the community. The highlights:

  • Snow plowing will be covered by Miller & Smith!
  • 3-year Contract for Full Mowing
  • Final handover of community (punch list)


Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Emerson HOA Notes 11/26/12

Highlights from the meeting of the Emerson Master HOA Board of Directors on 11/26/12:

  • Quorum was not achieved, so elections were delayed to Monday 1/28/13 (quorum will be established by whoever shows up at that time).
  • Murray Hill Middle School Jazz Band will perform outside Clubhouse at Emerson Holiday Open House on Sat. 12/8/12 (weather permitting). Deadline to RSVP for Holiday Open House is 11/30/12.
  • New Adults Games Night event scheduled for Saturday 1/12/13 from 4-8 pm in Clubhouse (cards, checkers, chess, TV, whatever people want). Email coming out soon to RSVP.
  • Next quarterly Safety Committee meeting Thursday 1/10/13 at 7 pm. Howard County Police have praised Emerson's program, urge residents to leave outside lights on, use alarms, close garage doors at night. Howard County Police have new iWatch app for iPhone/iPad/Android.
  • Three new pet waste stations to be installed on 12/5/12.
  • New pool policies regarding guests to be finalized at January meeting. Plan to solicit feedback prior.
  • Lengthy Q&A session:
    • How to be a Board candidate (nominations all closed, no write-ins allowed).
    • Services provided by Emerson
    • Snow removal responsibilities
    • Emerson budget and debt
    • Repairs and reforestation area, and demarcation of responsibilities


Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Homeowner Responsibilities

We hope everyone is expecting a great Turkey Day! We've been asked to clarify some issues and to remind the community:

  • Guest Parking is limited, so please use your garages and driveways as your primary parking spaces. If we can, let's save those spaces for visitors. (By the way, you probably noticed M&S striped the parking bays yesterday!)
  • Each homeowner is responsible for maintaining your mulched beds (weeding, pruning, and mulching). 
  • However, Autumn Walk will take care of the mowing and trimming again in 2013, including inside fenced yards for the first time (though we will have to set policies regarding unlocking your gates, and posting notices if you do not want them to mow inside the fence).
  • When snow does come, you must clear your sidewalks within 48 hours.
  • We will be posting pet waste disposal signs to remind residents and visitors to pick up solid waste when walking their dogs.
  • Howard County's Traffic Engineer has recommended that the Autumn Walk speed limit be reduced to 15 mph for safety reasons. Until the signs can be installed, please reduce your speed voluntarily.

It helps us save time (and your money) when everyone does their part.

We will address matters when they are brought to our attention, but so far we've been fortunate that simple reminders have been sufficient, for which we offer a big thanks!

P.S.: Our HOA has also decided that Emerson's Architectural Review is so stringent that we will not require an additional review by Autumn Walk for external improvements. We will periodically revisit this question.

P.P.S.: Finally -- no, these classy "No Parking" signs aren't permanent, we're just glad the parking spaces got their stripes!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Calendar of Events

Last Update: 3/25/13

A reminder of the events that are coming up in the next month, starting with the Autumn Walk HOA Meeting tomorrow (we hope to see you there!).

If you cannot attend, we would appreciate knowing your thoughts or questions ahead of time.

Autumn Walk HOA:

Mon. 11/19/12 @ 7 pm
Emerson Clubhouse
Autumn Walk HOA Budget Meeting (adoption of FY13 Budget and setting of HOA fees); detailed info on our Facebook page
Mon. 3/11/13 @ 7 pm
Jenny's House
Fri. 5/10/13 @ 7 pm - 9 pm
Wherever the Flamingo Has Landed
Flamingo Friday
Mon. 6/3/13 @ 7 pm
Emerson Clubhouse
Autumn Walk HOA Elections (election of 2013 Board, details to be posted to our web site and  Facebook page

Will also vote on proposal to expand Board
Somewhere in Autumn Walk
Autumn Walk Social - Community Picnic (volunteers needed to organize!)

Emerson Master HOA:

Mon. 11/26/12 @ 7 pm
Emerson Clubhouse
Emerson HOA Elections (three positions open)

*** Elections postponed to February 2013 ***
Sat. 12/8/12 from 12 pm - 2 pm
Emerson Clubhouse
Emerson Holiday Open House (picture-taking with Santa & His Elves) - must RSVP to Emerson by 11/30/12

Murray Hill Middle School Jazz Band will perform outside if weather permits 
Thu. 1/10/13 @ 7 pm
Emerson Clubhouse
Quarterly Safety Committee Meeting
Sat. 1/12/13 from 4 pm - 8 pm
Emerson Clubhouse
Adult Game Night (hang out at the Clubhouse without kids for TV, cards, checkers, etc.)

E-mail to follow for RSVP 
Wed. 1/23/13 
Emerson Clubhouse or to CMC
**NEW** Deadline for Emerson Board of Directors Candidates (signatures from 20 households in good standing required)
Mon. 1/28/13 @ 2 pm
Emerson Clubhouse
Emerson Nominating Committee (certification of candidates for Emerson BoD)
Mon. 1/28/13 @ 7 pm
Emerson Clubhouse
Emerson Board Meeting 

Guests: Howard County Officials

Will also adopt new pool policies

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Let It Snow, Let It Snow

The Winter Season is approaching us -- we've seen freak snowstorms in early November before -- so even though we haven't made out our holiday shopping lists yet, Autumn Walk HOA has started to think about how we'll handle snow, which is the biggest unknown variable in our budget.

Last year, snow was the builder's responsibility and we had an extraordinarily mild winter.

The forecast this year is for normal to heavy snow, so who will be responsible for clearing the roads and sidewalks?
  1. The builder is in the process of "dedicating" the streets to Howard County (transferring maintenance to the County). You may have seen the surveyor stakes in the ground, but until this handover happens, snow removal is the responsibility of Miller & Smith. (Though you are always responsible for clearing your own driveway and sidewalks.)
  2. Once the County has accepted the public streets:
    1. Howard County will plow the main street.
    2. Homeowners are responsible for shoveling their sidewalks within 48 hours. (You will want to avoid de-icing agents with salts that can damage the concrete and kill your plants.)
    3. The HOA will be responsible for the guest parking spaces and the sidewalks adjacent to common areas. We have decided we will only shovel the walks.
After this first year we'll find out if this plan is adequate!

For those who wish to check the condition of the County roads, Howard County has a

Winterizing Your Home

Here's a reposting of the winterizing tips that Miller & Smith's Warranty Department sent to us last month.

At a minimum, it's probably a good idea to turn off your rear hose bib (from inside your mechanical room) since you likely won't be using the hose anymore and that way you won't forget.

As colder weather approaches you can take a few key steps to ensure your home serves you well through the coming months. Please take time to check these items in and around your home and attend to any that need maintenance.

  • Clean, test and replace batteries in smoke alarms
  • Test and reset ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCI) breakers/receptacles
  • Change furnace filter
  • Operate heating system; if service is needed it is more conveniently arranged before the busiest part of the season arrives.
  • Adjust registers and dampers.
  • Drain your [outside lawn] sprinkler system
  • "Winterize" exterior faucets to prevent water from freezing and expanding into the pipe causing a broken water line.
  • Adjust or replace weather-stripping on exterior doors as needed.
  • Check the fit of exterior doors; thresholds are adjustable -- use a quarter to turn the screws.
  • Check caulking, inside and out, and touch up.
  • Review safe fireplace operation. Provide professional cleaning at regular intervals.
  • Check the garage overhead door, tighten bolts as needed, and lubricate the rollers in the tracks. Have other repairs done by professionals.
  • Clean gutters, check downspouts and confirm that splash blocks drain away from the house.
  • Check foundation, concrete, and yard for settling; fill in as needed for positive drainage.
  • After snowfall, brush snow off gutters and away from downspouts.
  • Remove ice and snow from concrete and masonry promptly; avoid de-icing agents with damaging salts.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

An Autumn Walk Halloween

Halloween pictures are now up on the Facebook page...and don't forget, this weekend it's time to "fall back" an hour as Daylight Savings Time ends at 2 am on Sunday!

Thanks go out to Jenny in 9847 for organizing the Halloween Kids' Parade, and to all the residents who decorated their homes in spooky fashion! It was great to see everyone outside greeting visitors and passing out candy.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Hurricane Preparation Guidelines

Update 10/30/12: Maryland was very fortunate with the storm track and the power has stayed on in our neighborhood so far. Please be careful once travel restrictions are lifted, as there may be traffic signals out, localized flooding, and trees toppling in the rain-soaked ground.

We could be fortunate enough to have Hurricane Sandy pass us by, but even moderately strong winds and heavy rains could cause some damage.

We have received some guidelines from both of our management companies (Autumn Walk and Emerson), to include emergency numbers.

See below for detailed checklists, but in particular:
  1. Please bring in or tie down loose objects and furniture outside to prevent them from becoming projectiles; 
  2. Make sure that you have water and necessities in case we lose power; and 
  3. Fill the gas tanks of your cars.
And if you observe damage after the storm such as downed trees or electrical wires, or overflowing storm drains, please let us know.

We hope everyone will come through safe and sound next week!

P.S.: We have heard some conflicting information about propane grills. If you decide to bring the grill in, you should keep the propane tank outside for safety reasons.

Please read on for detailed information:

Sunday, October 21, 2012

2013 Annual Budget Meeting

Update 10/23/12: A full explanation of how the budget was calculated is now posted to the residents-only Facebook page. Please contact us if you need a copy. Also note that the correct date is Nov. 19th.

The next formal Autumn Walk HOA meeting will be the 2013 Annual Budget Meeting.

Date: Monday, November 19, 2012
Time: 7 p.m. - 9 p.m.
Location: Emerson Clubhouse

  1. Present the budget in detail to the community.
  2. Discuss whether the community wishes to continue full-service mowing in 2013. Assessment fees are being raised to cover the difference.
  3. Board will adopt the 2013 Budget.
  • Formal notices of this meeting were mailed to all households in Autumn Walk last week.
  • The proposed 2013 Budget has been provided in the mailer; our goal was to get it in your hands 30 days prior to the meeting.
  • Some of the worksheets used to calculate the Financial Reserve have been posted to the residents-only Facebook page.
  • The meeting will have a period for public comment, after which the Board will vote. Note that while every effort will be made to obtain consensus, the decisions will be made by the Board.
We look forward to seeing you at this important meeting! Please contact us ahead of time with your thoughts and concerns.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Cleaning Up After Your Pets

Please remember that both Howard County Regulations and your HOA covenants require pet owners to clean up solid waste left by their pets, on or off their property, and dispose of it in a sanitary manner, or face civil penalties.

This is also a reminder that your pet must be carried or on a leash when outside, so please take something with you on your way out the door, to clean up after your pet "does its daily duty."

This is a matter that affects cleanliness, the appearance of the community, and public health (pet waste can foster parasites long after it is gone).

A few extra minutes can make a big difference in the neighborhood, and can also show a little kindness and consideration for your neighbors. Thanks for your help and cooperation!

From the Autumn Walk Covenants Section 7.9.B:

“Each Member who walks a pet within the community, including the Common Area, is required to clean up any and all solid waste deposited by their pet.”

Monday, October 1, 2012

Neighborhood Construction Work

You've all noticed by now that the builder is starting to finish the final construction in the neighborhood, as they prepare to hand over maintenance of the street to Howard County.

When you see an orange spray-painted "X" it means that something is going to be replaced soon, whether it's large pieces of dead sod, broken curbs, sidewalks, etc. The builder will also be replacing dead trees and shrubs.

The County will then inspect the neighborhood and identify any further actions necessary, and then the street will be paved, after which Howard County will take over responsibility for street repairs and snow removal (other than the guest parking spaces, which will remain the responsibility of Autumn Walk HOA).

Future replacement of trees and shrubs will also be performed by the HOA, as will all other maintenance of the common areas.

Our community manager, April, says there will probably be one day during the paving when the street will be blocked off from about 9 am to 4 pm. She expects they will give us advance notice so you can park outside the street by 7 am, to avoid getting trapped inside and unable to drive to work or elsewhere.


  • (10/8/12) Street paved by M.T. Laney Company, Inc, Eldersburg, MD.
  • (11/19/12) Guest parking spaces striped.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Emerson HOA Notes 9/24/12

Update 10/30/12: Corrected number of open positions; there will be three Emerson Directors elected to two-year terms.

Highlights from the meeting of the Emerson Master HOA Board of Directors on 9/24/12:

  • Emerson Elections on 11/26/12
  • Board approved installation of new pet station for dog waste on Palace Hall
  • Pool rules will be revised next season to deal with overcrowding
  • Upcoming activities include Halloween Parade on 10/27/12 and Holiday Open House
  • Reinspections for architectural covenants are beginning
  • Stephens Manor may be torn down
  • Safety Committee meetings will change to less frequent quarterly schedule 

Friday, September 14, 2012

History: Howard County Schools

Probably all of us moved to Autumn Walk at least in part because of the highly-rated Howard County school system. But did you know that this ranking is the direct result of a conscious decision by the Rouse Company 60 years ago, to systematically create a high-performing school system as part of their vision for Columbia?

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Picnic Report: Rain Couldn't Stop the Party!

I think we can unequivocally say that despite the best efforts of the weather sprites, the Autumn Walk Picnic was a success -- and it was a true community effort!

The theme of the day became "adapt and have fun," and the result was great food, great fellowship, and late-night kibitzing (yes, in the rain) long after the party formally ended. The proof is in the pictures on the Autumn Walk Facebook page.

Early in the afternoon, the high winds shredded the canopy we tried to put up even as the forecast called for heavy rain. But a "Plan B" was developed on the fly and the residents of the corner of the cul-de-sac opened their garages to get us under cover, and we were on!

By the numbers:
  • 28 of 45 houses were present.
  • Roughly 50 adults and 25 children were able to attend at least part of the picnic.
  • Fully a quarter of the houses in Autumn Walk actively participated in the planning and organization of the picnic, or stepped up at the last minute when plans changed on the fly.
  • Everyone brought something to the potluck (with massive amounts left over), and both Dr. & Mrs. Kim (9851) and CAS (our management company) donated $50 even though they couldn't be there.
  • Donated prizes included three $15 iTunes gift cards (door prizes), cupcakes (kids' cakewalk), and blow-up globes for the kids. Door prize winners were Adrienne (9846), Callie (9831), and Jenny (9847).*
  • Because of the many contributions we will be returning $100 to the Autumn Walk treasury for future events, meaning the event cost the HOA a grand total of $50.
  • A memorable sight for me was to see a half dozen kids splashing happily in a large puddle, proving that sometimes the greatest pleasures are the simplest.

So many people contributed that it's impossible to acknowledge everyone, but special thanks must go out to:

1. The organizing committee: 
  • Bindu (9811)
  • Carlo (9821)
  • Sam & Daphna (9834)
  • Adrienne (9846)
  • Jenny (9847)
  • Fred (9854)
...particularly the lead buyer (Bindu and her husband Dharmesh), the "IT and DJ guy" (Sam), the equipment manager (Adrienne), and the children's games coordinator (Jenny and her daughter Sammy).

2. The grillmasters (who got drenched as the rains started just as they fired up the grills):
  • Dharmesh (9811) - veggie burgers
  • Randy (9858) - burgers and dogs (grilling from his deck)
  • Kennedy (9862) - burgers and dogs (grilling from his deck)
  • Charles (9852) also brought his grill to do the final batches so Carlo wouldn't need to truck his down the street

3. The last-minute garage hosts:
  • Fred (9854)
  • Randy & Kelly (9858)
  • Alice (9860)
  • Kennedy & Megan (9862)

4. Photographers who spent so much of their socializing time documenting the event instead:
  • Amy (9806)
  • Jamie (9848)

5. Even though the rains prevented us from playing, Joe and Allie (9832) brought their cornhole games in addition to Texas caviar and coolers filled with ice 

6. An army of folks helped with set-up and especially clean up, which is usually the least fun part of the job.

Hopefully we will have many more opportunities to meet each other. Join the conversation on our Facebook page, and if you have ideas for some fun events, please bring them up there or contact us!

The bonds established at the picnic are a first small step to becoming a true community, and not just an accidental collection of houses.

Thanks to everyone who participated, and thanks once again for a job well done!

* No, the door prize drawings weren't rigged, unless someone managed to corrupt the 4-year-olds pulling the entries from the bowl. The fact that so many committee members won was a function of the fact that so many households were involved in organizing the event! 

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Builder Materials

Note: This post is being published in raw form so you can see where we still need assistance. If you can complete or correct the information here, please let us know! Without a joint effort, this probably won't improve beyond this state.

Last Update: 7/3/15

If you've ever tried to perform a repair or renovation on a house after it was built, you know how difficult it can be to get information about the original materials.

This page will be used to consolidate the list of materials, models, sizes, and colors used by M&S when our community was built.

Please help us by providing information about materials you may be familiar with!

Monday, September 3, 2012

Picnic Next Weekend!

The Autumn Walk Picnic is next weekend!

Date: Saturday, September 8
Time: 4 pm - 7 pm

(Note: if we have to change to the rain date on Sunday, the schedule will shift up by 2 hours)

If you haven't already done so, please RSVP to the invitation in your email, especially if you can provide potluck items!

  • We still need help with set-up and clean-up; also need to borrow trash and recycle cans
  • Plans call for blocking off the end of the cul-de-sac, which will restrict access for residents. If you can, please park your cars in your driveway to keep the street clear. Please let us know if this is a problem.
  • Schedule of events is below
  • Photos will be posted afterwards to the Autumn Walk residents-only Facebook page (access restricted to residents who have "friended" Autumn Walk)

Autumn Walk HOA will be providing hamburgers and hot dogs, and our management company CAS, Inc. has given us a generous welcome gift as well.

Please come out, have fun, and meet the neighbors!

Tentative Schedule of Events (Details May Change) - Saturday, September 8:

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Stephens Manor

If you're like me, you've wondered about the graceful house that sits next to the Emerson Clubhouse. Though somewhat tattered around the edges, it was clearly once a house of distinction, but there aren't any signs posted to tell you who lived there. After a little amateur sleuthing, I think I've found some answers.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Autumn Walk is Now on Facebook!

Thanks go out to Sam Morgan in 9834, who has set up a Facebook page for us to use as a controlled forum for discussions within the community. The cover photo came from Randy Ransier in 9858 (the rainbow, by the way, was real!).

In order to encourage the free exchange of information, the privacy settings have been set at a level so that only residents who "friend" Autumn Walk can see and post to the page.

Please recommend that other residents "friend" Autumn Walk Emerson (

We hope this will serve as a valuable supplement to this blog in helping our residents connect, get to know each other, and help each other out!

Possible topics:

  • Social: discussions and ideas for social events
  • Recreation: queries and suggestions on places to eat, play, work out, etc.
  • Issues: Problems that may be of general interest (posts might be deleted later if the issue is resolved permanently)

If you have any other ideas for the community, please let us know! (Or better yet -- post on Facebook!)

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Emerson Master HOA: Notes July 2012

Note: This post does not contain formal notes from the meeting, but is intended only to flag Autumn Walk residents of items of interest from the larger Emerson Master HOA.

Topics from the Emerson Master HOA Meeting on 7/23/12 (for details, see the full post below or contact Emerson):
  • National Night Out
  • Annual Pool Party (June)
  • Skylark Boulevard
  • HOA Fees
  • Alternate Fence Designs & Architectural Review
  • Emerson Clubhouse
  • Next Meeting: September 24, 2012 at 7 pm in the Clubhouse

Friday, August 17, 2012

Laurel Mall Redevelopment Begins

Update 5/14/13: From The Baltimore Sun:

"In terms of tenants for the redeveloped site, mall officials said fully executed leases are now in hand for a 49,000-square-foot Harris Teeter grocery store; a more than 33,000-square-foot Sports Authority sporting goods store; a 12-screen, state-of-the-art Regal Cinemas theater; and nearly 65,000-square-feet of space for Burlington Coat Factory."

Read more:,0,1078069.story#ixzz2TKWiFjDm

The developers for the overhaul of Laurel Mall, to be called Towne Centre at Laurel, held a groundbreaking ceremony on Monday, August 13th with officials from the City of Laurel and Prince George's County.

The company intends to demolish the existing mall and convert it into an open-air retail center similar to their developments in Hunt Valley and Annapolis, with an expected re-opening in September 2014.

Photo 8/17/12 from Greenberg Gibbons:

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Wednesday, August 15, 2012

HOA Fees

This page provides information on your HOA fees (including payment methods and how to get auto-debit forms) for both of your HOAs:

Last updated: 8/15/12

Monday, August 13, 2012

2012 Landscape Contract

On July 5, 2012, the Autumn Walk Board awarded a contract for the rest of CY2012 for full-service maintenance of the property.

For this year, we chose not to raise the assessment fees, but if the service is continued in CY2013, fees will rise to balance the budget.

The decision will be made at the 2013 Budget Meeting on November 19, 2012 in the Emerson Clubhouse.

Grounds Contract: July-November 2012
Start Date: July 12, 2012
Cost: No extra cost in 2012; full service will require extra dues in 2013
Scope: Full Property

1. You are responsible for:
  • Mulching, weeding, and pruning your own flowerbeds 
  • Watering your grass and flowerbeds 
  • If you have a fenced-in yard, you must mow it yourself

2. The Contractor will provide the following services:

Autumn Walk HOA Actions

Consolidated Record of Pending or Completed Actions: Last Updated 4/24/2013
  • 2013-06-03: 2013 Autumn Walk Elections: Votes on expansion of Board from 3 to 5 members, then will vote on one or three vacancies for 2-year terms
  • 2013-05-15: Emerson Presidents: Emerson Presidents exchange information
  • 2013-04-25: 2013 Call for Nominations and Newsletter: Mailing Begins of Call for Nominations (Autumn Walk Elections) and Autumn Walk Newsletter
  • 2013-04-23: Review of Landscaping Issues: CAS meets with Brickman to review landscaping issues and discuss mowing inside fenced yards.
  • 2013-04-22: Homeowner Request for Landscaping Changes: Homeowner asks for the process to change plants in front beds. Fred queries Emerson, reviews bylaws. Response pending.
  • 2013-04-20: Residents Propose Flamingo Fridays: Publicized in Newsletter, on web site, Facebook. First event will be 5/10/13.
  • 2013-03-25: Final Snow of Season: Did not require snow removal from sidewalks. Autumn Walk snow budget was not needed this winter.
  • 2013-03-15: Street Dedication: Fred contacted Howard County to find out status of handover from Builder to Howard County maintenance of street. Punchlist is being addressed, Howard County expects it to be on the docket in June.
  • 2013-04-11: Quarterly Financial Report: CAS provides 1Q-2013 financial report showing income and expenses. Fred reviews.
  • 2013-03-15: Financial Controls: Fred queries CAS on financial controls and crime insurance policy. CAS provides detailed response on 4/1/13. Recommends independent audit.
  • 2013-03-13: Emerson Presidents: Emerson Presidents exchange information
  • 2013-03-11: HVAC and Humidifier Presentation: Fred worked with ARS to provide free presentation on HVAC systems and Aprilaire humidifiers, hosted by Jenny
  • 2013-02-10: 2012 Tax Returns: Fred signs tax returns for 2012
  • 2013-01-09: Tax and Audit Engagement: Fred signs letter authorizing accountants to start Autumn Walk taxes
  • 2013-01-01: Landscaping Contract Signed: Autumn Walk authorizes 3-year full-mowing maintenance contract. Added pesticide treatments (twice in 2013, annual thereafter). Snow removal to be performed on as-needed basis for sidewalks adjacent to parking spaces and common areas & mailboxes only.
  • 2012-12-21: Speed Limit: Speed limit reduced to 15 mph for safety reasons.
  • 2012-12-18: 2013 Management Contract: Board voted 3-0 to continue management contract with CAS for 2013 under the same terms as 2012
  • 2012-12-02: Turf torn up: Turf torn up behind Lots 25-27, 28; possibly from animals digging for grubs - Board voted 2-0 to contract for 2 grub treatments in 2013, treatments began c. 4/5/13
  • 2012-12-02: Recycling trash: Recycling trash loose after collection, probably from overfilled bins - Posted to web site on 12/17/12, followed with email
  • 2012-11-27: Erosion on slope (Slope belonging to The Landings behind Lots 5-11): Grass is not growing properly. Also possible dead trees behind Lot 4. The Landings still managed by Builder (Williamsburg). Resolution: President contacted Williamsburg on 12/4/12; they inspected, will repair in the Spring. Lot 11, however, is on Autumn Walk property and must be addressed by us.  (Follow-up: Fred contacted new President of The Landing on 4/16/13; CAS also inspected with Brickman on 4/22 and 4/23.)
  • 2012-11-19: 2013 Assessments: New budget adopted, fees will rise to cover cost of full mowing service effective Jan. 2013. New HOA fee coupons will be mailed by CAS.
  • 2012-11-19: Drainage Issues (Common Area Between Lots 4 & 5): Standing water after every rain
  • 2012-11-19: Public Trees: Evaluate trees for replacement near lots 21, 27 & 28; question about long-term effect of roots
  • 2012-11-19: Snow Removal: Resolve whether Builder or HOA will remove snow prior to County takeover in 2013 (Closed 11/29/12: Miller & Smith will pick up cost for one final season. Expect to sign contract for sidewalk snow removal on 2012-12-03.)
  • 2012-11-19: Next HOA Meeting: Completed, Budget Adopted - Approval of CY2013 Budget and Assessments - Formal Notification Mailed 30 days prior
  • 2012-11-15: Handover Punchlist: List of Items HOA would like Builder to address (Status: List provided to CAS to determine which items will be addressed by Builder)
  • 2012-10-31: Residents Organize Halloween Parade
  • 2012-10-21: Request for Maintenance Reminder (Mulched Beds) 
  • 2012-09-12: Request to Address Dog Waste Problem: Posted messages 10/9/12; signs budgeted for FY13
  • 2012-09-03: Residents Request Traffic Changes for Street (Action: Fred) - Howard County traffic engineer recommended lowering speed limit to 15 mph plus curve warning sign. Will be Autumn Walk responsibility. CAS checking whether Howard County can provide the sign(s) for installation. 
  • 2012-08-27: Autumn Walk Facebook Page Goes Live (forum for residents only)
  • 2012-08-16: Blog Goes Live! Comments requested
  • 2012-08-13: Draft Blog Created: Comments requested
  • 2012-08-12: Budget and Financial Reserve Analysis: Completed 10/17/12 (Assigned to Fred)
  • 2012-08-10: Drainage Issues: Runoff in Swale: Pending
  • 2012-08-09: Drainage Issues: HVAC discharge: Connected to underground drainage 9/12/12
  • 2012-08-09: Mowing Issues: CAS walkthrough with Contractor, obtaining recommendations from Contractor on how to maintain drainage, HVAC, and reforestation areas (in progress)
  • 2012-08-03: Request for No Soliciting Sign: Board Approved 3-0, Action Pending (CAS)

Autumn Walk FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): Last updated 03/11/2013

Welcome to Autumn Walk @ Emerson!

If you've stumbled across this blog, the intent is to create a web site for our HOA to communicate the latest news, track our activities, and serve as an archive of important information.

The blog will go public once enough material has been generated to make it useful, but in the meantime, feel free to browse the pages of this work in progress. Suggestions (and help!) would be welcomed.

Reference posts with information of long-term value will be linked permanently in the sidebar, and updated as needed. Current plans are to include:
Thanks for reading, and thanks for participating in your HOA!

Best regards,
Your President
Autumn Walk HOA