rebuttal of CAI's, "Issues and Perspectives" – pt 2

 The following is part 2 of a rebuttal of certain assertions and claims found in the CAI online “brochure”, Issues and Perspectives.

2.  Community Association Governance (from CAI’s Issues and Perspectives brochure)

Tip O’Neill, longtime Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, coined the phrase “All politics is local.” He wasn’t speaking of community associations, but he could have been. There’s nothing more local and, therefore, more accountable than those elected by their neighbors to the governing boards of homeowner associations, condominiums and cooperatives.


Comment:  This position of true direct democracy at work flies in the face of CAI’s support of the top-down imposition of UCIOA, a model HOA “constitution” written by the legal-academic aristocrats, without public input.  It flies in the face of  the developer imposed declaration offered to homebuyers on a “take-it-or-leave-it basis.”  And, CAI has not opposed local planning board mandates of HOA governance over a new subdivision, which do not provide for protections of individual rights and freedoms, in contrast to the US Constitution.


This section in the brochure does not deal with real issues of HOA governance, but contains more “selling points”.




 3.  A Brief History of Association-Governed Communities and CAI (from CAI’s Issues and Perspectives brochure)


a.  In 1964, the Urban Land Institute (ULI) published Technical Bulletin No. 50: The Homes Association Handbook, the first systematic study of planned communities. The principal author was Byron Hanke, one of CAI’s eventual founders.


Comment:   After bringing this important document to light several years ago, CAI has finally acknowledged its existence. (I believe this 400-odd age handbook  can still be found on


b.  CAI believes homeowner and condominium associations can and should exceed the expectations of their residents. It’s that vision that drives CAI’s commitment to be the preeminent worldwide center of knowledge and expertise for people seeking excellence in the governance and management of common-interest communities. CAI inspires excellence by identifying and meeting the evolving needs of the professionals and volunteers who serve associations, by being a trusted forum for the collaborative exchange of knowledge and information, and by helping our members learn, excel and achieve. Our vision is reflected in community associations that become better—even preferred—places to call home.


Comment:  CAI is espousing its personal agenda, without identifying the particulars. What does “CAI believes [HOAs] . . . should exceed the expectations of their residents”?  These expectations are not identified is these alleged expectations are highly suspect based on CAI’s own 2009 “survey” question: Awareness of the Association, Did the fact that your current home is in a community association make you more likely to . . . .”  Consistently over the three reported surveys, some 60%  replied, “No impact.”  According to the survey, the majority appears to have had no expectations.  But, buyers do have the expection of living under and being subject to the US Constitution.  So, what’s CAI’s agenda?

Published in: on March 12, 2010 at 12:11 pm  Comments (1)  

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  1. FYI – Firefox doesn’t recognize the above CAI links for some reason.

    Re local planning approvals of HOA’s – I’m a Planning Commission chair who has fought hard against approving more HOA’s in our small town. I live in one, a gated one, and want to never see another one here. In fact, after our devpt was approved (before we moved here), council voted to change the general plan to disallow gated communities. They fly in the face of neighborliness, and always have HOA’s attached. I’ve created more awareness of HOA dysfunction, and we do now restrict their power when an HOA is chosen as the governing mechanism. There’s one just across the road where the board and one resident are trying extremely hard to push their limits. They actually installed a monstrous, custom, spiked iron gate in violation of both conditions and the GP. They’re daring us to make them take it down. We voted unanimously last night to make them do so, and council will back us up. They also had the audacity to have custom signs made saying the road was for residents and guests only. It is not. They will have to remove those as well.

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