Friday, August 26, 2016

National Dog Day!

Keeping Your Dog Safe

 & Your Community Happy!


On a serious note...

Virtually every community has a leash law. The law requires that dogs be kept on a leash at all times when on public property. While on private property, dogs must be under the control of their owners. The intent of this law is to protect the health and safety of the public and to protect your pet. The use of a leash will benefit you, your neighborhood, and your pet. There are many good reasons to keep your dog on a leash:
  • It’s a great good neighbor policy, preventing your dog from trespassing on neighbor’s property during your walk. It also keeps your dog from jumping on people you encounter, ensuring that your dog has the chance of being properly introduced.
  • Improved companionship. A well trained and leash-obedient dog is a pleasure to walk with.
  • Walking your pet on a leash will prevent the spread of disease. It is less likely that your dog will be exposed to Parvo or Distemper. A leashed dog can be restrained from sniffing the droppings of other animals.
  • A leash is commonly referred to as “Your Pet’s Lifeline,” protecting your pet from traffic and unrestrained animals. Accidents or animal bites are greatly reduced when responsible pet owners obey the leash law.
  • An obedient and well behaved dog is a positive reflection of its owner.
  • It’s a great identification tool, symbolizing that the dog has an owner, and enabling someone who sees the leash and identification tag attached to the dog’s collar to find you if you and your pet should become separated.
  • It’s a great relief to wildlife, keeping your dog from chasing squirrels, deer and other wildlife.
  • It’s the law! The law is in place to protect other members of the public and your pet from injury.
Be a good neighbor. Be a good friend. Use a leash.

On a fun note!
13 Things Your Dog Can Teach You

1. When loved ones come home, always run to greet them.
2. Allow the experience of fresh air and the wind in your face to be pure ecstasy.
3. Let others know when they've invaded your territory.
4. Take naps and stretch before rising.
5. Run, romp, and play daily.
6. On hot days, drink lots of water and lie under a shady tree.
7. When you're happy, dance around and wag your entire body.
8. No matter how often you're scolded, don't buy into the guilt thing and pout - run right back out and make friends.
9. Delight in the simple joy of a long walk.
10. Eat with gusto and enthusiasm. Stop when you have had enough.
11. Be loyal.
12. Never pretend to be something you are not.
13.If what you want lies buried, dig until you find it.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Thunderstorm Safety – Avoiding a Lightning Strike

Warm weather usually means fun in the sun, but summer heat also can bring severe weather. Threatening thunderstorms often loom large on summer afternoons so it’s important to be prepared for downpours and accompanying lightning, which can strike outdoors or indoors. Consider the following suggestions when planning both outdoor and indoor events this summer to reduce the risk of a lightning strike

There's a storm brewing - Hanover, PA
  • Watch the weather. Pay attention to your local weather forecast before participating in outdoor activities. If there’s a chance of thunderstorms, consider rescheduling or moving events indoors. If that’s not possible, have an emergency plan in place in case a severe storm rolls in and designate a sufficient nearby structure as an emergency shelter.
  • Stay inside. If severe thunderstorms are imminent, go indoors and wait until they pass. Safe, enclosed shelters include homes, schools, offices, shopping malls and vehicles with hard tops and closed windows. Open structures and spaces do not provide adequate protection.
  • Duck and crouch. If you’re caught outside during a severe storm, it’s important to crouch low on the ground, tuck your head and cover your ears to help protect yourself from harm. Do not lie down; lightning strikes can produce extremely strong electrical currents that run along the top of the ground, and laying horizontally increases electrocution risk.
  • Turn off faucets. During a thunderstorm, lightning can sometimes be conducted through the plumbing. Avoid any type of contact with running water, including bathing, showering, and washing your hands, dishes, or clothes.
  • Turn off electronics. All electrical appliances—televisions, computers, laptops, gaming systems, stoves, and more—that are plugged into an electrical outlet could carry a current from a lightning strike. Surge protectors will reduce the risk of damaging electronics.
  • Stay away from windows. Not only is lightning a threat, but high winds and hail create flying debris that could be harmful during a thunderstorm. Close all windows and doors and keep away from them.

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Impending Weather by Steve Wolf CMCA, AMS, PCAM, Tidewater Community Association Manager

I want to take a moment to address everyone regarding the impending snow storm this weekend. As it stands right now, it looks like the Maryland area is in for a direct hit. 

Below is a link to the latest report. It indicates the potential for snow that will be measurable in feet.  If this is the case, there are a few safety tips that I would like to point out, as well as some websites to view for additional information.  Please remember that these types of storms are dangerous, and have the potential to be tragic….so please stay vigilantAside from my job as a Community Association Manager for Tidewater Property Management, I am a Firefighter/Medic with the fire department in Baltimore County. Although most likely I will be deployed, I will keep the Tidewater vendors and Boards updated with information as it becomes available.  Please note, I will be in constant communication with our vendors responsible for snow removal. If this turns out to be a big storm, we respectively ask our clients to be patient because it is going to take some time to clear. Rest assured that our Tidewater crews will be working around the clock to make sure sidewalks and roadways are clear. Also note that once the government declares a state of emergency, only emergency vehicles, State Highway, and essential personnel will be allowed on Maryland Roadways.

How to Prepare for a Winter Storm
  • Winterize your vehicle and keep the gas tank full. A full tank will keep the fuel line from freezing.
  • Insulate your home by installing storm windows or covering windows with plastic from the inside to keep cold air out.
  • Maintain heating equipment and chimneys by having them cleaned and inspected every year.
  • If you will be going away during cold weather, leave the heat on in your home, set to a temperature no lower than 55° F.
  •  If the power goes out, close off unused rooms to consolidate and retain heat.  Wear layered clothing and use blankets or sleeping bags to stay warm. Bring pets inside.

Put Together a Supply Kit

  • Water—at least a 3-day supply; one gallon per person per day
  • Food—at least a 3-day supply of non-perishable, easy-to-prepare food
  • Flashlight
  • Battery-powered Radio
  • Extra batteries
  • First aid kit
  • Medications (7-day supply) and medical items (hearing aids with extra batteries, glasses, contact lenses, syringes, etc.)
  • Multi-purpose tool
  • Sanitation and personal hygiene items
  • Copies of personal documents (medication list and pertinent medical information, proof of address, deed/lease to home, passports, birth certificates, insurance policies)
  • Cell phone with chargers
  • Family and emergency contact information
  • Extra cash
  • Baby supplies (bottles, formula, baby food, diapers)
  • Pet supplies (collar, leash, ID, food, carrier, bowl)
  • Tools/supplies for securing your home
  • Sand, rock salt or non-clumping kitty litter to make walkways and steps less slippery
  • Warm coats, gloves or mittens, hats, boots and extra blankets and warm clothing for all household members
  • Ample alternate heating methods such as fireplaces or wood- or coal-burning stoves
NEVER use generators, outdoor heating or cooking equipment, such as a grill, camp stove, or a gasoline or propane heater, indoors.

NEVER heat a home with a stove.

If driving is absolutely necessary, keep disaster supplies in your vehicle, make sure your vehicle is properly equipped, and use extra precaution on the roads.

If you do not have adequate supplies to stay warm in your home and you can get there safely, you may want to go to a shelter.

For additional information, please visit the following websites:

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Are You Ready for Cold Weather?

Fall is the time to prepare for winter—cold and wet conditions not only make you miserable, but they can damage your home.  Luckily, winter conditions have only recently been resurfacing. Some winterizing can wait, some can’t. Make a list of what needs to be done, and tackle the time-sensitive tasks first. Here’s a simple checklist from Tidewater to help you get a jump on winter.

Indoor Winterizing
  • Examine doors and replace weather-stripping as needed.
  • Examine window caulking and reseal where needed.
  • Examine and repair vents where needed.
  • Clean chimneys and flues.
  • Remove items near heat vents.
  • Place nonskid runners or door mats outside to help keep water, sand and salt out of the house.

Outdoor Winterizing
  • Cut back tree branches and shrubs that hide signs or block light.
  • Examine outdoor handrails and tighten if needed.
  • Turn off electrical breakers for outdoor equipment.
  • Close hose bibs.
  • Clean out gutters and downspouts.
  • Clear yard drains.
  • Spray outdoor locks and hinges with lubricant.
  • Stake driveway and walkway edges that may be difficult to find under deep snow.

Assemble, stockpile or refresh winter supplies:
  • Batteries
  • Candles and matches
  • Ice melt and deicer
  • Sand
  • Snow shovels
  • Generator fuel
  • Antifreeze

Friday, November 27, 2015

What is a Special Meeting?

Special meetings are unscheduled meetings called from time to time by the board for a specific purpose. Special meetings usually address issues that need immediate attention or that need more time and discussion than can be handled in routine board or annual meetings.

There are a couple of things that make special meetings … well, special.

First, members must be notified of the exact purpose of the meeting, and the meeting must be limited specifically to achieving this purpose. This is important because people typically decide whether to attend a special meeting based on the issue and how it’s being addressed. Therefore, actions taken on issues not listed in the notice will be invalid. In fact, no action can be taken at all, if it was not included in the notice. For example, if the stated purpose of a meeting is “to discuss” a problem, the board cannot actually vote on a solution—at least not in this meeting.

Second, association members—not just the board—can call for a special meeting, if they get a minimum number of signatures on a petition that states exactly what issue or problem they want to address. Homeowners give the petition, with its stated purpose, to a board member who schedules the special meeting.

Like annual and board meetings, special meetings are open to all association members who wish to attend, and they require a quorum before any business can be conducted. Also, notifying all association members properly is essential; when and how the notice is delivered, what it says, and other requirements must be met.

Monday, September 14, 2015

Love Your Dog, Leash Your Dog

We love dogs - we really do.  That's why associations are committed to enforcing county leash laws on association properties.  According to the U.S. Humane Society, an unleashed dog has an average life span of less than four years.  Allowing your dog to run free threatens your dog's health and welfare and the happiness it brings to you.

We also love your community.  That's another reason the association is committed to enforcing the county leash law - so ALL residents may enjoy the community.

We trust we can count on you for voluntary compliance with any applicable leash laws and rules.  We don't like to call animal control, but we won't have any choice if your dog is running free.  Be sure to check the lease law in your county.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Are HOA Residents Happy?

Do you know that more than 60 million Americans live in homeowners associations and condominium communities? How do these 60 million residents feel about their own associations? Are they happy with their elected boards? How do they feel about the rules?

The Foundation for Community Association Research, an affiliate of Community Associations Institute (CAI), sponsored a recent national public opinion survey to answer these and other questions.  Here are some of the key findings:

  • 71 percent of residents say they are satisfied with their community association experience. Only 12 percent express dissatisfaction and 17 percent are neutral on the question.
  • 89 percent believe their association board members strive to serve the best interests of the community, while 11 percent say the opposite or they aren’t sure. 
  • 76 percent say their professional managers provide value to their communities, while 24 percent say the opposite or they aren’t sure. 
  • 70 percent believe their community association rules “protect and enhance” property values. Only 2 percent say rules harm property values, while about 29 percent see no difference or didn’t know.