FY24 Pool New Process & Policies

Hello everyone, pool season is here! We are excited to catch up with everyone! As covered in our annual and town hall meetings, there are new changes this year to our pools.

As with prior years, everyone must check in with the attendant on duty.

NEW This summer:

  • Everyone must badge in, please do not hold the door for security tracking
  • There are enter queue and exit lanes
  • The pool attendant will check you in 
  • Each household is only permitted 4 guests (party fees apply after 4)
  • Guest fees are $5 per person 
  • Guests are required to wear a guest wristband at all times within the pool for visibility
  • We ask wristbands are given back to the attendants as guests leave
  • Minimum age to enter alone 16; unless the request form is filled out and the FY24 AGREEMENT, RELEASE AND INDEMNIFICATION AGREEMENT is signed and received by a member of the Association
    • Anyone under 16 must be accompanied by an adult (18+) if the Agreement isn’t signed
    • Sitters, Childcare, and Nannies are able to be utilized
  • Family policy is still valid see FAQ

We have had a lot of after hours activities in the past and we have taken some big steps to be able to keep an eye on the pools after hours. Please ensure everyone in the home knows the pools close at 9pm which include the parking lots. (10pm on Thurs – Sat) In regards to after hours activities: all homes are subject to the fine schedule & loss of access to pools for 1 year.

We thank everyone for helping to work through this new process. Please be patient with our attendants, they are young and doing as instructed. We strive to keep our community safe, and hope everyone has a wonderful summer!

Hello everyone. We appreciate all the feedback & support. We read every FB message and every email that was received, and it was very helpful.  We heard from you, and after further discussion, we have decided to make a few adjustments, in order to make this work better for more families.

 First; a bit more of an explanation as to WHY our pool policies had to change-

Age limit: while we understand the new limit is not ideal, it was created based off of several metrics such as:

  1. Behavior
    1. Ignoring pool attendants
    1. Giving false names when asked who they are
    1. Foul and sexual language around others
  2. No lifeguards
    1. A close call by a solo child raised awareness and concern about children swimming alone.

While this may not be a specific child, it is representative of Thousand Oaks children. We are intentionally not revealing names of children involved in multiple concerns.

Question: What if I do not have a babysitter?

Answer: We are sorry, but the pool attendants are not there to babysit during the day. They are hired to maintain the flow of residents. These attendants are not Red Cross certified lifeguards or paramedics.

Question/Statement: This isn’t fair to my child.

Answer: The Association understands and knows there are a lot of great children in our community. Unfortunately, there are two factors to this decision.

  1. Rules must be made for all, not the few.
  2. Children can/do act differently without their parents and with friends.

Question/Statement: The teens we hire for the pool aren’t doing their job to enforce rules, we should hire 18+ to work the pools or lifeguards.

Answer: It is not the role of the attendant to ensure community members act appropriately at the pool. It is their job to monitor, correct, and eject when rules are not being followed. All attendants have been instructed to call 911 when it seems dangerous. All attendants have also been instructed not to engage with people with raised voices, yelling, or screaming at them, the overall Association will manage. The Associations’ first priority is to ensure our attendants are safe and feel safe.

Question/Statement: My child is old enough to come to the pool alone.

Answer: The Association doesn’t involve itself in evaluating each child’s capacity or maturity. We do have a responsibility for all homes families in the neighborhood. Last year we had an issue where a child swimming alone was struggling in the pool. We do not have lifeguards and cannot legally help. A good Samaritan adult stepped in and assisted.  

$5 Guest fee: The fee was raised to mirror a sampling of pools in the Northland and what they are charging. The fee would be paid if the guest went to other places. These fees go to offsetting the attendants’ cost, and investments in security equipment that was necessitated by a significant number of safety incidents and property damage incurred by the Association in prior years.

Question/Statement: I already paid dues; I shouldn’t have to pay more.

Answer: The dues assessed each year are established by the annual budget for the Association. That budget does not provide for the use of common areas or pools by more than the residents who live in lots in Thousand Oaks. When our property is used by unanticipated numbers of non-residents with frequency, it causes greater maintenance, problems during the season and overall accelerated wear and tear on the facilities.

4-person guest limit: This is for a number of reasons, one of which is pool capacity. It has been a constant request over the past 5-7 years to reduce capacity. We can always increase the number of guests. The Association has party fees to be able to manage large groups. As always, residents are able to email the HOA and can inquire about specific instances, such as grandparents staying for the summer, family, etc. The only commitment is it will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.

Question/Statement: I have more than 4 people in my family.

Answer: Your immediate family does not count against your guest limit. If you have 1 child or 15 you are able to bring your family to the pool free of charge.

Question/Statement: I pay dues and should be able to bring who I wish to the pool.

Answer: While yes you are a member, and have paid dues, current dues do not include unlimited use of common areas and pool by non-members. By way of example our local YMCA does have limits on the number of guests each paying Member may bring into the facility, this is done to ensure members are able to utilize the common space without overcrowding. It ensures safety and meets occupancy limits by facility owner or local government.

Guest wristbands: Our neighborhood is very large, and when guests are factored in, the amount of tracking makes it very difficult. Last year we had a resident bring a guest who ended up meeting up with a non-resident gentleman who snuck behind a family leaving the pool. These two individuals proceeded to speak very explicitly and referenced sexual context in the clear earshot of minor children. Additionally, one of the same gentlemen also put his hand on a 13-year old’s shoulder, which was uninvited contact. It took the Association several days of combing handwritten login sheets and hours of footage to identify they were guests and unauthorized entry. Having a wrist band, which changes colors each day, will allow us to better identify who is a guest and who is a resident. Additionally, we will be able to match up a digital record to be able to track down the homeowner.

Question/Statement: Why do we have to check in, previously we were able to badge and walk in.

Answer: Members of the Association have always been required to sign in. The difference is now the attendant is going to check you in vs. being able to self-sign in.

Question/Statement: These bands are not necessary and are embarrassing. We aren’t a theme park.

Answer: The world is a vastly different place than it was 20 years ago, and we have many more homes than ever before. Very close calls and serious concerns from Members to the Association have deemed it necessary for the team to easily tell who a resident is and who is a guest. The action is 100% around safety of all 1,000 homes and to protect those who wish to swim safely.

Overall questions:

Question: Has the Association changed its previous rule regarding children, grandchildren and grandparents.

Answer: While the Association has put in a new guest/fee policy, it does not override the previous policy of being able to bring your children (in house/out of house), grandchildren, or grandparents free of charge.

Question: I have called around to my friends and other HOAs are not doing this.

Answer: While we appreciate due diligence, Thousand Oaks is a very large neighborhood, which is growing quickly, and we have our own challenges and concerns which must be addressed.

Question: How did the policy come into effect.

Answer: The Association is permitted to make policy as deemed necessary. The 20 volunteers assisting the Association – who all own lots in Thousand Oaks – overwhelming voted in favor of this policy.

Question: When was this communicated? Why was it last minute?

Answer: It was communicated at both the Annual meeting in November 2023 and the Town Hall on May 13th. The Association uses live events to help communicate news of the neighborhood, it is up to the members to attend those events. Both the safety concern and the property damage suffered by the Association over the past years, in addition to new rules related to unmonitored children at the pool have repeatedly been discussed in open meetings and communications.

Question: Why are we making capacity polices when it’s clear we need a third pool?

Answer: Thousand Oaks was never scheduled to have a third pool, nor will it have a third pool. It is important for the Association to manage the assets appropriately, so all members have the ability to ensure the pool without worrying about capacity.

Question: We just got cameras- why can’t we rely on those cameras to identify the offenders and only give the offenders consequences?

Answer: The cameras are a wonderful tool for looking at issues, but if we don’t know the child’s identity that is causing the problem, we are right back at square one with not being able to ban that one person. The cameras do not record sound and would not be able to show the full severity of behavior.

Question: How many pool keys are permitted?

Answer: Each Lot is permitted 1 key. If you lose your key, your lost key will be deactivated and you can purchase a new key by emailing the Association.

What’s Next?

We are sending out a link (found below) where members are permitted to sign up their 12 – 15-year-old if the following criteria are met:

  1. Members must sign an Agreement, Indemnification and Release (“Agreement”)
  2. The Agreement will contain a provision that states upon a policy violation, each family is permitted 1 warning, followed by loss of pool key for a year, and fine. (1st warning will be emailed and/or mailed to the property owner’s address and notification of pool key termination will be communicated in writing.
  3. Members must ensure children who are signed up must produce a pool key.
    1. If two children from different homes come to the pool, each will need their property pool key.
  4. Any child caught giving a false name will count as the 1st warning.
  5. Loss of the pool key at any point in the year, will not entitle members any form of discounts, dues reduction, or other financial consideration of sums due to the Association.
  6. Any guest children who fall within the age range of 12 – 15 must complete an Agreement with participation from legal guardian or parent.
  7. Any guest children who fall within the age range of 12 – 15 must wear a reusable id bracelet, provided by the Association, which identifies First name / parent phone (future state)
  8. Nannies and Childcare Providers bringing children to the pool may sign an agreement and will not be counted as a guest while they are working. They will be responsible/accountable for the behavior of the children under their care, and any guests they bring.

Thousand Oaks Pools Minor Pool Access

https://forms.office.com/r/V7fwrK0t9t

Further Questions:

Question: How will my 16-year-old provide ID if the school districts collect student badges at the end of the year, and not everyone has a driver’s license.

Answer: With the ability to sign up a child of the age range of 12-15, this will eliminate the need for any identification.

Question: Why do we need to sign up our children for the pools?

Answer: It has always been required to give all family member names to the Association for pool access.