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We don't have the money

Bella Vista is not, and will never be, Bentonville. I, for one, think that is a good thing. People choose to live in one place or the other because of the unique amenities each has to offer. For example, Bella Vista has beautiful trees and hills, while Bentonville has a downtown square and wonderful restaurants and entertainment. Bentonville has an excellent school system, but Bella Vista has a wonderful environment in which to raise a family. Each city has pluses and minuses and neither one should try to emulate the other.

The recreational amenities we already have in Bella Vista need to be maintained at the highest level possible. We don't need to add more "big city" facilities just to be like, or try to compete with, the cities around us. I have never heard anyone say they would not move to Bella Vista because we only have one indoor swimming pool or, we don't have a pool with a river walk and a rock climbing wall or, we don't have an indoor running track.

In the last two years, our POA leaders have spent almost $12,000,000, the biggest part of our reserves, to try to entice people to come to Bella Vista. They are now offering special deals to get outsiders to support what they have built.

We used to measure the success of an amenity by the number of POA members that were using it. Now we measure success by how much money it is making. Our leaders will tell us that this is because we have not had an increase in assessments for over a decade and we need to find additional income. That may be a true statement, but I believe the real reason we need outsiders to use our facilities is so our leaders can say they are spending our money on the right things. They are spending our money to entice outsiders to come here to support what they have spent our money on ... a vicious circle.

Don't let the answers to a questionnaire about what you would "like" to have be interpreted as what you say you "need" to have.

We have no more reserves. And, even if we increase our assessments, it would take forever to pay for the new Community Center being proposed. We do not have the capital dollars to build this project nor do we have the expense dollars to maintain it if it were built. Our POA board would have to open it up to the public in order to support it. But that won't work because all of the surrounding communities already have a center like this.

We need to make sure our assessments are at a level to allow us to maintain the amenities we have at the highest possible level. We have swimming pools, parks, clubhouses, hiking/biking trails, golf, tennis, fitness facilities, clubhouses and more. Let's appreciate and enjoy what we have and not try to keep up with our neighbors.

Larry Blech

Bella Vista

Editorial on 08/08/2018

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