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Subject: Board passes special assessment using a quorum
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VictorJ1
(Florida)

Posts:4


02/13/2018 9:17 AM  

We are a small subdivision(120 homes) located in the panhandle of Florida. Our board recently passed a special assessment to bring a natural gas line into the subdivision using a quorum, by 67 votes from homeowners to pass it. My issue is that the board has not been able to provide an explanation as how they were able to use a quorum vote to pass a special assessment that under our covenants would require 2/3rd's of the homeowners to vote on and approve a major project of this nature. I am concerned that the board has set a precedence by using a quorum in place of a special assessment to pass major changes in the subdivision for future changes.

From our Covenants and Florida laws surrounding efforts of this nature it appears that the board has violated the processes use to pass a major project into our community. Has any other homeowners seen this occur?

SueW6
(Michigan)

Posts:271


02/13/2018 9:47 AM  
Check your bylaws to see if 2/3 of ALL members was needed to pass this motion

OR

if 2/3 of those in attendance at a duly called meeting was needed.

KerryL1
(California)

Posts:5160


02/13/2018 10:59 AM  
If this is a CC&Rs issue, check your CC&Rs to see if you need 2/3rds of all members to approve this special assessment.

And....how do your CC&Rs or bylaws define "quorum" of the members. Are you mixing up "quorum" and "majority?"

This would be a capital expense and perhaps FL laws has its own requirements
VictorJ1
(Florida)

Posts:4


02/13/2018 11:43 AM  

Hello, thanks for the reply. I reviewed the bylaws and pasted the article concerning quorums, I am not 100% certain but it appears that the quorum article refers back to the covenants regarding issues surrounding special assessments, but I am not 100% certain, your thoughts? So far as special assessments go in our bylaws, it speaks only to how the special assessments are collected from the homeowners.

Section 4. Quorum. The presence at the meeting of members entitled to cast, in person or by proxy, thirty percent (30%) of the total votes of all members at the time of the meeting shall constitute a quorum for any action except as otherwise provided in the Articles of Incorporation, the Declaration or these Bylaws. If, however, such quorum shall not be present or represented at any meeting, the members entitled to vote thereat shall have power to adjourn the meeting from time to time, without notice other than announcement at the meeting, until a quorum as aforesaid shall be present or be represented.

Thanks again
RichardP13
(California)

Posts:2538


02/13/2018 12:44 PM  
How Special Assessments are voted on would be in your CCRs, not your Bylaws.

Typically, the language will state you need a majority, or 61 for quorum and 51% to pass or 62. It could be accomplished by a combination of secret ballots and proxies (if allowed in your documents).
JohnC46
(South Carolina)

Posts:7503


02/13/2018 4:17 PM  
Victor

The thing to zero in on is what it takes to pass a special assessment. Typically the amount it takes to pass such is a % of all the owners, not just a % of those attending any meeting.

As an example. We need 20% of our members attending our Annual Meeting to conduct business. That aside, we still need 67% of all owners to approve a Special Assessment. 67% of the 20% does not hack it for a Special Assessment..

We have 112 owners. We can conduct business with 22 of them. To do a Special assessment we need 74 of the 112 to agree. If 73 say yes and one says no, it does not pass.
DouglasM6
(Arizona)

Posts:722


02/13/2018 4:29 PM  
Posted By VictorJ1 on 02/13/2018 11:43 AM

Hello, thanks for the reply. I reviewed the bylaws and pasted the article concerning quorums, I am not 100% certain but it appears that the quorum article refers back to the covenants regarding issues surrounding special assessments, but I am not 100% certain, your thoughts? So far as special assessments go in our bylaws, it speaks only to how the special assessments are collected from the homeowners.

Section 4. Quorum. The presence at the meeting of members entitled to cast, in person or by proxy, thirty percent (30%) of the total votes of all members at the time of the meeting shall constitute a quorum for any action except as otherwise provided in the Articles of Incorporation, the Declaration or these Bylaws. If, however, such quorum shall not be present or represented at any meeting, the members entitled to vote thereat shall have power to adjourn the meeting from time to time, without notice other than announcement at the meeting, until a quorum as aforesaid shall be present or be represented.

Thanks again




Then they needed only 36 votes, present or by proxy, to constitute a quorum. Probably only needed a majority of affirmative votes to pass the measure. We really need to see more of your governing documents to clearly understand this.
VictorJ1
(Florida)

Posts:4


02/13/2018 4:38 PM  

Richard, thank you for the details, I am working with the other homeowners to review this.
VictorJ1
(Florida)

Posts:4


02/13/2018 4:39 PM  

John, thank you for the details, I am working with the other homeowners to review this.
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