HOA Bill of Rights misstated in Private Neighborhoods

On p. 102, Part 1, Ch. 4, of Robert Nelson’s book, Private Neighborhoods, the author quotes my 2000 address to the Arizona Legislature’s Interim HOA Committee, the “jump-off” event for the following 5 years of homeowner rights advocacy in Arizona.

The author also refers to HOANET as “a group of dissaffected unit owners”, while stating’

“George Staropoli called on the state legislature to adopt a ‘homeowner’s bill of rights’ that would be incorporated automatically in the founding documents of every neighborhood association and provide for ‘legal sanctions against the abuse of these rights by the board of directors'”.

The author then misstates my proposal as if it were a matter of consumer choice for individual associations to choose as they please. He then offers: “Many Americans have in effect chosen a dictatorship.”

Below is an excerpt from my statement of Sept. 7, 2000:

Statement Prepared for presentation to the
Homeowners Association Study Committee Of the Arizona State Legislature
September 7, 2000

Good morning Mr. Chairman. Good morning ladies and gentlemen of the Committee. Once more I reluctantly find myself before the committee to speak against my neighbors and other citizens of Arizona. I don’t relish being here; however, circumstances and events have brought me here.

As in the times of 1776, a small, principled and dedicated group of citizens are seeking a redress of their grievances. They first looked to the existing government, the HOA Board, and having failed to obtain satisfaction therein, must seek other means of redress – a radical change in the concept and legal structure of the homeowner association and its controlling document, the CC&Rs. What is needed is an inclusion of a homeowners Bill of Rights and the removal of such onerous provisions that make the homeowner nothing more than an indentured servant, living at the suffrage of the board – pleased if the board is benevolent; living in fear if the board is oppressive. To quote from the Declaration of Independence,

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.”

That whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or abolish it, and to institute new government . . .”

Continuing my quote,

“In every stage of these oppressions we have petitioned for redress in the most humble of terms; our repeated petitions have been answered only by repeated injury”.

The people of Arizona only wish to be able to present their case before this Committee in a fair and just manner. However, sadly I feel that, because of the composition of the committee they are being asked to justify their grievances before their oppressors; they are being put directly into a trial situation with their “oppressors” sitting in judgment. The homeowners, Arizona citizens in good standing, who find these truths to be self-evident, are being called to justify their complaints without the committee calling for the perpetrators to answer for these repeated acts against them.

Today we seek the replacement of the homeowners association form of totalitarian government as set forth in the CC&Rs. We seek, among other changes to the CC&Rs, the inclusion of a homeowners’ bill of rights, restoring those rights that every American is entitled to and should enjoy in today’s society.

Published in: on November 2, 2005 at 1:08 am  Leave a Comment  

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