The Columbia Council awarded Columbia Association president Padraic M. Kennedy a $10,322 bonus last night, raising his compensation to $105,905 for the next budget year.
The council also approved purchasing two separate parcels totaling 5.3 acres for $1 million from the Rouse Co. The board tentatively plans to build a $400,000 recreational vehicle storage facility on a 3-acre parcel and hasn't decided how to use the 2.3-acre parcel.
Under terms of the transaction, Rouse is granting the association the right to impose its annual property levy on two properties now excluded from the charge -- the Snowden Square retail center and a planned, 600-unit residential development.
The council, citing the nonprofit association's strong financial performance in the 1994-1995 budget year and an increase in the use of recreational facilities, voted 7-2 to grant Mr. Kennedy's bonus.
The bonus and his base salary of $95,583 give Mr. Kennedy a 2.8 percent increase over the $102,985 in total compensation he received this year. His bonus was $7,402 this year. The fiscal 1996 budget year begins Monday.
Mr. Kennedy, who has led the Columbia Association for 23 years, did not receive a raise in his base salary. A council policy restricts increases in the president's base salary to every other year.
Council members praised the association's performance during the past year.
"It's certainly been an outstanding year for CA and hopefully next year will be as good or better," said Councilwoman Suzanne Waller of Town Center.
The council annually evaluates the president, using performance objectives submitted by the president and approved by the council at the beginning of the budget year.
The council evaluates how well the association performed in these areas: finances, membership services, construction, open space management, community services and communications. It declined to release specific goals that were set.
"There were a couple things that didn't go right this year, but the committee felt there were many more things that went right in a big way," said David W. Berson, council vice chairman.
Mr. Kennedy said, "I'm pleased [the council] thought it was a good year and that CA made the progress it did."
Councilman Charles A. Rees, who opposed the bonus, said the process of determining the president's raise is too secretive. Several other members agreed that the system has flaws and should be re-evaluated.
The Columbia Association imposes an annual levy on Columbia property owners to oversee the community's recreational facilities, social programs and parkland maintenance. It collects nearly half its revenue from fees for recreational facilities and other programs.
In the RV park deal, the council tentatively plans to build a storage facility on 3 acres in the former General Electric Co. manufacturing park off Snowden River Parkway. However, the deal is contingent upon an environmental assessment of the land, which is near General Electric hazardous waste dumps being monitored by the federal Environmental Protection Agency.
The other 2.3-acre lot is in the nearby Gateway office park, which council members say is prime commercial property. The council has no specific plans for using that commercial property, but CA executives have proposed building an "executive fitness center" for office park employees, establishing an association retail outlet or selling it.
The transaction will give the association the right to impose its levy on the Snowden Square retail center and a future residential development, which will generate more than $300,000 annually in assessment revenue, according to association estimates. That aspect of the deal has prompted most council members to declare it a wise investment.
But several council members expressed concern that there was no appraisal of the 5.3 acres.
"I find it very difficult to approve the purchase without knowing the value of what we're getting," said Councilwoman Norma Rose of Wilde Lake village.
But Mr. Berson, of River Hill village, responded that the deal would be profitable in the long run regardless of an appraisal. "Whether it's appraised at $1 or $1 million is somewhat immaterial," he said.
The council also approved spending $215,000 to build a ramp and a boardwalk along the Lake Kittamaqundi shore in Town Center. The project also involves reinforcing a shore wall to stem erosion.
CA PRESIDENT'S SALARY HISTORY
Each April, the Columbia Association board of directors reviews the president's salary. Here is the recent history of Padraic M. Kennedy's salary increases.
Year ... ... Salary ... ... Bonus ... ... Total ... ... ... % change
1988 ... ... $87,285 .. ... $6,875 .. ... $94,160 .. .. ... N/A
1989 ... ... $87,285 .. ... $10,900 .. .. $98,185 .. .. ... 4.3
1990 ... ... $90,790 .. ... $10,912 .. .. $101,702 .. .. .. 3.6
1991 ... ... $90,790 .. ... $10,895 .. .. $101,685 .. .. .. 0
1992 ... ... $93,115 .. ... $6,975 ... .. $100,090 .. .. .. -1.6
1993 ... ... $93,115 .. ... $11,174 .. .. $104,289 .. .. .. 4.2
1994 ... ... $95,583 .. ... $7,402 ... .. $102,985 .. .. .. -1.3
1995 ... ... $95,583 .. ... $10,322 .. .. $105,905 .. .. .. 2.8
SOURCE: Columbia Association