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Subject: The minutes of a HOA meeting
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Author Messages
AlexM1
(Oklahoma)

Posts:247


12/14/2018 5:48 PM  
What is the time frame that we must follow in getting the minutes of our meeting out to the residents? No, nothing about that is in our CCRs and are not mentioned in any of our rules.... The management company said that the minutes can ONLY be sent out to the residents following a subsequent meeting at which time minutes of the previous meeting can be approved even if we have meetings 3-4 months apart....how do other HOAs handle this?
DouglasK1
(Florida)

Posts:1307


12/14/2018 6:33 PM  
If people ask we'll send out unapproved minutes clearly marked "DRAFT".

Escaped former treasurer and director of a self managed association.
SheliaH
(Indiana)

Posts:2349


12/14/2018 6:38 PM  
There is no mandate about this, but it shouldn't take forever for minutes to be distributed. They SHOULD be approved by the board before distribution because members need to hear them (or at least read a draft copy) so the secretary can be advised of any clarifications or corrections. THEN the board votes to approve them. Remember, these are considered legal documents because they reflect the official actions of the association. They're not a note for not recap of who said what, but should accurately reflect the decisions the board made.

Don't overthink this. All you need to do is have your meeting and direct the secretary to have a draft available for board review no later than 72 hours following the meeting (24 would be even better, as he/she might be less likely to forget something). All board members should be given a deadline as to when they should send in corrections or clarifications. The secretary can prepare a second draft with the corrections, you hold another short meeting to discuss and vote. Make the minutes available in your newsletter or on your community's website (preferably both), and then rinse and repeat 3-4 months from now.

And don't forget to add some sort of action item list, indicating who's responsible for doing what by the next meeting. When you put things in writing and give deadlines, people are more apt to take it seriously.

If that's too much, you may need to consider having your meetings more frequently, perhaps every other month, especially if homeowners complain about the frequency (that could be the real problem).

AlexM1
(Oklahoma)

Posts:247


12/14/2018 7:23 PM  
Great... Comments by both Sheila and Douglas are great comments and do appreciate them as they give me a different approach to think about.
GeorgeS21
(Florida)

Posts:853


12/14/2018 9:10 PM  
Some states allow voting by email, some don't.

If your state DOES allow voting via email, simply email them to BoD as quickly as possible, get email approvals from the BoD and post however you usually do it.
GenoS
(Florida)

Posts:2580


12/15/2018 12:16 AM  
Posted By DouglasK1 on 12/14/2018 6:33 PM
If people ask we'll send out unapproved minutes clearly marked "DRAFT".

Same. There's nothing anywhere that requires them to be distributed to the owners. We do it as a convenience and make sure they're marked "Unapproved". It's only when they're approved at a subsequent meeting that they become an actual official record of the association (Usually about a month later, sometimes more).

For 5 years the secretaries here did that, putting copies in the clubhouse and sending them through email to those who elected, in writing, to receive them. This year the secretary stopped doing it and some homeowners were very upset. I sympathize with them but there's really nothing that requires it to happen. To the really loud complainers I suggest they run for the board next year and volunteer to be the secretary.
KerryL1
(California)

Posts:6045


12/15/2018 9:38 AM  
You should check state law, Alex. some states, like CA, do have requirements. But there's no requirement in CA to send minutes out to owners once approved. or in draft form.

There is a statutory requirement that Board-approved minutes be available to owners. If minutes are not approved 30 days past the meeting, the draft minutes must be made available to owners.
TimB4
(Virginia)

Posts:16092


12/15/2018 11:42 AM  
We have at least a draft of the minutes available after 60 days.
SueW6
(Michigan)

Posts:402


12/16/2018 3:21 PM  
I suspect there’ a lot of needless verbiage in the minutes and people want to see that. It becomes a narrative rather than minutes of a business meeting.

So - a summary of ACTIONS only can be released at any time that simply state the boards’s business accomplishment:

Example-

“Motion by Joe to clean the pool this week. Passed unanimously.”

KerryL1
(California)

Posts:6045


12/16/2018 5:02 PM  
However badly the minutes are written, Sue, in CA, a "summary" is not statutorily acceptable. Only the actual minutes as written and amended or approved by the Board.
AlexM1
(Oklahoma)

Posts:247


12/16/2018 5:08 PM  
Yes, I think many of you and Kerry are right... I will post the results of our situation in about 3 weeks
SueW6
(Michigan)

Posts:402


12/16/2018 6:47 PM  
The original poster asked about getting minutes to the members.

While the summary is not the minutes, the list of motions and their passage might calm the residents until the “official” minutes can be released to the homeowners.

Most folks just want that basic info, anyway.
GeorgeS21
(Florida)

Posts:853


12/16/2018 7:47 PM  
Alex,

Can the board vote via email in Oklahoma?

If so, why not approve in that manner and release to the HOA?
GreggT
(Florida)

Posts:75


12/17/2018 5:27 AM  
Posted By SheliaH on 12/14/2018 6:38 PM


Don't overthink this. All you need to do is have your meeting and direct the secretary to have a draft available for board review no later than 72 hours following the meeting (24 would be even better, as he/she might be less likely to forget something). All board members should be given a deadline as to when they should send in corrections or clarifications. The secretary can prepare a second draft with the corrections, you hold another short meeting to discuss and vote. Make the minutes available in your newsletter or on your community's website (preferably both), and then rinse and repeat 3-4 months from now.

And don't forget to add some sort of action item list, indicating who's responsible for doing what by the next meeting. When you put things in writing and give deadlines, people are more apt to take it seriously.

If that's too much, you may need to consider having your meetings more frequently, perhaps every other month, especially if homeowners complain about the frequency (that could be the real problem).





Gee after being on our HOA board for a little over 10 years and the secretary for 8, if the board "DIRECTED ME" as an unpaid volunteer to have them ready no later than 72 hours after the meeting (even better 24), they would be finding a new secretary!
Maybe your secretary position is through a Temp Service who you pay!
I try to have mine done anywhere from a couple day to a couple weeks from the meeting. As long as they are done with enough time for the other board members to review prior to the next meeting, you are OK.
AlexM1
(Oklahoma)

Posts:247


12/17/2018 6:14 AM  
No Gregg... cannot vote by ballot
GeorgeS21
(Florida)

Posts:853


12/17/2018 6:51 AM  
Alex,

I did a quick look online and cannot find anything governing HOA boards voting via email ... does Oklahoma or your Bylaws have provisions or restrictions for email voting?
GreggT
(Florida)

Posts:75


12/17/2018 7:02 AM  
Posted By AlexM1 on 12/17/2018 6:14 AM
No Gregg... cannot vote by ballot





Gee where did I say that??
SheliaH
(Indiana)

Posts:2349


12/17/2018 10:59 AM  
If you read the man's question, he said his HOA meets every 3-4 months and there was a concern that was too long for homeowners to wait to find out what the board did (which it is, in my opinion.) Why so salty about the verbiage - would you prefer my saying "ask the secretary to have a draft copy of the minutes available by, say Thursday (if the meeting was on Monday)?

Apparently you woke up on the wrong side of the bed this morning or something - calm the hell down! Your method works for your community, which is great - he was asking for ideas for his HOA and like you he can take some, none or all of the suggestions herein.

And here's another - take the agenda, download one of those meeting minute templates from Word, and jot down your notes in the order various things occur. After the meeting, you won't have to figure out what happened when because those notes will be in order and all you'll need to do is flesh out the draft and send it to your colleagues. If you're organized, it shouldn't take all day (it's a draft, remember). The sooner you start, the sooner you can finish. Have a nice day!
JohnC46
(South Carolina)

Posts:7927


12/17/2018 11:27 AM  
Meeting Minutes are a record of what the BOD did as in motions made and acted on. They are not a record of everything said.

A BOD might have spent 2 hours discussing something but until a Motion is made there is no need to publish what was said. Even after a Motion is Made and Seconded and then discussed for say a 1/2 hour before voting on it, there is no need to record what was discussed then either. As an example:

A Motion to Raise Dues 20% was proposed by John Smith.
Lucy Brown Seconded the Motion.
The BOD discussed the Motion.
The BOD voted on the Motion and it was approved 4 to 1.

Some will add actual voting such as Smith, Brown, Jones and White voted in favor of the Motion. Williams voted against the Motion.

KISS
RoyalP
(South Carolina)

Posts:307


12/17/2018 11:53 AM  
for the uninformed:

KeepItSimpleStupid

an old computer adage, REALLY old

KerryL1
(California)

Posts:6045


12/17/2018 11:56 AM  
Uh, oh, working off memory, I was incorrect on a couple of points re: Calif. & meeting minutes.

1st, as Sue pointed out, a "summary" of the meeting is OK until the minutes are actually approved by the board: CA "Civil Code §4950. Meeting Minutes.
(a) The minutes, minutes proposed for adoption that are marked to indicate draft status, or a summary of the minutes, of any board meeting, other than an executive session, shall be available to members within 30 days of the meeting. The minutes, proposed minutes, or summary minutes shall be distributed to any member upon request and upon reimbursement of the association’s costs for making that distribution."

"(b) The annual policy statement, prepared pursuant to Section 5310, shall inform the members of their right to obtain copies of board meeting minutes and of how and where to do so."

2nd Once approved by the board, they should be somehow distributed to members.
From Davis-stirling.com: "Publish Approved Minutes. Once draft minutes have been approved by the board, they should be distributed to the membership in some fashion--either by summarizing them for the newsletter, posting them on a common area bulletin board, posting them in a password protected place on the association's website, and/or mailing them to the membership. Approved minutes must be permanently available for inspection by the membership."


Still, Alex needs to learn what OK requires (if anything).

JohnC46
(South Carolina)

Posts:7927


12/17/2018 12:07 PM  
I view fining like an automobile driving offense. The Officer issues a ticket. You can appeal it to a Judge.

In our case part of our MC's job is to play the heavy. When the BOD becomes aware of an offense, we discuss it and if we agree it is a fineable offense, we notify the MC to send a fining letter thus the MC becomes the accuser. Part of that letter tells the offender that they can appeal this fine to the BOD. If they appeal, the BOD would call a Special (private) Meeting with them to discuss it. After hearing their side, we would vote.

We consider fines as a last resort. We do not want to fine. What we want is the violation taken care of and hopefully the treat of fines and liens will do that.
RichardP13
(California)

Posts:3193


12/17/2018 12:46 PM  
Posted By JohnC46 on 12/17/2018 12:07 PM
I view fining like an automobile driving offense. The Officer issues a ticket. You can appeal it to a Judge. WRONG. The fine amount you are referring to is bail. If you want to challenge the ticket/violation, you go before a judge or now days can just want a letter. If you choose not to challenge a fine can then be issued and a homeowner should be notified of a Board's decision.





KerryL1
(California)

Posts:6045


12/17/2018 1:00 PM  
I believe JohnC' & Richard's most e recent posts belong in a different thread--the one about unit fines in CT.
RoyalP
(South Carolina)

Posts:307


12/17/2018 1:12 PM  
..... So - a summary of ACTIONS only can be released at any time that simply state the boards’s business accomplishment: .....


Said summary would, in fact, be the


... wait



... wait



... wait for it



... wait for it




MINUTES



(after the BOD approves them AT THE NEXT MEETING)
KerryL1
(California)

Posts:6045


12/17/2018 5:45 PM  
If referring to CA statutes, RoyP, I'd say a summary of the DRAFT minutes would be less formal than actual minutes that have been approved. A summary that I'd accept as an owner would even be just a copy of the agenda with whatever action was taken, even if none, under every agenda item. Our PM does this anyway as meeting f progress and I agree with Sheila: It can't be that hard to transfer the actual board decisions to the meeting minutes template.

I'm right now trying to get a summary or draft minutes from an 10/25/18 open meeting and an organization meeting after our Ann. Mtg. & Election. I made the request in writing and allowed 10 days for a reply, but ... silence. Have Plan B in the works.

AlexM1
(Oklahoma)

Posts:247


12/17/2018 5:54 PM  
KerryL1: le us know how that turns out....
KerryL1
(California)

Posts:6045


12/19/2018 5:37 PM  
Well, since you asked, Alex, I had to fwd. my email request to our PM's supervisor, who said he'd handle it. I received the copies the next day from our PM who apologized profusely. Still, there was no explanation.
GeorgeS21
(Florida)

Posts:853


12/19/2018 10:03 PM  
Alex,

Did you ever say it was or was not legal for the Board to vote by email?
GenoS
(Florida)

Posts:2580


12/20/2018 3:25 PM  
Posted By JohnC46 on 12/17/2018 11:27 AM
Some will add actual voting such as Smith, Brown, Jones and White voted in favor of the Motion. Williams voted against the Motion.

The individual votes of each Director must be recorded in the minutes in Florida. It's good for homeowners' review when sitting board members are running for re-election. Unless individual votes are recorded there's no way to tell who voted for the $5,000 toilet seat in the clubhouse.
GeorgeS21
(Florida)

Posts:853


12/20/2018 5:59 PM  
Geno,

My odd FS617 voluntary association tries to align with 720 ....

I can’t find the required recording of votes by directors in 720 ... maybe just blind from reading it so much ... can you direct me to it, please?
GenoS
(Florida)

Posts:2580


12/21/2018 4:03 AM  
Posted By GeorgeS21 on 12/20/2018 5:59 PM
I can’t find the required recording of votes by directors in 720 ... maybe just blind from reading it so much ... can you direct me to it, please?

I know what you mean FS 720.303(3) MINUTES says,

"A vote or abstention from voting on each matter voted upon for each director present at a board meeting must be recorded in the minutes."

I've used that to finally (I hope) convince people that the president HAS TO VOTE. For the last 2 years the presidents have trotted out this idea that the president only votes to break a tie. That might be true in other types of gatherings under Roberts Rules of Order, but it's not true for HOA or Condo associations where Directors are elected by the membership. After all, Directors vote, not Officers, and one has no business being on the board if one is not prepared to vote on questions that the board must decide.
GeorgeS21
(Florida)

Posts:853


12/21/2018 6:20 AM  
Geno,

Thanks ... I guess I screwed up a couple of minutes this cycle . No real foul for us since we are FS 617, but I was really trying to align with 720.

All our votes were unanimous, however ... since 720 doesn’t address that circumstance specifically, I should have stated “unanimous” in the minutes.
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