LEONARDTOWN, Md. – The St. Mary’s County Board of Commissioners held a public forum on Jan. 11, where many of the citizens complained about the parking restrictions. Citizens believed that the commissioners’ board added park restrictions off of misinformation given by a Homeowners Association (HOA) member. In defense of the HOA, the HOA president has responded.

“There has been a lot of misinformation and inaccurate statements presented as fact,” Kimberly Short, HOA president said. “Consequently, I would like to provide some facts to counter the misinformation.”

First, Short wanted to clarify that the HOA does not have any authority over roads. The Department of Public Works and Transportation is the county agency that oversees and establishes guidelines for county roads. 

Regarding citizens claiming that the HOA went rogue, Short explained the HOA moved in the best interest of the community. The HOA only expressed the safety concerns mentioned by those in the community. Safety concerns behind the road needed to be addressed first. As a result, they reached out to people that have the authority to address these concerns.

“The HOA has acted on behalf of the community to address safety concerns in the past to include the most recent actions regarding on-street parking,” Short said. “Although the HOA does not have the authority to approve any of the actions involving county-owned roads, we do have a responsibility to direct the concerns to the attention of the county agency that has that authority. To ignore any safety concern brought to our attention would be irresponsible and could cause the HOA to face legal liability.”

Additionally, Short mentioned how some speakers acknowledged there were parking issues, but they said that it should not have been mentioned. On the contrary, the HOA tried to handle this internally before looking for external help.

“After exhausting all possibilities of resolving the issue internally, (efforts included multiple occurrences of police involvement, Court involvement -peace orders being sought and granted – information is a matter of public record), the residents of Dayflower Place pursued the only other option available to them,” Short said.

Dayflower is a county-owned street that did not have any parking restrictions. For this street, no one could change it. The only plausible answer to the solution was to look for the help of the county commissioners.

Lastly, many speakers believed the HOA did not include them in the process. Short struck back by saying that they sent out the invitation, but the attendance/participation was so lackluster, they sent out a survey. The survey was submitted and reviewed according to Short. 

“Due to COVID concerns, the meeting was held virtually. Because of the lack of homeowner attendance/participation and the important nature of the agenda and the items discussed, the board decided to break from standard practice and send a survey to all to make them aware of the parking issues, and that we were working with the county to address the safety concerns and allow for their feedback to be included,” Short said. “The meeting was held in accordance with the HOA bylaws. The feedback that was provided was reviewed and submitted to the county again in accordance with the HOA bylaws. “

In conclusion, Short acknowledged many would rather go without parking signs, but the safety concern is too great to ignore. The HOA made a tough decision that they hope plans out well in the future.

“Although the HOA Board understands that many would prefer that the signs and ordinance be rescinded, we support safety and accessibility for all homeowners,” Short said. “Faced with the concerns and the demonstrated safety and accessibility issues, we took the necessary steps following all county guidelines and HOA bylaws to have the issue addressed by the appropriate authority.”

For all of those within this community, the HOA hopes to discuss this matter at their annual HOA meeting on April 6 at 6:30 pm. The HOA wants this meeting to end with a compromise that works for all parties involved.

Contact our news desk at news@thebaynet.com

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24 Comments

  1. This is a waste of time ! Folks who live on this culdesac should be able to park in front of homes, looks like someone is a bone head !

    1. If you add – “in front of their own home” then you might garner some support.
      When individuals insist on claiming spots, with zero regard for common decency, this is exactly where you end up.

      1. Why are you belittling others’ responses? It shows your lack of character and respect towards others. I pray that you find peace in your heart to be kinder to those in the world you share with them. If you are so angry about your situation that you must attack others I hope you find peace.

    2. Let’s not use words to speak down about someone. Everyone is entitled to their opinion. Never let someone lower your standards because they lost theirs.

  2. Adding the no parking signs has created safety issues that were not present before. Now that people are parking all their vehicles in their driveways side walks are being blocked and forcing adults and children to walk in the streets to get around the vehicles. The HOA board has done nothing but manipulated information to fit their narrative using their power for personal gain and a matter that they should be able to handle on their own the board needs to be removed and replaced. All the information given to the County Commissioners by the HOA board members is skewed and misrepresents the actual facts.

  3. Kim says she had exhausted all options before going to the County Commissioners but when the HOA company was contacted to get the number of complaints reported for parking in the street they informed us they have had zero complaints for parking in the last two years. This is an issue with one neighbor not getting along with another neighbor and it has caused the entire neighborhood to suffer.

  4. The record has been provided to the commissioners with the true facts. Unfortunately, Ms. Short took a personal vendetta against a neighbor and used her position to move ahead once she did not achieve the results she hoped initially. She has been held accountable by the community members that she is supposed to represent. Ms. Short has provided more information to the Baynet and has used more resources to defend herself than she has to provide the community with information leading up to this whole situation.

    In the emails she has sent the homeowners she belittles them and tells them how they refuse to participate but homeowners have a record of being told “said meeting” that she refers to was just for board members by the board member themself. How can members participate if they are told it’s just for board members? How can they participate in the survey if none were mailed to the homes especially for those that have it as a preference or are new to the community? Was adequate time given to community members to participate and were several methods provided for them to participate? When given a short window and little effort to communicate there was even a survey going out ( Ms. Short never used the Facebook page to provide this to the community, a concerned and confused community member did who is not on the board). Collecting data is important to provide a full scope of the situation. Community members went door to door and came together to collect data which was presented to demonstrate that the community is active when given the opportunity. They also asked for signatures so they could allow the Commissioners the chance to see how the community really felt. Was there a full effort by the board to get a full representation or just enough to pass their agenda ( 2 of the board members live on the 1 street having the issues), if this is a court case I would have to say no!

    The community came together and got over 50 homes to participate by going door to door and truly allowed both sides to be represented without bias. All were welcome to the meeting and even notified on the community Facebook page. ( Ms. Short also encouraged community members to take action if they were unhappy and wished them luck in their pursuit to overturn this issue on the Facebook page, now she claims at the meeting she knew nothing about it. Which is the truth Ms. Short? You viewed posts and even commented on many. So the evidence is there that you were aware!

    Let’s not blame the community, instead, let’s look at ways to improve the situation and hold a meeting prior to April. You want homeowners to sit and wait, you do realize they are having to wait over 5 months for a solution, missing holidays, funerals, and community events before you are willing to discuss any of this with the community… just to be clear. Is that how you want to represent yourself and the community? We should have been proactive and now you are upset because you have to be reactive.
    You have been called to hold a meeting several times to work with the community members but you refuse. The community just wants the truth to be shared and Ms. Short to take ownership for her lack luster performance representing the full community and situation at hand.)

    These meetings, new surveys, and presentations to bring awareness were all done by community members when our HOA president and board members use this format in the past but chose not to notify with details about the survey or this situation.

    Now the homeowners must wait until the Commissioners respond or April for a meeting. Ms. Short should have shared her responses to the community because the HOA president shared she is not wasting any more time on this issue and it is the communities fault by lack of participation. Well Ms. Short a community and its participation is a representation of the leadership that represents them so while you are angry about this all it is a reflection of your lack of leadership, communication, and professionalism that you displayed towards the lovely members of your community. I am sure many of us who watched and heard the situation and read your responses can see that you are now in defense mode and taking it out on those in your community. Do not tear a community down, build it up!

    While the community understands Ms. Short has a personal problem about parking the community members also have a right to share the facts that they have been presented and the experiences they have equally.

  5. This is a department of transportation issue not HOA.
    No Parking was implemented due to the county guidelines not the HOA.
    Blocking sidewalks is a violation that can have you ticketed and towed if the police wish.
    Saftey issue was brought to the department of Transportation and they submitted there findings to the county commisioners. Does not mater what the HOA says for or against. HOA has no authority. I like how people think Ms Short has all this power over St Marys County Government as the HOA president (that was elected 2 years in a row).
    Quite trying to blame each other and just work on a solution to what you feel is an issue. Additionally Parking, widening the roads and addition sidewalks to allow for on street parking….

    1. The sidewalks are being blocked because we are forced to park all our cars in our driveways. So now are you saying we can’t park on the street or in our driveways? Where do you suggest we park?

  6. “Additionally, Short mentioned how some speakers acknowledged there were parking issues, but they said that it should not have been mentioned.” If she stated this in her state who stated this? All speakers introduced themselves?

    “many speakers believed the HOA did not include them in the process. Short struck back by saying that they sent out the invitation, but the attendance/participation was so lackluster, they sent out a survey. The survey was submitted and reviewed according to Short.” What was her results 12-18 homes out of 77 while the community members who presented received 51 out of 77. Was it lack of participation or lack of effort on the boards part? Clearly the community cares at least 10 presented at the meeting against it.

    Also let’s share what Kim also says behind the scene to the community members when they request a meeting or ask for communication using the Facebook page.

    Community members are called bullies and told she is done dealing with this

    I have attempted to respond individually to comments on the unofficial Facebook page with diplomacy, professionalism, and accurate information, in my effort to address the concerns. Of the members that I have responded to or that I have been made aware have complaints, only 2 of you have been in attendance for at least 1 of the last 3 HOA meetings and neither of you attended all 3. Yet the non-active, non-participating, Facebook bullies or my preferred term keyboard gangsters, have had the audacity to criticize, make accusation of misrepresentation and attack me and the other board members for working FREE of charge to address the issues plaguing our community. It seems when action is taken on behalf of the community as a whole to address safety concerns and accessibility issues, causing the the bubble of oblivion to pop for the silent non-active members and those that are the cause of the complaints, they want to

    scream foul. Not to mention the members that are delinquent in their financial obligations to the HOA having full knowledge that they have no vote in HOA matters, per the HOA bylaws, yet are some of the loudest keyboard gangsters spewing false statements and lies on the unofficial Facebook page. So please stop being dramatic and showing faux concern when all of you have been invited to participate in community decisions for the past 3 years and you chose to shirk the opportunity to be an active member of this HOA.
    This is my final response to this issue. Enough is enough, this is exhausting I have spent countless hours on this issue. I of course will be responsive to HOA business that requires my attention. If any of you would like to step up to the plate on behalf of this community and work to address all community issues and not just those that affect you personally and are in good financial standing with the HOA, I invite to contact Blackstone Management or any current board member and let them know of your interest to join the board and run for a seat. There is one vacancy that has been for over a year, and any of the current members can be unseated.
    If the commenting members on the Facebook group wish to take their case to the Department of Public Works and Transportation or the Commissioners as has been posted… proceed. If changes are made to the Ordinance currently in place that allow on-street parking, I hope the road widths are widened to safely accommodate the flow of moving traffic and larger vehicles. If modifications are not made, this Board did its due diligence to rectify the issue presented before it utilizing the appropriate processes availed to it and the liability falls on the county and not this HOA.
    There have been requests to have a meeting.
    • This board has held the required annual meeting
    • I as President will not ask the other members to give up more of their unpaid time to
    accommodate the members that didn’t see fit to attend the meeting of August 30 and nor the prior 2 meetings
    This information is being provided to the homeowners in the South Woods Estates Subdivision and the Director of the Department of Publics Works and Transportation as he has already been contacted with some of the claims addressed in this document.
    In closing, those that fail to cast their vote for president do not get to request a do over because the election results did not go their way.
    Respectfully,
    Kimberly Short HOA President

    We would be in attendance if you would use the Facebook to share important information with the community. You pick and choose when you want to share information on the page and are a very active member on the page. You just elected to not share that important I donation it appears.

    Also Kim’s response to a residents question about a plan to solve the problem via Facebook “ Erin Kluever not that this will work for everyone but in response to your request for advice for guest parking, I have communicated with my neighbors and in the event that I am planning to have guest and my driveway is filled they have agreed to allow my guest to park in their vacant spaces. I get it, no on-street presents challenges just as on street parking has presented challenges. Before there was no recourse when on street parking presented challenges now there is. Also, enforcement occurs when enforcement agents are called out. I am not saying that the safety and accessibility issues go away but if your neighbors are aware that it is short term and not something that occurs daily they might be a little more understanding.” so is it a true issue of concern if you state this as your solution to community members as the person having the issue on your street?

    Facebook question from homeowner: “Thanks Kim those references to sections of the HOA bylaws for notifications do not match my official copy of the Southwoods bylaws. I do believe you are correct in this page is unofficial. I plan on holding a community participation petition to have this reevaluated and file a formal grievance to the county commisioners for misrepresentation of our community. All are welcome this weekend I will be going door to door and I will be set up at the entrance to the neighborhood. Thanks and have a great day.” Her response: “You’re welcome. Of course all citizens have rights to act as they see fit. I wish you well with your efforts.”

    So what changed? We had more data then you thought? We had more participation? We have actual data? While she stated at the meeting she was unaware there is evidence and responses showing otherwise. Let’s be transparent and honest!

    Also a quote from Ms. Short on the Facebook page: “ _____ I am not going to go back and forth about this issue. We followed the appropriate steps in addressing the issue. The HOA Bylaw noted was taken from the HOA Bylaws for the South Woods Estates Subdivision. Take whatever steps you deem appropriate as Mr. _____ stated he plans to do. This is my last comment about this issue on this Facebook feed.”

    1. I drove past Dayflower like recommended, I saw 2 cars on the whole street. This seems like it is being blown up by one street. Why is this even an issue? Many streets throughout the county have a car on both sides parked along the side and in driveways. Did this situation just start occurring or was it like this when you elected to purchase your home and now you just want it changed to meet your personal needs? I have been trying to keep up with this whole thing and feel that this is an issue between 3 neighbors. If you have an open side in your driveway on that street offer them a spot to solve the problem instead of creating a larger problem! Be a community and one of you please just step up and be a bigger person. Is it really worth this issue for your whole community?
      I read above that Ms. Short said to use each other driveways if they have openings, and help each other out… does she have open spots, and did she offer this one offender to use those spots to lead by example?

      1. My understanding is Ms. Short doesn’t even drive. She has no vehicles in her driveway. Haven’t seen a single vehicle in her driveway in two weeks. From day one of development of this great community on street parking has been allowed and never once has there been an issue. Ms. Short moved into the neighborhood knowing on street parking was allowed and decided she didn’t like having her neighbors parking on the street so she and the previous HOA VP decided to end on street parking without involving the rest of the community. The information she and the VP presented to the County Commissioners was inaccurate. When the community was given the opportunity to be involved they collected accurate data that shows the opposite of what they presented and she is now on the defensive to try and cover up what they did. After starting this issue the previous HOA VP moved out of the neighborhood and rumor has it Ms. Short is moving out (not confirmed) as well and leaving this mess she created for the rest of the neighborhood to deal with.

  7. Ms. Short is not moving. She does drive and owns 2 vehicles. She along with 7 homeowners on Dayflower Place, identified safety and accessibility issues on their street when vehicles were parked. They notified the Department of Public Works and Transportation. Dept. of Public Works and Transportation did an analysis of Dayflower Place and determined the street width did not allow for safe on street parking. Also the director of the Department of Public Works and Transportation noted the departments inability to plow during snow events. As a result the department recommended no street parking. Yes, Ms. Short identified a safety and accessibility issue and forwarded it to the proper authorities. That county authority did its own review, analysis and survey of the street and determined it to be unsafe for on street parking.

  8. No matter what information was provided (accurate or inaccurate) the county authority did its own review and based on its review there is a safety issue caused by on-street parking.

    1. They say they did a review, however the homeowners measured the streets using public works documents and found that the streets do meat the minimum requirement for on street parking. As for the plowing public works said they could not plow dayflower with their smallest plow due to on street parking, but after this last snowstorm there were vehicles parked on the street on dayflower and the street was plowed just fine. It was photographed for proof. Again some people are in defensive mode and trying to cover up the truth.

      1. interesting, so the county authority for the streets either can’t measure or doesn’t know its own guidelines

  9. Considering they are a hop skip and a jump from criminals and low lifes living off of their tax dollars and not paying rent, the people who were unlucky enough to buy homes in that area SHOULD be able to park in front of their own homes…if for no other reason to make sure their vehicles aren’t broken into or damaged!

  10. now that both cases have been presented to the county authorities that have ownership and decision making over the roads, let them do their jobs. If there is no safety issue surely they will remove the signs. Either way the HOA, Ms. Short and none of the homeowners in favor or against have the authority to change anything.

  11. The county put up the signs cause the safety issue was made and they had to address it or it could come back on them. They used the HOA as the fall guy to stop the complaints from being directed at them.

    1. No one complained to them except for the HOA. That’s one of the big issues with this. The HOA management company didn’t receive any complaints either. This was a two person crusade because they had an issue with their neighbor. There were no safety concerns that is just the excuse the HOA president is using so that she can get what she wants. There are now safety issues with everyone parking all their vehicles in their driveway it’s causing sidewalks to be blocked and people mainly kids are having to walk in The streets to get around the vehicles in driveways.

  12. Ms. Short speaks of misinformation and falsehoods within the community and I for one agree with her 100%. The misinformation and falsehoods need to stop. Let’s put some of them to rest now!

    1. Ms. Short said this is not an HOA issue it’s a county issue, but when she conducted the survey she removed votes of homeowners that are not current on their dues. Ms. Short if this is a county issue why would you remove votes of homeowners not current on their dues? That makes it an HOA issue.
    2. Ms. Short presented the county commissioners with 6 votes for and 6 votes against, them presented to the community 9 votes for and 9 votes against. But when the community received the actual results of the survey it showed 6 votes for and 14 votes against. Ms. Short why are you presenting different numbers to different people?
    3. Ms. Short told the community that the sheriffs would only enforce no parking if homeowners called to complain about other homeowners parking in the street and that if you talk to your neighbors when you have an event you can ask your neighbors not to report you because it’s only for a short time. Ms. Short do you not understand the law? The sheriffs patrol the neighborhood all the time (thank you officers) and if they see a car parked in a no parking zone (even if no one complaints) they can still enforce the law and have the car removed.
    4. Ms. Short said that no one attended the HOA meeting and it’s the communities fault for not participating. Ms. Short when a community member asked about joining the meeting they were told by board members that the meeting was for HOA board members only and not until the meeting started had the HOA board members changed their minds and said that others could join the meeting.

    Yes we are very tired of misinformation and falsehoods. It needs to stop now!

  13. Acknowledging that most if not all post have been about me or directed toward me, I provide this response.

    As one of the homeowners directly impacted by the on street parking on Dayflower Place, I acted in the best interest for my safety and the safety of the other homeowners that joined me in submitting a petition to the county authority having jurisdiction and responsibility for overseeing and addressing safety issues on county owned roads. Following that submittal by seven of the eight homeowners residing on Dayflower Place, the department of public works and transportation did their own review and analysis and confirmed safety and accessibility issues did exist when cars are parked on the narrow street. I stand behind everything that was submitted by me acting as a homeowner affected by the issue and as the HOA president working on behalf of my community. I will not debate the issues on this newsfeed.

    I will state that this article reads as though a personal interview was conducted with me and that is not the case. The information quoted was pulled from a document that was provided to the community members, county commissioners, the Department of Public Works and Transportation and the writer of this article.

    The residents most affected by the parking issues and the HOA provided clear information identifying a safety and accessibility issue in its community to the county authority that has jurisdiction. It is the responsibility of the county authority to investigate and if warranted based on their findings, address those concerns no matter how they are presented or by whom. Anyone can submit a concern to a county agency.

    It has been noted by some, that the county authority that has jurisdiction and oversight over the county roads has in their possession all information whether accurate or inaccurate, true or false, from varying sources.

    As the issue at hand is parking or no parking, signs or no signs, ordinance or no ordinance on a county-owned road it is a COUNTY ISSUE. I nor the HOA has authority over county-owned road decisions.

    In summary:
    1. A safety and accessibility issue was identified.
    2. That issue was forwarded to the appropriate county authority that has jurisdiction to address the issue.
    3. The appropriate county authority did its own analysis and its findings confirmed a safety and accessibility issue existed.
    4. The final decision making authority with jurisdiction over safety issues approved an ordinance to address the safety and accessibility issue.
    5. If the decision making authority decides to rescind the ordinance put in place to address a confirmed safety and accessibility issue, remove the signs and allow parking, it is totally within their power and authority to do so, it is not in mine.

  14. 1. A safety and accessibility issue was identified.

    A. The streets measure the minimum width required by the county to allow on street parking. The snow plows still have room to plow which was demonstrated after the last major snow storm. You use safety as your reasoning however, no parking on the street has created the safety issue. Children are now having to walk in the streets due to sidewalk blockage due to no street parking.

    2. That issue was forwarded to the appropriate county authority that has jurisdiction to address the issue.

    A. The information that was provided was not accurately documented and does not provide all the facts.

    3. The appropriate county authority did its own analysis and its findings confirmed a safety and accessibility issue existed.

    A. The county authority that did its own analysis seems to have been done poorly as their evidence has been proven to be incorrect, but this is an entirely different issue in itself.

    4. The final decision making authority with jurisdiction over safety issues approved an ordinance to address the safety and accessibility issue.

    A. Yes, a decision was made with inaccurate information that does not encapsulate all the data, and the community is working to have this overturned. You yourself even invited anyone in the community that wanted to challenge the ruling to do so.

    5. If the decision making authority decides to rescind the ordinance put in place to address a confirmed safety and accessibility issue, remove the signs and allow parking, it is totally within their power and authority to do so, it is not in mine.

    A. We agree the proper authorities have the power to make this situation right, as stated above there was not a safety and accessibility to begin with, but there is a safety concern now.

    “I will state that this article reads as though a personal interview was conducted with me and that is not the case. The information quoted was pulled from a document that was provided to the community members, county commissioners, the Department of Public Works and Transportation and the writer of this article.”
    Not sure the reason you felt the writer of this article even needed a copy of the document you sent out, other than you wanted it to be published. The document was authored by you to the community and provided to this news outlet so in essence this document was an interview with you. The words used are all yours.

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