xKitchen Cabinet Old
21 March 2018
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11 May 2017
Since spring of last year, I have pushed for the completion of our infrastructural projects in order to bring our community into compliance with government requirements. We have completed paving the road from the pluma through the YalKu loop, the installation of new topes according to government specifications, the removal or repair of old topes. Now we begin the next project, lighting the community.
On Tuesday we worked with the solar company to hammer out the contract for street lights and the contract is signed. We are working this project in two phases. Each phase requires a down payment of $10,000 USD for that phase. Final payment for the phase will be made only after the community committee has approved the installed lights. First phase begins on July 1st, when we make the down payment for phase one. This is for the placement of the first 50 lights. The overall contract includes both phases.
A team made up of committee members and solar company staff will walk the community and decide placement for each light, always considering the best placement position for the lot owner.
If you already have lighting, we are asking you to purchase a light anyway. These purchases will be placed in those areas where we have been unable to reach or do not know who owns the lot. It would be greatly appreciated if you could donate extra lights or money. To start off, David and Dan of Casa Gatos will purchase three lights. For total fairness, this email is being sent to every email address that Vecinos has both member and non-members. As community members, we all should contribute to these projects, since everyone benefits from their completion.
Each light will cost $410.00 USD. Payments may be made by bank transfer, Mexican or US check, Mexican or US cash, or credit card. Vecinos will issue Facturas or receipts for your payments.
At the completion of the street light project any monies not used will automatically be transferred to the central sewage project. Being a public membership organization, our accounts are open for your perusal at any time.
Thank You All for your commitment and support for our community.
Roy Daniel Freeman, President
PS: When you are here please, thank the members of the ADMACK and Vecinos boards all their hard work time they have given in helping to complete these projects.
30 January 2017
Notes from the President September 2016
Just want to let you know what’s happening. We had a meeting with Jaime Macedo and his staff of architects. It is a great group of very talented people with a leader who believes in conservation and low-density population environments. Sr. Macedo is going to make not only a good neighbor but a great partner for Akumal Norte. We talked about future projects, including different types of sewage systems and what they may look like. However, we are talking about a few years for some projects. We are working on sewage system design so we can be set up and in compliance with the federal government’s mandate regarding sewage being processed and sent out of Akumal Norte. All of us agreed that when we finalize Akumal Norte’s sewage system, we need a plan to restore Akumal Pueblo’s sewage system as well. As the cabinet moves forward to finalize the sewage system, I will let you know what we are planning. In the end this will benefit everyone and complete yet another infrastructure system.
Señor Macedo was very knowledgeable and interested in the creation of the Conservation and Preservation Center. We discussed with him building the new facility in the main park located across from Qué Onda and Casa Gatos. He is very community-minded and concerned about preserving the natural resources, mangrove, and jungle that make our community so unique in Quintana Roo.
The project to light our street without interference to our turtles is also in the discussion stage. This likely will be done sooner than the sewage. Finally our tourists will be able to see where they are going without tripping or falling.
I wish I could tell you exact plans now, but all good projects take time for planning, finding funding, and finally building; however we have taken our first steps and are on the way.
Notes from the Kitchen Cabinet Meeting of 7 September 2016
NOTES ABOUT OUR MISSION AND GOALS
Akumal Playa and Akumal Norte are truly unique locations in the Yucatan Peninsula – it has one of the last free beaches that is still close to pristine. Vecinos’ mission is to establish Akumal Norte as a fully functioning community with all of the up-to-date infrastructure services necessary to be comfortable, while at the same time maintaining Akumal Norte’s unique natural qualities. This means maintaining the natural environment and resources as we found them and fell in love with for all people. Vecinos is working with several state and federal government departments to stop exploitation of any type. This being said, let me tell you the state of affairs.
Vecinos is happy to announce it has completed its first infrastructure goal of completing the resurfacing of the main road going from the pluma next to Casa Alux to YalKu Lagoon. Other infrastructure goals include installation of a central sewer system, underground electric, street lighting, and underground cable for the internet.
The board members and president in effort to serve the community have had both breakfast and luncheon meetings at Casa Gatos with the local Director of PROFEPA and the Regional Director of CONANP. These meetings discussed how to protect our natural environment from commercial exploitation and were then followed by tours of Half Moon Bay and YalKu Lagoon. For the past two weeks, Vecinos representatives have participated in zone meetings held to establish governing rules for zones of Akumal Bay and Half Moon Bay. In addition, letters have been sent from the organization to request that rules be set for YalKu Lagoon and rules be set that will protect Akumal Norte from over-exploitation from companies that are being turned away from the main bay in Central Akumal. As these issues progress we will send out updates.
CONSERVATION and PRESERVATION CENTER
In an effort to protect and preserve Akumal Norte’s natural environment assets – Half Moon Bay, YalKu Lagoon, mangroves, jungle, parks, cenotes – and maintain the area as it has been for hundreds of years, we have moved forward to establish a Conservation and Preservation Center. At present, we have been offered a 99-year lease from our neighbors and Vecinos members Frank Hatch and Lennie Maitta for a large lot located across form Casa del Sol. This keeps with a long time goal that Frank and Lennie have had to give something to benefit the community that both love. The center is different from the CEA center. It will house a small archeological museum representing the Maya who established Akumal, along with classrooms teaching about the importance of the mangrove, lagoon, and the land and sea life that exist there.
NEW BYPASS ROAD and CENTRAL SEWER SYSTEM
This week we will be meeting with Jaime Macedo, owner of MM Desarollos and our neighbor. We will be discussing the building of a bypass road that would begin almost at the foot of the bridge from the Akumal Pueblo, ending at the pluma. Normally, it is difficult to get permission to build through mangrove; however, under this road would be pipes carrying central sewer, electric, internet, and new fresh water connections. This then becomes a project needed “for the benefit of the community”, making it possible for road construction permits to be issued. Final determination of the road placement is really up to MM Desarollos as owners of the land. This entry road would be privately held, meaning that the government cannot issue permits for businesses to be located on it fringes as has been done on the present entry roadway. This makes the new entry road much safer for arriving visitors, owners, and staff. When we have more details I will write to you.
What can you say about a volunteer who works tirelessly to deal with security issues of the community? THANK YOU, Terry Richardson! Terry sends out very detailed reports every month, and several Vecinos members and Terry will be meeting this month to evaluate the present program. Again, as I have more information I will keep you posted.
Vecinos organization will work hard to preserve this great community. As far as protecting the natural resources and environment we just need to follow in the footsteps of our Maya brothers and show the same respect for the environment as they did. They enjoyed the land as it was, with no need for entertainment parks.
Thank you for your support and faith in me as your president, and remember you can write to me with questions or suggestions at the email address listed below.
Meeting Notes, 4 August 2016
I hope you are having a wonderful summer. Due to vacations as well as the heat and humidity, we are taking a hiatus from our normal schedule of Cabinet meetings. The board is still working on on going projects, and we are beginning to think of the coming year. Through the generosity of so many of you, we are almost at our goal of road completion by the beginning of this year’s High Season. Donations are still being accepted for completion and maintenance of the road.
Today we had a really great breakfast meeting with the Director of the new Akumal PROFEPA Office, Rodolfo Belchis. He is very excited to work with us for the enforcement of the protection of the our bays, lagoon, and mangroves. The breakfast marks the beginning of work on two new projects. One is the creation of a private entrance road coming into Akumal Norte which will pass over some mangrove land. Normally, this construction would be prohibited; however, pipes/lines running under the new road for sewage, water connections, and electricity make this project feasible because it is for the “good of the community.” Therefore, this project will be issued the necessary construction permits. We’re in the beginning stages of the project and it will take time to come to fruition.
We all remember our first visit to Akumal Playa; its magic drew us back time after time and eventually many of us became homeowners. Many of us rent our homes or condos; however, the number of additional people this brings in doesn’t add significant stress to the natural resources, and we do give back to the community. Now larger facilities and outside tour companies are encroaching more and more on all areas of Akumal Playa. The magic that drew us here is being tainted. If this keeps up, we will slowly become another Tulum or Playa Del Carmen. This past Sunday we had well over 1500 people in Akumal Bay and 1200 in Yal Ku Lagoon. Today a third snorkel tour company began building giant entrance piers for their new location on Yal Ku Lagoon. This overload of our natural resources will eventually cause great harm to the lagoon, bays and mangrove. And to what end?
So is born the second important project of the Association: the creation of the Akumal Norte Preservation and Conservation Center. This is a major project requiring your help and support. As we created the projects to restore our road and engineered the new water system once more we need to move forward to protect this paradise from over exploitation. At full implementation, the Center will work to conserve our mangroves, parks, sea and land animals, with a museum preserving the history of this area. A large parcel of land has been made available on a 99-year lease from Frank Hatch and Lennie Maitta. The building when completed will house classrooms, a community center, a laboratory, Natural History Museum, and administrative offices for Vecinos. This project is being created to preserve Akumal Norte’s resources and the same magic that drew us all here.
If you have experience writing grant proposals or in creative writing, we can use your help. Most of the writing can be done from your home and emailed in. Please write to me at the address below and let me know your experience and what you would like to help with. We will be creating educational materials for all aspects of the resources, animals, and history here in Akumal.
Thank you for your support,
Dan Freeman, President
Notes from the Kitchen Cabinet Meeting of June 16th
Sewage Committee Meeting was organized by Carlos Ortiz and included representatives from the hotels, local businesses, and social organizations. The goal set for us is to build a sewage removal and treatment system that will serve Akumal Playa, Akumal Pueblo, South Akumal, and all of the sewage requirements encompassed in these areas. It is hoped that this system will be a model for the rest of Mexico for a well thought-out, full service sewage disposal system.
The guest speaker was Dr. Morgan from UNAM, the University of Mexico. Dr. Morgan’s field of expertise and experience is in the study and planning of sewage disposal systems. His work has been exemplary in other parts of Mexico. As part of the planning process, Vecinos has been asked to come up with figures for the Akumal Norte area. These numbers are to include the sewage needs at present and estimating what they will be when our empty lots have been built on. This information includes number of bathrooms (toilets & showers), kitchens, laundry rooms, pools, and water usage for exterior maintenance, i.e., gardens, cleaning etc.
The information collected will be sent to Dr. Morgan for his evaluation and use in planning a new system. This is the first step in understanding the actual system needed to accomplish our goal for disposal and treatment of sewage. Next step will be to have all parties on board with the plan and to begin the process of finding financing.
At present the only area not completed is from the intersection at La Iguana going left around the corner up to Que Onda Hotel. We are expecting 18 skids of adocreto blocks to be delivered today. This amount of block will finish the road from the La Iguana intersection to the first empty lot going towards Casa Christensen. Next week a second order of 18 skids of adocreto will be delivered to finish the road to Casa Christensen. After that, the only unfinished main road in all of Akumal Norte will be the section next to Que Onda Hotel.
I would like to give a big thank you to Nancy Poor whose contribution to the road this week in honor of her husband David Poor really did made it possible for us to move forward. Of course, it is through the generosity of so many that the road has gotten this far. We have received contributions from Vecinos Members and non-members. We are so lucky to live in a neighborhood were the residents care so much about the community.
AKUMAL NORTE JUNGLE CLEANUP
Although we did not get all of the trash picked up, a great deal was accomplished and it has been agreed to plan another cleanup. I think as owners begin to see the continued cleanup of our community they will come forward to join in. Think of it this way — for $800 pesos (about $45 usd) say four times a year, we can really begin to make an impact on cleaning up the neighborhood. I know the government should be part of this process, and maybe in the future we can convince them to furnish this service, but until then we need to move on and present to tourists and ourselves a clean, spiffy neighborhood.
For those of you who contributed the $800 pesos this time, we ended up with money left, $7700.pesos. This can be given back in equal payment to all of the participants. This would amount to $381 pesos or roughly $20 usd each. Or the money can be accumulated for the next cleanup. Please let me know what you want. We will do what the majority decides. Please let me know asap, thanks.
Although there is much more to be discussed and accomplished in the community, we have gone to a summer schedule. This means a lighter meeting schedule for the next three months.
If you have questions or topics to be discussed you can reach me by emailing me at
Hope all of you are healthy and happy and having a great summer,
Newsletter – 25 May 2016am
David and Dan returned from Totness, England on May 19th. It was a great trip, however we are happy to be home – as they say “So much to do and so little time to do it!”
1) Web site update, Web Editor Carly Flores
The web is still being reviewed and some changes are being made such as our office phone number which now is 984-875-9096 (Dan’s Landline Phone) until a new line can be secured. Our email address is [email protected], As soon as the web master is available these changes will be made. The membership and donation forms are active and can be filled out and sent from the web site now.
2) Security Update Terry Richardson
Terry will mail out an update this week. As always he has been hard at it and is developing a positive plan for Akumal Norte.
3) Clean up Day Summary Report Monica Estrada & Dan Freeman
All the credit for the success of this clean up really goes to Claudia Flores, Joel Datica, and Santos Ake, who worked very hard to make this happen. After walking around and seeing the plan in action, I was really happy with the results. As you may or may not know, PROFEPA has opened an office in Akumal Pueblo and are enforcing those rules that apply to the cleanup and preservation of the mangrove and jungle areas of Akumal Playa.
Our cleanup day was the first joint attempt by ADMAK and Vecinos at a general cleanup for the community. We’ll evaluate the plan and see if it needs tweaks for future community cleanups. Although the staffs of many condos and houses do their own debris removal, there is still a lot of dumping in the mangrove and jungle areas. In the future, if dumping in these areas continues, there will be penalties imposed on owners by PROFEPA. So this really brings home the need for us to solidify a community plan and be proactive with the cleanup on a regular basis. As plans develop I will keep you informed.
4) Road Work & Donations Dan Freeman
A big thanks this week goes to Galería Lamanai for a generous donation to help completion of the road resurfacing. With every day that passes we get closer and closer to the finish line. At this point you can drive from the pluma to Yalku Lagoon without hitting any pot holes! This coming week work will continue on the stretch of road from La Iguana intersection to Casa Sueños. The concrete curbs on the edges of the road are being created and sascab is being spread, and we are just waiting for the shipment of fifteen skids of adocreto blocks. We have heard that Maribel from Que Onda will help with the road alongside the Que Onda hotel.
We are really close to completing the paving of the entire road. My goal is to have the road completely finished by the beginning of the new tourist season.
Please, if anyone has donation money, we need it to finish paying for the blocks and labor. If you wish to contribute, go to the web page at www.vecionosakumalnorte.com and hit the word donate. A form will appear that you can fill out online, hit send, and it goes to our office. Once we have it we will send you a secure form for you credit card information and you will receive a receipt for your taxes. We thank for your support!
5) Membership Recruitment Dan Freeman
We’re working to acquire 10 new members. I waited to begin mailings until I returned from England, so I will work on these this month. Also I’m waiting to hear from a couple of potential new members from the La Bahía condos.
FUTURE PROJECTS INFORMATION
It is my intention to always relay accurate information to our membership and eliminate the inaccurate “whisper down the road” information.
6) Update on Municipalizing and New Road discussions Henning Bartsch
Just to keep you up to date on this subject, there are discussions with various persons concerning the need for a new entrance for Akumal Playa – nothing solid yet. As and when these discussions lead to an in-place project, you will be the first to know. Your team players will work on this and future projects only if they benefit our community.
7) Akumal Norte ID Cards Peter Swenson
This is an idea being developed as a possible future projects. Peter Swenson from Mi Casa Del Mar is working on it. Thank you, Peter.
8) Topes Neil Breton
When the main road is totally paved, we will walk the road and evaluate it for the proper placement of uniform topes. They will be built strictly to slow down drivers but not destroy their cars. They will have reflectors on each side and be marked with tope signs. Old topes that are in the wrong areas will be taken out. If they are in the right place they will be redesigned to meet the new standards.
Highway maintenance. When the road and topes are completed we will continue to use donations for the upkeep and maintenance of the road.
9) Refrigerator Magnets Carly
Small magnetized signs that can easily be display on your refrigerator are in design and will soon go into production. These signs give you or your tourist emergency phone numbers for the dispatch of immediate emergency service to their location.
10) Sewer Service Henning
Because of federal regulations, Akumal Norte will have to put in a central sewer service. This service will be coordinated with Akumal Pueblo. Both areas are connected through underground water ways. Again PROFEPA is charged with sewage disposal as dictated by Federal law, so we in turn must begin the sewer project. Right now we are planning this project and negotiating how the money can be found. Nothing solid yet. Do not listen to rumors; when we have accurate information, I will forward it to you.
Future Presentation: I would like you to send me simple questions that you may have to be addressed to PROFEPA. After I have received them I will evaluate them to find the 10 must asked questions. I will have them translated into polite Spanish and given to our new PROFEPA Director in the Akumal Pueblo. Along with that, we will ask when he has time if he can meet with the cabinet and community members to give us direction on how we can work with them to help bring our community in line with the PROFEPA rules. I will let you know when and if this happens so if you’re here you can attend. It would be in Spanish and we will have translators. SO SEND IN THOSE QUESTIONS, KEEP THEM SIMPLE.
31 January 2016
Dear Vecinos and Vecinos Members of Akumal Norte:
As we embark on the new year 2016, Vecinos of Akumal Norte Association is gearing up to make the community of Akumal Norte the best tourist destination and the best organized community in the Riviera Maya.
Vecinos is a volunteer organization. Its operational and project monies are provided through donations from our members and community.
Vecinos of Akumal Norte and the Municipal government of Tulum have signed an agreement in which Vecinos is the only recognized legal entity representing Akumal Norte.
Through the advisory efforts of Vecinos de Akumal Norte, ADMAK and other property managers we have reached 70% regularization of Akumal Norte Properties.
Over two thirds of the road through Akumal Norte is now paved, paid for solely by voluntary donations.
Through efforts of this nature and projects such as the work with CAPA to complete the community’s water system, Vecinos is establishing good faith that our community is working to come into compliance with government mandates. This should help us to secure assistance from the government for future projects.
The municipal government has listed projects for our community that must be completed within a fixed schedule. Failure to meet these dates can result in significant fines.
Following is a list of ongoing and new projects for 2016 and beyond . These projects all require donated funds from the community.
• ORGANIZATIONAL COMMUNICATION. Bringing the Vecinos web site, newsletter,r and community blog online. This will serve to insure better communications within our community.
• ROAD RESURFACING. We are now poised to pave the two worst stretches that remain. If the road in front of your property has not been resurfaced, please contribute money for its completion. The road is not a municipal responsibility, so contributions to complete the entire road are needed. To make a contribution please contact us at the email address listed at the end of this letter.
• SECURITY. Security chairman, working with the property managers and Vecinos members, has organized private security for the community of Akumal Norte and will send updates.
• UNDERGROUND ELECTRICITY AND STREET LIGHTING. These are mandated obligations our community will confront. Vecinos will continue working to try to secure help from the government with funding these projects.
SEWER SYSTEM. Vecinos was able to negotiate a moratorium on the identification of properties with inadequate sewage disposal systems, which ends in May of 2016. The installation of a new sewage system has been mandated by the federal government. The cost to homeowners is estimated to be $10,000 USD; condo buildings will be higher.
Vecinos Marketing and Membership Chairman