Community News
Summer, 2021
Upcoming Meeting Dates

2021 SMHOA Board Meetings
3rd Tues. each month @ 7:00-8:30 PM.
Dial-in number (US): (425) 436-6381 Access code: 365233#

All homeowners are welcome to attend meetings. Please join us.
The monthly HOA BOD meetings are being conducted by teleconference. Due to COVID our normal meeting location is closed and to be as careful as we can be, all of our meetings are being conducted by teleconference. You are still welcome to join us. Please check your email before the meeting for instructions on how to join the meeting


It appears that the state of Maryland and Montgomery county is starting to turn the corner after a ~16 month COVID lock down. This dark time will be forever known for illness, closures and social distancing. In our neighborhood it has led to an almost daily sight of residents walking for exercise, strollers out in the warm afternoon and the sound of children laughing and playing. All wonderful activities that normally are lost in the hustle and bustle of daily life. During walks, I have seen chalk writing on the driveways and streets with encouraging words. They bring a smile to everyone’s face and provide encouragement. A big 'Congratulations’ to all our recent graduates – we again saw a few car parades through the neighborhood that have been a nice celebratory activity. Now that the number of cases have decreased greatly and the state and county have lifted a lot of the COVID protocols, we can all start working to get back to our lives and soon not have to worry about talking to our neighbors. 

The HOA has received notification from the county of plans to build a new church on the vacant lot directly across East Randolph Road from Forcey Church/School. The new church will be named Iglesia Vida Nueva Church.
The Communications Committee is always looking for newsletter content. Send your ideas/input to Charles Lasky.

There have been many gardening trends from trying to eliminate all bugs in the garden to full blown organic gardening. Eco-friendly gardening is a sensible approach of encouraging sustainable gardening practices that encourages healthy plant growth with minimal insecticides and less chemical fertilizers. 

Eco-friendly gardening strives to: 

1. Eliminate wasting water
Not all plants need the same amount of water. Turf grasses that we use for our lawns take far more water than most trees and shrubs. Chemicals we use such as weed killers, insecticides and cleansers that are not used properly wash into our watersheds. How much pollution do you think an area the size of the DMV uses that ends up in storm water overflow and eventually into our watersheds and then our drinking water? Remember Montgomery county ordinances bans the use of most synthetic pesticides, including “weed & feed” and pre-emergent products, used for lawn care. Only organic pesticides and herbicides can be used in the County. Violations could result in a fine.

2. Propping up failing plants with chemicals
All plants have needs required to thrive. Some plants need more sun than others and some need more shade. Some need more iron and others more phosphate. Plants planted where they will perform well need less or don’t need chemicals to thrive. If you are constantly having to treat a plant to get it to grow, it may be planted in the wrong place. 

3. Our county offers lawn waste recycling on a regular basis
Please don’t dump lawn waste or anything else on our common land. We see many people using paper lawn waste bags to dispose of their lawn waste. A more economical and ecofriendly way to is to purchase a reusable trash can for lawn waste and let the county compost it. They will last for many years, save you money and reduce resources used to make the paper bags. The county will pick-up yard waste each week on your trash day.

Just a note: The HOA recently had trash picked up on many of our common lands, a pickup truck full of garbage was removed. We have been hearing of areas that have been missed. We are planning another garbage pickup near the end of Summer. Please don’t dump trash on common land. If you are caught dumping ANYTHING on common land the HOA will fine you. Keep our community looking great.

Community Associations, Inc. (CAI) has been our HOA’s managing agent for almost 20 years. Our community has been well served by their management. The HOA learned a few months ago that CAI was merging operations with Comsource, Inc., a large HOA management company in Olney. All residents have received written notice about this change. The CAI staff that you have gotten to know, will now be with Comsource. Charles Lasky will continue to be our manager. Comsource is a larger company than CAI and we are hopeful that the move will be advantageous to our HOA. More information on this change will be forth coming.

New email addresses:  

There have been a large number of homeowners who haven’t been cutting their grass on a regular basis. The HOA and the county both have strict grass maintenance and height guidelines. The BOD can’t be everywhere, if you see a lawn that is overgrown please let us know.  The HOA will send the homeowner a letter to cut their grass within a specific period of time or the HOA will contract with someone to cut the grass and bill their account.  Through our covenants, that covers all SMHOA homeowners, the HOA has the right to go onto a homeowners property to correct issues if the homeowner fails to correct them.  If the homeowner fails to reimburse the HOA, a lien can be placed on a home. Thankfully the HOA has only had to do this a few times in its existence. We have a great community who care about the appearance of their homes.

The Board continues to receive complaints of homeowners leaving their trash cans out after their pickup day and/or leaving out items that weren’t picked up at the curb. Please do not put trash out earlier than the scheduled pick up. If the county doesn’t remove something that you have left out for collection, it is your responsibility to remove it from the curb. Leaves and grass cuttings must be in a dedicated refuse container or paper bags.

Click here for more information.

There have been several complaints regarding people walking their dogs and not cleaning up the dog poop. Montgomery County has laws requiring owners to pick up their dog’s waste. Anyone who violates any Animal Control Law “shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor and shall be punished by a fine up to $100.00. Not cleaning up after your dog is not only inconsiderate of your neighbors, but is also a health concern. A responsible dog owner will clean up after their dog.

The biennial covenant inspection is ongoing. During the first inspection our contactor identified about 160 violations of our maintenance standards, with the most prevalent maintenance issue being dirty siding. The entire process will consist of a total of three consecutive inspections. Those who haven’t resolved their maintenance issues one month after receiving the third letter, from the third inspection, will be handed off to the HOA attorney to resolve through the legal system. The second inspection is planned for the week of June 21. If you need additional time to resolve your violation, please let us know. We pride ourselves in working with our neighbors. It is the fiscal responsibility of the board of directors to maintain property values by ensuring that the homes in our community are in good condition. 
What is a foundation plant?

Every house in our development was first sold with foundation plants in the front of the house. Foundation plants are shrub type plants that are strategically placed at the front of a home to accentuate the appearance of a home. Through out the years some owners have removed these plants and some have left nothing there or replaced them with something inappropriate. The HOA has eased standards some, but we still require appropriate foundation plants. If you have any questions about the appropriateness of a foundation plant, please contact us. 

What is a Builder Ornamental Light(BOL)?

Every house in our development was first sold with exterior lighting that is functional as well to enhance the appearance of our homes. Some homeowners have removed these lights to install motion security lights that do not enhance the appearance of the home. It is against HOA policy to remove the BOLs. The HOA is not trying to make your home or the community less safe. If you would like to install a motion sensing light that is not decorative, the HOA may allow you to install one as long as it is not in place of a builder ornamental light. If your BOLs have seen better days and need to be replaced, you can replace them with suitable lights. All lights have to match. If you wish to alter your BOLs or install a separate security light, please submit a property improvement request to the BOD. The form can be found on the HOA website by clicking here.
Board of Directors:

  • Tracy Shahan, President
  • Earl Gamache, VP
  • Neil Pedersen, Treasurer
  • Becky Meadows, Secretary
  • David Golden
  • Mitiku Kelkay
  • Renu Simon
  • Maqsood Tariq
  • Nikki Miltcetich
  • Ryan Woodlee

Snowdens Mill HOA is managed by:

3414 Morningwood Drive
Olney, Maryland 20832

301-924-7355 x153
Useful Telephone Numbers:

For medical and other emergencies, call 911. Following are other useful numbers:

  • County Info/services 240-777-0311
  • PEPCO (Outages) 877-737-2662
  • Miss Utility 800-257-7777
  • Missed Trash/Recycling 240-777-0311
  • Animal Control 240-773-5960
  • Poison Control 800-222-1222
  • Police Non-Emergency 301-279-8000
  • Street Light Outage 240-777-0311
  • Street Tree Damage 240-777-7623