This bill should not be heard in any committee!
It is contradictory and confusing, and ideal for attorney involvement in the expected challenges to the interpretations of the statutes. Also, it is definitely aimed at destroying any vestige of democratic governance in homeowner and condo associations. This bill denies access to the courts.
The Carpenter Hazlewood Delgado & Wood blog of Jan. 18, 2011, written by Scott Carpenter, “HB2441 – CC&R Amendments,” argues: “This change would enable community association to change their documents without onerous approval requirements that count a failure to participate as a ‘no’ vote.” (Emphasis added). The exercise of the democratic right to vote and to protect one’s private property is considered “onerous” by the CAI Legislative Action Committee co-chair, Scott Carpenter.
Carpenter’s Dec. 17, 2010 letter, titled “Bad Documents,” to CAI lobbyist DeMenna proposed a change in the laws. The letter includes HB 2441, verbatim, under the title “Easier to Amend Bad Documents.” This bill did not originate with the bill’s sponsors, but from the CAI lobbying organization that supports not you, the homeowner, but that legal corporate person known as the HOA. The Sponsors are just the vehicle doing CAI’s bidding.
The title of the bill itself simply reads: “homeowners’ associations; declaration amendments,” and the bill extends well beyond just changing the voting requirements to amend the CC&Rs. Some of these changes are good for homeowner protection, but are offset by the draconian attack on homeowner property rights. CAI argues, in Carpenter’s letter to DeMenna, that the proposed voting procedure is just like public voting laws, but fails to provide the necessary public government protections, and ignores the legal fact of the private contract in operation here, the CC&Rs agreement. HB2441 is another top-down imposition of government interference, which otherwise in instances involving the protection of homeowner rights, is vehemently opposed by CAI.
As you read this bill, remember that the courts take the everyday meaning of the words used, and if not clear, or seemingly contradictory, the court will look to intent. Courts have held that if word “x” was not actually stated, then the drafters should have included word “x” if that was their meaning or intent. Read the bill carefully as written, and think how your opponent could challenge the wording in the courts.
The full document with its detailed, 10-point analysis can be found at HB 2441.