Board Resources

Below are resources for the board to use to get things done and make decisions.

Board Communications:

Any posts to the announce list or replies to potentially controversial messages to the board should be circulated for approval of at least one other board member before going out.  Email replies should clearly indicate who should reply to the original sender.

Board Meetings

According to the bylaws (Article 3 Section 12), quorum = 1/2 board members, and a passing vote must be a majority of members (can be electronic).

Board meetings will generally be held the monthly, monitor the calendar for exact schedule.

Meeting notes should be posted to the board group for record keeping with the following subject to facilitate searching and identification:


Committee Responsibilities:


Tasked with managing lifeguards, chemicals, and all tasks related to the pool functioning, maintenance, and operation.


Tasked with maintaining the SSRC brand and developing the visual and textual guidelines for communications.  Only members of this committee should post announcements to the announce list and they are also responsible for crafting responses to criticisms, complaints, and concerns.  Posts and responses should be circulated to the committee members via this group and have at least 1 approval before sending out.

Previously, the image of Smoketree HOA was that we were:

  • Exclusive
  • Rude & Abrasive
  • Elitist

The image we want to project is that we are:

  • Inviting
  • Friendly
  • Approachable
  • Understanding
  • Inclusive
  • Supportive
  • Fun
  • Responsible

As part of this goal, we have decided to de-emphasize the HOA aspect (since we do not operate or serve as a traditional HOA and have no CC&Rs) and rename the organization the Smoketree Swim & Recreation Club.


Google Group membership is a perk.  People in the group who haven’t paid should be removed from the members-only list on June 1st (they should still be included in the announce group).

When adding people to the Announce list, please use the following welcome message:

Welcome to the Smoketree Neighborhood email list.  This is for announcements and emergencies so please only post in case of emergency.  The list is moderated, so please call the board number 678-820-8435 to have your message approved.

For chat, we have the Smoketree Member email list.  We will automatically add members to that list.

When adding people to the Member list, please use the following welcome message:

Welcome to the Smoketree Members email list.  Feel free to chat and talk with other members here but please be courteous and respectful.  You can post by emailing [email protected] or visiting



Yearly we send out bids to see who wants to do our landscaping.  We generally go with the lowest bidder who we think is reliable.


Smoketree used to have monthly social events.  The past few years have had next to no social events.  We’d like to change this to improve our image and add value for the members.  Here are some ideas for events that could be had:

  • Poker nights.
  • Casino Night (could be a good fundraising opportunity)
  • Karaoke night. (There’s a DJ in the neighborhood. Lived up on Bennington.)
  • Cookout at the cabana.
  • Chili cookoff. (Winner gets a wooden spoon that says “you win”)
  • Wine tasting
  • Game night.
  • Bingo night. ($1 each?)
  • Magic: the Gathering Camp (Ben has lots of cards that could be used/donated).
  • Easter Egg Hunt
  • Pool Cover Removal Party
  • Pool Cover Installation Party
  • Last Pool Day Dog Party
  • Smores Night
  • Pizza Night
  • Flamingo
  • Spaghetti Night
  • Ice Cream Social
  • Talent Show
  • Massage Day

Events should be advertised by flyer, in the Signal, and with signs the week of the event.  The Cabana should be booked per the usual procedure and added to the Smoketree Calendar.

Smoketree Signal

We have [email protected] set up for submissions of articles and messaging.  If you need to be set up  to use or send from that account, contact [email protected]  We also have [email protected] available for anyone who wants to champion getting corporate funding!

According to our bylaws, The Signal needs to be sent out monthly (except for January) to all members and it has been customary to send the first 3 in the year to the entire neighborhood to attempt to entice members.

We switched to digital-only signals in 2018 to save on printing costs and the environment.  Anyone who wants a printed signal will be accommodated upon request.

There is typically a President (or Board Member) letter to start The Signal.

Once The Signal issue is ready to be published, it should be sent to [email protected] to allow the board to review and catch any policy, procedure, and decision errors and typos that may be present.  The previous policy was to have this done by the 20th and give the board 24 hours to review, but it has been suggested that this date be moved up to be more relevant (like the 10th) and give the board 48 hours to review.

Once the board has approved the issue, it can be sent to Patrick Hally as a PDF for printing and his wife Ashleigh is in charge of distribution via block captains.  Patrick has very sophisticated machines that print and fold and has generously donated these services to us at no charge.  In exchange, we offer his family free advertising in The Signal.  Sometimes, it’s useful to remind Patrick during business hours.  It has been suggested that we offer a “green” option to members to allow just getting a digital copy and saving on printing costs and resources.

The PDF should be named as follows to facilitate archival where YYYY is the 4 digit year and MM is the 2 digit month with leading 0 if necessary:


Once it’s been distributed, the PDF should be posted to the website via the announce list (if is an issue that should go to the neighborhood), or to the member list for digital consumption/archival.

Advertising costs are listed on the Membership page for members.  We have not discussed rates for corporate sponsors (though I believe Marco’s pizza would be a great corporate sponsor to target). Generally, a business could become a newsletter member to have access to the $1 advertising.

Example request for Signal content by Cindy:

My name is Cindy Petersiel and I am new (& returning) editor of the neighborhood newsletter, The Signal.   The purpose of The Signal is communication and connection; it’s a great way to get to know your neighbors better and to get information about Smoketree and our community.

Signal articles come from Smoketree residents.  YOU make the Signal.  Articles from a variety of neighbors make the Signal the most interesting and informative it can be.   I’m starting work on June’s Signal, so if you’d like to submit an article, please email it to [email protected] by Tuesday, May 31.

I want to make sure I highlight recent graduates in the upcoming Signal, so if you have a graduate in your household, please send me their name and the school from which they are graduating.

Here are some other ideas:

Neighborhood events – announcement of future or coverage of past

Neighborhood concerns

Community events

Restaurant (or local business) reviews

House and garden tips

New neighbor introductions

Spotlight on a special neighbor

Seasonal tidbits – information, recipes, etc

Life events – births, marriages, exciting events

Volunteer/donation opportunities


I’m sure I haven’t covered all of the possibilities.  If you think of something, toss it out there to the group.  And remember, I will edit or even write up an article if you send the info (and you get the byline!)  Don’t worry about your writing – we just want to hear from our wonderful neighbors!

Thank you so much!

Cindy Petersiel

Pool Information:

The Pool inspection in 2014 and 2015 was either May or June 24.

TODO: find out when the inspection was in 2016.

TODO: Have Leslie’s fix (missing screw) in the drain next to “A” in the map below. The vacuum from the pump hole should have a disc that partially covers the hole, but there is currently too much suction.


Waste Pro: 770-451-9395

Call them in October to cancel service and only pay for service from May—October.

TODO: call and make sure they have the board number on file instead of Davida’s.

Pool Cover Removal/Installation instructions

Leslie’s Pool Cover Removal Suggestion: (pool layout with points for illustration)

|                        |

AF is the shallow end and EK is the deep end.  Requires a minimum of 8 people.  Assign people letters to make calling easier.

  1. Have people stationed at C, D, E, H, J, K.  Remind people at each station not to let go of their spot until we’re complete.
  2. Have 2 additional helpers for removing springs and collecting sheaths.
  3. Unhook C—D—E—K—J—H (most of these can be pre-unhooked as long as the lettered points stay hooked until people are stationed).
  4. EK goes towards AF going over DJ (should stop just before CH).
  5. At that point, EK continues around/over CH to AF.  EK will also continue around CH until they get to BG.
  6. Helpers should unhook B—C and G—H.
  7. CH should move all the way to join EK at AF (Don’t let go!)
  8. Helpers should unhook A—B and F—G.
  9. DJ (currently at BG) should enlist the aid of helpers to flip entire cover over AF and off onto the concrete.
  10. Pool cover should be carried over to grass area in the sun to dry (going over the fence is more complicated and less efficient as it is shaded and not in the sun).  After carrying over, can use the Pool Cover installation instructions to unfold (which is the reverse of the above).

The cover should be blown off and cleaned/brushed before refolding in the same way as the removal, then folded in half hotdog and then twice in half hamburger before putting away.   Lifting onto a wheelbarrow is a better way of transporting at this point.

For installation, the cover can be unfolded at the edge of the pool and the instructions reversed.


  • Once people have been assigned letter stations, make sure they don’t let go!
  • Anyone not assigned a station can help, but keep the “helpers” distributed on each side to prevent having a side without helpers or tempting stationed people from letting go.
  • ~26 posts long side
  • ~14 short end
  • Put up chairs as well to prevent kids putting on pool.
  • Change all the gate codes in preparation for the next year.

Gwinnett County Swimming Pool Ordinance

Combination Locks:

(See the member list for the latest codes or ask a board member).  When emailing out the new lock combination, include the following reminder:

The gates have all been outfitted with combination locks.  To use them, rotate the dials to show the code MEMBER_CODE and then squeeze the lock and when you release, it will pop open.

You should not need to pull the lock to open it; it should pop open after it is squeezed together.  You may call the emergency number if you’re having issues: (678) 820-8435

To close the lock, jumble the dial code and then push the lock closed and make sure it is secure.

The bathrooms can use the same code.  The left door is broken and must be pulled towards you when you enter the code.  You may give children the code KIDDIE_CODE to avoid sharing the gate code with them.

We will be changing the code periodically, and we will post here when we do so.

  • Management Locks:
    • Pool House
    • Pool Shed
    • TODO: we need another lock to lock the circuit breaker for the Cabana.
  • Member Locks:
    • Front Gate
    • Pool Gate
    • Pool Back Gate
    • Left Bathroom
    • Right Bathroom
    • Left Tennis Courts
    • Right Tennis Courts
    • Tennis Back Gate

Locks combinations will be changed only as needed.  In addition to the management and member codes, there is a 3rd code just for the bathrooms (the kiddie code).  To change the padlocks:

  1. Open lock with the factory set or previously set combination. The lock must be set to the current combination, or you cannot reset it. Note: the shackle must be in the open position to reset the combination.
  2. Insert reset tool (enclosed in the package, Ben and Trista also have) in the hole on the side of the lock.
  3. Push reset tool in and turn 90 degrees (in either direction). Reset tool automatically stays in this position.
  4. Set wheels to the desired combination.
  5. Turn and remove reset tool. The lock is now set to the new combination.
  6. Post the new combination to the members-only google list.  If changing the management locks, post the new combination to the board list.

The bathroom doors should be coded for all 3 codes.  There is not a master code and this should not be used unless we have issues with unauthorized people changing the codes.  To change the bathroom door codes:

  1. Use an Allen wrench to remove the security screws on the sides of the lock on the inside.
  2. Replace the batteries if they are low (4 AA Alkaline batteries).
  3. Press the Program button once for the member code, twice to change the management code, and 3 times to change the kiddie code.
  4. Enter in the new code on the keypad.
  5. Press the lock button to confirm.
  6. Reattach the security screws and back plate and test before shutting.

The doors can also be operated by a manual key which is the same bathroom key that has been used for years.  This can be re-keyed using a smart-key tool.


We have decided to give Civic members last year’s band to access the property. Pool and tennis access must have current year band. We have purchased wristbands from Rapid Wristbands. Specs:

  • Style: Ink Injected
  • Size: 1/2 Inch
  • Text Color: #ffffff
  • Back Message: 678-820-8435
  • Font Face: chunk_five (Chunk Five)
  • Font Size: 25
  • Digital Proof Option: Yes

Messages, colors, and quantities:

  • 2017 — Swirl Red and Yellow, Adult Qty: 240 + 50 Free, Youth Qty: 10 + 50 Free
  • Smoketree 2016 — Swirl Lime Green Bright Blue Yellow, Adult Qty: 220 + 50 Free, Youth Qty: 30 + 50 Free
  • ?? — Green bands
  • ?? — Pink bands

Board Property/Resources and location:

Old circular locks — in the pool house (Ben has the master key)

Vending Machine Key — In the pool house on the right of the shelves on a rusty nail.

Easter Supplies and blow up Easter Bunny — Trista

Big honking yellow cooler bought by SHOA in 2015 — Ben

Old Bylaws — Ben

Old Signal Newsletters — Ben

Pink old wristbands — Andrea

Gatorade and coolers — Trista

Past membership papers — Ben

Holiday and event supplies — Ben

Financial Documents and files and Quickbooks — Davida

Mailbox Keys — Andrea, Davida

stuff for memorial day — Ben

stuff for Halloween — Ben

Coffee percolator. — Brian Tucker?  Does this still even exist?

Company Seal — Davida

Vending Machine

Been trying to figure out how to program the darn thing for a while.  Currently set to 60¢/can and filled with:

  1. Coca-Cola Classic
  2. Coca-Cola Classic
  3. Caffeine Free Diet Coke
  4. Diet Coke
  5. Sprite
  6. Minute Maid Pink Lemonade
  7. Mr. Pibb Xtra
  8. Fanta (Orange)
  9. Fanta (Grape)
  10. Diet Barq’s (Note: Diet Barq’s is caffeine free but regular Barq’s is not)

Ben has a vending key and the other key should be in the pool house.  This is a different slug than the PowerAid machine which Ben may have a key for, but it may just not work at all (potentially sell off to someone for parts?)


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