Executive Director's Update

March 2017

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Top of the morning to you all. It is hard to believe that we are already into our third month of 2017. By now we have learned about the legislation we will be facing this year. We also learned about the decision by the City of Santa Monica to uphold the anti-discrimination ordinance that was passed in May of 2015. This ordinance prohibits landlords from refusing to accept housing vouchers. As this plays out in the media, we can expect tenant groups to firmly latch onto the idea that they can place undue pressure on our members to accept these vouchers.

The reality is that we have many members who already accept housing vouchers, and we are working with our partners to also house veterans, mentally ill, homeless and low income. Similar ordinances already exist in Northern California: Marin County, San Francisco, Corte Madera, East Palo Alto and Woodland. This decision will have farreaching effects and if you have not been attending our Special Committee for Long Beach Legislation meetings, I highly encourage you to begin. Look at our weekly e-newsletter, The Beacon, for dates on the next meeting. We NEED your voice.

Which brings me to another topic—one about the landlord/tenant relationship. AACSC is looking for positive relationships and those who would be willing to come to the Association and talk about it.

If we leave it in the hands of our detractors, one would think that there are no positive interactions with tenants, and this is simply not true. So let’s begin to show the other side of the equation and share the upside of ownership. Call Jeannie in our office to let her know you are interested and would be willing to tell your story—we are sure there are plenty of you out there.

Another positive move is the unveiling of our NEW AACSC logo. You will be seeing the old and the new together, but we want to assure you that the only thing that will change is the addition of new events and new education classes. Our number one concern is customer service, and we know from time to time we make mistakes, but your membership and our attention to the value of your membership is our first priority.

By now you have had your 2017 Vendor Referral Sourcebook delivered, and we want you to take notice of the change that has been incorporated into this book. If you look at the bottom of the page you will notice a note that says: “Company names in blue are AACSC members.” We love our vendors and advertisers, but our emphasis are those who are members of our Association AND who are supporting our industry. We encourage you to use our members first and to let any vendor who is soliciting your business know that you prefer to use members of the Apartment Association, California Southern Cities. We also invite you to send us any testimonials you have when you use one of our members; they always appreciate the feedback and we love to share it with them, too.

In closing, have a leprechaun kind of day and I hope you find a pot of gold at the end of the month. Besafe, stay informed and get involved—it’s only YOUR investment we are protecting.

February 2017

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What happened to January? It appeared to pass quickly, which brings into play what is coming up in February.

We have been talking about three issues that will be leading our discussions over the next months, and if you have missed any of these, now is the time to reengage and get involved. What three issues are we talking about? (1) Trash; (2) Just Cause Eviction; and (3) Changes in the Pro active Rental Housing Inspection Program (PRHIP). AACSC has been meeting with our local Long Beach City Council Members to talk about each of these important issues.

The overall result has left us feeling good but with the knowledge that there is more to do. It is not time to relax, but time to become even more informed and involved. Look for survey questions to be posed in our weekly email newsletter, The Beacon—we need your feedback. I also want to thank our Special Committee for Long Beach Legislation for getting involved. The new faces and participation have been great!

We are beginning our new Education Calendar as well, and the first Certified Apartment Manager (CAM) class of the new year will begin March 15, so be sure you reserve your spot. The CAM certification is the premiere course that employers are looking for and the National Apartment Association (NAA) is focusing on highlighting their classes for all of our members as you continue on the path to improve our professional image. NAA has also updated the CAM class and has reduced the number of classes from 18 weeks to 15 weeks.

We hope you will join us for the February Membership Meeting on the 23rd to learn all about the rebates and ways to save money—we will have at least three companies on hand to answer all your questions and help you through the rebate process.

Finally, we have dedicated this issue to our former Executive Director of 28 years, Nancy Ahlswede. Her passing in December has left a hole in our hearts and a missing piece of the multifamily puzzle that had her name on it. AACSC honors her legacy, wishes peace for her family, and gives our thanks for all she contributed and gave to everyone she touched. She will be greatly missed.

January 2017

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As we say goodbye to 2016, I absolutely must begin this New Year by thanking you, our members, for a great year. As always, there were successes and challenges, and 2017 is sure to be no different; but when we asked you for your help—you were there. When we asked for your feedback and participation, you were there; and when we wanted to celebrate and give back to our community, you stepped up and gave from your heart.

Interval House is so grateful for your generosity, and as always, AACSC provided the bulk of the toys that were given out to those who are beginning a new life, free from violence. We also participated throughout the year in planting trees around the City of Long Beach and provided donuts to all the volunteers. It was amazing to see just how fast four dozen donuts can disappear—it was like a magic trick—POOF—Gone!

We enjoyed our 10th Annual AACSC Golf Tournament; our first steel drum band at the Summer Social, where we were honored to be host to our own Mayor Garcia; held our first Certified Apartment Portfolio Supervisor (CAPS) class—to rave reviews I might add; and we graduated more than 30 Certified Apartment Manager (CAM) students. As I attended our National Conferences, we heard loud and clear that NAA is committed to educating our industry on the value, time, and dedication it takes to achieve these credentials.

Now that 2017 is here, we want to make sure that you know AACSC is always in your corner and keeping our ear to the ground to listen and act on your behalf. We know that our industry is under attack, and it is important to us that whenever you hear something that you think might affect us, please call our office any time to alert me to any rumors you hear. We are in constant contact with our City Council members in Long Beach, and last year we began reaching out to our other sister cities so that we can remain aware of potential threats. When it affects one, it affects us all.

So welcome to 2017 at AACSC, and continue to look for all the new changes that will bring us into a new way of doing business. More connected, more active committees, increase in education, and don’t forget to tell your fellow owners why they should be a member, too.

We look forward to seeing you at the 2017 Board of Directors Installation Dinner on January 19 at the Virginia Country Club, and at the first Membership Meeting on January 26 at the Petroleum Club in Long Beach.

Make this the best year ever and get involved — there is still a lot to do!

December 2016

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Where did 2016 go, and what will 2017 look like for the multifamily industry?

So much of this year has been caught up in the Long Beach issue of Rent Control and Just Cause Eviction, also known as Tenants Right to Know issues. Neither option helps our ongoing challenge of providing housing. In fact, what the real challenge is lies in helping our residents understand that neither of these options will benefit them. That issue alone is just one of our focuses for 2017.

Nevertheless, I don’t want to end this year on a negative note, but rather a positive and encouraging message. There is a lot to celebrate too, and it has to do with all of you, our members. So let me begin with thanking all of our vendors who support our AACSC events. The PSC/MSC lunches had great attendance and lots of fun raffle prizes that were given away. And I can’t say enough about all of our other events: Golf Tournament, Summer Social, Installation, Trade Show and our upcoming Holiday Party. We love putting on these events for you. We appreciate your volunteer time and can’t wait to do it all again in 2017. THANK YOU!!!

On another very special note, I cannot let the year end without thanking our awesome staff for all they do. We started out our year missing staff members. That is always stressful, but the staff stepped up and everyone chipped in to help. Ruby rocks the credit checks, Teresa is already preparing for an AWESOME year of Education, and with the new addition of Jeannie in Membership and Marketing, we are looking forward to really increasing our membership and volunteer participation. Oliver, of course, counsels our owners with care, and Tom is always on the lookout for sponsors to help us with our events. Donna and Sophia keep our financials in order, and Terri keeps our Board, Committees, Staff and Operations running smoothly. But I couldn’t forget Rachael, who added the newest and littlest member to our staff, her daughter Catalina (gotta love that name). Each of our team members has their own specialty, but all of us, working together, are focused on providing the best customer service we can. I thank them for all they do, and we even manage to have a little fun.

To end the year, Happy Holidays to you and yours.

I hope you will join us for more events, education programs and that you will attend our Annual Board Installation at the Virginia Country Club on January 19, 2017 as we usher in a new year. Get involved on a committee, and don’t take the season for granted—take time to enjoy your family, and I will see you in 2017.

November 2016

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By the time you read this we are either about to vote for a new President, or we have a new President! Either way, change is coming!

Some may not be pleased with the out come, while others may be overjoyed. No matter what your stance is on the election, believe it or not, we need to be thankful—thankful that we live in a country where we can voice our opinions and vote our conscience; thankful for freedoms that were made possible by those who have defended this great country—our Veterans.

This election year has been like no other in history.

As I mentioned, change is coming! Some of the proposed changes will be welcomed, while others will offer great challenges. We can choose to embrace change, argue against it, or simply settle on the fact that we will need to figure out how to work those changes in.

The same is true for AACSC as we look to the future.

First, we must be thankful for changes that were made and for the changes yet to come—thankful to you, our members, for your continuous and valued support for this Association. It is through our members that we were able to make changes and improvements to strengthen AACSC in 2016. It was through your ideas, requests and interest that we are able to offer you the best programs in the rental housing industry. From educational programs, numerous committees, monthly meetings and extensive legislative involvement, AACSC has been able to promote and protect your investment! We look forward to 2017 with all of the changes and opportunities that will certainly be coming!

Secondly, we must thank our AACSC Board members. These individuals have unselfishly given of their time to support and improve this Association. Throughout 2016 they have supported us, lead us, taught us and looked out for our best interests in the rental housing industry. Thank you AACSC Board!

Last, but absolutely not the least, let’s not forget to thank all of those who have supported us personally and professionally throughout the year. In the hustle and bustle of life, we sometimes forget to thank family and friends for their support. We may take them for granted, not meaning to. Here’s where we make the change! If you, like me, have made this mistake, let’s make the change and remember to be thankful and to express it. If I haven’t communicated this to you, the change starts now! Thank you to all who have supported this Association and me personally. You are all so important to me, and I am grateful to each of you!

So, during this season of change and thanksgiving, let’s embrace the changes that are coming, embrace our freedoms, and never forget to thank those who have made it all possible—our Veterans. For your service and dedication to our country, we are thankful!

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California Southern Cities
333 W. Broadway St., Suite 101
Long Beach, CA 90802
(562) 426-8341

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