February 28, 2023 Board Minutes

River Hill Board of Directors

Meeting Minutes

February 28, 2023

(Continuation of recessed 2/7/23 meeting)



Opening (Agenda Item 2):

Mr. Kirk called the meeting to order at 7:01 p.m. The meeting was held via Zoom. The following members attended: Kevin Bruening, Jim Kirk, Jian Ni, Muyiwa Odeniyide, Janet Munro, and Eric Greenberg. Renee DuBois (Village Manager) was present. The following guests attended the meeting: Jennifer Lynott (Communications & Events Coordinator), Eva Lambright (Covenant Advisor), Ron Briggs, Laura Brooks, Tara Capino, David Donovan, Dennis Kenez, Joel Hurwitz, and Alan Schneider.


Approval of the (Agenda Item 3):


Mr. Kirk made a motion to modify the agenda by adding Resident Speak Out to the administrative items in lieu of the Teen Advisory Report. Ms. Munro seconded the motion. The motion carried unanimously. 4-0


Administrative Items

Announcement of Executive Sessions (Agenda Item 4A)



Board Meeting Minutes – January 10, 2023, and January 25, 2023 (Agenda Item 4B):


Mr. Kirk made a motion to discuss the January 10th and 25th meeting minutes.

Mr. Bruening seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously4-0

Discussion ensued.


Mr. Kirk made a motion to table a discussion of the January 10th and January 25th minutes. Ms. Munro seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously. 4-0


Resident Speak Out (Agenda Item 5)

Ms. Capino spoke out in favor of the work Mr. Greenberg is doing on the CA Board. Ms. Capino discussed her concerns regarding the amount of CA assessment money paid as the annual charge versus what the lien payer actually receives and recommended that the assessments be lowered. She mentioned election integrity and requested to keep in-person voting. Mr. Kirk posed the question to Village Manager Renee Dubois regarding the consideration of online voting. Ms. Dubois stated that there is no provision for electronic voting at this time.


Teen Advisory Report (Agenda Item 6):

None. A report will be given at the next meeting.


Mr. Ni joined the meeting at 7:07 p.m.


Old Business

County Executive Calvin Ball Listening Sessions (Agenda Item 7A)

Members of the RHBOD have attended these meetings. Mr. Bruening mentioned his attendance at one of the meetings where the issue of noise was discussed and commented on acceptable noise levels in residential homes per County code (65 decibels for daytime hours, 55 decibels at night, 45 decibels during the overnight hours).

Ms. Dubois drafted a letter to Mr. Bruce Gartner, Administrator of Howard County Office of Transportation, concerning the noise issue along route 32 and the request for sound barriers. Mr. Kirk said that he would look into taking additional measurements of noise levels over a longer period and in different locations.


Mr. Kirk made a motion that the prepared letter be sent to Bruce Gartner and County Executive Calvin Ball. Mr. Bruening seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously. 5-0



HoCo By Design (Agenda Item 7B)

Ms. Dubois stated that HoCo By Design has moved to the Planning Board stage and needs to be added to the BOD March meeting agenda. Mr. Bruening mentioned that he will attend the Planning Board meeting on March 9, 2023 and that there will be three work sessions.



New Business Continued from 2/7/2023

HB 29- Residential Owners in Common Ownership Communities Bill of Rights

(Agenda Item 8E)

Ms. Dubois recommended that this item be tabled.


Ho. Co. 7-23 Candidates for Village Board or Columbia Council in a Village of Columbia – Reports of Donations and Disbursements (Agenda Item 8F)

This item has been withdrawn.


Ho. Co. 17-23 Elections in Villages of Columbia – Voting Rights (Agenda Item 8G)

This item has been withdrawn.

HB 80 – Real Property- Regulation of Common Ownership Community Managers (Agenda Item 8H)

This item was skipped because it does not have the necessary votes in the House.


HB 105 – Real Property – Condominiums and Homeowners Associations-Governing Bodies and Annual Meetings (Agenda Item 8I)

This item was not discussed.


RHCA Ethics Policy (Agenda Item 8J)

Ms. Dubois shared that the Ethics Policy has been modeled after the CAI policy; Ms. Dubois shared the Code of Ethics and asked that it be reviewed and for comments to be forwarded within the next week.

Mr. Briggs requested a copy.


HB 147 Street Racing and Exhibition Driving-Prohibited Acts, Enforcement, and Penalties

Discussion ensued. The prepared letter is being reviewed and edited by Mr. Kirk, Ms. Munro, and Ms. Dubois. Ms. Dubois asks that the Board vote on moving these letters forward. Mr. Odeniyide cautioned against language in the bill regarding the “seizure of vehicles” and requested this language be removed.


Mr. Kirk made a motion to approve the letter as amended. Mr. Odeniyide seconded the motion. The motion carried unanimously. 5-0


SB 229 – Vehicle Laws-Noise Abatement Monitoring Systems-Authorization, Use, and Penalties

Mr. Kirk made a motion to send the prepared letter in support of the bill. Ms. Munro seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously. 5-0


Election Items (Agenda Item 8K)

Ms. Dubois shared that the Election Handbook has been updated. Minor modifications include wording related to requirements of the candidates including the following updates:

  • Candidates must provide proof of residency.
  • Candidates may submit a 150-word candidate statement.
  • Candidates may submit a headshot photo for printing purposes.

This information has been forwarded to the Board.



Committee/Liaison Reports

Development Advisory Liaison (Agenda Item 9i)

Mr. Bruening will attend the Planning Board Meeting on 3/9. He discussed the HoCo By Design Appendix and again referenced the amount of infill that is planned and his concerns. He will forward the most recent version to the Board.


Traffic & Safety Committee (Agenda Item 9ii)

Mr. Kirk reviewed the letters that had been prepared by Ms. DuBois.


Mr. Kirk made a motion to submit the SB229 Noise Abatement Monitoring Systems letter as written. The motion was seconded by Ms. Munro. The motion passed unanimously. 5-0


Sound Barrier Liaison (Agenda Item 9iii)

Ms. Munro reviewed the progress and the letters being sent requesting sound barriers be made a priority. Mr. Kirk will look into doing additional sound measurement studies.


Village Manager (Agenda Item 9B)

Ms. DuBois stated that the Ethics Policy will be reviewed at the next meeting. Additionally, approval is required for the 990 and 990T. The next meeting will also include discussion of the budgeting process and contract renewals. Ms. Dubois discussed the issue of variance in the financial report as health insurance coverage of 3 staff members vs 2 staff members.


Mr. Kirk made a motion to approve the variance report with the explanation. Mr. Odeniyide seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously. 5-0


Columbia Council Representative (Agenda Item 9C)

None. Mr. Greenberg was absent from the meeting.


Board Chairperson (Agenda Item 9D)

Mr. Kirk requested that all information to be sent to the Board in the Board Package several days before the meeting to allow for enough time to review the materials.


Board Speak Out (Agenda Item 10)

Ms. Munro suggested adding a secretary position as a Board position to keep track of action items.


Adjournment (Agenda Item 11)

At 8:00 p.m., Mr. Kirk made a motion to adjourn the meeting. Mr. Bruening seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously. 5-0