“Notice of Board Meeting Must Include Agenda” – News-Press

“Notice of Board Meeting Must Include Agenda” – News-Press

Q: The board of directors of my condominium association recently voted on an issue that was not on the posted agenda. Following the meeting, the board realized that this was an error and there is a question as to how to correct the mistake. Should the board address this at the next board meeting and vote to undo what they voted on? (S.G., via e-mail)

A: Section 718 112(2)(c) of the Florida Condominium Act requires that notice of board meetings be posted on the condominium property at least 48 hours in advance (certain notices must be posted and sent to all owners 14 days in advance). The law goes on to say that the posed notice specifically must identify all agenda items. The public policy is that if owners know what the board will be voting on, they can decide if they would like to come to the meeting to observe or offer input.

The statute goes on to provide that an item not included on the notice may be taken up on an “emergency” basis by a vote of at least a majority plus one of the board members. Any emergency action so taken must be noticed and ratified at the next regular board meeting.

It is not suggested that the issue taken up was an emergency, but rather it was just a mistake. While there is no way to go back in time and cure the mistake, the most appropriate cure would be for the association to add the issue on the agenda at the next board meeting and have the board properly address the issue and revote on the motion.

Interestingly, for homeowners’ associations, while there is a requirement that notice of board meetings generally be posted at a conspicuous place in the community at least 48 hours in advance, there is no requirement that an agenda for the meeting must be posted. However, given that the Homeowners’ Association Act, Chapter 720, Florida Statutes, provides that members have the right to speak on all “designated items,” posting an agenda is a “best practice” and an agenda should be available at the meeting to confirm what issues owners may address.

Q: What does “plurality of the votes” mean when there are five seats up for election in a homeowners’ association? (J.Y., via e-mail)

A: Plurality means that the candidates who get the most votes win, whether they received votes from a majority of those who cast ballots or not.

Q: From what I understand, Florida law does not require directors to reside in the community, but our condominium documents do require residency within the community to be eligible to serve on the board of directors. Which would control? (S.F., via e-mail)

A: Florida law controls over your condominium documents in this instance, and the residency requirement in your condominium documents are not enforceable as being contrary to Florida law.

Section 718.112(2)(d)4 of the Florida Condominium Act states that every unit owner has the right to serve on the board. There are also certain limitations on board eligibility within the Act itself. For example, certain convicted felons are ineligible for board service. Certain financial defaults to the association can also disqualify a person from running for or serving on the board.

Other than the criteria for ineligibility set forth in the Act, limitations on the right to serve on the board are not legally valid. The Division of Florida Condominiums, Timeshares, and Mobile Homes, the state agency which has specified regulatory oversight of condominiums, has also ruled that “residency requirements” for board service contained in association bylaws are invalid. However, term limits contained in bylaws are valid in condominiums.

Joe Adams is an attorney with Becker & Poliakoff, P.A., Fort Myers. Send questions to Joe Adams by e-mail to jadams@beckerlawyers.com. Past editions may be viewed at floridacondohoalawblog.com.