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Subject: Where should Committees be delineated?
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GeorgeS21
(Florida)

Posts:1263


06/19/2019 12:30 PM  
Hi All,

HOA of 314 properties ... generally well managed with a PM and BoD - I am on the Board and the VP. We have solid CCRs, with R&Rs and solid Bylaws (although were are on the 4th revision).

I'm reviewing docs and trying to align various bits and pieces ... the only committees called out by docs are the Architectural Control Board in the CCRs and the Nominating Committee in the Bylaws.

In common verbal usage and even some processes are:

- Landscape Committee

- CC&R Committee

As an aside, the CCRs also call out a "Architectural Representative" that is not referenced anywhere.

I was told initially by the outgoing president that the Landscape and CC&R Committees were approved by the Board, but it is not in any minutes I have found.

My intent is a positive one - to clean up the docs - one component of this could be to determine which Committees are standing committees, then make certain their tasking and processes are delineated in one place. Doing this in the CCRs is very difficult, obviously. So, given two other easy to manage locations - Bylaws or R&Rs, both of which can be changed by our Board per our docs, where SHOULD these be located?
TimB4
(Virginia)

Posts:16417


06/19/2019 5:58 PM  
In my opinion, within the rules/regulations.

Basically, the formation of a standing committee should be a policy resolution (a resolution simply being a formal (written) decision by the board).
GeorgeS21
(Florida)

Posts:1263


06/20/2019 6:55 AM  
Tim,

I like that solution, as well. R&Rs are easy to change by the Board and can be tracked via the Board minutes - unlike our current, R&Rs, which are not even dated, I would have a block of information at the bottom noting when they were changed and the mechanism.

In a broad sense, I would think any Committee related to technical governance (Nominating Committee, Audit Committee, etc) should probably be in the Bylaws, and a Committee related to architectural, covenants, etc would best sit in the R&Rs (since modifying the CCRs is usually far too difficult).

Seem reasonable?
JohnC46
(South Carolina)

Posts:8563


06/20/2019 7:13 AM  
George

Be sure to include that committees serve at the pleasure of the BOD and in any dispute, the BOD is the final decision maker.

Do not be afraid to fire an unruly committee memebr.
GeorgeS21
(Florida)

Posts:1263


06/20/2019 8:01 AM  
John,

Good point - linking the various components is a great idea.
GenoS
(Florida)

Posts:3135


06/20/2019 10:55 PM  
Posted By GeorgeS21 on 06/20/2019 6:55 AM
R&Rs are easy to change by the Board and can be tracked via the Board minutes - unlike our current, R&Rs, which are not even dated, I would have a block of information at the bottom noting when they were changed and the mechanism.

Not anymore in Florida, George. FS 720 was changed last year and "Rules & Regulations" is now defined as one of the "governing documents". Amendments to the governing documents now include any changes to the Rules & Regulations, and no amended document takes effect until it's recorded with the county.

It used to be easy but now even a simple change to the Rules & Regulations requires a whole rigmarole of red tape to deal with. The Florida legislature strikes again. I don't know who wins there but the state's HOAs are definitely the losers.
EdC5
(Florida)

Posts:93


06/21/2019 4:51 AM  
Posted By GenoS on 06/20/2019 10:55 PM
Posted By GeorgeS21 on 06/20/2019 6:55 AM
R&Rs are easy to change by the Board and can be tracked via the Board minutes - unlike our current, R&Rs, which are not even dated, I would have a block of information at the bottom noting when they were changed and the mechanism.

Not anymore in Florida, George. FS 720 was changed last year and "Rules & Regulations" is now defined as one of the "governing documents". Amendments to the governing documents now include any changes to the Rules & Regulations, and no amended document takes effect until it's recorded with the county.

It used to be easy but now even a simple change to the Rules & Regulations requires a whole rigmarole of red tape to deal with. The Florida legislature strikes again. I don't know who wins there but the state's HOAs are definitely the losers.




Thanks for that post.

Edward J Cooke, CMCA, LCAM
EdC5
(Florida)

Posts:93


06/21/2019 4:57 AM  
I wish this bloody thing had an edit feature!

Anyway, as a CAM I do like that R&Rs now have to be recorded. I've run across too many situations where new owners are being hit with violations of rules they don't know exist. In fact, in my own association I've never seen the so-called Rules & Regs, and every time I ask the MC for a copy the invariable answer is "We don't have a copy". Now they are just as accessible as all other governing docs. I hope this very quickly is added to the statutes for condos, coops, and MHCs.

On another note, I hope there is a statute for HOAs to have websites to match current condo law quickly as well.

Edward J Cooke, CMCA, LCAM
GenoS
(Florida)

Posts:3135


06/21/2019 9:00 PM  
Posted By EdC5 on 06/21/2019 4:57 AM
Anyway, as a CAM I do like that R&Rs now have to be recorded. I've run across too many situations where new owners are being hit with violations of rules they don't know exist. In fact, in my own association I've never seen the so-called Rules & Regs, and every time I ask the MC for a copy the invariable answer is "We don't have a copy". Now they are just as accessible as all other governing docs. I hope this very quickly is added to the statutes for condos, coops, and MHCs.

It's not a bad idea, it's just that the legislature is so ham-fisted with its half-baked ideas. It would be better if there was a 1-year deadline for recording changes to the Rules & Regulations. A board could accumulate changes and file them all at once for the preceding year.

We have a few new homeowners in the last 6 months that have hung multiple birdfeeders from the trees in back of their houses. All of the trees are on common property. But we've never had a problem until now. The birds like them but the debris falls to the ground and has been attracting all kinds of critters, including rats. So the board wants to make a new Rule: No birdfeeders anywhere on the property. It would have been a simple change 2 years ago but now it has to first be reviewed by an attorney and then filed with the county before it takes effect. Technically it doesn't have to be reviewed by an attorney but people here are skittish about recording anything in the county's official records unless the attorney reviews it first.

As for the website requirement for condos, another good idea that doesn't go far enough in my opinion. It wouldn't affect my HOA because we have less than 150 units (homes) and that's the threshold below which a condo is exempt from having to have one.
KellyM3
(North Carolina)

Posts:1418


06/22/2019 6:56 AM  
This is the cleanest solution. Plus, it leaves open the option for future boards to eliminate and cancel committees that aren't performing or, for whatever reason, become functionally obsolete due to streamlined processes.
KellyM3
(North Carolina)

Posts:1418


06/22/2019 6:56 AM  
This is the cleanest solution. Plus, it leaves open the option for future boards to eliminate and cancel committees that aren't performing or, for whatever reason, become functionally obsolete due to streamlined processes.
KerryL1
(California)

Posts:6541


06/22/2019 10:37 AM  
CA Corporations code contains some materials about committees. Our bylaws say hardly anything except that a nomination committee is required. Our CC&Rs say an ARC is required.

As JohnC points out, and CA corp. codes too, the Board is responsible in every way for committees, their members, the comm. chair, charters, et. You might want this in your bylaws.

There's an excellent article today in "HOA Homefront," a syndicated column by K. Richardson, an HOA attorney, about committees.

With Tim, committee formation and disbandment should simply be done by board decisions at open meetings. I wouldn't get too specific about particular committees in any formal gove.

Our HOA has a doc called "Guidelines for All Committees," which is very helpful in showing Owners the board's expectations about the roles of committees, their formations, duties, reports, etc. We have charters for specific committees.
JohnC46
(South Carolina)

Posts:8563


06/22/2019 10:52 AM  
Kerry

Welcome back.
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