California Sen. Wieckowski has sponsored SB 1265 that opens with, emphasis added,
SECTION 1. Section 4801 is added to the Civil Code, to read:
4801. The Legislature hereby finds and declares both of the following:
(a) Common interest developments function as quasi-governmental entities, paralleling in almost every way the powers, duties, and responsibilities of a local government.
(b) As a result, it is the intent of the Legislature for this chapter to ensure that democratic principles and practices are in place with respect to the governance of common interest developments.
The bill addresses my HOA Common Sense, No. 4 on democratic elections. Facing our society and the role of HOAs, people must choose between laissez-faire private government vs. Constitutional government. Many object to state restrictions and CAI promotes unregulated governments without oversight as not being any problem.
Kelly G. Richardson wrote a column in the OC Register proudly proclaiming that he’s CCAL in order to give the appearance of authority and expertness, but fails to mention that he’s CAI true and true or that CCAL is a CAI group. Talk about transparency and propaganda! In it he denies HOAs are quasi-governments, arguing that “This is a dangerous and false statement,” but offers no supporting evidence for his opinion.
Yes, it is dangerous to the current HOA legal scheme supported by state laws that favor the HOA entity over the rights and freedoms of their members, who are the people of California. As I’ve maintained, HOAs are de facto private governments operating outside our system of constitutional democratic government and not recognized by the state. That means they exist and function like public government but state legislatures refuse to acknowledge that fact!
If the HOA wants to make its own laws, and most states give a large degree of freedom to local municipalities, especially under their “home rule” laws, why isn’t CAI promoting this constitutional method for HOA governments? In reality, CAI is subversive seeking to undermine constitutional government by playing on the emotions of the people.
And in what amounts to fearmongering, both Richardson and the California HOA lobbying entity, CAI-CLAC, make the following false arguments, that “It also strips local community associations of their local control as to whom can serve on their boards” and Richardson’s own, “This bill would bar any HOA board candidacy eligibility requirements.” The Evil Empire alleges that the bill changes provisions regarding who can be a board member and removes current HOA conditions for board membership; such as having a criminal record, or behind in dues, etc. A reading of the bill shows no such alterations of existing law that affect membership requirements or voting rights. See Section 5105 of the bill.
This bill may not be perfect and not please everybody. No comprehensive bill in a democracy will do so. What it does do is to make a strong case for the defects in the private HOA government model in contrast to public government.
I congratulate Senator Wieckowski on sponsoring this very important bill.
- HOA Common Sense: rejecting private government, George K. Staropoli, Amazon Kindle, 2013.
- HOA Homefront: Potentially disastrous HOA bill pending in Sacramento, April 25, 2018.
- Supra, n. 1.
- “April CLAC-TRAC: CAI-CLAC’s 2018 Legislative Positions,” CAI-CLAC newsletter email of April 24, 2018.
- Supra, n. 2.
- See SB-1265 Common interest developments: elections.