News Channel 3 has learned exclusively that a portion of the golf course at Trilogy at La Quinta has been foreclosed on and a partial owner has shut off the water suply, demanding the homeowner's association pays tens of thousands of dollars for it.
Wednesday residents there received an emailed letter from the HOA president saying the water had been shut off and the pumps were locked with warnings posted that civil or criminal prosecution could be pursued if they were turned back on without consent.
"These people that are in chapter 7 bankruptcy; they’re demanding money from our HOA," said Trilogy homeowner David Eng. "They say that to avoid any disruption in the water, you’re going to have to come up with $90,000 as a security deposit and $45,000 a month to keep the water running."
Richard Besone is a homeowner at Trilogy and an attorney. He's followed the golf course's issues closely and said without hydration for the grass and landscaping, it's baking under the desert sun. "It's a green expanse that we look across to the mountains," he said. "If there's no water, theres no green expanse and plants start dying."
Besone and Eng said a big concern is the quality of life for people who live there, especially those who came to retire and enjoy life and hobbies like golfing.
"When you have the threat of the golf course being closed or the water being shut down such that the golf course is going to be impaired or not operate ... that's an assault on our lifestyle," Eng said.
"I came out here to go swimming and to enjoy the warm weather and the pools," Besone said. "I didn't really come out to deal with all the stuff."
So what's next for the community? Besone said it's up to the HOA and charter members to do something. "And what exactly that is, we’ll find out," he said.
With the water shut off Tuesday, the clock is now ticking to get it back on before the grass – and homeowner's lifestyles – dry up.
According to the letter that went out to residents, the board is working with local and state authorities as well as pursuing legal action. So far, they said, they have not gotten a response.