As we quickly approach the summer, many homeowners, including board members, will be returning to homes up north for the summer. Boards and association managers should take a few minutes to brush up on the requirements for meetings of executive committees that may be appointed to act on behalf of the Board in the absence of some or all of the directors.
Formation of Executive Committees
Boards have the authority under The Florida Not For Profit Corporation Act, unless otherwise prohibited by the Articles of Incorporation or the Bylaws governing the corporation, to adopt a resolution designating from among its members an executive committee to exercise the authority of the board. With the large number of seasonal owners in many communities throughout Southwest Florida, it is not uncommon for the boards of such communities to appoint an executive committee to assist in the operation and care of the association property during the summer season.
Though the use of such committees can be an important tool in ensuring an association’s property is maintained and other services administered at consistent levels in the summer months, it is important to make sure that these committees operate in accordance with Florida law while carrying out their duties. Both The Condominium Act, and the Homeowners’ Association Act, contain provisions which require meetings of committees, including executive committees, to be noticed and conducted in accordance with the following requirements, unless exempt under provisions relating to meetings with the association’s attorney:
- Meeting must be open to all unit owners
- Unit owners must have the right to speak on designated agenda items
- Notice, specifically identifying all agenda items, must be posted on the property at least 48 continuous hours prior to the meeting
- Minutes of the meeting shall be kept
These requirements apply to:
- all committee meetings of a condominium association in which the committee will take final action on behalf of the board;
- all committee meetings of a condominium association when the committee is not taking final action on behalf of the board, unless such meetings are specifically exempted by the bylaws of the association;
- any meeting of a homeowners’ association in which a final decision will be made regarding and expenditure of the association; and
- any meeting of a committee or other similar body of a homeowners’ association that has the power to approve or disapprove architectural decisions affecting residential property owned by a member of the community.
By sticking to the foregoing requirements, the executive committee not only will keep the association in compliance with the law and governing documents, but will also keep owners in the loop and ease transition back to the full board when seasonal residents begin returning to the community.