Q. I must disagree with one of your answers about a manager acting as the president. This is ridiculous. A manager can run the meeting if the board so chooses but cannot be president if he or she is not a member of the association. Will you reprint the correct answer? R.C., Naples
In the statutes there is no requirement for a director or officer to be a member of the association or a resident fulltime or part-time. Your documents may have such a requirement, however this is an infrequent one. Therefore, almost any person can be elected to the board of directors and serve as an officer.
I do not recommend that a manager serve as president; my reference was that the manager would then have too much authority. However, I have known associations that have the need for the manager to take control and operate as president.
In one such example, the board and most of the owners of the small condominium were professionals (doctors, attorneys, elective officers for large corporations). These men and women did not have time to manage the affairs of the condominium. They met once a year and gave executive decisions to the manager, who was elected as the president. Legally, there is nothing wrong with this operation.
As to conducting meetings as the chairperson, most managers are trained to be fair and follow the agenda and keep the meeting on time. You do want short meetings that address all the agenda items, don’t you?
As to conducting meetings as the chairperson, most managers are trained to be fair and follow the agenda and keep the meeting on time. You do want short meetings that address all the agenda items, don’t you?Q. I would like to have the state rules for our board duties. I would like to know the rules as a resident and board. Can you guide me how I can obtain this information?
M.K, Weeki Wachee
There is no one-source document. The answer is not complicated but it does require effort. I could say simply, do unto others as you would like them to do to you. Keep in mind that the association should not be a “mom and pop” operation but operated as a business. That means the board will have the same requirements as any large commercial corporation board of directors. While the statutes for the type association, such as FS 718, and the corporation statutes, such as FS 617, provide some of the answers, your association documents will also have requirements for the board of directors and officers. The state has published a pamphlet called “Condominium Unit Owners’ Rights And Responsibilities” but it applies to HOA as well.
Directors are responsible for the operations and maintenance of the common areas and association. Officers and management have duties that are defined in the statutes, the documents and the instructions of the directors. In simple terms, the directors are responsible and the officers only have duties. The pamphlet says that owners are responsible to pay their fees on time, respect and use the common areas properly, comply with the statues and documents. It also says that an owner should attend and participate in meetings, volunteer to work on committees and serve on the board, vote on issues presented and at elections, cooperate with other owners in community life, bring any concerns or problems to the attention of the board, and be familiar with the statutes and the association’s documents.
The one thing that is not in the pamphlet is the final responsibility to be a member of the community. In the end, the owners are the ones who pay for the maintenance and operations. If the board fails, then the owners must pay.
Q. During a board workshop, it was established that Robert’s Rules of Order would be used. During the meeting, a vote was taken and a motion approved with no input from the members present. Discussion is allowed only after the meeting. I would appreciate your thoughts and recommendations on this circumstance.
While the board is allowed to set meeting policies and Robert’s is one of the options, it needed to follow its own policies. However, if it was called a workshop, in the eyes of the state statutes, it was an illegal meeting. If a quorum of directors met to discuss association business, it was a board meeting. If less than a quorum of the directors met, it could be considered a committee meeting. Usually, committees do not make final decisions or take final votes. Any board can set the meeting policy but it should also follow its own policies.