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Subject: Basketball Hoop
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PaulP12
(Maryland)

Posts:5


05/14/2019 11:05 AM  
Our HOA came up with new rules pertaining to basketball hoops for our association. The majority of driveways in the community are not 15 feet long as the homes usually have a detached garage with an alley in the back. I want to install a basket in the peak of my garage and was recently denied. There are at least two homes in the community that have hoops installed on the garage that have driveway less than 15 feet. I was told these were grandfathered in with the covenants prior to 2017. Do I have any options to fight the below rule? The HOA president is one of the few homeowners with a 15 foot driveway so of course, he has a hoop installed.



1.5. BASKETBALL GOAL SYSTEMS. (ACC APPLICATION REQUIRED).
A goal may installed only on a permanent pole next to a driveway that is fifteen (15) or longer
measured from the end of the sidewalk (if in front of the house) or the end of the curb (if in the
ack of the house) and provided the backboard faces the driveway.

A. Portable structures are prohibited.

B. Backboards for a basketball goal system shall be clear or "smoke" (tinted gray) acrylic.


Thank you,

Paul
AugustinD


Posts:1594


05/14/2019 11:22 AM  
Is what you quoted a rule the board created? If it's only a rule the board created, then what exactly do the covenants say that may be relevant?

Any rule the board creates has to be "consistent" with the covenants.
RichardP13
(California)

Posts:3534


05/14/2019 11:35 AM  
A rule on basketball hoops doesn't need to be in the CCRs, but the authority for the Board to create rules MUST. Rules must be "fair and reasonable". That must be the standard across the country. On the surface, unless there is a justification for the 15 foot rule, I can't find that rule meets the standard of fair and reasonable.

If I were on a board either they wouldn't be allowed, or they would have to be of the portable type and stored after use. It also depends on where there are local recreation facilities providing that activities or if the HOA itself has common area hoops. Where I use to live we didn't allow because we had a community park with two hoops.

Been there, Done that
PaulP12
(Maryland)

Posts:5


05/14/2019 11:53 AM  
Posted By AugustinD on 05/14/2019 11:22 AM
Is what you quoted a rule the board created? If it's only a rule the board created, then what exactly do the covenants say that may be relevant?

Any rule the board creates has to be "consistent" with the covenants.




Below is the covenant from 2003. The rule I previously posted was part of Master Rules change implemented in 2017.


8.1.15 Play Equipment. Play equipment shall not be placed on any lot
without prior written approval of the ACC, shall be screened from public view, and is permitted in
the rear of Lots only. Play Equipment shall include basketball hoops.


Thank you for responding
PaulP12
(Maryland)

Posts:5


05/14/2019 11:58 AM  
Posted By RichardP13 on 05/14/2019 11:35 AM
A rule on basketball hoops doesn't need to be in the CCRs, but the authority for the Board to create rules MUST. Rules must be "fair and reasonable". That must be the standard across the country. On the surface, unless there is a justification for the 15 foot rule, I can't find that rule meets the standard of fair and reasonable.

If I were on a board either they wouldn't be allowed, or they would have to be of the portable type and stored after use. It also depends on where there are local recreation facilities providing that activities or if the HOA itself has common area hoops. Where I use to live we didn't allow because we had a community park with two hoops.





At the Architectural meeting that I went to last night, they stated the rule was for "safety" but when I indicated that there were at least two hoops attached to garages in similar fashion, they went with the grandfathered in comment. My main complaint with the HOA is with consistency. If hoops are banned, then ban it for all. Specifying driveway length seems arbitrary.

Thank you for your response.
AugustinD


Posts:1594


05/14/2019 12:09 PM  
Paul, who voted to implement the "Master Rules change"? Was it the Board or the membership? Are the Master Rules recorded with the county? (Covenants are recorded with the county.)

I cannot tell: Would your hoop be in public view and in the rear of the lot? How about the two others already installed?

The safety argument is bogus. Kids are allowed to play in the streets because federal fair housing law says disallowing such play discriminates on the basis of familial status. I am reading closely what you are writing and looking for a similar claim of discrimination against kids and so families with kids. I am not sure such a claim is there. For now, 'just saying.'

But by any chance, do you have kiddos who play basketball?

I tend to agree with Richard and you that the 15-foot rule is arbitrary, not fair and not reasonable. The courts do indeed look for this standard when questions about covenants and their implementation arise.
PaulP12
(Maryland)

Posts:5


05/14/2019 1:37 PM  
Posted By AugustinD on 05/14/2019 12:09 PM
Paul, who voted to implement the "Master Rules change"? Was it the Board or the membership? Are the Master Rules recorded with the county? (Covenants are recorded with the county.) The original covenants were recorded in 2013. I have not yet found the new Master Rules recorded in public records. The Board created and voted on the Master Rules Change. Directly below is how the rules change was delivered and voted upon.


"Rule Hearing Notice Provided: Notice was given the 9th day of February, 2017, to the members of the Arora Hills Homeowners Association, Inc. ("Association") that the next meeting of the Association's Board of Directors ("Board") will be held on the 23rd day of March, 2017, at 7:30 p.m. at the Arora Hills HOA Community Clubhouse located at 23030 Birch Mead Road, Clarksburg, Maryland 20871 and at that Meeting, there will be a Hearing on the Proposed Master Rules and Regulations. Owners unable to attend were advised to submit comments in writing.
At the meeting on March 23, 2017, the Board held an open forum under New Business to permit owners to comment on proposed Master Rules and Regulations. A copy of the proposed Master Rules and Regulations was attached to the Notice. At the conclusion of the Rule Hearing and at the Board Meeting, the Board voted to approve the proposed Master Rules and Regulations as distributed to Owners. The effective date of the Master Rules and Regulations is April 15, 2017."






I cannot tell: Would your hoop be in public view and in the rear of the lot? How about the two others already installed?

The other two are installed exactly in the same manner as we would put our hoop. I actually used a picture from one of the installations in my application last night. It would in public view in the alley as our home is a townhouse with a row of eight detached garages. The hoop would be installed above the garage door in a peak area.

The safety argument is bogus. Kids are allowed to play in the streets because federal fair housing law says disallowing such play discriminates on the basis of familial status. I am reading closely what you are writing and looking for a similar claim of discrimination against kids and so families with kids. I am not sure such a claim is there. For now, 'just saying.'

But by any chance, do you have kiddos who play basketball?

Yes, I have a nine year old that thinks he is Steph Curry.

I tend to agree with Richard and you that the 15-foot rule is arbitrary, not fair and not reasonable. The courts do indeed look for this standard when questions about covenants and their implementation arise.





I answered after your comments.

Thank you,

Paul
AugustinD


Posts:1594


05/14/2019 3:41 PM  
Paul, I think the Rule violates the covenant. What you propose violates the covenant. Yes others got away with it, and yes, it looks like favoritism. But I think if push ever came to shove and this landed in court, the court would ignore the Board-made rule and go by the Covenant. The covenant 'runs with the land' is publicly noticed to all who buy into the HOA, and is considered a contract. I do not blame you for making the selective enforcement argument. But I do not like your chances.
PaulP12
(Maryland)

Posts:5


05/15/2019 8:51 AM  
Posted By AugustinD on 05/14/2019 3:41 PM
Paul, I think the Rule violates the covenant. What you propose violates the covenant. Yes others got away with it, and yes, it looks like favoritism. But I think if push ever came to shove and this landed in court, the court would ignore the Board-made rule and go by the Covenant. The covenant 'runs with the land' is publicly noticed to all who buy into the HOA, and is considered a contract. I do not blame you for making the selective enforcement argument. But I do not like your chances.





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