Cypress Isles News
The official newsletter of the Cypress Isles Homeowners Association
November 2006 Edition - Published Quarterly


In This Issue - November 2006
Holiday Lighting Contest
A Neighbor's Passing
Welcome to Cypress Isles!
Emergency Response and You
Crime Update
WLCA Board Actions
Cypress Isles Contact List
We Have a New Manager!
They're Not Our Kids
Homeowner Cited for Trimming Conservation Areas
Board Approves 2007 Budget
Dates and Figs
Publication Schedule
Street Parking Defined


Holiday Lighting Contest
Deck your yard to celebrate the holidays!
Judging for this year's annual Holiday Lighting Contest will be on Sunday December 17th at 7:00 p.m. Winners will be listed on our website shortly thereafter and published in the February Cypress Isles News, when nobody cares anymore.


A Neighbor's Passing
A message from the President

Today in our fast-paced lives we do not seem to take time to really get to know who lives beside us, across the street form us and just around the corner from us. Every day we come and go, passing each other without even a wave. That to me is a sad thing, but I have to admit that I have been guilty of this myself when my wife and I first moved into this community. Now, after 8 years I must say that getting to know my closest neighbors and even some neighbors in other parts of the community has been a true pleasure for my wife and me, but I have to say that this message is about something more.
When we moved into our home in 1998 it was only a few short months before one of my new neighbors extended a greeting to us. After that day on many occasions we spoke and exchanged ideas on lawn care and other subjects. I am sorry to say though that after a few years we stopped taking as we allowed a difference to come between us. Instead of really trying to understand each other's position we just decided to not communicate any longer with each other. That was a huge mistake on my part.
About 2 years ago we started to exchange a few words, but there was still some discomfort with us both. The good thing was that we were at least communicating.
One day as I was working on the house my neighbor called out to me and asked how my project was going. Following a 5-10 minute conversation he told me that he had been very sick for several months and that he had been diagnosed with Leukemia. I must say I was taken aback by that news. Later that day I was sharing this with my wife and thinking what could I do to help him, but I never asked him myself. Months went by and I would speak with him occasionally across the fence and ask how he was doing. Each time he would respond "okay", again I never asked if there was something I could help him with, assuming there was nothing I could do.
In July I received a call from this neighbor about a HOA matter, and I offered to handle it for them. When I went by their home later that day I spoke to him about the illness and he said things were looking much better. I must say that he did look very good considering what he had been through over the past 6 months or more. This was the first time I felt like we had crossed the bridge from our past and could look forward to being real neighbors again.
With a very heavy heart I have to say that we will not have that chance. My neighbor was unable to win the battle with his illness and on September 2, 2006 he passed away.
I encourage everyone to get to really know your neighbor before a tragedy occurs or an illness strikes, and if there are differences between you, find a way to work it out. Who knows, they may become your best friend.
This message is dedicated to Jim Couch who I believe was a good neighbor, husband, father and grandfather. I know you will join me in sending condolences to his wife, Linda Couch, and their family, as it is sure that he will be missed.

Ron Wiley, President

Welcome to Cypress Isles!
Go over and say, "Hi!"
Welcome to our new neighbors at:
939 Spring Island Way
If we've missed anyone else who recently moved in, please let us know so we can mention you in the next newsletter.

Emergency Response and You
The State of Florida has developed a program that will be most beneficial to you, your family, and emergency responders. The program allows you to put up to two people to contact in case of an emergency on your driver's license information. This information can only be obtained by law enforcement and will be used to make quicker notifications of accidents, injuries, or death to your next of kin or other individual that you select. This came about after a teenage girl was killed in a car crash and it took law enforcement over 5 hours to find and notify the young girl's mother.
If you are a parent with a young driver or if your child may be a passenger in another vehicle, you will have a little extra comfort in knowing that if your child or loved one is involved in a crash, law enforcement will be able to notify you quicker as long as they have identification with them. If you are a single member household with out of state next of kin, law enforcement will be able to make that notification.
Below is the website's information along with a link to the service. It only takes a minute to type in the information and a split second later it is updated. You will need your driver's license number and your birth date along with the person(s) you want to be notified and their names, addresses, and phone numbers. The system takes only two contacts and gives them up to three numbers in which to contact them.
Please take a moment to visit the site and give yourself that extra little security.
This service will allow you to provide contact information to law enforcement in the event of an emergency. This information may save crucial time if ever it becomes necessary to contact family members, or other loved ones. This service is only available to individuals holding a current Florida Driver License or Florida Identification Card.

(Funding for the mailing of this edition of the Cypress isles News was provided by:)

Investments for Your Lifetime


Lee J. Blackwell
Wachovia Securities Financial Network
Senior Financial Advisor


717 North Magnolia Avenue
Orlando, FL 32803




Comprehensive Financial Plans
Retirement, Rollover, Estate, College, Insurance


Crime Update
Here's what's happened since last newsletter…

Saturday, Sept. 2, 2006, 10:44 PM
Attempted car burglary
600 Block of Divine Circle, well-lit driveway
Attempted entry: Driver-side door of locked, black 1996 Honda Civic.
Vigilant neighbors witnessed two juveniles, approximately 16 years old, tampering with another neighbor's car. Both suspects were wearing black. One of them had long blonde hair and was wearing a skull cap. The neighbor called 9-1-1 then went outside to watch. When the suspects realized the neighbor was watching them, they left the scene.
Nothing was stolen from the car, but the owner observed scratch marks to the driver's side door handle. The police lifted fingerprints and submitted them into evidence.
Thanks to the vigilant neighbors for getting involved, calling the police, and interrupting a possible crime in progress.

* * * * * *

Another car stolen--
Tuesday, Sept 19, 2006, between 10PM-4AM
800 block Spring Island Way
2001 Chevy Impala, parked in driveway,
unlocked truck, key for Impala (house key as well) left on seat of truck.
Neighbor next to victims left for work between 3 am and 4 am, and told victims that he saw a kid on a bike further down SIW as he left. The neighbor thought it odd but didn't do anything. Police told victims to call 911 when anyone sees activity of this type in the neighborhood. Victims had to re-key everything.

* * * * * *

Friday Oct. 13 or Sat. Oct. 14, 2006
There was a report of a car broken into in the 800 block of Spring Island Way. No other information was forthcoming.

* * * * * *

Please remember to file a police report for incidents, no matter how insignificant they seem. If you can't get through to the non-emergency sheriff's number: 407-836-HELP (4357) call 9-1-1.
Also contact your Block Captain or our Neighborhood Watch Coordinator, John Tenney at 407-992-4420 or or visit our website -

Sandy Horazak

WLCA Board Actions
Learn more about WLCA by visiting their new website,
Here are the highlights of WLCA Board actions during August, September, and October.

WCLA 2007 Budget
The 2007 budget was presented for approval at the October meeting, but it was sent back for re-work after the discovery of a missing line item. Homeowner fees, now at $100 per quarter, are expected to increase by $8 to $10 per quarter. The top 3 items causing the large increase in homeowner fees were management company fee increase, insurance, and common area maintenance.

No Swim Diaper, No Rubber Pants, No Pool
The Board will change its policy of restricting small children to the wading pool while allowing older children and adults to swim in the main pool. The restriction had been enacted years ago after the pool had to be closed, cleaned, and shocked following several "loss-of-load" accidents by children who were not fully potty trained. The new policy will require infants and small children to wear swim diapers covered by rubber pants in order to enter either pool. Parents will assist security personnel with enforcement, and pool privileges of violators will be suspended.

Vines Removed from Median
Vines and other weeds that invaded the Lake Underhill median strip near Discovery Middle School are being removed. After this major clean-up, the median will be maintained as part of normal maintenance.

No Benches, Decorated Driveways
The Board denied requests by Crystal Bay and others to install benches near retention ponds or entrances because access to those benches would require trespassing on private homeowner property. In another action, the Board confirmed the WLCA ARC decision not to allow stamped or painted concrete driveways.

No Kill Algae
A homeowner had requested that WLCA spray one of the retention ponds to kill the algae that had developed there. Since the St. Johns River Water Management District is the governing authority and generally forbids such killings, the Board declined to take action without written permission from SJRWMD.

WLCA Board meeting times and places are posted at the WLCA office by the pool, and in the median strip on Lake Underhill at Alafaya Trail and at Woodbury.


Cypress Isles Contact List

Board of Directors
Ron Wiley, President 407 384-2564
Dennis Horazak, Vice-President 407 207-6557
Mike Kranz, Secretary 407 970-9036
Myron Davis, Treasurer 407 737-8200
Lee Blackwell, Member 407 275-2541
Harold Engold, Member 407-273-4990
John Tenney, Member 407-383-3079

Sue Bires, Community Management Professionals
407 903-9969 Ext. 117

Neighborhood Watch
John Tenney 407-383-3079

Dennis Bode, Webmaster
Sandy & Denny Horazak, CI News Editor 407 207-6557

Handy Numbers
Orange County Sheriff Non-emergency 407 836-HELP (4357)
Animal Control (unleashed pets, etc.) 407 352-4390
Progress Energy Streetlight Repair 1-800-228-8485


We Have a New Manager!
We bid fond farewell to Rex Bowman, our property manager for the past 2 years. Rex has accepted another position within Community Management Professionals, and we wish him all the best in his new career.
Our new manager will be Sue Bires of Community Management Professionals, who has already begun working with the Cypress Isles Board. If you'd like to meet Sue, come to the January board meeting and say "Hello!"

They're Not Our Kids
Watch for solicitors claiming to be your neighbor's children.
Last week I heard from several neighbors on Divine Circle and Crystal River Drive that a young man who seemed to be in his late 20s to early 30s was selling magazines and books door to door on Friday, November 3, saying that he was "Sandy and Denny's son." He said he needed $2,000 to go to CA for his team's baseball tournament and that other neighbors were helping him. There were other solicitors going around too, but I don't know if they were using the same ploy, or using another neighbor's name on different blocks. Now, my real children are many things - mostly, honest, gainfully employed adults living far away, not selling things door-to-door in Waterford Lakes. Obviously this young man was trying to gain folks' confidence with his dubious heritage name-dropping, but I can assure you that they're not my kids!
The best way to keep solicitors away is to post a "No Soliciting" sign on your front door. If you already have a sign, point it out to them. If a solicitor has to lie about his parentage, chances are the whole thing is a scam. But if you want to buy something from door-to-door solicitors, buy it because you want it, or because you personally know the salespersons. Don't be fooled by phony offspring. Ask for I.D. if you suspect they're not who they claim to be!

Sandy Horazak
Mother of adult children in Delaware

Homeowner Cited for Trimming Conservation Areas
A homeowner in the 800 block of Spring Island Way in Cypress Isles will be cited by WLCA for trimming the conservation area behind his property, in violation of St. Johns River Water Management District policy. The violation could also incur significant homeowner fines from the SJRWMD.

Board Approves 2007 Budget
Higher insurance rates lead to a 6.8% increase in homeowner fees.
The Cypress Isles 2007 operating budget was presented and approved at the September 19th Board meeting. Expenses increased by 6.8 percent, resulting in the need to increase quarterly homeowner fees by $3.00 from $44.00 to $47.00 per quarter.
The biggest change was a whopping 47-percent increase in insurance premiums. This premium punch is being felt by homeowner associations and condominium associations all across Florida, as insurance companies recoup losses they experienced during the hurricane attacks of 2004 and 2005. All other expense increases were much more modest.
Funds for this year's entrance refurbishment project were taken from our reserves, and each dollar was matched by Orange County, giving us an equivalent 100% return on investment. Reserves for future needs are being steadily replenished, adding about $5.00 per quarter per homeowner.

Dennis Horazak, Vice-President
Myron Davis, Treasurer

View the Cypress Isles 2007 Budget

Not just Talking Turkey, but just in time for the holidays -- a different twist on recycling from a CI resident and professional recycling consultant. Read on…
Most Cypress Isles households make use of the green and orange recycling bins provided by Orange County for setting out their newspaper, magazines and catalogs, corrugated cardboard and Kraft paper bags (orange bin) and plastic/metal/glass bottles and jars (green bin). In a future column I will offer observations on how we can improve our use of this program, but given that 2 holidays are upon us, I will first turn your attention to an obscure Thanksgiving (or Christmas) recycling opportunity.
How many of you out there have adopted the pyromaniacally proud tradition of turkey frying for your Thanksgiving feast? Yeah, there's nothing like heating up four gallons
of peanut oil to 350 degrees and frying a 20-pound bird in about an hour to really make for a good main course (and impress the kids and relatives). Some of you, like me, may buy the peanut oil for one-time use or for frequent use over a short period of time (it will last for a while if kept cool). For those of you who have a second refrigerator, you may even be able to re-use the oil for many months.
However, at some point your peanut oil will reach the end of its useful life. Anyone who has ever tried to get rid of 4+ gallons of peanut oil knows that there is really no good way to do so. Fortunately, peanut oil (and also vegetable oil, canola oil, soy oil, and cooking greases) is fully recyclable into a variety of products, including animal feed and bio-diesel. The trick is getting it in the hands of someone who collects and processes the used cooking oil. As your friendly neighborhood recycling consultant, I volunteer to accept your used cooking oil for delivery to a recycler of this product.
Just pour (using a funnel) your used cooking oil back in the container it came in, take a moment to wipe down any spillage on the sides, and give me a call at 407-658-4261 to arrange a drop-off at my house (or pick-up at your house). DO NOT MIX IN ANY AUTOMOTIVE OILS, AS THIS WILL CONTAMINATE THE COOKING OIL. (Automotive oils should be delivered to the County hazardous waste center located at the County landfill on Young Pine Road, dropped off at one of the County's occasional household hazardous waste drop-off events, or possibly dropped off at a local automotive parts store or auto service center offering free drop-off of auto oils.)
Ultimately, much of a successful recycling program has to do with aggregating enough recycled material to be valuable to a recycler, so this call for your used cooking oil is somewhat of an experiment to see how much residentially-generated product might be out there. Thanks for your support, and feel free to call me at the number above if you have any questions about Orange County's recycling, hazardous waste, or refuse management programs.

John Culbertson

Cypress Isles resident John Culbertson recently launched a small business to provide recycling and waste management consulting services to cities and counties across the country with the aim of helping them establish, manage, and improve their refuse and recycling policies and practices. He has worked on recycling programs in Florida, Pennsylvania, California, Hawaii, Kentucky, Maryland, Texas, Illinois, and Connecticut, to name but a few states. He has volunteered to intermittently write a column to provide Cypress Isles residents with tips to improve their understanding of how to recycle more effectively, both within the Orange County recycling program framework and using the private market where available.

Dates and Figs
Happy Birthday to:

December 22 - Cookie Symons
February 4 - Scott Symons

Happy Anniversary to:
November 30 - Dick & June Glesener - 65 years!


Publication Schedule
The Cypress Isles News is published quarterly by the Board of Directors for the residents of Cypress Isles. We welcome non-commercial articles and paid advertising from our neighbors. Send email submissions to Copy deadlines are February 1 for the February issue, May 1 for the May issue, August 1 for the August issue, and November 1 for the November issue. Articles may be edited for length, clarity, or content.

Sandy Horazak, Editor

Street Parking Defined
While we try to discourage street parking, the streets are owned by Orange County, not Cypress Isles, so anyone can park in the streets. If you have an overflow of vehicles in your driveway, please do not block the sidewalk with parked vehicles, but park in the street instead.
Blocking the sidewalk could create a hazard for school children and other walkers and joggers who would then have to enter the street.

Street Parking Is Allowed

This is not!