Carolina Shores couple warned to pay POA dues

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By Laura Lewis, Reporter

CAROLINA SHORES — A Carolina Shores couple stands to lose their home for not paying their Property Owners Association dues.

Gere and Marge Dale have received letters from a Carolina Shores POA attorney stating they must pay dues or face action.

Gere Dale, a former town commissioner, said he has not paid an estimated $1,235 in POA dues on the couple’s home for the past four years because he objects to the way the POA has not provided financial information on a legal matter.

“This is a 600-pound gorilla exercising what he thinks is his prerogative,” said Dale, who spoke about the matter at the town board of commissioners meeting last Thursday, Jan. 9.

Dale, a former town commissioner, said the issue dates back to 2009.

“The POA, in a very controversial (action), came to the town and said ‘you’re going to take over the stormwater management for this town,’” Dale said.

The town responded it already had stormwater management, so the POA hired an attorney that forced the town to use its own attorney, Holt Moore.

The town subsequently formulated a resolution to implement a stormwater policy to enable the town to handle frontal swales from a “functionality standpoint ordinance,” Dale said.

Dale subsequently attended a POA meeting in February 2010.

He said he pointed out he was a dues-paying member in 2009 and some of his dues money was being used to pay for an attorney for the POA to “fight this battle, and as a taxpayer in this town, my tax monies were used to fight the POA on this issue.”

Dale said he told the board all he wanted from the POA at that time was an accounting of how much money had been spent for an attorney on this issue and an apology to the membership.

“For six months, their monthly bulletins never made any mention of this whatsoever,” Dale said, adding members were never informed.

“Yet they had plenty of room to highlight a social event,” he said.

“I said as soon as I get that information and apology, I will pay my dues,” Dale said. “For four years I’ve heard nothing from the POA. I’ve only heard from their attorney.”

Dale said he has never heard from the POA either in writing or phone in a four-year period.

A lien was placed on the Dales’ property in 2011 and was renewed in 2012 and 2013. Dale said they have lived there for the past 26-and-a-half years.

In December, the Carolina Shores POA board approved a resolution to foreclose on the Dales’ property and grant POA board president Peter Gulliver authority to execute “any and all documents necessary for this foreclosure proceeding.”

Dale said his wife has health problems and the threat they may lose their home hasn’t helped.

“My wife is extremely worried,” he said. “I have told the (POA) attorney that if this thing proceeds and has a detrimental effect on her health, I’m going to hold them as well as the POA responsible.”

POA president responds

“Mr. Dale should really work with his attorney and our attorney, and that will resolve things,” Carolina Shores POA President Peter Gulliver said Tuesday.
Gulliver said Dale is misinformed and has a hazy recollection of the way matters transpired.

“Mr. Dale doesn’t owe me, he owes his neighbors a considerable amount of money,” Gulliver said. “I am just one of the property owners in this subdivision. The obligation is for him to pay up. We have exhausted every other means to get him to pay.”

The POA’s action on the matter is a last resort, Gulliver said.

The Carolina Shores POA has domain over 1,246 properties, most owned by individuals, he said.

Out of more than 1,200 owners, Gulliver said Dale is one of nine who are in “dire straits” and owe the POA a considerable amount of money.

“We’re not the ones who are out of step,” Gulliver said. “His neighbors would like to be paid.”

Laura Lewis is a staff writer for the Beacon. Reach her at 754-6890 or email llewis@brunswickbeacon.com.