Reply to Elizabeth Chan

lionheart's picture

Hi Elizabeth,

Let me first welcome you to our community. If anything, the "drama" you observed is already worth the price of your ring-side ticket so to speak! ;o) However, let me assure you that PH residents are by and large sensible and fair-minded. Thank you for your post. Perhaps it is a good opportunity for me to give you and others here a bit of PH history as I see it. I moved here only 13 months ago.  

Many residents are dejected because of issues faced with Fivestar that are rooted in differences of perceived deliverables and perceived delivery. Emotions ran high yet most residents were guilty of apathy; preferring to let some of their neighbors take up the fight with the developers. Unfortunately, things are never quite as clear cut but to be fair, some of the grouses were/are justified. Few developers can actually deliver fully on promises and developers will always have their side of the story too, no matter how guilty they are of short-changing buyers.
Puchong Hartamas would have been like the scores of other older housing estates in the country if not for the fad that emerged at the turn of the last decade for gated/guarded communities. Security was and still is a priority and coupled with snob value, the demand was definitely there. Developers jumped on the bandwagon and Fivestar was no different when it started marketing Puchong Hartamas (Phase 1) in 2002 (or thereabouts). Unfortunately, the mushrooming of gated/guarded estates overtook the framing of proper laws, guidelines and regulations. The government did respond by enacting the Building & Common Property (Maintenance and Management) Act, 2007 to supplement the Strata Titles Act, 1985. To know more please refer here. Basically, the BCP Act is to lay down the law with regards to rights and obligations of owners and management issues. Herein lies our problem…PH does not fall under the ambit of the BCP Act! PH is classified as residential property and we have our individual titles. Common property like roads, vacant area, etc. have been handed over to the local authorities; we only own our houses!
Post 2007, the high demand for gated/guarded communes remains and to compound the headache of the local authorities (and the Housing Ministry) there were a legacy of estates like PH that remained in limbo vis-à-vis the law. Building plans had been approved and houses built, and perimeter walls had also been constructed (most with approvals still pending). For the fact that CFs and individual titles were issued implied tacit approval. Social considerations and PDRM encouragement meant that local authorities are content to allow the status quo for legacy estates. Developers in turn were content to hide behind this gap between the law (or lack of) and social expediency. To add to the fun, older (pre-2000) estates began requesting permission to "fence-up"…you see these all over PJ and Klang. These come with their own issues despite the Selangor government's own 2007 guidelines…one of which is a 85% residents approval criteria. Your PHRA is arranging for a briefing and Q & A session for residents by representatives of the House Buyers Association ( HBA) at a convenient time to answer queries once and for all. We hope the majority of you will attend.
There is so much more I could add that will bore the hell out of anyone reading but let me just stick to PH. We are lucky! We have a perimeter wall (albeit not officially approved), we have a guard-house (albeit inconveniently and hazardously located) and most important of all, we have signed a Supplementary Agreement (we do not need 85%; we effectively have a 100%) for security services. In short we have everything that most other estates are only beginning to want to have! Residents of PH should have taken over security service management long ago instead of paying RM6,000 per month (over and above security service contractor's fees) to Fivestar Property Management Services for virtually zilch services! Mind you, that's RM72,000 down the longkang every year! RM72,000 is a lot of money to pay for "rights" to sulk and bitch over non-security issues of which recourse is still not prejudiced by a takeover of security management. If they choose to, affected residents can still institute class action (subject to the statute of limitation) against Fivestar if they think they can win. My personal opinion is that we should have fought before the issuance of the CF and individual titles.  
Anyway, your current PHRA has opted to be pragmatic instead of be emotional. Your current PHRA has opted to engage rather than opt for blind rage. Your current PHRA has opted to move forward instead of dwelling on self-pity and the debilitating cry of injustice. Your current PHRA has bravely opted to take the welfare of PH into our (residents) own hands. But your current PHRA is by no means perfect.     
Now to address your queries wherever I can. My comments in red.


Will be moving into No.1, PH2/5 soon and hope to be able to get some advice from our veterans staying in this neighbourhood.
We noticed a used empty water tank turned upside down, at the outside of the grill (along the main road actually) coming into the backyard of my house and of course, to the rest of the houses along PH2/5.
Who shall I contact to remove this empty tank?? Will look into that. Perhaps we can sell it to the re-cycling contractor and raise some revenue.
Cos we feel that it is easy for people to climb up on the tank and cross-over to the the Security is rather far away and we are d 1st house along this road, we are worried about the safety for all concerned. Thus we will be lighting up the backyard and have added some barbed wire on the grill as well. Would like to do a site survey to ensure your measures do not over-lap with what the security contractor has committed to do. Maybe can save you some money.
Is there an emergency button to alert the security in case of emergencies and is there a list of emergency contact nos for us to call?? Yes there are numbers. PHRA will be circulating them as soon as we finalize the right contact numbers and SOP with the security company. Who also maintains the cleaning of drains (MPSJ) eg, where I currently live in PJ, MPPJ comes and clears the back & front of our drains on a monthly basis. We also noticed the empty piece of land with some palm trees behind our land, which is filling-up with rubbish too and seems to be like some sort of drainage / pond system. Who owns this piece of land?? Worry abt future mosquitoes breeding ground there. PHRA will look into that as we engage the MPSJ in coming working meetings and also seek the assistance of Mr Stephen Chin, the councilor for our area. 
My eldest boy has started school in SMK Puchong Bt14 and my 2nd son in SK Puchong Utama 3. Are transporters allowed to come into the area to pick them up as they are in the afternoon school?? Yes, they are (yellow stickers?) Will also be looking for part-time maid to come in on a weekly basis to help do some cleaning. Any recommendations?? Anybody in the eGroup can help Elizabeth out on this? In any case these matters will later be looked into by the proposed sub-committee for "Social and Community Matters". Any volunteers?
Anyway, we don't know the history of the PHRA but all we can say that it takes time & effort for our neighbours (old & new) to be part of the comittee. So, let bygones be bygones, and start afresh 2010 with good positive attitude and neighbourly kindness. We believe water will eventually find its own level but having said that, the prevailing spirit is to engage amicably but firmly whenever possible. It shocks me to see some of the letters that seems to be going around, it looks more 'action-packed' compared to the local politics. One thing for sure is that you have landed in an interesting place ;o) So let's not be too harsh with one another cos 'to err is human but to forgive is divine'. Absolutely agreed. The current committee has taken a lot of beating in the name of "good intentions". 
So keep up the good work to all those involved and Happy New Year. Thank you very much. Every bit of appreciation does help the team to persevere.

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