On May 6, several people representing the Oakmont Alliance delivered petitions with over 230 signatures to the OVA office, for delivery to the OVA Board of Directors. The petition required that a vote of the membership be conducted, “in the event the OVA Board of Directors intends to make an offer for the purchase of OGC.” The text further highlighted that “the acquisition of the Oakmont Golf Club (OGC) by OVA would materially increase OVA property assets, ongoing operational expenses, facility asset replacement expenses, responsibilities and liabilities … and such an acquisition would significantly alter the substance and character of the existing OVA.” The Oakmont Observer article describing the petition and its intended effect may be found HERE.

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In September of 2017 current OVA Board President Steve Spanier gave a talk at a Sunday Symposium on the topic of transpartisanship, a relatively new system of thought distinct from bipartisanship or nonpartisanship that attempts to move beyond bilateral opposing viewpoints on issues.  I covered this symposium for the Oakmont News and later interviewed Spanier to gain further understanding of the system of negotiation that he was espousing.

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The process that the OVA Board should be undertaking, in order to do perform their fiduciary duty, exercise due diligence and serve the best interests of Oakmont, would include a careful analysis of the consequences of purchasing OGC, as well as of not purchasing OGC. Exploration of the negative consequences of purchasing OGC does not appear to be taking place. Rather it seems clear that some directors have concluded, without appropriate and thorough analysis, that the best interests of Oakmont are served simply by purchasing OGC.

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As the issues surrounding the sale of the Oakmont Golf Club (OGC) and golf courses are discussed and presented to the Oakmont Village Association (OVA) community, facts and not fear should be the guiding principle. It is unconscionable to put OVA members in the position of participating in such a momentous and possibly perilous financial decision while appealing to emotions rather than presenting factual reasoning.  This is not a prescription for making the right decisions.

And we all need to be dealing with a common set of facts, all of which should be shared with the community being asked to provide the money to finance any such decisions.

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If the Board of Directors really wants to promote full, open and civil discourse about the potential of OVA purchasing OGC with attendant significant dues and/or assessment increases, the current Directors and candidates for Director on the next Board should commit – now, in advance – to having an OVA member referendum if purchase is proposed.


First, in carrying out its fiduciary duty of representing the best interests of the entire community, it is the Board’s obligation to do everything possible to assure the acceptability of any such decision.

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I have largely stayed out of OGC discussions of late, having said what I wanted to say, and also having observed that the OVA Board was not taking any of the more severe and unwise actions that many of us feared last summer.  But Steve Spanier’s decision to jump into the fray, and his strongly misleading President’s Message, demands my reply.

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