Frequently Asked Questions
These are questions frequently asked of Board members. If you have a question, send it our way! (These answers were updated November of 2009.)
Q. What should new residents do before construction?
Contact a board member. They will walk you through the process of getting house plans approved and the water hooked up. According to our Covenants and Bylaws, the Board must approve house plans and water hook-ups prior to construction.
Q. What's the latest on the water system?
There are five wells in the meadow, four of which currently provide us drinking water (one well isn't functioning because of a cave-in). Over the years we have deepened some of the wells, to provide us with more water.
The four wells discharge into an eight inch line leading from three 10,000 gallon storage tanks.
When Loyal Willis, the original developer, sold what is now Division Four to Western Land Company, that included the meadow. In April of 2004, Western Land Company granted to the Duquette Pines Homeowners Board the existing water delivery and distribution system. The DPHOA Board had been responsible for the maintenance and the billing of water assessments for many years. So nothing really changed.
Most folks who build in Division Four will have to drill their own well for drinking water. However, there are a handful of lots in Division Four that get their water from our system, as part of an overarching agreement the Board signed with Western Land Co.
Our system includes the wells, pumps and main water lines up to and including the main water shut off valve that connects to the property owner's water lines. Maintenance of the system includes water quality testing as scheduled by the State Dept of Environmental Quality, and repairs or replacement of pumps or other system components. Our water master is Brent Adamson.
Right now we seem to be in pretty good shape for drinking water. But no one really knows how much water is under ground. So water conservation is an important part of living in Duquette Pines subdivision.
Q. The Covenants for some of the Divisions say "No noxious or offensive activities shall be carried on that is an annoyance or nuisance to the surrounding owners." Is this being enforced?
The Board has sent letters to certain owners asking for their cooperation in keeping Duquette Pines an upscale subdivision. And when needed, the Board has sought legal action in cases where we believe someone is out of line with the spirit of the Covenants. We realize that this is a subjective matter, but the Board also believes its obligation to all homeowners requires action when things are truly 'noxious or offensive.' Usually the issues involve open storage of trash, junk vehicles, and sanitary issues.
Q. Is the Board doing anything about the wildfire threats to our Subdivision?
Our biggest concern is the BLM land directly to the west of our Subdivision. We have sent letters to the BLM, asking them to manage their holdings.
In September of 2006, the BLM did some thinning of small trees; and they tell us they will do more once an Environmental Impact Statement is ratified. We thank them for their efforts.
Several of us have had our lands thinned by a logger. Trees which are thinned have a better chance of warding off the pine beetle. Most foresters suggest that ponderosas should be about thirty feet apart. This gives trees more water and will also limit crown fires, hopefully.
In 2006 we were the recipients of a $45,000 grant administered by the County, which allowed work to be done on individual properties. This first phase is almost completed, and we just found out we were successful in receiving a second grant. This is a matching grant that utilizes federal and state dollars, but we get to match it with cash or 'sweat equity.'
Some believe that it is only a matter of time before we need to create a fire district, probably with the Idaho City volunteer Department, if that's possible. Jim White is our representative with the newly created Boise County Wildfire Interagency group and has begun attending meetings and reporting to the Board.
Q. What about speeding and dust on our roads?
The signs are posted for 20mph on our roads, but we realize that some folks don't seem to think that applies to them. The Board will send letters to offending individuals, and asks your help in this matter. We need to police ourselves.
The Board has occasionally put in speed bumps. No one likes these things, but speeding is a real problem for us, and the Board is attempting to deal with it. The Board has also installed several "Yield" signs at some of the major intersections.
In the summer of 2007, for the first time in the history of the subdivision, the Board began experimenting with a dust abatement chemical on the roads. Magnesium chloride is used by the County on the Bear Run road leading up to our subdivision. Gardner Construction put several small doses on all of our roads, over a period of several weeks. It worked, but not as well as some would have liked. The experimenting continues. (The problem with mag chloride is that it gets slippery when it rains, so we have been careful about putting too much on the roads.)
Q. What is the current charge per lot for road and water?
Currently each lot owner pays $340 for road and site maintenance (down from $360 in 2006) and $240 for water service and system maintenance. These are annual fees. Residents of all four divisions pay the same amount for road and site maintenance. Some lots in Division Four do not have access to the water system for domestic use and must drill a well.
These fees are legally binding. In 2007 the Board decided to turn property owners over to a collection agency if the fees haven't been paid for more than a year and if there has been no communication with the Board about the reason why.
Q. How is the Board dealing with the water shortage that seems to hit us each summer?
We have deepened several of our wells so that they produce more water. We also replaced pumps in several of our wells. In the last several years, Jim White, our resident manager, has searched out and fixed leaks in the system, which has helped immensely. The Board is continuing to monitor all needs and options, including a new well, when necessary. In November of 2004 a third 10,000 gallon tank was brought on-line; the cost for this one was split 50-50 with Western Land Company and us.
But unless we find a rich aquifer under the Subdivision, we are assuming that Duquette Pines residents will always have to conserve water during these drought years.
Q. Will the new residents moving into Division Four be under the same Covenants as those living in the other Divisions?
In October of 2006, the homeowners of Divisions 1,2, and 3 voted unanimously to change the Bylaws to allow the inclusion of Division 4. Prior to that time, Division 4 was governed by the developer, Western Land Company. In 2004, realizing that the four divisions would one day be united under one Board, the Duquette Pines Home Owners Board and Western Land Co. signed an Agreement. This began the process of consolidation, which was completed with the October, 2006, vote.
Because they are binding contracts signed at the time of purchase, property owners in Division 4 must abide by the Covenants written specifically for their Division. This also holds true for property owners in Divisions 1, 2, and 3. The Covenants for Division 4 are considerably different from the Covenants for Divisions 1,2, and 3. In fact, each Division has differences in their respective Covenants.
Q. How many lots are in each of the four divisions in Duquette Pines?
There are a total of 175 lots in Duquette Pines. In Division One, there are 31 lots; in Division Two, there are 34 lots; in Division Three there are 36 lots. Division Four has 65 lots, with fifteen of them able to hook into the community water system. There are also nine out-parcel lots, which are governed by the CCR's of Division One.
And there are 6.2 miles of road in Duquette Pines.
Q. What is the history of our wells?
Loyal and Barbara Willis settled in Duquette Pines in 1970 and had well #1
drilled in October of that year. This well is located near the home at 101 Meadow
Drive. Its original depth was 297 ft. and the pump was placed at 247 ft. The original
pump was replaced in 1990 by a new 3 hp pump. In December of 2002 this well was
deepened to 550 ft. and the pump was again replaced.