Guest Column: Taking a stab at understanding Ordinance 7

I recently visited the IVGID website for information on Ordinance No. 7 with the hope of better understanding three things: What does the ordinance currently say, what changes are proposed, and what is the rationale for those changes?

Unfortunately, the limited information posted failed to answer these questions, so I took my own stab at comparing key provisions of the current rule with the now-tabled proposed version and making some guesses as to just what it is the Board is attempting to accomplish.

Current Article V, para. 42, states that each parcel is entitled to up to five (5) face cards and/or punch cards, and that face cards (as opposed to punch cards) may be assigned only to eligible family members, residents or a resident’s eligible family members.

Punch cards, in contrast, are expressly transferable to anyone under Article VII, para. 56. Section 5.05 of the tabled proposed ordinance would extend the same treatment given punch cards to face cards, allowing a picture pass to be “assigned to anyone of the property owner’s choosing.”

I assume the rationale for this change is to eliminate what is an inherently intrusive rule having little to do with the manner in which many parcels are actually owned and shared.

A second noteworthy feature of the current ordinance is found in Article VIII, para. 68, which states that nothing in the ordinance shall prevent the District from issuing recreation privileges to “employees, former Board members, or anyone else, in the past, present or future, as approved by the Board of Trustees.” I understand that these same powers would be part of the proposed new ordinance, so that any “changes” in this regard would not really be changes at all.

That brings me to the issue of additional face cards and punch cards and the ability to transfer them to third parties. Under current Article VIII, para. 69, any parcel owner may purchase an unlimited number of additional face cards or punch cards by paying an additional fee equal to one-fifth of the current district recreation fee for a pass or punch card. Additional face cards, however, can “only be purchased for eligible family members of parcel owners or residents,” while additional punch cards expressly “cannot be purchased for commercial parcels and their tenants.”

Sections 2.13 and 2.17 of the tabled proposed ordinance would remove both of these restrictions by expressly allowing IVGID to sell an unlimited number of additional face cards and punch cards to “eligible parcel owners or their assignees.”

I do not know the rationale for removing these restrictions and feel that any explanation as to why the Board favored these changes should come from them, and not from me as mere speculation.

Some explanation, however, is needed before any of us can meaningfully determine which version makes the most sense from the perspective of the community as a whole — the current ordinance (restricted transferability of additional cards) or the proposed version (unlimited ability to transfer).

William C. Holmes is an Incline Village resident.

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