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Subject: Neighborhood Quality Control
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Author Messages
PhilR
(California)

Posts:6


06/29/2006 2:47 PM  
This is my 2nd request for help from experienced HOA Officers in Calif.who deal with non-compliance of restrictions in CC&R's pertaining to neighborhood quality control. Our Board is hampered from enforcement because our CC&R's are sadly lacking in necessary compliance language. Also,our documents require a majority vote of our entire 1600 property owners before any changes can be effective. This is entirely ridiculous since we only get about 20% of our property owners to respond to anything sent to them. So we really need to change the language to require a simple majority of votes cast by members who take the time to vote. Isn't this the way our entire system of government works to pass laws and elect our officals?? As a new Board member I find this all ver frustrating and am ready to resign if I can't get any control over persistent violators who put their own selfish interests above those of law abiding reidents. If there are any Calif. HOA board members who work with enforceable CC&R's who can e-mail me a copy, I and the other members of our board would be most grateful.Thank you !!

Phil Rivera
PhilR
(California)

Posts:6


06/29/2006 2:47 PM  
This is my 2nd request for help from experienced HOA Officers in Calif.who deal with non-compliance of restrictions in CC&R's pertaining to neighborhood quality control. Our Board is hampered from enforcement because our CC&R's are sadly lacking in necessary compliance language. Also,our documents require a majority vote of our entire 1600 property owners before any changes can be effective. This is entirely ridiculous since we only get about 20% of our property owners to respond to anything sent to them. So we really need to change the language to require a simple majority of votes cast by members who take the time to vote. Isn't this the way our entire system of government works to pass laws and elect our officals?? As a new Board member I find this all ver frustrating and am ready to resign if I can't get any control over persistent violators who put their own selfish interests above those of law abiding reidents. If there are any Calif. HOA board members who work with enforceable CC&R's who can e-mail me a copy, I and the other members of our board would be most grateful.Thank you !!

Phil Rivera
HaroldS
(Arizona)

Posts:906


06/29/2006 5:18 PM  
1600 properties is a lot to have to get a majority to agree to change anything. Whatever your percentage required now to change or add CC&Rs will be required before you can make the changes you want. Say your documents require 2/3 approval - that's 1,067 yes votes required. And you want to change it so that a simple majority of those who are VOTING can make changes?
These high requirements to make changes were put into declarations for a reason - they are a good control to prevent a minority from making major changes. You said about 20% of your members usually respond. That's 320. If those 320 were allowed to vote on major changes requiring just a simple majority, it would take only 161 votes to approve the change. So 10% of your members would be making the decisions that the other 90% would have to live with. Harold
GeraldT1


Posts:0


06/29/2006 6:04 PM  
PhilR,

Contact an attorney about your dilemma. If your CC&R's are so bad that the Common Property is being devalued because of unit owner non-compliance, it seems to me a Board has no other option but to protect the property and the owner's investments. I agree with Harold's reasons that a change should take more than those 20% who participate. But you are talking about compliance language. Board members are voted to act on behalf of the membership. Board members have a fiduciary responsibility to protect neighbors and the investments of the HOA. Have you read California Civil Code Davis & Stirling? Go to http://www.associationservices.com and download the Davis-Stirling%201.1.06.pdf. There is a section on Alternative Disupte process that may be helpful.

GeraldT1
RogerB
(Colorado)

Posts:5067


06/29/2006 6:32 PM  
Phil, the Declaration of CC&Rs is binding on all owners. Therefore at least a majority of all owners, and often more, must approve amendments. Meanwhile you can add Rules and Regulations which are more restrictive as long as they are reasonable and comply with all higher order documents. And Rules & Regs are the lowest order controlling document of an HOA. Usually Rules and Regs are approved by a simple majority of those voting at a meeting or even sometimes by the Board.

Even important and necessary amendments to the Declaration are difficult to get approved. Primarily due to apathy since no response is similar to not approving. I've found it is best to send out a ballot with a self addressed stamped envelope plus a letter explaining the pros and cons of the proposed amendment. Even then it usually takes knocking on doors to try to get an amendment passed.
JulieS
(Georgia)

Posts:412


06/30/2006 9:41 AM  
We have 'design standards'that were written by the board of directors a few years ago. This does not need any approval by the association to update. These items contain fence guidelines (height and materials), the number and size of yard decor, etc. It expands on what the covenants do not include.

Our neighborhood requires 2/3 majority vote to amend the covenants. Starting in January, we mailed out the proposed amendment and consent form...we sent it out a few times with few responses.

When it came time to distribute pool keys this year, we had people come to pick up their key, sign pool rules and we also had them sign a consent form. I have finally gotten the 2/3 majority vote to file the initiation fee amendment. It took 6 months. Yes, knocking on doors needs to be done too.

If anyone is a 'member not in good standing', this affects the total eligible vote. We have 137 homes and 11 people are delinquent on dues and one is under an ACC violation. This reduces the eligible vote from 137 to 125, multiplied by 66.67% means we needed 83 consent forms voting yes instead of 91.

LuciusD


Posts:0


07/02/2006 5:04 AM  
Posted By PhilR on 06/29/2006 2:47 PM

So we really need to change the language to require a simple majority of votes cast by members who take the time to vote. Isn't this the way our entire system of government works to pass laws and elect our officals??
Phil Rivera


No, Phil, I don't think so.
Think of your CCR's as analgous to a constitution. Constitutions almost always require super majorities for amendment. Our system of government is set up to prevent tyrannous minorities from seizing control and enacting amsndments they consider good for the country.
A simple majority of members who show up would amount to tyranny by a minority of activists. The members who don't show up and don't vote are still voting. They want the activists to sit down and shut up. They are voting for the status quo. And they have a right to.
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