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Becker’s Washington Weekly: Week of September 16, 2019

Washington Weekly

 

THE HOUSE

The House is back in session this week beginning on Tuesday as Congress continues work to avoid another government shutdown. The House is expected to begin work on a stopgap funding bill that would extend current government funding past the October 1st deadline in order to give lawmakers more time to work through the appropriations process. As part of this stopgap measure, the House is expected to include language that safeguards the Administration’s farmer bailout program used to mitigate the impact on American farmers due to the ongoing trade dispute with China. There are also a number of important hearings scheduled for this week including:

  • On Tuesday, the Veterans Affairs Committee will hold a hearing titled “Critical Impact: How Barriers to Hiring at VA Affect Patient Care and Access.”
  • On Tuesday, the Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing titled “Presidential Obstruction of Justice and Abuse of Power,” with testimony from former Trump Campaign Manager Corey Lewandowski.
  • On Wednesday, the Disability Assistance and Memorial Affairs Subcommittee of the Veterans Affairs Committee will hold an oversight hearing titled “Update on VA Contracted Exams, Quality Review Process, and Service to Rural Veterans.
  • On Wednesday, the Water Resources and Environment Subcommittee of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee will hold a hearing on “The Administration’s Priorities and Policy Initiatives Under the Clean Water Act.”
  • On Wednesday the Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee of the Veterans Affairs Committee will hold a hearing examining VA’s overpayments and debt collection practices.
  • On Wednesday, the Financial Services Committee will hold a markup of pending legislation.

THE SENATE

The Senate was back to work on Monday this week and began by continuing consideration of John Rakolta’s nomination to serve as the United States Ambassador to the UAE. Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pension Committee Republicans are expected to meet this week to iron out differences in surprise billing legislation being pushed by Senators Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Bill Cassidy (R-LA). The Senate Judiciary Committee is expected to hold an oversight hearing on Tuesday on the enforcement of antitrust laws with Administration officials testifying. There are also a number of key Appropriations Committee mark ups scheduled for this week, including:

  • Tuesday morning there will be a Subcommittee markup of the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development (T-HUD) funding bill.
  • Tuesday afternoon there will be a Subcommittee markup of the Financial Services and General Government (FSGG) funding bill.
  • Also on Tuesday afternoon, there will be a Subcommittee markup of the Agriculture appropriations bill.
  • Thursday morning, the full committee is expected to markup the T-HUD, FSGG, and Agriculture funding bills.

THE ADMINISTRATION

The U.S. and China will meet in Washington this week to continue trade negotiations. This is amid reports that the Trump Administration is considering a limited trade agreement that would delay and even rollback previously announced tariffs on Chinese imports in exchange for commitments from China on intellectual property and agricultural purchases.

President Donald Trump had a busy day on Monday, meeting with Bahrain’s Crown Prince Salman bin Hamad Al-Khalifa and presenting the Medal of Freedom to retired New York Yankees pitcher Mariano Rivera at the White House before departing for a campaign rally in New Mexico in the evening.

On Tuesday, the President will be in California for a series of fundraisers for his campaign. Also on Tuesday, FTC Chairman Joseph Simons and the head of the Department of Justice’s Antitrust Division Makan Delrahim are set to testify at the aforementioned Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on the enforcement of antitrust law.

Later this week, Vice President Mike Pence and SEC Chairman Jay Clayton are each scheduled to deliver remarks on the U.S. economy at the Delivering Alpha conference in New York City. On Friday, President Trump will host Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison at the White House for meetings and a State Dinner. On Sunday, President Trump will accompany the Prime Minister on a tour of an Australian-owned manufacturing plant in Wapakoneta, Ohio before heading to Houston, Texas for an event with Indian Prime Minister Narenda Modi to tout a planned trade agreement between the U.S. and India.

Brought to you by the Federal Lobbying Team at Becker & Poliakoff

Becker New Jersey Community Update for September 2019

Becker’s New Jersey Community Update newsletter features recent news and updates that we think you may find of interest.

September’s issue includes a spotlight article from Martin Cabalar and Matthew Meyers. David Ramsey and Robert Rabinowitz were both quoted in big publications. Arnold J. Calabrese, Tana Bucca, Matthew Meyers, and Karl Meth attended a wine, whiskey, and cigar tasting event and Becker’s Karl Meth, David Dockery, Jie Chengying Xiu, Brian Daughney, Robert Rabinowitz, and Victor DiGioia made it on the jumbotron at Yankee stadium. Karl Meth has a CAI Expo and Conference coming up, while Martin Cabalar will be a speaker at the Community Law Summit. Click below for all the updates!

Click here to view the newsletter!

“How much can be charged in transfer fees?” Naples Daily News

Q: How much can a condominium association charge to review and approve a lease application received from a proposed annual renter?  Can the same fee be charged for a seasonal renter? G.F.

A: Section 718.112(2)(i) of the Condominium Act states that no transfer fee shall be made by an association or its agent (e.g. management company) in connection with the sale, mortgage, lease, sublease, or other transfer of a unit unless the association is required to approve such transfer and a fee for such approval is provided for in the declaration, articles of incorporation, or bylaws.  This statute goes on to state that a transfer fee must be preset and may not exceed $100 per applicant and a husband/wife or parent/dependent child is considered one applicant.  If the lease is a renewal with the same lessee then the association cannot impose another transfer fee.

Most association governing documents that authorize transfer approval fees make no distinction between annual renters and seasonal renters.  If the governing documents do make a distinction between the transfer fees charged to annual renters and seasonal renters then the monetary amounts contained in the governing documents should be followed (as long as the monetary cap referenced above is not exceeded).

Q: My Naples homeowners association is in a dispute with our landscaping company. The landscaping company ultimately filed suit against the association in Orange County court in Orlando?  Don’t they have to file the lawsuit in Collier County court since that is where the association is located? T.K.

A: The terms of the landscaping contract may, and most contracts do, set forth the “venue” for adjudication of disputes (the County where lawsuits will be heard).  If the contract calls for the venue to be Orange County then the landscaping company can file the lawsuit there even though it is nearly 200 miles from your community.

Every community association should closely review any contract it plans to sign so that the board is aware of provisions contained therein, including venue.  My typical advice is to insist that venue be the county in which the community is located.  Having to fight a legal battle in a courtroom far away can make an already difficult situation more burdensome for a variety of obvious reasons including the need to travel and retain local counsel who may not have a relationship with your association.

Q: One of the directors on the board at my condominium association is very rude and disruptive at board meetings.  Nothing gets done because of the chaos he causes.  How do we get him recalled?  P.T.

A: Section 718.112(2)(j) of Florida Condominium Act states that any member of the board may be recalled and removed from office with or without cause by a vote or agreement in writing by a majority of the voting interests.  There are specific provisions governing the recall process outlined in the Condominium Act and the Florida Administrative Code and the Division of Florida Condominiums has promulgated forms which are available on line and which must be used when pursuing a recall.  These requirements should be closely reviewed by the persons pursuing the recall and the directors who are the subject of the recall effort.

Attorney David G. Muller is a shareholder with the law firm of Becker & Poliakoff, P.A., Naples (www.beckerlawyers.com). The information provided herein is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The publication of this column does not create an attorney-client relationship between the reader and Becker & Poliakoff, P.A. or any of our attorneys. Readers should not act or refrain from acting based upon the information contained in this article without first contacting an attorney, if you have questions about any of the issues raised herein. The hiring of an attorney is a decision that should not be based solely on advertisements or this column.

This article originally appeared in the Naples Daily News.

“Hurricane Shutters Can Be Regulated,” News-Press

hurricane shuttersQ: I understood that Florida law permitted a unit owner in a condominium to install hurricane shutters to protect their unit. I was recently told by my association that only a specific type of shutter could be installed and that any other type of shutter was prohibited including putting plywood over my windows. Can the association limit my rights to protect my unit? (M.W., via e-mail)

A: Yes. Under Section 718.113(5) of the Florida Condominium Act, each board must adopt hurricane shutter specifications for each building within each condominium operated by the association which shall include color, style, and other factors deemed relevant by the board. The law goes on to say that an association cannot prevent an owner from installing shutters if they comply with the specifications adopted by the board.

The specifications can limit the type of shutters that can be installed, as long as the specifications comply with the applicable building code. Therefore, your association can require that if owners install hurricane shutters, that they install a certain type of shutter, and prohibit the installation of all other shutters.

Q: My question is about condominium website requirements and what and when documents must be posted. Must the association post the agenda and also bids, proposals, and any other document being considered at a board meeting, before the board meeting, so that owners attending the meeting are well informed? (C.G., via e-mail)

A: As discussed in previous columns, the new law only applies to associations managing a condominium with 150 or more units. Therefore, many associations are exempt from the law and do not have to have a website, and can decide its contents if they choose to do so.

Where applicable, the statute requires posting a list of bids received within the past year and summaries or complete copies of bids for materials, equipment, or services which exceed $500, must be maintained on the website for 1 year. The law does not specify how soon after such documents are received by the association they have to be posted, I suspect the law would require within a “reasonable” time.

Conversely, notice of membership meetings (and the agenda) must be posted no later than 14 days before the meeting. Any document that will be considered or voted on by the members must be posted at least 7 days in advance.

Board meeting notices and agendas must be posted at least 48 continuous hours before the board meeting except in an emergency, or at least 14 days prior to the meeting if a non-emergency special assessment or an amendment to the rules regarding unit use will be considered at the board meeting. Documents pertaining to special assessments and unit use rules must also be posted at least 14 days prior to the meeting.

Although the statute contains a number of posting deadlines, it does not contain a general deadline as to how soon after the association receives a document it has to post it. Therefore, while logic would dictate that documents that the board will be considering at a meeting should be posted on the website before the meeting, it may not be a strict legal requirement. However, as you note, posting these documents would further the statutory goal of permitting owners to be informed about the operation of their association.

“Reduce the Stress of Election Season,” FLCAJ

As Floridians begin to see the proverbial light at the end of the summer heat wave tunnel, the specter of election season begins to rise over community association managers and boards of directors. As most community associations hold their annual meetings, elections, and budget meetings toward the end of the calendar year, it is important to keep in mind all the details that have to be straightened out weeks, and even months, before those nail-biting, hours-long elections take place. The Florida Condominium Act requires that residential condominium associations send out their first notice of the annual meeting and elections not less than 60 days prior to the election. Once the notice is sent, the clock starts for a myriad of deadlines and paperwork that require advance planning. For-getting to check one of the items off the list could lead to having to start the whole process all over again, which can lead to increased costs and confusion for the association.

The first notice of the annual meeting and election should be a simple document. It must contain the name and correct mailing address of the association and the date of the meeting. However, if your community intends to have electronic voting, the administrative code requires the first notice to also disclose the procedure and deadline to consent to electronic voting if the board of administration has provided for and authorized an online voting system. The problem is that the statutes require a board to approve the availability of electronic voting by a board resolution that must be adopted at a meeting that was noticed at least 14 days in advance of the meeting. In plain English, in order for the first notice to state that electronic voting will be available at the annual meeting, the association must have decided that it would allow electronic voting in general at least before the first notice is sent. This means that a notice for a board meeting to decide the issue of electronic voting and the online voting system must have been sent at least two weeks before the date that the first notice of an annual meeting and election is sent out.

Also, the association needs to decide on a vendor. The statutes require that electronic voting take place pursuant to a number of different requirements. For example, the election of directors must take place in a manner in which the vote of the owner is separated from the owner’s name (to preserve the anonymity of the vote in the same way the two-envelope system protects anonymity). Not every online voting system is in compliance with Florida laws, so carefully review the requirements and ensure that whichever system you use does comply. Bottom line, if your community is considering online voting and hasn’t started this process, it should do so now.

Forty days before the meeting, the residents who wish to be candidates in the election must submit a notice of intent. The association should prepare a receipt form that can be sent or handed to the owners upon receiving the notice of intent. This will ensure that the association includes only those owners who submitted notices of intent to be candidates properly and in a timely manner and the potential candidates have evidence of such proper and timely submission.

The 40-day deadline is also the deadline for candidates to become eligible for the election. The Florida Condominium Act sets out a number of eligibility requirements. Among these is that the candidate owes no money to the association, that he or she has not been previously suspended or removed from the board by the Division, and that he or she is not a felon (unless his or her civil rights have been restored for at least five years). Before the manager or the board places a person’s name on the ballot, an eligibility check should be conducted to make sure the candidates meet the requirements in the law. The candidates must be eligible on the 40th day before the election in order to have their names placed on the ballot.

In addition, most condominiums have requirements in their declaration of condominium, bylaws, or articles of incorporations that the board of directors be composed of only “members” or (owners). In other words, before putting the names of candidates on a ballot, the association or its manager needs to verify eligibility as well as possible. Taking the time to update deeds or ownership records, ensuring that the accounting is up to date, and checking that the candidates meet those requirements is important.

If a name of a candidate who is not actually eligible is placed on a ballot that is mailed out or delivered with the second notice of annual meeting and election, the Florida Administrative Rules would require a new, revised mailing be sent out. If it is too late at that time to deliver another mailing 14 days before the meeting, then the association should reschedule the meeting.

Thirty-five days before the election is the deadline for candidates to submit their information sheets with any information that they may want to have mailed out to the members with the ballots. Failure to add any document submitted on time will also require a new mailing to be sent out. If it is too late at that time to send another mailing 14 days before the meeting, then the association should reschedule the meeting.

Many condominium documents have extended budget meeting notice requirements. Although the law requires the budget meeting notice be sent out a minimum of 14 days before the meeting, many condominiums (especially older condominiums) require budget meeting notices be sent out not less than 30 days before the meeting. This means that proposed budgets and any voting documents related to budgets (like reserves waivers) must be sent out at that time as well. In fact, many of these older condominium documents also require 30 days’ notice for any member meeting. If your condominium plans on voting on the budget at the annual meeting, and you planned on combining budget meeting notices with your election notices, your new second meeting notice deadline is now 30 days.

In short, elections require quite a bit of preparation well in advance of the actual date. Taking the time now to schedule the deadlines and all the things you have to get done in order to meet them will make things far less stressful.

Becker’s Washington Weekly: Week of September 9, 2019

Washington Weekly

 

THE HOUSE

The House returns this week from its six-week summer recess with a busy agenda. Monday evening, the House is expected to vote on a series of energy bills, including some that would block oil and gas drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, the Atlantic and Pacific coasts, and the eastern Gulf of Mexico. The House Judiciary Committee is also set to vote this week on a package of special procedures impacting impeachment and investigation related hearings and would potentially allow the panel’s staff counsel to question witnesses. There are also a number of notable committee hearings this week including:

  • On Tuesday, 9/10 the Health Subcommittee of the Energy and Commerce Committee will hold a hearing on improving maternal healthcare.
  • On Tuesday, 9/10 the Joint Economic Committee will hold a hearing on making it more affordable to raise a family.
  • On Wednesday, 9/11 the Health Subcommittee of the Veterans’ Affairs Committee will hold a legislative hearing on a number of proposed bills.
  • On Wednesday, 9/11 the Energy and Commerce Committee will hold a hearing on improving broadband maps.
  • On Thursday, 9/12 the House Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing on the role of data and privacy in competition.

THE SENATE

The Senate also returns from summer recess this week and along with their House counterparts, have three weeks to pass legislation to avoid another government shutdown. In the wake of a number of mass shootings over the recess, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell will face increased pressure to take up gun control legislation but has indicated that he will not act until he receives clear guidance from the White House on what President Trump would be willing to sign off on.

Following the July spending cap agreement reached by Congressional Leadership and the Trump Administration which allows for $1.3 trillion in discretionary funds for FY2020, the Senate Appropriations Committee is expected to unveil topline allocations for the twelve spending bills and begin markups. There will be markups on Tuesday, 9/10 of the Defense and Labor-HHS appropriations bills in their respective subcommittees before a full committee markup of the Defense, Energy & Water Development, State & Foreign Operations, and Labor-HHS bills on Thursday, 9/12.

THE ADMINISTRATION

What originally looked to be a busy and possibly historic week for President Trump has since been significantly scaled back due to last minute cancellation and health issues. Planned negotiations with Afghanistan and Taliban leaders in Camp David this week were cancelled by the President over the weekend. Additionally, a planned Thursday meeting with the emir of Kuwait has been postponed due to the emir’s health issues.

The President is expected to speak at a rally Monday evening in Fayetteville, North Carolina for Dan Bishop, a candidate in Tuesday’s special election in North Carolina. Meanwhile, the Chairman of the SEC, Jay Clayton, is expected to deliver remarks on Monday at the Economic Club of New York. On Wednesday, Acting TSA Deputy Administrator Patricia Cogswell will be on Capitol Hill to discuss oversight of the agency and protecting the nation’s transportation systems. The Treasury Department’s Undersecretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence, Sigal Mandelker, is in the United Arab Emirates this week to meet with the chiefs of the country’s banks and shipping companies as the Trump Administration looks to tighten the sanctions on the Iranian regime.

 

Brought to you by the Federal Lobbying Team at Becker & Poliakoff

 

Attorney Spotlight: Michael E. Boutzoukas

Michael E. Boutzoukas concentrates his practice in the areas of commercial real estate, real estate development, leasing, financing and business transactions. Michael provides clients with general consultation and guidance in legal matters to business clients, leveraging his own transactional experience with the firm’s specialists in taxation, employment law and securities to serve his clients’ needs. Mr. Boutzoukas’ peers call upon him to assist them with their clients’ real estate and business transactional disputes to gain perspective on the best course of resolution.

Donna DiMaggio Berger Appointed to Board of American Lung Association in Florida

Fort Lauderdale, Florida – September 10, 2019 – Becker, a multi-practice commercial law firm with attorneys, lobbyists and other professionals at offices throughout the East Coast, is pleased to announce that Community Association Shareholder Donna DiMaggio Berger has been appointed to the board of the American Lung Association in Florida.

Ms. Berger has been involved for several years in the assistance and promotion of community associations creating smoke free building policies which limit residents and staff’s exposure to second-hand cigarette smoke.

“For tenants and employees of community associations, secondhand smoke exposure poses serious health threats. I am proud to join the board of the American Lung Association in Florida and help them in their quest to make community associations smoke free. This will protect everyone from exposure, save money on repairs, and reduce fire risk for buildings,” said Ms. Berger.

As Founder and Executive Director of Becker’s Community Association Leadership Lobby (CALL), Ms. Berger has led various community association advocacy initiatives, working with legislators and other public policymakers on behalf of those who live, serve, and work in common interest ownership communities.

She has testified before the Florida Legislature regarding community association law and frequently appears on radio talk shows and in print media discussing these issues, including a monthly column in the Miami Herald.

Ms. Berger is a member of the College of Community Association Lawyers (CCAL), a prestigious national organization that acknowledges community association attorneys who have distinguished themselves through contributions to the evolution or practice of community association law and who have committed themselves to high standards of professional and ethical conduct in the practice of community association law. She is also one of only 190 attorneys statewide who is a Board Certified Specialist in Condominium and Planned Development Law.

Ms. Berger has been honored as a member of Florida Trend’s Legal Elite, named a Woman Extraordinaire by South Florida Business Leader and honored at the 4th Annual 100 Outstanding Women of Broward County benefiting the Boys and Girls Club. She has also been recognized by Broward Lawyers Care for her commitment to pro bono service and served as the Pro Bono Legal Advisor for The Broward Coalition from 2008-2011, a not-for-profit organization which represents the interests of approximately 200 Broward County community associations. In addition, she has given seminars and speeches around Florida detailing community association legislative lobbying efforts.

About Becker
Becker, with headquarters in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., is a multi-practice commercial law firm with attorneys, lobbyists and other professionals at offices throughout the East Coast. More information is available at www.beckerlawyers.com

Becker’s Government Law and Lobbying Team Expands in D.C. and Florida: Alfonso Lopez and LaToya Sheals Join

Washington, D.C. and Florida – September 9, 2019 – Becker, a multi-practice commercial law firm with attorneys, lobbyists, and other professionals at offices throughout the East Coast, announced today that Alfonso Lopez and LaToya Sheals have joined the firm as lobbyists in the Government Law and Lobbying practice.

Mr. Lopez joins as a Senior Corporate and Government Relations Consultant in Becker’s Federal Lobbying practice in Washington, D.C. He currently represents the 49th District in the Virginia House of Delegates and serves as the Whip of the Virginia House Democratic Caucus. He has successfully championed legislation creating the Virginia Affordable Housing Trust Fund, established the Small Business Investment Grant Fund, expanded Medicaid coverage to immigrant mothers and children, and raised the cap on nonresidential solar net metering in Virginia.

In 2018, Mr. Lopez created the first Virginia Latino Caucus, which deals with issues within the Latino, immigrant, and New American communities. He serves as the Caucus Co-Chair. In 2015, he founded the Virginia Environment and Renewable Energy Caucus in the Virginia General Assembly and currently serves as its chair.

Ms. Sheals joins Becker’s State Legislative Lobbying team as a Government Relations Consultant based in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. She was most recently the chief of staff and legislative assistant to Florida Senator Victor Torres, who represents the 15th district, encompassing Osceola County and southern Orange County. She received her JD from Thomas M. Cooley Law School and her B.A. and M.P.A. from Florida A&M University.

Becker’s Government Law and Lobbying Practice Chair Bernie Friedman said, “We are thrilled to welcome Alfonso and LaToya to our bipartisan, diverse practice. It’s been an exciting time as Becker has been in growth mode with the addition of Mike Grissom as a Senior Government Relations Director in Tallahassee and Steven Blattner as a Government Relations Consultant in D.C. earlier this year.”

Prior, Mr. Lopez served as the Assistant Administrator for Congressional and Legislative Affairs of the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) in the Obama administration where he helped lead the  effort to pass the Small Business Jobs Act. He was also then-Governor Kaine’s Director of the Virginia Liaison Office in Washington, D.C. He also served as the Governor’s representative to the National Governors Association, Democratic Governors Association, and the Southern Governors Association. Mr. Lopez was the highest ranking Latino in the Kaine Administration and also served as the Deputy Policy Director on Governor-Elect Kaine’s Transition Team. Mr. Lopez received his undergraduate degree from Vassar College and his J.D. from Tulane University in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Ms. Sheals said, “I look forward to collaborating and advocating with Becker’s experienced, bipartisan lobbying practice and assisting clients across Florida.”

Mr. Lopez added, “I know and have worked with several of the lobbyists in Becker’s DC office. They have an excellent client base and enjoy a stellar reputation.”

Government Law and Lobbying has been a core practice for Becker since its founding in 1973. The firm’s team of lawyers and lobbyists includes several who have served in high-level government positions and distinguished themselves in the political and legislative arenas and in state, local, and federal government. The group’s first-hand working knowledge of government, at every level, provides clients with valuable insights, unparalleled access and a deep understanding of the legislative, administrative and regulatory processes to help navigate the maze of government.

About Becker
Becker, with headquarters in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., is a multi-practice commercial law firm with attorneys, lobbyists, and other professionals at offices throughout the East Coast. More information is available at www.beckerlawyers.com

“Water Bills Can Be Split Equally,” News-Press

Q: I recently purchased a condominium unit and discovered that the water bill is paid for by the association for the entire community as part of our assessments. This seems unfair because many of the owners like ourselves only stay in the unit a few months out of the year, while other units are occupied all the time. Is it legal for the condominium association to charge everyone equally for water? (L.Y., via e-mail)

A: Yes, and in fact it may be legally required, depending on the language of your condominium documents.

Many condominium developments have a single master meter for certain utilities. Section 718.115(1)(a) of the Florida Condominium Act provides that unless the allocation of expenses is otherwise addressed in the declaration of condominium, the expenses of any services required by federal, state, or local government law shall be paid by the association as a common expense. This includes fire safety equipment and water and sewer service where a master meter serves the condominium.

Therefore, unless your declaration of condominium provides for some other method of payment for the water service, the law requires that the cost of water billed to a master meter be shared as a common expense for all unit owners.

Q: We have a master property owners’ association and 15 condominium associations under the umbrella of the master association. Each condominium association has its own board. Our condominium has only 8 units and it is almost impossible to get people to serve on our board. Do the term limits apply to these small condominium associations? If so, we will have no one on our board. (M.M., via e-mail)

A: Section 718.112(2)(d)2 of the Florida Condominium Act was amended effective July 1, 2018 to provide that a board member may not serve more than eight 8 consecutive years unless approved by an affirmative vote of unit owners representing two-thirds of all votes cast in the election, or unless there are not enough eligible candidates to fill the vacancies on the board at the time of the vacancy. I have addressed this issue in several of my columns, which are available on line. (Agency Revisits Term Limit Issue; June 10, 2019), (Term Limits Continue to Cause Confusion; December 17, 2018), (Board Member Term Limit Law Sparks More Controversy; October 14, 2018) and (New Term Limit Law Not Retroactive: August 19, 2018).

The term limit law does not apply where the number of candidates running for the board is less than or equal to the number of vacant seats that need to be filled. In such a case, and regardless of whether a current board member has already served eight 8 or more consecutive years on the board, he or she is permitted to continue running for the board. That would seem to resolve your problem./

While the law allows associations governing 10 or fewer units to “opt out” of the default “voting and election procedures” in the statute, it is not clear that this would extend to term limits.  Your community may also want to investigate the concept of a “merger” of the various associations within your development.