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Subject: Texas HOA - open records
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Author Messages
JosephS27
(Texas)

Posts:2


12/02/2018 7:37 AM  
The BofD for our HOA is still controlled by the developer for the next year or so - there's a golf course in the middle of the community that was built by the developer and sold to a third party - the golf course is not owned by the HOA, but there are deed restrictions attached to the sale of the golf course (binding on subsequent owners) that control things that the golf course must do and must not do. The documents have a clearly defined "Disputes" resolution process, yet the BofD has decided to renegotiate the agreements, and they are refusing to disclose any of the provisions under discussion with the golf course because they claim that the situation is "in litigation" and thus they can shield the process from the HOA residents under the open records act. Residents have concerns that the deed restrictions will be gutted and leave the golf course property open to other development and such. WHat are the residents rights in this situation?
SheliaH
(Indiana)

Posts:2311


12/02/2018 8:48 AM  
That's a legal question, so you need to speak to a private attorney. The problem is the developer still runs things so until the community changes hands, there might not be anything you can do for now. If the issue is in litigation, there may or may not be some sort of gag order in effect until the issue is settled.

Is the current board consisting of homeowners? If so, you might want to wait for what they come up with, but in the meantime, there's nothing wrong with the residents telling the board what their concerns are - if it's renegotiating the issue anyway, those may be issues that are already being discussed.
RoyalP
(South Carolina)

Posts:203


12/02/2018 8:49 AM  
As a matter of 'practicality' : NONE

Theoretically : ?????


Your CCRs are able to be amended (procedure contained therein).

The 'developer' most likely has 'super voting' power.

? Did you not READ and UNDERSTAND the contract (a/k/a Covenants and Restrictions) before you purchased ?


CAVEAT EMPTOR
RoyalP
(South Carolina)

Posts:203


12/02/2018 9:19 AM  
Posted By SheliaH on 12/02/2018 8:48 AM
That's a legal question, so you need to speak to a private attorney. The problem is the developer still runs things so until the community changes hands, there might not be anything you can do for now. If the issue is in litigation, there may or may not be some sort of gag order in effect until the issue is settled.

Is the current board consisting of homeowners? If so, you might want to wait for what they come up with, but in the meantime, there's nothing wrong with the residents telling the board what their concerns are - if it's renegotiating the issue anyway, those may be issues that are already being discussed.




The FIRST LINE of the OP's post:

The BofD for our HOA is still controlled by the developer for the next year or so .....




MelissaP1
(Alabama)

Posts:7762


12/02/2018 9:38 AM  
These are also NOT "Records" yet. They are proposed changes. They are NOT "records" till they are filed and agreed to by all parties. So basically just comes off as being "nosy" to know anything at this point. There's no need to know at this point by the golf course and developer's standards. (Or those doing the negotiating). It's still be negotiated so nothing is in stone to be recorded.

So sounds like it's just something to get under the thumbnail but no action can be discussed or taken. The HOA doesn't even own it nor sounds responsible for it. Just doesn't sound like someone doesn't like the "standards" it may be kept at. Standards that are still being discussed.

Former HOA President
JosephS27
(Texas)

Posts:2


12/02/2018 2:00 PM  
I admit that I don't know as much as I need to know about my HOA's CCRs and procedures - yet - but I am working on it.

When you said "They are NOT "records" till they are filed and agreed to by all parties.", one thing I need to find out is what the resident's rights are as far as when the BofD negotiates or re-negotiates agreements, and whether or not those agreements qualify as records - ideally, the BofD member's interests will be aligned with those of the residents, since the BofD members (after the developer is out) will all be residents - but there will undoubtedly be differences of opinions - I want to find out what types of changes require a resident vote, and which ones do not.
SueW6
(Michigan)

Posts:354


12/02/2018 2:12 PM  
When the “turnover” happens, hopefully there will be a lawyer to guide the board in the re-writing of the bylaws.

In the meantime, educate yourself on Texas condo laws and bylaws and parliamentary procedures.
AmyJ3
(Florida)

Posts:18


12/05/2018 8:19 AM  
Even if controlled by the developer you are a member of the corporation and have rights under the Property Code 209.005 to request inspection of records.

Also, if there is active litigation, you can look up the court records. Many jurisdictions are accessible online for free. You wan't see every deposition transcript and discovery but you will see all pleadings, responses and court order. If there is a gag order by the court it will also be posted.

Hope this helps.
NigelB
(Texas)

Posts:251


12/05/2018 4:12 PM  
Posted By JosephS27 on 12/02/2018 2:00 PM
I admit that I don't know as much as I need to know about my HOA's CCRs and procedures - yet - but I am working on it.

When you said "They are NOT "records" till they are filed and agreed to by all parties.", one thing I need to find out is what the resident's rights are as far as when the BofD negotiates or re-negotiates agreements, and whether or not those agreements qualify as records - ideally, the BofD member's interests will be aligned with those of the residents, since the BofD members (after the developer is out) will all be residents - but there will undoubtedly be differences of opinions - I want to find out what types of changes require a resident vote, and which ones do not.




The rights of the residents (members of the association) are contained in Section 209 of the Texas Residential Homeowners Property Protection Act. But as the HOA is still under developer control the developer can do basically whatever they want. If you check your governing documents you will undoubtedly find that the developer has given themselves more votes per lot than an individual homeowner which will only have one vote. You will also probably find that the developer has an absolute right to change those governing documents at whim and without any vote of the members (even if an amendment did require a vote - the majority developer votes will prevail).

As for records - it is not true that a record is not a record until agreed by all parties. A record may be meeting minutes, emails, or any other memorialized document which records association business, contracts, bills, etc. All are available to the membership under Section 209.005.

So while you may be able to get documents relating to any agreement or amendment between the HOA (Developer) and the Golf Course - you really have no say in the matter because the developer is still in control.
RoyalP
(South Carolina)

Posts:203


12/06/2018 5:43 AM  
..... The rights of the residents (members of the association) are contained in Section 209 of the Texas Residential Homeowners Property Protection Act. But as the HOA is still under developer control the developer can do basically whatever they want. If you check your governing documents you will undoubtedly find that the developer has given themselves more votes per lot than an individual homeowner which will only have one vote. You will also probably find that the developer has an absolute right to change those governing documents at whim and without any vote of the members (even if an amendment did require a vote - the majority developer votes will prevail). .....


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