AZHOC - Arizona Homeowners Coalition
Voice for homeowner rights and justice.

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Homeowner

Have yet another question and this has to do with surplus funds from your HOA budget. Dennis and I have been discussing it. I’ve discussed it with my Association’s CPA and I guess now the...
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Homeowner

Need some information on how your HOA conducts your Board elections with absentee ballot and in-person voting. It’s actually been years since my community has run their elections in accordance with ARS 33-1812. Shocking. Yes...
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Board of Director Term Limits

What is your coalition’s position on term limits for HOA Board of Directors? Do you think your coalition would have a good chance at persuading legislators in the 2019 legislative session to enact a firm...
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  • From Nick on Board of Director Term Limits

    Dennis,

    Thank you for the detailed and informative reply. So if I understand correctly, if a term limit law were to be enacted in 2019 that limited a Board member’s service to 20 total years, one would have to wait 20 more years from 2019 before a current Board of Director who is in their 20th year of service would be affected by a term limit law due to Article 2 Section 25 of the Arizona Constitution? I personally think 20 years is an excessive amount of time to serve on a Board, especially alongside other long-serving entrenched members who exhibit a bunker mentality. I am familiar with HOA’s that have Board members who have over 20 years of service.

    If a term limit bill was crafted with a high limit threshold for years of service, such as 10 years, I think it would have a good chance of passing. Such a bill would help those rare communities that are small in size, have a low turnover of homeowners and entrenched Boards that are difficult to challenge. Arizona has a very transient population and a generally high turnover rate of homeowners in HOA’s. Most HOA’s in this state are on the medium to large size in number of homeowners and thus a term limit law would not negatively affect the majority of homeowners in HOA’s, because due to these structural factors, there is high probability of a good supply of capable, conscientious Board members willing to serve. I have studied the pros and cons of term limits and that’s why I specifically think a high limit on years of service is a good way to strike a balance between reducing entrenched Boards and keeping good Board members.

    Again, thank you for your reply and I hope you or others will re-consider drafting such a term limit proposal.

    Go to comment
    2018/09/21 at 11:11 pm
    • From Dennis Legere on Board of Director Term Limits

      Nick;
      Actually if a term limit bill were to be passed it would apply to any board member in office on the effective date of the law. So if on that effective date a board member had already served for 5 years with 2 year individual terms and the established term limit was 6 years than he could not run for a new term after his current term expired. The retroactive prohibition in a case like this would say that if a board member had already served 7 years with two year terms and the term limit was 6 years, he/she would not be forced out of office prior to the expiration of his/her current term. He/she could not run for an additional term however after this current term expired.
      In addition any typical term limit bill would also establish how many years an individual would have to wait until they can run again.
      The state has 8 year term limits for Senators and Representatives in their respective house, but what many of them do is simply run for the other house and start over again. Legislators in this way can serve for life if they keep getting elected.

      I don’t disagree with your position, like I said earlier I actually drafted a term limit proposal at one time, however I believe that there are higher priorities that need to be addressed to protect true transparency in association transactions, duties and responsibilities of boards, election integrity, enforcement of rules and regulation , resale disclosure, and foreclosure protections and so forth. Let’s see what we can get passed in the next couple of sessions before we re-look at the value of this issue. Remember if we can get honest and free elections the people can today establish their own term limits by simply not voting for board members who are not meeting the needs of the community.

      Go to comment
      2018/09/22 at 6:42 am
  • From Dennis Legere on Board of Director Term Limits

    Nick
    First of all, it is against the Arizona Constitution to make any bill retroactive. I debated a term limit bill for some time now and last year actually drafted such a bill. I decided not to attempt to get it sponsored because of the negative aspect of such a bill. While term limits will surely help communities with board members that are entrenched and lose sight of the needs and desires of their community members, but it will also force good conscientious board members off the boards. Finding and keeping good board members is vital to community health. I decided to approach this issue from a different direction. This year I have a bill proposal for the 2019 session that will force association to hold elections every year for any board position who’s term has expired especially in those communities with exorbitant quorum requirement. Many communities have used the inability to meet a quorum requirement in the initial attempt to satisfy the annual member meeting requirement as a way to actually avoid having an election. We have some communities where a quorum of the board has been in place for 17 years without ever holding an election. This core group then fills any vacancies by appointments of their friends who once again are never subjected to an election. My bill will force any board member off the board after his/her term has expired unless they are re-elected by the members. I have also address the process of removing board members, if they are not meeting the needs of the community. While this particular bill will do many other things, and will be our top priority for this upcoming legislative session, it will be one of 4 comprehensive bills all aimed at empowering the Arizona homeowners to provide checks and balances in the governance and operation of their communities. We will provide for consequences for any board or management company that fails to comply with the law, without overburdening any community boards who are really trying to serve their communities. I’ll be providing legislative updates on the details of each of these bill soon to all our members, and will post the full language of each bill on this site once they are introduced by a legislator.

    Please allow me the opportunity in this post to remind everyone that while I spend a tremendous amount of time and energy developing these proposal and promoting these bills face to face with every legislator that I can, I still need a membership of sufficient numbers to get the legislator’s attention. Joining our coalition is free, but is essential to truly be able to present our case against the highly funded HOA industry represented by CAI and AACM. Each of those organizations spend hundreds of thousands of dollars every year supporting elections campaigns and paying for their highly respected professional lobbying firms. While we work for the 3.5 million homeowners in this state until our numbers actually approach the 10,000 member level , the Industry money will speak louder than our membership to these politicians. Not to say in any way that politicians are bought but rather until we can demonstrate with our membership following that we truly represent a voice of constituents in their districts we will not be taken seriously. So please if anyone out their sees our site or this post take 2 minutes to join our numbers and help us help all of you. Tell your friends and neighbors about us and help spread the word.
    Thank You
    Dennis

    Go to comment
    2018/09/21 at 6:09 pm
  • From Dennis Legere on Bed Bugs

    Elaine,
    That all depends of what your CC&R’s say. if it can be proved that occupants of a unit caused an insect infestation that impacted other units and the CC&R’s allow for such provisions that the aggrieving unit owner could be required to pay for the treatment. If the CC&R’s address these type of things then the association would most likely take action to treat the infestation and bill the owner of the unit that initiated to issue. Like all things in an Condo, the board is usually not compelled to take action, but it they do take their responsibility seriously they will and if they cannot figure out who caused the infestation simply bill all the unit owners impacted for that service. The laws allow a board to assess either the individual unit owner that caused the impact to common property, or if that cannot be positively determined all the unit owners impacted by the issue for that treatment. While beds are not common property the bed bugs would not be limited to simply the beds in a unit and will migrate from unit to unit,
    If I were you I would never wait for a board to take action on an issue like this I would treat my unit as soon as possible and if the association attempts to take action in the future show them that you have already taken action and they need not treat your unit unless you want them to again.

    Go to comment
    2018/09/20 at 2:07 pm
  • From Dennis Legere on Restrictions to my property

    Jerry,

    I’d need to see the declaration and the specific provision that allows private property to be used and maintained by the community. This clearly is an unusual situation. While the association is free to establish rules on the use of common property including permitting and identification they would not normally have authority to establish rules on the use of private property even if that property was maintained by the community. Requiring anyone to wear a badge on private property could never be construed as an architectural standard like paint color or length of front laws grass. If you have your CC&R’s electronically send them to me at help@azhoc.org and I’ll look them over and get back to you.

    Go to comment
    2018/09/17 at 6:51 pm
  • From Evan on Ground coverage in front of house

    Awesome insight. Thanks Dennis. Much appreciated

    Go to comment
    2018/09/07 at 11:22 am
  • From Evan on Ground coverage in front of house

    Thank you Dennis! This is extremely helpful.

    Evan

    Go to comment
    2018/09/03 at 10:27 am
  • From Dennis Legere on Any examples of conversion to Improvement District?

    Dale ;
    To the best on my knowledge there has never been a conversion of an existing HOA to an Improvement District. First the municipality would have to allow improvement districts in their zoning ordinances, and to my knowledge Gilbert is the only municipality to do that. We tried to pass legislation to require municipalities to allow this option for developers in their zoning regulations for two years and were not successful at getting those bills passed. This coming session we will focus on other priorities and go after this in another year. To make this happen the community would have to take a vote to end the association, then ask for the municipality to accept their community as an improvement district. The association would have to vote to transfer title for all the common property to the municipality and to change the CC&R’s to eliminate the association and assessments to an improvement district and an advolurum tax to pay for the maintenance and upkeep of the common property. Not an easy process but in our perspective a worthwhile objective for many communities.
    If you have any more question just let me know
    Dennis

    Go to comment
    2018/08/30 at 1:07 pm
  • From Dennis Legere on Ground coverage in front of house

    Evan;
    It would be difficult for me to answer without seeing your ACH guidelines /rules. Your arguments are sound and reasonable. Basically the association has no right to require you to plant a specific number of plants unless your written and approved ACH guidelines specifically call for an exact number of plants and those guideline are uniformly imposed on all homeowners. If it does not have that specific guideline then they cannot impose such a restriction because they do not like your plans or you. That is what is called acting in an “Arbitrary and Capricious” manner. The association has a duty to “treat all members fairly” and acting arbitrarily does not satisfy that duty. If they question that they have any such duty tell them that they should first look up Arizona Appellate court decision of Tierra Ranchos HOA v Kitchukov.
    Remember this is your property and the association cannot apply any restriction on your use of your property unless specifically authorized in your CC&R’s and documents in approved community documents.
    If you need more help contact me directly.

    Thanks

    Dennis

    Go to comment
    2018/08/30 at 12:58 pm
  • From Patricia Cowan on Important Things to Remember

    This is very good information Dennis and after reviewing it again I am reminded of the important information here, Thank you for all the hard work you are doing to improve the relationship between Management Companies, BofD’s and Members. FYI, another word for Voluntary Associations is Neighborhood Associations. Too many in Tucson want to make the association mandatory. I think all the word tricks should be known to the naive buyer or HO.

    Go to comment
    2018/06/18 at 8:51 pm
  • From c j on Access to HOA records

    Your “lot info” can usually be foundon the financials given to the board members. Ask a member. If your HOA maintains a web site ( as mine does ), that is another avenue for easy access. Go to a board meeting & ask questions !

    Go to comment
    2018/05/30 at 9:09 am