Kiawah Island Digest July 2014

July 2014 D i g e s t The Official Publication of the Kiawah Island Community Association Judge Rules on Beach Parcel 13 Common Property Dispute KRA claimed they did not intend to transfer the property to KICA and requested that the board sign a corrective deed allowing ownership to revert to KRA. This request has been made to multiple KICA boards dating back to 2007, but in every instance, the board and its legal team have concluded that regardless of whether the property was supposed to be transferred, it was unambiguously conveyed as common property and the board had no authority to execute a corrective deed. The only mechanism for transferring ownership of common property is a 75% vote of the membership. On Wednesday, June 4, Charleston County Master-in-Equity Mikell R. Scarborough issued his Final Order in a lawsuit in which KICA was the defendant. The judge denied the plaintiff’s claims and ruled in favor of KICA. Background In March 2013, the Kiawah Island Community Association (KICA) was served with a complaint whereby Kiawah Resort Associates (KRA) sought judicial reformation of a deed to 4.62 acres of land conveyed to the association in December 1995. Because this property is landlocked and surrounded by land owned by KRA, KICA has not had access or the ability to develop it. The judge's ruling does not alter that fact. Despite significant testimony as to what the various parties intended, the judge ultimately concluded that KICA’s position since 2007 was correct. In his order, Judge Scarborough declared, “The court finds that whatever evidence exists of KRA’s intent not to convey the Beachfront Strip to KICA is only relevant to the extent that the court finds the deed and agreement for conveyance to be ambiguous.” He further concluded, “As such, the deed unambiguously shows that KRA conveyed the Subject Property as part of the Beachfront Strip to KICA as Common Property and no evidence within the Beachfront Deed itself infers a contrary intent.” Within the order, the judge also determined that he should examine only the intent of the immediate parties to the deed, KRA and KICA, and further concluded that the Town of Kiawah Island’s intent in the 1994 development agreement was not relevant to his analysis. Conclusion The board takes its fiduciary responsibility to the membership very seriously, and from time-to-time it is faced with legal action. Litigation is rarely a first option to resolve differences, but when it is necessary, KICA retains excellent legal counsel and works diligently and effectively to defend the interests of the community. Letter from the COO: KICA Communications To all of our eDigest readers, I hope you are gearing up for a great Fourth of July holiday with friends and loved ones. To those of you reading this in the traditional print version, I hope you, your friends and loved ones had a great Fourth of July. Any time I’m asked to write something for Digest, the first question I consider is, when will our members actually read the content? The answer, and the timeliness of our communication, usually depends on the format in which you receive it. With that in mind, I’d encourage you to consider signing up for eDigest. On average, you’ll receive each issue about 1-2 weeks prior to the print version arriving in your mailbox. Not only that, the eDigest is interactive, letting you search the issue, click on web/ email links, print at home, download to your computer, zoom, etc. The publication itself is the same as its printed counterpart, only it’s delivered electronically the same day we give our printer approval to produce the hard copy. To subscribe, just contact our Communications team (communications@kica.us or 843-768-9194). Whether print or electronic, Digest is just one way of receiving information from KICA. I thought I’d dedicate the rest of this space to sharing information on numerous other communications channels available to KICA members, some of which have been introduced in recent months. Continued on Next Page...