All Lake Junaluska property owners pay annual fees to cover the expenses of services provided by Lake Junaluska Assembly Public Works. These fees are commonly referred to as Service Charges and are based on property tax values as established by the Haywood County Tax Assessors Office. Please refer to Number 15 in the Rules and Regulations of the Lake Junaluska Assembly for information on what these fees pay for.
Rule 15: Each owner shall pay such service charges as are fixed from time to time by the Lake Junaluska Assembly, Inc. Board of Trustees for the purpose of paying reasonable and specific expenses associated with the upkeep, maintenance, and related costs that benefit residents of the Assembly grounds, which may include, but not be limited to, security protection, street maintenance, street lighting, drainage maintenance, bulk waste and green waste collection, and administrative costs of Lake Junaluska Assembly Public Works in providing such services.
Changes in the Billing Cycle in 2020
Since the early days of the community, Service Charges had been collected at the end of the year to cover the expenses incurred during that year's conference season. While this practice may have worked fine in the 1920s, 30s, and 40s, its a practice that does not well align with current accounting and budgeting standards. Knowing that altering this practice would be complicated and confusing, it was understandably not an action that was enthusiastically anticipated.
However, the economic challenges resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 clearly illustrated the need for a timely change. In July of 2020, the Lake Junaluska Board of Trustees approved a recommendation brought forth by the Service Charge Task Force, a group comprised of seven property owners tasked with determining a new billing schedule that would move the collection of Service Charge fees into prepayment.
As the first phase, the 2020 Service Charge bill was issued on the 1st of September of that year, instead of the customary date of December 1st. In Phase Two, the 2021 Service Charge bill was issued on January 1, 2021. Residents were offered a discount of 5% as an incentive to pay by the end of January, otherwise, they could opt to pay in installments over 12 months. A decision regarding the billing schedule for the 2022 Service Charge will be considered at the March 2021 Lake Junaluska Board of Trustees Meeting.