Typically scenic glider rides are offered from May through October. The rides are one hour +/-, depending on weather, thermal heating and ridge lift. The areas flown are Darby Canyon, Treasure Mountain, Alaska basin, Battleship Mountain, Ice flow lake, Snow Drift Lake, the West side of the Teton range, Table Rock, Cascade Canyon, Teton Canyon both North and South, over Grand Targhee then if there is time and are maintaining or gaining altitude, they will go across the valley to the Teton River and then back to the Driggs airport. On very rare occasions they may find enough lift to go high enough to go over the top of the Grand Teton. On a clear day, the passenger will also get a view of the Jackson Hole valley, Jackson and Jenny Lake and Swan Valley.
The glider carries one passenger weighing no more than 230 Lbs. and the cost is $250.00. which covers the cost of the tow plane, tow plane pilot, glider and glider pilot. They do not do any aerobatics during a scenic flight. It is recommended passengers bring a small hat (for sun protection), sunglasses and a camera with a wide angle lens. It can be very warm in the glider so summer attire is also recommended. They have taken passengers as old as 100 years and can often accommodate those with disabilities if they are light enough to be lifted into the glider. They generally don’t take children under eight years old because they have a habit of climbing out of their seat belt and standing up, fiddling with the controls or simply not appreciating the flight or the scenery.
It’s best to schedule a glider flight at least one day in advance, but often times we can squeeze in a last minute booking. Passengers need to understand that weather is a major factor in providing a safe and enjoyable ride and should be flexible and understanding when conditions such as strong winds, thunderstorms or low cloud cover require that we cancel, postpone or reschedule flights.
For further information or to schedule reides contact Teotn Aviation at 208-354-3100.
Not long ago I did an article on property taxes, and how they work here in Teton County. In that article I go over levies, taxing districts and so on. Since I won’t go into too much detail on that end of things, feel free to email me, and I will forward you the link to that post. I keep all of the Ask the Expert articles up on the Teton Valley Realty website blog.
Anyway – the county’s primary source of revenue is property tax. The county has to come up with a way for all property owners to share the cost of “operations”, and they accomplished that by prorating each property owner’s share based on the value of their property. They determine that value based on sales prices, construction costs, rents, etc. Whenever a property is sold here in the county, they send the new property owner a letter requesting the details of the sale, including purchase price. ***Note, Idaho is a non-disclosure state, and the new owner is not required to respond to the letter.
Back to your asessment notice. Many of you probably noticed an increase in your assessed value this year. Don’t get excited, this only means that your prorated share of property taxes is going to increase. The increase most of us are seeing is based mostly on real estate recovery. Building costs are up, rents are up, demand is higher than in recent years, and supply is low. It’s important that you understand the accuracy of this letter. If the county is assessing the value of your property too high, you could be unnecessarily paying more than your fair share of property taxes. If the value is too low… well, you decide what to do.
If you read read your notice, you will see instructions on how to “appeal” your property’s assesment. If you only made note of the value and stashed it in your file cabinet, you can find that information on the county’s website under additional information on the assessor page. If you don’t email, you can pick up the information at the county courthouse during normal business hours, or stop by my office and I will print it out for you. IMPORTANT – should you decide that the county is over valuing your property, the deadline for appeal is Monday, June 22nd at 5:00 PM. The county is surprisingly easy to work with regarding the appeal process, but probably less so as we approach the deadline. Those who wait until 4:30PM on Monday the 22nd, might see less cooperation.
Prior to starting the appeal process, it would be a good idea to arm yourself with data supporting your claim that your property is overvalued. If you are a land owner, you might obtain recent sales of lots in your subdivision or nearby. When the county assesses homes, they value the land, then the improvements for a total assessed value. You could obtain sales data for land, or data of recent home sales in your area, as long as they are similar in size. If you have a finished basement and your neighbor doesn’t, that would definitely affect assessed value. A great resource is your favorite real estate agent, who would probably love to send you the information you are looking for.
There is a bit of good news in all of this, our market is improving dramatically. If you missed last month’s article, It’s a good overview of where we are today.
In light of the recent happenings with a local homeowners association (HOA) in Driggs, I thought I would write this week’s article about HOA’s purpose, and their ability to control certain situations – and why. Some feel certain HOAs have entirely too much control. However, the board of directors who represent the HOA, as well as each individual owner must abide by governing documents of the development that typically include; Articles of Incorporation, Bylaws, CC&R’s, and Rules and Regulations. The articles are usually simple documents to get the HOA up and running initially, and include non-profit filings with the Secretary of State. The bylaws dictate how the association is run. The CC&R’s are the bulk of these documents that include everything about the operation of the HOA, restrictions, requirements, etc. If written, the Rules and Regulations are typically a simplified version of the CC&R’s that include specific rules that will directly effect owners and residents. All of these documents can typically be found in the record, or provided by a county, real estate agency or title company.
When considering a purchase, it is imperative that you review these in their entirety, though they can certainly be comprehensive. For you, tenants or other residents, it might not be a bad idea to review (at least) the CC&R’s and/or rules and regulations as they most directly impact the residents. All of the above said, the problems with homeowners associations usually arise when someone hasn’t reviewed, or there is a misunderstanding. Regarding the issues I was recently involved with, it was a matter of interpretation. Honestly, the largest problem is lack of participation by the homeowners. Understandingly so, it’s usually a thankless job performed voluntarily. In this latest circumstance, I’m not convinced the majority of the owners didn’t disagree with the interpretation of the board of directors, but without enough participation from those that feel that way, nothing can change. Further, it takes initiative. If none of the Board of Directors take that initiative, oftentimes a member not directly involved with the board will know how to get that ball rolling. It’s all about questions, knowledge, and involvement. In this latest circumstance the entirety of the HOA took the brunt, even though it was only the decision of the board of directors that the residents didn’t agree with. Despite how all of these tenants and residents feel, all of this interpretation can be clarified exactly how the majority rule intends, but the majority must participate in the next meeting, ask those questions, and make their own personal decision, not leaving the decision to the board.
Next time you receive a proxy in the mail for your local HOA, forget about the proxy and set aside time for the meeting to cast your own vote. You will be enlightened and help the better cause that YOU believe in!