To Protect The Rights, Privileges, Freedoms of Country Club Estates, theresidents of Country Club Estates petition for the Acceptance of the CCEResident’s Bill of Rights:WHEREAS: This State of Vermont in VSA 27(a) has fostered, permitted,and mandated the widespread usage of Homeowners Associations and:WHEREAS: This State has caused to be enacted State Statutes governingHomeowner Associations, Condominium Associations and HotelCondominium Associations:WHEREAS: Over time Statutes have been enacted that are abusive andunfair to Homeowners, while empowering and enriching PropertyManagers; and,WHEREAS: There have been widespread abuses by HOA Boardsgoverning these Associations, to wit:• People’s Constitutional rights have been abused or taken away• Financial abuses and theft of Association funds have taken place• Homeowners threatened with steep fines, legal fees, and foreclosure for petty infractions or falsely-alleged violations• Boards are not following their own Rules and Regulations, and have selectively enforced and inconsistently applied rules• Out-of-control boards have been forcing their will upon others• Boards are not willing to uphold the Open Meeting law, but face no consequences for failing to do so• Boards are not being Transparent in their actions and in their use of financial resources and withhold information from homeowners• Boards are not accountable because homeowners are not organized; Homeowners’ votes are diluted allowing Board members to re-elect themselves over and over• Homeowners wishing to challenge unfair Board actions must pay for legal fees out of their own pockets, while Boards have a bottomless “war chest” to draw from, which is then charged to all of the Homeowners• Furthermore, others charged with managing or overseeing the justice and fairness of Homeowner’s Associations have failed to performed their duties on behalf of Homeowners, or are not well-versed in the Statutes or proper procedures and are more favorably disposed towards Boards, Property Managers, and their Attorneys which include;• State agencies empowered to deal with complaints and abuses• Poorly trained Property Managers
THEREFORE:Now let a HOMEOWNERS BILL OF RIGHTS be enacted to protectHomeowners from incompetent or abusive Boards and abusive State laws.1) No Homeowner shall ever have his home or land foreclosed by aHomeowner’s Association for non-payment of fines, delinquent monthlyHomeowner Association fees (regular assessments) or for non – paymentof special assessments. The Association will be permitted to place a lienon the property until the unpaid fees are brought current, but may notforeclose on the lien. The legal costs shall be borne by the delinquenthomeowner.2) No Special Assessment, for whatever purpose, shall be levied uponowners in a Condominium Owner’s or Homeowners Association without awritten ballot, requiring a two-thirds (2/3) approval of all Owners in theAssociation. Further, the following minimum time periods must beestablished for payment of the Special Assessment, or such longer periodof time as may be established in the Special Assessmenta)120 days after notice of approval of a Special Assessment to make onepayment if $750.00 or under.b) Any amount over $750.00 shall not be required to be made in no fewerthan 3 equal payments, with the first payment due no less than 120 daysafter notice of approval of the Special Assessment with no less than 60days between payments. And Payment Terms Can Be Negotiated and aPayment Committee comprised of five Non-Board-Members and OneNon-Resident will review and accept and approve new payment terms.All payment terms are to be considered. The Payee Can Appeal All Terms.c) Any amount over $1,500.00 shall not be required to be made in nofewer than 10 equal payments, with the first payment due no less than120 days after notice of approval of the of a Special Assessment, andwith no less than 60 days between payments. And Payment Terms CanBe Negotiated and a Payment Committee comprised of five Non-Board-Members and One Non-Resident will review and accept and approve newpayment terms. All payment terms are to be considered. The Payee CanAppeal All Terms.d) Any amount over $2,000.00 shall be made in no fewer than 20 equalpayments, with the first payment no earlier than 120 days after notice ofthe approval of the Special Assessment with no less than 60 daysbetween payments. And Payment Terms Can Be Negotiated and aPayment Committee comprised of five Non-Board-Members and OneNon-Resident will review and accept and approve new payment terms.
All payment terms are to be considered. The Payee Can Appeal All Terms.e)Any amount over $3000.00 shall be made in equal installments not toexceed $100.00 per installment, with the first payment due no earlierthan 120 days after notice of approval of the Special Assessment, andthereafter, with no less than 60 days between payments. And PaymentTerms Can Be Negotiated and a Payment Committee comprised of fiveNon-Board-Members and One Non-Resident will review and accept andapprove new payment terms. All payment terms are to be considered.The Payee Can Appeal All Terms.3) It shall be incumbent upon the Homeowner’s Association, PropertyManager or the Declarant to prepare a summary of the CC&Rs, Rulesand Regulations. These requirements are to be explained either in personor by use of a Videotape, CD or DVD (at option of the buyer) with a copyof the summary or the video given to the buyer prior to the sale of thehome, condominium or property. Moreover, a complete copy of theGoverning Documents may be issued upon request, in Paper format, CDor DVD, to each buyer.4) All documents that have been prepared for Homeowner’s AssociationBoard Members, even in Draft form, and including all legal advice anddocuments issued to the Property Manager, Board Members or ExecutiveDirector shall be made available to members of their respectiveAssociations upon request, and at no charge to them.The only documents which may be withheld are:(1)Privacy Act protected personal information contained in employmentrecords, and(2) documents relating to pending or current litigation, for which aProtective Order has been issued by a Court of Competent jurisdiction orby a duly appointed Arbitrator. All legal documents so withheld must bereleased upon request at the conclusion of the litigation and withoutcharge.5) All Homeowners shall be allowed to speak at HOA Board Meetings onany agenda item being discussed during the meeting. A minimum of 5-minutes must be allowed for each Homeowner’s comments per topic.Homeowner’s who cannot attend the meeting in person may submit theircomments to the Board, to the Board President, or to the PropertyManager or Executive Director by Email, Fax, Private Messenger, orAgent , U.S. Mail or e-mail, so long as it is delivered no later than 12hours prior to the start of the Meeting. Comments submitted shall be
read by a Board Member prior to or during the live oral comment periodon the topic which is the subject of the Homeowner’s comments.If the comments are lengthy, the duration of reading may, at the optionof the Board, be abbreviated / truncated to 5 minutes per-comment per-topic. However, the comments must be summarized in as faithful andaccurate a manner as possible, to convey the Homeowner’s intendedexpression. All comments presented, either orally in-person, or inwriting, must be heard prior to putting the subject or agenda item to aHomeowner or Board vote.6) Interest shall not accrue on any unpaid fines. A maximum interestrate of 5 percent (simple interest) per-annum may be charged on unpaidmonthly fees beginning 60 days after they are assessed. An interest rateof 3 percent may be charged on unpaid Special Assessments, beginning90 days after they are due. r any Homeowner with any unpaid fine(s),delinquent or unpaid assessment(s), or unpaid fee(s), a statement mustbe mailed via certified mail, with return receipt to that Homeowner’smailing address of record at least every 60 days. (The costs of mailingmay be charged to the Homeowner’s account). Failure to mail astatement by the 70th day will void all fines and interest imposed by theAssociation.7) The Office of the Ombudsman shall be empowered to resolve disputesbetween Association Boards, Property Managers, and Homeowners. TheOmbudsman shall be vested with the power to impose fines against theHOA in the amount of not more than $100 per-occurrence and not morethan $400 in total fines against any single homeowner, or not more than$2,000.00 per-occurrence and not more than $6,000.00 in total finesagainst any Board or Property Manager within any Two-year period,measured from the date of the Ombudsman’s decision the first offense.8) Any Board member, Property Manager, or Executive Director who hascommitted Three (3) infractions within any Two-year period, measuredfrom the date of first filing with the Ombudsman’s Office, and havingbeen found guilty of infractions of either the Governing Documents or ofState Statutes or Codes that govern Common Interest Communities,shall pay an additional fine in the sum of not less than Two ThousandFive Hundred Dollars ($2,500.00) to the Office of the Ombudsman. In thecase where a Board Member, Property Manager or Executive Director hascommitted willful Violations, a breach of any fiduciary duty, or acted withmalice or gross negligence of their duties, they shall be personally liableto pay the fines and shall not be defended, reimbursed, or indemnifiedfrom or by the Association, or the Association’s insurance carrier. Uponsuch finding, the Board Member, Property Manager or Executive Directormust reimburse to the HOA or insurance carrier all costs of his or her
defense.9) The Ombudsman’s office shall award costs and reasonable attorney’sfees to any prevailing Homeowner.10) The Ombudsman’s office may not assess attorney’s fees or costsagainst a Homeowner in favor of a Board or Property Manager unless theOmbudsman reasonably finds that the Homeowner brought the claim inbad faith and was motivated by an improper or vexatious purpose.11) Homeowner Boards shall not be allowed to hold hearings concerningalleged violations of the Association’s governing documents. Only Fact-finding sessions that are open to all the other members of theAssociation shall be held. The facts found shall be used by both or eitherparty and submitted to the Ombudsman’s Office to substantiate theirclaims.12) No Homeowner’s Association shall change their CC&Rs unless 85%of the Owners in the Association vote in favor thereof by written ballot.No declarant shall be allowed to unilaterally change or amend CC&Rsafter the first home or lot is sold. At the time when the required numberof homes or lots are sold and the declarant turns over control to thehomeowners it shall then require 85% of the then-owners to affirm bywritten ballot any changes to the Governing Documents.13) Full Disclosure with free debate shall be required on all mattersconcerning the Budget, Reserve Studies Repair & Replacement of all theAssociation’s infrastructure components. Results shall be publishedeither in the association’s next newsletter or copy of the minutes of themeeting, either in electronic format or paper format at the discretion ofthe Homeowner, Prior to the Board’s Vote on the issue before them.14) Any document requested by an Association member shall be turnedover to that member without charge in either paper format or by e-mailat the option of the Association Member.15) All members shall receive a copy of the previous year’s FinancialAudit Statement at the annual Homeowners Meeting or, if not inattendance, any homeowner may request a copy be sent by either U.S.Mail, by e-mail, or to be picked up at the on-site administrative office ordesignated common area facility (e.g., office or clubhouse).16) No homeowner shall be denied access to or prevented from reviewingall Bank Statements, Bills Paid and Unpaid, Invoices, Quotes, Estimates,Contracts, both Past and Current, and Attorney/Legal Invoices, duringnormal business hours at the office of the Property Manager or
Community Administrative Office. No charge shall be made for anyHomeowner, or his or her representative to review these documents.17) A Term Limit shall be imposed for Associations with more than Fifty(50) units: No Director or Officer of a Homeowners Association shall servemore than Two (2) consecutive two – year terms in the capacity as aDirector, President , Officer or Board Member. A period of Six (6) yearsmust elapse before a former Director, President, Officer or Board Membershall be allowed to again serve in office in the same Association or SubAssociation.18) Decisions of the Board of Directors shall be based on all the factsavailable, or such facts as should be known upon reasonably diligentinquiry, and under the Business Judgment Rule. When consideringBudgets, Reports dealing with Construction Defects, Infrastructurerepairs or replacement, Equipment repairs or replacement, ReserveStudies, and Reserve Assessments, a Board must have thoroughlyreviewed and analyzed any bid, report, and/or study prepared by aProfessional knowledgeable in the area under consideration prior toadopting or ratifying it. In light of the Board’s fiduciary duties toHomeowners, wasteful, redundant, and excessive expenditures should beavoided. While the lowest-cost approach is not always required, theBoard should seek foremost the “best value” for the homeowner’s andgive due consideration to the financial hardships which might beimposed on homeowners, to be balanced against the beneficial effects ofthe expenditure on homeowners.19) The State of Nevada must ensure that all Association Board Membershonor the State and Federal Constitutions, which guarantee “equalprotection and due process” to its Citizens. The State of Nevada has aduty to ensure that each Common Interest Community adhere to thelaw.This HOMEOWNER’S BILL OF RIGHTS shall supersede any conflicting orinconsistent provision of State Statutes or Homeowner’s AssociationGoverning Documents.By _________________________ Dated this 1st day of July 2008