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Subject: President Role & Duties vs other Board Members
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LillyR
(Missouri)

Posts:19


05/30/2019 10:00 AM  
Hello everyone, Im a new board member in our recently developed community. Our community consists of three board members now. There was one board member elected the year before we got on board. The developer of our community, was the developer, management company, and the president of the board of directors. Our current management company however did not change it is still owned by the developer of our community.
When we were elected on board we were asked what positions or titles we wanted and we're told that all positions were treated equally, the no one role can give approval without the entire board making a decision.

However, that hasn't been the case. Recently the president of our board has been allowed to make several decisions without notifying all the board members. When the HOA management company is questioned about thing being approved we are told that the president approved. Our management only tells the president about issues we have in our community. We find out after the fact.

Example 1 our waterfalls recently went out I called management to find out if they were aware of the waterfalls not working I was told the waterfalls are broken and we've already gotten an estimate and our. President of our management company has already approved. None of the board members at least the two members were not made aware of any issues with the waterfalls. We didn't approve as a board for any repairs being made to the waterfalls.

Example 2.
The board voted on a specific repair to our common areas. Upon checking after installation I noticed what we approved wasn't installed. I notified management company. The management company told me that the item that we chose was going to cost a bit more, andhe president of our HOA approved of this change.

The only person that was given paperwork a is the president. We were told that we be expecting emails for architectural approvals and will gave meeting every 3 months

What are some copies that all the board members should have?

If the President is going to make all the decisions for our community I dont understand why we're on the board.

How should I address this at our next meeting?
MelissaP1
(Alabama)

Posts:8184


05/30/2019 10:35 AM  
Who is the President? Is it still the Developer? Have you been turned over to the owners? Not that clear. If it's still the Developer, then most likely they still in control. You as board members were given those positions so there was owner represented. May help in the transition later down the road. Now if your owner owned, then time to take a chat with the President. Refer to the duties that should be in your Articles of Incorporation their duties. Meeting notes need to reflect the decisions made.

Former HOA President
LillyR
(Missouri)

Posts:19


05/30/2019 10:49 AM  
My apologies the developer has fully turned the community over to the residents. Our board consits of 3 board members President,Vice President and Treasurer. Our management company is owned by the developer.
MelissaP1
(Alabama)

Posts:8184


05/30/2019 10:55 AM  
My best advice. Bring a copy of your CC&R's, Articles of Incorporation, and By-laws to each meeting. (ACC if you have one too). It's best to start of on the right foot. Which is when making a decision refer to those rules. Even if it's not an immediate answer. It has to be quoted from a section of those documents.

Also it's time to update those documents and re-file them if hasn't been done already. Need to remove all references to the developer including the voting classes. I always suggest doing this every 5 -7 years as technology and how people live changes.

Surprised you don't have a Secretary position. The President can't do the Secretary's job in most HOA's documentation. So I'd like to verify what positions your HOA is to have and their duties.

Former HOA President
RichardP13
(California)

Posts:3596


05/30/2019 11:14 AM  
As the owner of a management company working exclusively with HOA's, the process would be different than what you describe. As a general rule, the president would speak on behalf of the Board and the association a it pertains to matters when dealing with a management company.

In both examples, both parties potentially are wrong, the president and the MC. What should have been done is the MC when speaking with the president should have asked for the board authorization, via minutes to either proceed or change the order. Action Without a Meeting could have been used as long as all Board members were notified and all board members agreed unanimously.

If the president is asking on their own, if the other two agree, the president can be removed as an officer and replaced as president by one of the others. The other person can be Secretary/Treasurer and the "former" president can be made a director-at-large. Remember, when voting on issues on behalf of the association, all directors have an equal voice.

Been there, Done that
LillyR
(Missouri)

Posts:19


05/30/2019 11:50 AM  
Thank you. Our managment company had already given the first board member the title as President before we were elected on the board. At our first board meeting the ownner/developer of the MC was there and asked what position we wanted and said they all have the same duties and obligations. Reiterating that we already have a President.The positions were President,Vice President, and Treasurer I said Vice President.
The President was given copies of contracts, and phone numbers.

We didn't receive anything at all

The President should be up for reelection this year.

We didn't receive anything at all.

LillyR
(Missouri)

Posts:19


05/30/2019 11:53 AM  
Should we ask for all copies of contracts from the the MC as it realtes to our community?
RichardP13
(California)

Posts:3596


05/30/2019 12:15 PM  
There are four officer positions in a HOA, president, VP (does nothing), secretary, and treasurer. All are supposed to be voted on annually. An organizational meeting should be held at the annual meeting or shortly thereafter to vote on officers. Doesn't mean you have to change them just re-vote or re-affirm the positions.

The membership votes for directors, the director appoint or vote on the officers of the corporation. You should be aware of, and if needed, have copies of all contracts the HOA has entered into.

Been there, Done that
KellyM3
(North Carolina)

Posts:1375


05/30/2019 12:28 PM  
You are a new board member. You do not know the culture of the HOA board you've joined.

I recommend you stay of the way of someone conducting routine repairs and maintenance based on on-the-ground management and project oversight. Your repairs will be delayed greatly through micro-management.

On new projects and installations, by all means demand a vote.
RichardP13
(California)

Posts:3596


05/30/2019 12:35 PM  
Posted By KellyM3 on 05/30/2019 12:28 PM
You are a new board member. You do not know the culture of the HOA board you've joined.

I recommend you stay of the way of someone conducting routine repairs and maintenance based on on-the-ground management and project oversight. Your repairs will be delayed greatly through micro-management.

On new projects and installations, by all means demand a vote.



Boy, that's just GREAT advice.

Been there, Done that
LillyR
(Missouri)

Posts:19


05/30/2019 12:43 PM  
First off I came here for advive from seasoned members not to be criticized.Non of the board members have ever served on an Hoa board. Thank you'll that have replied with helpful tips without criticizing or belittling others.
LillyR
(Missouri)

Posts:19


05/30/2019 12:46 PM  
Thank you for your advice prior to posting this comment. This comment isn't helpful.

Have a great day!
LillyR
(Missouri)

Posts:19


05/30/2019 12:50 PM  
Thank you Melissa for your help.
PatJ1
(North Carolina)

Posts:64


05/30/2019 12:51 PM  
How much did the repair cost?

It's common that the MC has the ability to approve repairs up to a specific amount without involving a vote from the Board. It is usually written into the MC contract. Ours is $500.00 for routine repairs and maintenance.

Perhaps everyone was operating with that type of understanding.

Board members are volunteers. Many have no idea what they're doing. Educate them. Don't beat them up.
MarkM19
(Texas)

Posts:332


05/30/2019 1:03 PM  
Lilly,
Not everyone is made to be a board member. You are not always going to be in control of every situation. It takes some pretty thick skin to have your neighbors that you thought were very nice start attacking you for everything under the Sun and accusing you of things you can't even imagine. That is life as a Volunteer board member. IF it has not happened to you yet it will and from the way you reacted to what many on this site would consider mild comments. You may want to get out now to safe yourself from what is clearly coming. Everyone will agree it is a thankless job.

This site has all kinds of contributors. Sometimes we get things wrong and sometimes we do not get all of the facts until the very end. This can be frustrating for readers who are just trying to help. We also have some who like to poke the bear every now and again. We have all been poked and some time it is fun to poke someone else. Not saying anyone should condone that behavior because sometimes it crosses that line.
RichardP13
(California)

Posts:3596


05/30/2019 1:17 PM  
The issue might not be that they didn't have the opportunity to approve or disapprove of something, the issue is with communicating.

I have a situation right now with a property where someone has vandalized the front gate and it won't close. I a, authorized per contract to handle on my own. What I do though is let all Board members know that it is being handled in the event they may be contacted by a homeowner that they can safely say it is being handled.

Been there, Done that
JohnC46
(South Carolina)

Posts:8347


05/30/2019 1:25 PM  
Lilly

Not everything requires a BOD vote nor a unanimous vote. If everything did, nothing would get done.

Let us use the waterfall as an example. Assuming your budget has money allocated for Landscape Repairs (which the waterfall repair would be) and there is enough to cover the repair, then I say the President can authorize the repair. Keeping communication open is a good idea especially when folks will notice something like the waterfall is not working and they be calling around. Best you are all on the same page but you cannot shut down your association while waiting for all to approve everything.

Now if not enough money to cover the repair, that will require a BOD discussion like: where the hell are we going to get this money?

Now what he could not do without a BOD vote, would be to authorize spending non-allocated money for a major improvement to the waterfall. No one can spend money not already budgeted/earmarked without BOD approval. In your case 2 of the 3 on the BOD approving.

While on the waterfall. It eventually will need a major repair/overhaul and this should be covered in your Reserve Fund which was generated by a Reserve Study but another subject.

Many BOD Members have little knowledge about Budgets, Reserves, etc. and are so scared of running out of money, they want to micro-manage every expense.

Real life. Our HOA is responsible for each homes sprinkler system. We budget $3K a year for landscape repairs which includes sprinklers repairs. Our landscaper sends the BOD and the MC an Email informing us of any repairs needed and the cost. He is just looking for BOD approval to be sure he gets paid and what for (like $120.00, sprinkler repair, so and so address). We are set up that either the Pres. or myself can verbally (Email) approve the expenditure and the MC will pay it. We get monthly financial reports (44 pages) from our MC. The Pres and I (VP & Treasurer) review the reports and discuss them. If we see something out of line from what we budgeted for, we discuss it. Along these lines, we budget $4K per month year round for our landscaper. The MC will pay him automatically each month unless told otherwise. No need for approval on this as we have budgeted it.

Hope this helps in your learning curve.
LillyR
(Missouri)

Posts:19


05/30/2019 1:26 PM  
Hi.The cost of the repairs was over $5000.00.

I will ask for a copy of our contract with our MC.

LillyR
(Missouri)

Posts:19


05/30/2019 1:32 PM  
Thank you for your help you have been helpful.
LillyR
(Missouri)

Posts:19


05/30/2019 1:43 PM  
Lol! Thank you for your response. However,I'm not looking to be in control of every situation life doesn't work that way. I've reacted with thankfulness to everyone that has been helpful. I appreciate you for informing me of things I should expect in the near future.

Thank you Mark
SueW6
(Michigan)

Posts:496


05/30/2019 2:24 PM  
Lilly
Some HOAs have a policy requiring a vote of the Board for expenditures over X amount that are not in the approved budget.

Otherwise, repairs and day to day operational costs can be approved by the President .
LillyR
(Missouri)

Posts:19


05/30/2019 2:27 PM  
Thank you Sue.
LillyR
(Missouri)

Posts:19


05/30/2019 2:31 PM  
Thank you. You hit the nail right on the head the issue is communication.
When members of the community ask us questions we have no clue of whats going on.

Thank you Richard
SheilaJ1
(South Carolina)

Posts:74


05/30/2019 2:45 PM  
Posted By LillyR on 05/30/2019 2:31 PM
Thank you. You hit the nail right on the head the issue is communication.
When members of the community ask us questions we have no clue of whats going on.

Thank you Richard


If you have no clue what is going on then make sure the minutes state that you did not vote for expenditure of funds. Get a copy of the management contract and kindly share it because in almost all contracts it states "board approved" not "president approved"


NpS
(Pennsylvania)

Posts:3366


05/30/2019 2:49 PM  
Hi Lily
Some options to consider:

1. In most HOAs, the decision on who will be Officers (Pres, VP, Sec, Treas) is determined by a vote of the Board. On a 3 person Board, it only takes 2 Board members to reshuffle that deck. You and the non-Pres member can call a vote on who should be Pres at any time you like. If you feel that one of you can do better, then step up, vote current Pres out, and vote yourself in. He's still a Board member, but not Pres anymore.

2. In many HOAs, there's a point person for the relation with the MC. Usually it's the Pres, and MCs typically expect that this is the case. But, if the MC receives notice from the Board that you are the point person on the relationship, then the MC must accept that transfer of responsibility. In this way the current Pres can stay Pres, but the point person from the Board is someone other than the Pres.

3. In some HOAs, after a vote of the Board, each Officer position is delegated the right to approve $X without a vote. You can even put restrictions like, in the event of an emergency the Treas can approve up to $1500 on her own, but if there's no emergency then only $500.

4. Maybe the Pres is just as clueless as everyone else. Just trying to do the best he can without disclosing the difficulties he's experiencing. It could be valuable to explore what the Pres thinks about what's ok for him to do. And if he would feel the same way if someone else became Pres.


Je publie un degagement de toutes responsabilite. Read all posts at your own risk.
LillyR
(Missouri)

Posts:19


05/30/2019 4:46 PM  
Thank you Np for your help.
LillyR
(Missouri)

Posts:19


05/30/2019 6:46 PM  
Thank you Sheila
DouglasK1
(Florida)

Posts:1406


05/31/2019 11:17 AM  
Each officer has duties as identified in your governing documents and possibly state law. Typical duties of the president include presiding over meetings, setting the agenda, and signing contracts. Decisions should be made by a majority of the board members, not by a single member, including the president.

In most associations (read your governing docs for details), directors are elected by the members (owners), and the directors elect the officers. Assuming your documents are typical, if you and the other board member think the president is out of control, you would have enough votes to elect a different president.

Escaped former treasurer and director of a self managed association.
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