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Subject: Attitude of Hoa President
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JohnK23
(Georgia)

Posts:1


05/29/2019 11:50 AM  
The day our boards 1st meeting the person elected made it mandatory that all 5 of us board members must sign in , put in the time and if we did not we would be fined. I have been on 5 boards and never heard of this. It is my opinion that any rules for the board must be presented to the board and voted on before one person, makes them law.
MelissaP1
(Alabama)

Posts:8503


05/29/2019 12:01 PM  
A HOA can't randomly enforce fines. It has to be allowed to fine in the 1st place. After that, a HOA needs to have a fining schedule identifying infraction and rate of the fine. So think need to do a bit of education here and ask where this is in the rules.

The board and officers should always reference the rules whenever making a decision. I brought a copy to every meeting. So have them point out where they can fine and what rate. A board is VOLUNTEER. So why would that require a fine?

Former HOA President
ND
(PA)

Posts:341


05/29/2019 12:43 PM  
Typically the HOA Members elect the Board, and the Board (among themselves) select the Officers (Pres, VP, Treasurer, Secretary, etc.), some of which may also need to be Board Members while others may not have that requirement. Most typically the Board Members also serve as all of the Officers.

Not sure how your Pres came to be Pres, but if this is a sign of all things to come, the rest of your Board Members should be able to band together, remove this person from their Pres position, and select a new Pres. This person wwould still be a Board Member, but no longer power hungry with the Pres title. Further, Pres typically carries the same decision-making ability as the rest of the Board Members (one single vote on decisions to be made) . . . meaning the Board as a group make the decisions, not anyone in particular even if holding Pres position.
MarkM19
(Texas)

Posts:404


05/29/2019 1:25 PM  
John,
I will agree with the first 2 responses and I am sure every other President will also agree. I have been on 9 boards and President of 5 in 2 different States. This is a very zealous thing for anyone to try. I agree that board members should be as active as they can be with time they have to give. They are volunteers and None should ever be fined for not give x amount of time to the board. That is IMO crazy. As mentioned before the President gets only 1 Vote just like all other board members. They need to be reminded of this early and often by other board members till it sticks.
JohnS111
(New York)

Posts:165


05/29/2019 4:27 PM  
Rules that govern directors would usually be in the bylaws or in a contract between the HOA and the director in connection with the director's services as a director. Same for officers.

If those documents do not have any rules regarding signing in or paying fines, then the president would have no basis whatsoever to require such things. If the president wants to impose those rules, then the bylaws or other contract would need to be amended in accordance with their terms, and such an amendment would typically require owner or board approval (or both).

It's troubling that the president does not indicate a basic knowledge of HOA governance.

As for me, I'd refuse to sign in or follow specific time requirements and would call her bluff when she tried to impose fines for that.
MarkM19
(Texas)

Posts:404


05/29/2019 4:39 PM  
John,
One of our smarter contributors on this site posted a really great "Code of Conduct" sheet that goes into great detail about what Board responsivities are and what is expected if you run for office. In my opinion every HOA should adapt to their State and send out with Election information and have potential candidates sign and return with their ballots. It is also important for every member of and HOA to know the guidelines and if board members cross them they can make sure to call them on it.

I am sorry I did not give direct credit to the person who posted it. I am pretty sure he is a PM out of Ca. maybe we can get him to repost for everyone's consideration. I have already had it approved by our board for future elections thanks to him.
RichardP13


Posts:0


05/29/2019 6:10 PM  
As many might know, California requires that all associations have a set of election rules. The vast majority don't. In 2012 while working for a management company, I wrote a complete set of election rules and form (23 pages), and vetted by an attorney who worked for the law firm that we all used to cite California HOA law. Included was a pledge, required to signed by a candidate who wanted to be included on a ballot.


Pledge by Nominee for Election to Board of Directors

As a nominee for election to the Board of Directors, I have read our Homeowner Association’s
Bylaws, CC&Rs and Rules.

If elected to the Board of Directors, I pledge to do all of the following:

Comply with the Association’s Bylaws, CC&Rs and Rules as they exist unless
superseded by law;

Obtain the advice of experts, if and when appropriate, including attorneys, construction
experts and others;

Read the Davis - Stirling Act at least once each year when the yearly amendments
become available and to comply with the law;

Read the management agreement in effect between our Association and management
company so that I am aware of the management company’s contractual responsibilities
and those areas where it has no contractual responsibility;

Pay my assessments before they become delinquent and strictly comply with the
governing documents of our Association;

Attend all board meetings and homeowner meetings unless it is absolutely not possible to
attend;

Accept no compensation from the Association, members of the Association, or vendors
and contractors providing goods and / or services to the Association;

Comply with the Open Meeting Act as set forth in the Davis - Stirling Act;

Make certain that agendas are posted and / or distributed to all members in advance of
Association meetings and that minutes are taken and maintained of all meetings as
required by law;

Hold annual elections for the Board of Directors according to the Association’s Rules,
Bylaws and California law;

Provide members of the Association with an email address so that members can make
direct contact with me, if required;

Obtain a reserve study from an expert in the field every three years, and to review and
adjust it annually between reserve studies as required by law;

Avoid conflicts of interest with the Association if possible and to recuse myself from
voting on a matter where a conflict or the appearance of a conflict exists;
Adopt realistic annual budgets each year in order to avoid the hardship and liability
associated with special assessments;

Honor my fiduciary duty to the Association at all times by placing the Association’s
interests above my own personal interests;

Read all written contracts with contractors and vendors so that I am aware of their
obligations as well as the Association’s obligations; and

Treat other board members, homeowners, vendors, contractors and Management
Company representatives with professional courtesy and respect at all times.

I have carefully read and understand this pledge and promise that if elected to the Board of
Directors of our Association, I will honor it.

_
________________________________
Signature
_________________________________
Print Name
_________________
Date
MarkM19
(Texas)

Posts:404


05/29/2019 7:13 PM  
Richard,
Thanks this is exactly what I mentioned earlier. If anyone gets to read this and signs and does not understand what a board members responsibilities are must be blind.

Thanks again and I promise to give you credit next time I mention it.
DanM12
(Georgia)

Posts:23


06/08/2019 8:04 PM  
this is good stuff
GenoS
(Florida)

Posts:3177


06/08/2019 8:34 PM  
It is good stuff. My own HOA's president had a half-baked version of something like this but she had ulterior motives in getting the other board members to sign it. My question on it is this: If there's no such pledge, loyalty oath, code of conduct, or code of ethics required in the governing documents (CC&Rs, Bylaws, Articles of Incorporation), then how can anyone be forced to sign such a thing? There are always "optics", such that it doesn't look good if someone refuses to sign, but what legally compels anyone to sign it?
RichardP13


Posts:0


06/08/2019 10:48 PM  
You answered your own question.
AugustinD


Posts:1905


06/09/2019 9:44 AM  
During the McCarthy red scare, the use of loyalty oaths and pledges was common. In my experience, legal professionals at times have re-written such documents to be a summary statement of duties, and the only obligation or request is that Management and HOA members (not just candidates or directors) sign that they have read and understood the summary statement. Such a statement can and probably should be part of the HOA's employment contract with Management. For Members, the covenants do not require a signature on such a statement, so signing or not signing will have no legal ramifications. Members should not have it held against them for not signing. Also requiring signing may be a way to start conflict and bad feelings from the get-go with new members. I think competent attorneys would advise not requiring signing. In short, I think requiring signing is a time-waster for members, directors, and candidates.

Else as others above indicate, JohnK23's HOA's president it out of line. What she or he could have done is presented such a statement as her thoughts alone and asked if there was general agreement that this is how the board works. No signing required, of course.
NpS
(Pennsylvania)

Posts:3658


06/09/2019 10:19 AM  
Attached is rights and responsibilities chart put out by CAI. CAI proposes that Boards sign a resolution to adopt this document.

CA takes it further by making it a law that Board members sign a document individually.

Given the choice, I think that I prefer the CAI approach. It created the opportunity to discuss, accept or reject, and then set a standard for the community.

But then again, people sign things all the time without paying attention.

Attachment: 169195990371.pdf


Sikubali jukumu. Read all posts at your own risk.
RichardP13


Posts:0


06/09/2019 10:38 AM  
Posted By NpS on 06/09/2019 10:19 AM


CA takes it further by making it a law that Board members sign a document individually.


Which law might that be?
AugustinD


Posts:1905


06/09/2019 10:45 AM  
Posted By NpS on 06/09/2019 10:19 AM
CA takes it further by making it a law that Board members sign a document individually.


I see Florida requires either signing such a document or taking a course. See Florida Statute 720.3033:
http://www.leg.state.fl.us/Statutes/index.cfm?App_mode=Display_Statute&Search_String=&URL=0700-0799/0720/Sections/0720.3033.html

But do you know where this is in California's statutes?
RichardP13


Posts:0


06/09/2019 10:52 AM  
How many people REALLY follow this? And why is there nothing for Condos?

720.3033 Officers and directors.—
(1)(a) Within 90 days after being elected or appointed to the board, each director shall certify in writing to the secretary of the association that he or she has read the association’s declaration of covenants, articles of incorporation, bylaws, and current written rules and policies; that he or she will work to uphold such documents and policies to the best of his or her ability; and that he or she will faithfully discharge his or her fiduciary responsibility to the association’s members. Within 90 days after being elected or appointed to the board, in lieu of such written certification, the newly elected or appointed director may submit a certificate of having satisfactorily completed the educational curriculum administered by a division-approved education provider within 1 year before or 90 days after the date of election or appointment.
AugustinD


Posts:1905


06/09/2019 11:22 AM  
Posted By RichardP13 on 06/09/2019 10:52 AM
How many people REALLY follow this? And why is there nothing for Condos?


For the equivalent requirement for Florida condos, see Florida statute 718.112 (2) (d) 4. b.

I suppose the number of boards who follow this is probably about the same as the number of boards who follow their own covenants and the rest of city, state and federal law.
NpS
(Pennsylvania)

Posts:3658


06/09/2019 11:25 AM  
Posted By RichardP13 on 06/09/2019 10:52 AM
How many people REALLY follow this?



I think more and more.

Just about every HOA law firm in FL is offering free 2 hour training for new Board members. Good recruiting tool for them. Better informed Board members.

Over time, this trend is likely to grow in FL and elsewhere.

Sikubali jukumu. Read all posts at your own risk.
GenoS
(Florida)

Posts:3177


06/09/2019 12:39 PM  
Posted By NpS on 06/09/2019 11:25 AM
Just about every HOA law firm in FL is offering free 2 hour training for new Board members. Good recruiting tool for them. Better informed Board members.

Over time, this trend is likely to grow in FL and elsewhere.

Some property management firms, too. A quick internet search shows all attorney's recommending the "training" course over the signed statement. A couple of hours isn't enough time to cover even 10% of what board members should be aware of. The self-signed statement is no better and probably worse, but both are adequate in the eyes of the law. The whole requirement is sort of fluffy in my opinion. Yes absolutely I'd like my board members to get some sort of training, but I think the reality is what's required by law fails to prepare them in any way.

We had a board member appointed to fill a vacancy last year at the end of May. He then went on vacation for 4 months and didn't return until early October. Aside from the question of why someone would want to be on the board just in time for them to go on a 4-month vacation, this man failed to attend a course and didn't sign a statement. As per the statute, he was suspended from the board at the end of August. This set off a firestorm in the community. His fans claimed that the law was a technicality and it didn't matter that he had fallen afoul of his responsibilities.

Finally, the HOA attorney told the board that when the guy came back he should not be allowed to participate in any sort of board meeting unless and until he attended a course or submitted a signed statement.

(The best part is that by the time the man submitted his statement so the suspension could be lifted, he had fallen over 90 days past due in an assessment that became due in July. According to the statute, by operation of law he had abandoned his seat on the board and was no longer a director. Not suspended, mind you, but completely off the board. That was fun!)
AugustinD


Posts:1905


06/09/2019 3:59 PM  
Posted By GenoS on 06/09/2019 12:39 PM

We had a board member appointed to fill a vacancy last year at the end of May. He then went on vacation for 4 months and didn't return until early October. Aside from the question of why someone would want to be on the board just in time for them to go on a 4-month vacation, this man failed to attend a course and didn't sign a statement. As per the statute, he was suspended from the board at the end of August. This set off a firestorm in the community. His fans claimed that the law was a technicality and it didn't matter that he had fallen afoul of his responsibilities.

Finally, the HOA attorney told the board that when the guy came back he should not be allowed to participate in any sort of board meeting unless and until he attended a course or submitted a signed statement.

(The best part is that by the time the man submitted his statement so the suspension could be lifted, he had fallen over 90 days past due in an assessment that became due in July. According to the statute, by operation of law he had abandoned his seat on the board and was no longer a director. Not suspended, mind you, but completely off the board. That was fun!)


Why have his supporters not objected to the legal technicality that a HOA member has to pay the assessment?

"His fans claimed that the law was a technicality..." I love it. I would record the names of all the members who argued this. I would want to ensure they never got voted onto the Board.

At least the HOA attorney appears competent.
GenoS
(Florida)

Posts:3177


06/09/2019 5:03 PM  
Posted By AugustinD on 06/09/2019 3:59 PM
Why have his supporters not objected to the legal technicality that a HOA member has to pay the assessment?

"His fans claimed that the law was a technicality..." I love it. I would record the names of all the members who argued this. I would want to ensure they never got voted onto the Board.

At least the HOA attorney appears competent.

We've had a 50% turnover in homeowners in the last 5 years. About half of them have "traded up" from their former trailer park residences. They see the HOA as the landlord with themselves as tenants. It's what they were used to and it's very hard to educate them that that's not how it works in a mandatory HOA.

The director that was removed "by operation of law" when he fell more than 90 days delinquent came from such a community. Most of his supporters also came from the same community and were "supporting him" because he was their pal from the mobile home park. They didn't see any good reason to point out that he had abandoned his seat. They thought that was rude and mean and concocted a couple of conspiracy theories about who "wanted him off the board" and why. A dozen different homeowners asserted that scheming board members wanted him off and used "that silly law" as an excuse to do it. Instead of becoming educated they preferred to remain ignorant and loudly ask what the rest of the board was trying to hide. And then, predictably, none of them ran for the board themselves in January.

The situation would be comical if it wasn't so serious. It's more than a little scary at times.
NpS
(Pennsylvania)

Posts:3658


06/09/2019 7:30 PM  
We get around a 75% response rate to our Annual Meeting survey.

One of the questions we ask is: How well do you think you know what's in the rules and regulations?
(We use "rules and regulations" because most wouldn't know what CC&Rs are)

This year's answers were:

15% Very Well
36% Better than Most
44% Enough to Get by
5% Not very Well

More than half of the folks who said "very well" are actually clueless. Yet, because they say they know what they are talking about, there are many folks who will rely on them.

Glad we don't have a situation like you Geno. But then again, we have a lot of folks willing to follow the self-appointed guru.

Sikubali jukumu. Read all posts at your own risk.
GenoS
(Florida)

Posts:3177


06/10/2019 10:05 PM  
Posted By NpS on 06/09/2019 7:30 PM
One of the questions we ask is: How well do you think you know what's in the rules and regulations?
(We use "rules and regulations" because most wouldn't know what CC&Rs are)

Here we use "the Bylaws" because most don't know about the other documents. After (gently) correcting people 300 or 400 times I gave up and just rolled with it. Turned out to be a great time saver.
NpS
(Pennsylvania)

Posts:3658


06/11/2019 3:35 AM  
Posted By GenoS on 06/10/2019 10:05 PM
Posted By NpS on 06/09/2019 7:30 PM
One of the questions we ask is: How well do you think you know what's in the rules and regulations?
(We use "rules and regulations" because most wouldn't know what CC&Rs are)

Here we use "the Bylaws" because most don't know about the other documents. After (gently) correcting people 300 or 400 times I gave up and just rolled with it. Turned out to be a great time saver.



Probably a better choice. Will try it and see what happens next year. Thx.

Sikubali jukumu. Read all posts at your own risk.
SueW6
(Michigan)

Posts:550


06/11/2019 4:52 AM  
Attendance Role call at the beginning of the meeting is pretty common. It also confirms the meeting’s quorum - and notes when board members are absent, excused or not.

Done at the beginning of the meeting.
LisaD6
(Connecticut)

Posts:57


06/14/2019 7:10 PM  
I started having a sign in sheet at all the meetings so we have a record of who attends. Noone can say they werent there with a signature. Noone ever refuses to sign it. They all sign.. the main reason why we started the sign in sheet one of the owners forged a unit owners name on a proxy. Deft. means for a sign in sheet. I wouldnt start fininf people for not signing it. I would print there name on it and have a witness initial next to it. Problem solved.
JohnC46
(South Carolina)

Posts:8650


06/15/2019 1:53 PM  
Posted By LisaD6 on 06/14/2019 7:10 PM
I started having a sign in sheet at all the meetings so we have a record of who attends. Noone can say they werent there with a signature. Noone ever refuses to sign it. They all sign.. the main reason why we started the sign in sheet one of the owners forged a unit owners name on a proxy. Deft. means for a sign in sheet. I wouldnt start fininf people for not signing it. I would print there name on it and have a witness initial next to it. Problem solved.




That is a bit childish for a BOD. All the Secretary has to do is note what BOD Members are there or not.
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