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Jane Doe Deer
Jane Doe Deer, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 3864
Experience:  Atty. 24+ years; Plain English explanations of Landlord/Tenant & Purchase/Sale
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These questions have to do with non-profit corporations, homeowner

Customer Question

These questions have to do with non-profit corporations, homeowner associations in particular. It also has to do with parliamentary procedure if the HOAs Bylaws are silent on this.

I’ve seen meetings of the membership, run by the board, where the members are allowed to make motions from the floor, vote, and have it be binding. It seems as if that usurps the authority of the board, effectively turning a republic into a democracy.

If the Bylaws are silent on this point, or only reference that meetings should be run using parliamentary procedure, is it appropriate for motions from members to be allowed with a vote taken of the members?

Does the subject matter? Say, would it be okay to get a general idea of how the members present would like to see something happen, as a survey would, but not have it binding on the board?

What about votes on budget, assessment levels (dues), Rules & Regulations, etc.?

Thank you for your time.

Janice
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  Jane Doe Deer replied 3 years ago.

Thank you for being a return Just Answer customer. I hope that you don't mind that I switched your question out of "chat," since you were off line.

 

I really had a laugh, and HAD to take your question, since my HOA was like yours when I first joined, in 1989. They used to have meetings that lasted six or seven hours because of silly stuff, similar to yours.

 

One thing that our Bylaws do (now) is name a particular parliamentarian guide by which to run meetings. It also was a matter of strong leadership on our Board to get things improved.

 

As it sounds as though you well know, yes, it's supposed to run like a Republic, not a Democracy. HOA's, city councils, etc only allow motions from Board or council members.

 

Who votes on rules, etc., will be determined by your CCR's and bylaws. However, even if only a Board can vote on something, it's always a good idea to submit major proposals to the membership for review and comment - whether or not the Board is required to do so.

 

You've probably already done this, but have you reviewed Colorado's statutes? Some statutes specify how votes must be conducted for certain facets of HOA life, such as special assessments, etc.

 

I would love to write some more if I can be of any more help!

 

Jane

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Jane,

Thank you so much for answering. Lots of oddities with HOAs, I'm sure you've found. I was on the board, did various training through CAI (http://www.caionline.org/), worked for a friend in her small HOA management company (single-family homes), then took it over from her after she no longer wanted it. I don't require that I do all of the management work - only the portions that a self-managed HOA don't want to do themselves.

I hadn't noticed the Q was in chat so don't mind at all. Should I look to see if there is other information that could help me from what was said?

I had one HOA that has written some of this stupidity into their Bylaws - actually, they ended our contract because they don't have the funds & can't raise the dues without a vote by everyone. Their bright idea is usually to rope more volunteers into doing the work. I've done only covenant enforcement for them, which is something that shouldn't be done neighbor against neighbor. When they started with Jeanne, my friend, I hear they had 20 volunteers doing cov enf & had it into all kinds of a dog's breakfast. Guess they're headed back to that. I'm seeing if I can help them extricate themselves, eventually, so they're running things better.

The two board members who came to pick up the records did give me a hug before they left.

I need to look more thoroughly through CCIOA & the more recent revisions on these points (Colo Common Interest Ownership Act). I also need to look over exactly how they've structured their votes to involve the members rather than having the board be leaders & lead them out of this morass. Hoping I can see a way through to get the board to be leaders again - then hire me back to do their cov enf again.

Anyway, I'm not going to hit the ACCEPT button yet as there might be some more that you'd want to add.

Maybe I should copy some of their revisions into a next question (I'm out of time now for my free month - not sure how you guys get paid, though). Is reviewing text from Bylaws something you guys can do or is that beyond the scope for the attorneys on this web site?

Thank you for all your help, your laughs, and understanding!

Janice

Expert:  Jane Doe Deer replied 3 years ago.

Reviewing specific bylaws is usually beyond the scope.

 

Would you like me to opt out? I really don't have anything else to add. In fact, in this instance I think you know more than I do!

 

My best,

 

Jane

Jane Doe Deer, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 3864
Experience: Atty. 24+ years; Plain English explanations of Landlord/Tenant & Purchase/Sale
Jane Doe Deer and 9 other Real Estate Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Your insight was appreciated!
Expert:  Jane Doe Deer replied 3 years ago.

Thank you so much for accepting, and for the bonus!

 

Please write back if I can be of further help.

 

My best,

 

Jane

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