Old Wharf Condominium Council of Unit Owners
46th Street and Ocean Highway, Ocean City, WID
Council of Unit Owners Annual Meeting, 17 May 1997
The Annual Meeting of the Council of Unit Owners of Old Wharf Condominium convened
at 1 1 : O O A.M. on 17 May 1997 at Hall's Restaurant, 60th Street and Ocean Highway,
Ocean City, MD.
Roll Call and Certification of Proxies: Owners from 18 Units were present at the
meeting and an additional 8 proxies were available, making a total of 26 Units represented.
Proof of Notification of Meeting: President, Ken Tavener offered a copy of the meeting
notice as proof of notification.
Minutes of Last Meeting: The minutes of the previous annual meeting of the Council of
Unit Owners was presented and accepted.
Treasurer's Report: The Treasurer, John Wisniewski, was unable to attend the meeting,
however, the annual report of last year's budget, expenses, and the proposed budget for
the 1997 - 1998 were sent to all Council Members. The report was accepted as presented.
Art Glaser, Unit #41, presented an updated Unit Owners Directory (Thanks to Art for
Reports of Officers: None
Reports of Committees: None
Election of Board of Directors: Dutch Zellner, Unit #42, resigned his position on the -
Board of Directors upon sale of his Condominium. The By-Laws state that the number of
Board members shall be 2 or 3, at the discretion ofthe Council Members. Some years ago
a vote was taken at an annual meeting to change the number of Board Members to 7.
However, it isn't recorded whether that motion was approved by a 213 majority of Council
Members, as required by Law. In any event, the change was never recorded and made an
official part of the By-Laws of Old Wharf Condominium. Consequently, until the number
of Board Members is officially established as part of the By-Laws, the vacant position on
the Board will not be filled. There was no formal motion or vote to establish the number
of Board Members at this meeting, since there were only 26 Units represented, not
sufficient for a 213 majority.
Old Business: The roof drains have been modified by Fritz Hoffman, the Old Wharf
Maintenance Manager, to avoid the backup of water which had previously caused leakage
into some units. Fritz had also been authorized to have the parking lot coated, paint all
the pillars in the garage, paint the stairs, reroute the air condition drains, and replace the
dumpsters as required by the City. The only one of these to be completed to date is the
surfacing of the parking lot. Fritz informed the Council that he was planning on rerouting
the air conditioning drains into the city waste water system. There was a concern
expressed that perhaps such a fix would not be accordance with city regulations. No one,
including Fritz, was familiar with the City's regulations on the matter, so it was decided by
the Council that Fritz should not undertake that particular fix until the City regulations
could be checked. No alternative fix was discussed at the meeting.
The fire alarms, which had rusted into inoperability, were replaced with electronic
horns, which will not rust.
A. Fritz reported that some time ago a leak occurred in one of the second floor
units resulting in substantial water damage to that unit, the one below, and the ceiling of
the garage, and that he had traced the problem to failed parts on the commode. Two
possible sources of leaks were determined:
1. The first leak could occur around the two bolts which hold the main
tank to the base of the commode. The washers which seal the bolts and
prevent leakage from the tank are deteriorating with age. They become so
badly deteriorated that they could begin to leak, or if the tank is nudged or
moved at all the seal could break, initiating a leak.
2. The second leak could occur around the compression nut sealing the
water inlet line. These are plastic nuts which are under pressure. Over
time they could crack resulting in a serious leak. The nut is an integral part
of the water inlet line and can not be replaced separately. - .
Fritz informed all Council members present at the Meeting that this problem could
be occurring in most, if not all the other units, and should be, at the very least, inspected,
and perhaps remedied. The Council passed a resolution requesting the President to send a
survey form to all Council Members asking whether they would like to participate in an
overall fix to these problems. Fritz Hoffman has offered to replace the failing parts with
new, and considerably upgraded parts, for a total of $75.00. This includes about $15.00
for parts and about $60.00 for labor.
B. It was suggested that all Unit Owners be reminded again of the potential for
leaks from their hot water heaters, if they are still using the original units. The builder
provided no emergency drains for these heaters, only a pan under the unit which will hold
only a small amount of water. The overflow will go into the units below and can cause
C. In 1996, the Board of Directors hired an attorney to review the Old Wharf
Condominium By-Laws for their compliance with Maryland Law, and an interpretation of -
the By-Laws delineation of Common versus Unit Property. The past President, At r
Rutledge, and the current President have reviewed the response, and have determined that
our By-Laws are woefully out of date. Kathleen Kordek, Unit #16, is an attorney and had
volunteered to help bring our By-Laws into conformance with Maryland Law. The
original By-Laws were constructed by the builder, probably from standard Covenants,
maybe from another Condominium project. They were turned over to the Council of Unit
Owners, which could amend them to more specifically represent their needs and
requirements. This has never been done, and there have been many occasions when the
specific phrasing of the By-Laws was inappropriate or undesirable, and, therefore,
ignored. Although there has never been a dispute over actions taken by the Council or
Board of Directors, ignoring or intentionally breaking By-Laws could lead to liability in a
legal case. A committee was formed ( Kathleen Kordek, Unit #16, At Rutledge, Unit
#17, John Haczewski, Unit #20, and Ken Tavener, Unit #29) to review the specific
provisions of the By-Laws, and recommend changes which would make them more
appropriate and acceptable to our Council of Unit Owners. Kathleen will insure that all
recommended changes are in compliance with Maryland Law. This committee will
coordinate all its suggested and proposed changes through the President, who will
incorporate them into a proposed new version of the By-Laws to be sent to all Council
Members for comment. At some point in time, the Board of Directors will submit an
official proposal for modification of the By-Laws to a vote by the Council. The By-Laws
must be approved by a 213 majority of eligible votes, and then officially recorded with
D. A discussion was held on the general maintenance and upkeep of the
Condominium, and the need for immediate response in cases of emergency. Fritz Hoffman
is currently providing maintenance management for the condominium which includes
arranging to have maintenance projects done as well as responding to the needs of the
Unit Owners. He knows the design and systems of the building well, has adequately
performed maintenance tasks on the Common Property, and has done a good job for the
owners who have utilized him. The Owners present at the meeting seemed inclined to
retain his services for these purposes. The Condominium Management needs which are
1. An emergency response capability to handle immediate problems.
Several Unit Owners have had difficulty contacting Fritz in emergency
situations. This is not a reflection on Fritz's availability, he has other
Condominiums he manages.
2. Building improvement construction management -- The ability to
determine improvements or maintenance work which needs to be done and
make recommendations to the Board and Council. The ability to prepare
specifications for necessary work, negotiate and administer the contracts,
and monitor and supervise the job in a timely manner.
3. Administrative Services -- Since none of the Board of Directors live
fu!l time 2t the Condominium, it is proving increasingly dificult to maintain
the administrative fhnctions, which include
a. The maintenance of the budget, including paying the bills, and
collecting the Condominium Fees
b. Organizing the annual or any special meetings, including issuing
the notices and taking minutes
c. Providing interaction with the Association's Insurance companies
(including handling claims made by either the Association for
Common Property or Unit Owners for Unit Property), Banks, Real
Estate Brokers, etc.
d. Writing and distributing reports to the Council Members.
e. Maintaining the Owner Directory, and any other owner
4. Custodial Services --- Maintaining the parking area, the stairwells, the
balconies, landscaping, lights, outside of windows, etc. The cleaning of the
carpet on the balconies has become a sore issue. The Owners have been
(and renters are not inclined to spend much time cleaning balconies) not
much cleaning gets done.
A committee was formed (Jeffery Hale, Unit #8) to request proposals from
Property Management Companies in Ocean City. The proposals will determine the costs
associated with various levels of Property Management. The Board of Directors will
review these proposals and decide whether to utilize any part of them, and whether they
will be utilized with, or replace, Fritz Hoffman.
E. Mr. and Mrs. Chapman, Unit #33, reported that they were having recurring
leaks around the windows in the bedroom. Several attempts at discovering the source or
stopping the leak had proved unsuccesshl. Mr. and Mrs. Johnson also reported that the
seal on one of their windows in the bedroom had apparently failed, because the window
had condensation in it. It was mentioned that perhaps the windows had a guarantee which
would cover these problems. Ken Tavener will contact the company which installed the
windows, have them come out to inspect the problems, and fix them, either under
warranty if covered, or at a cost to the Council.
F. It was reported that the paint on the stairs was in very poor shape, and that, in
fact, someone had slipped. and hurt themselves this winter. The Council voted to have
Ken Tavener contact Fritz Hoffman and request that he paint the stairs with 2 coats of
skid resistant paint. It was also pointed out that the carpet installed on the carpet had no
edging, and the carpet was unraveling. Ken was to ask Fritz to install, or have installed,
edging to prevent any hrther deterioration of the carpet.
The meeting was adjourned at 12:30 P.M.
Tavener, acting Secretary for Meeting ( Actually my wife Susan Mays was kind
enough to take notes so that I would have some clue as to what actually went on )
Old Wharf Condominium Association Board of Directors 1997 1998 -
President: Ken Tavener ,Unit #29, Secretary: Howard Klug, Unit #27
Vice President: Art Rutledge, Unit #17
John Haczewski, Unit #20, Merrill Thomas, Unit #15
Art Glaser, Unit #41