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February 2016

CAI Florida Legislative Update!

CAI Florida Legislative Update

February 09, 2016

Florida 2016 25 Bills
Number:  FL [R] HB 53 – Updated (New 01/13/2016)
Sponsor:  Rep. Daphne Campbell (DEM-FL)
Title:  Landlords and Tenants
Abstract:  Provides criminal penalties for specified prohibited practices by landlord relating to maintenance of premises, retaliatory conduct, & other protections.
Status:  1st Reading – 01/12/2016
Number:  FL [R] HB 203 – Updated (Status 02/07/2016)
Sponsor:  Civil Justice Subcommittee
Title:  Residential Properties
Abstract:  Revises requirements relating to issuance of estoppel certificate to specified persons; requires that estoppel certificate contain certain information; provides effective period for certificate based upon date of issuance & form of delivery; provides that association waives specified claim against person or such person’s successors or assigns who rely on certificate in good faith; authorizes summary proceeding to be brought to compel association to prepare or deliver estoppel certificate; specifies maximum amounts association may charge for estoppel certificate; provides for periodic adjustment of maximum amounts; requires DBPR to calculate & publish maximum allowable fees on its website; provides that authority to charge fee for estoppel certificate must be established by specified written resolution or provided by written management, bookkeeping, or maintenance contract.
Status:  Reported out of Business & Professions Subcommittee – 02/07/2016
Number:  FL [R] HB 653 – Updated (Status 01/13/2016)
Sponsor:  Rep. John Cortes (DEM-FL)
Title:  Homeowners’ Associations
Abstract:  Renames Division of Florida Condominiums, Timeshares, & Mobile Homes & Division of Florida Condominiums, Timeshares, & Mobile Homes Trust Fund; provides that Legislature reserves power to amend or repeal ch. 720, F.S.; requires that homeowners’ associations be governed by such amendment or repeal; authorizes division to investigate certain complaints and conduct certain investigations; requires division to adopt penalty guidelines; provides homeowners’ association fees; requires written notice of certain board meetings; authorizes homeowners’ association to impose certain fines; revises annual meeting requirements; provides requirements for voting by general & limited proxy and board elections & vacancies; revises applicability of certain provisions that relate to transition of association control in community.
Status:  1st Reading – 01/12/2016
Number:  FL [R] HB 665 – Updated (Status 01/13/2016)
Sponsor:  Rep. John Cortes (DEM-FL)
Title:  Community Association Managers
Abstract:  Renames Regulatory Council of Community Association Managers as Board of Community Association Managers; revises & provides responsibilities relating to board; revises provisions relating to licensure of community association managers & community association management firms, licensure by examination, continuing education, fees, & disciplinary proceedings.
Status:  1st Reading – 01/12/2016
Number:  FL [R] HB 667 – Updated (Status 01/13/2016)
Sponsor:  Rep. John Cortes (DEM-FL)
Title:  Community Associations
Abstract:  Renames Division of Florida Condominiums, Timeshares, & Mobile Homes as Division of Common Interest Communities; revises & provides provisions relating to community associations; repeals chapters 719 & 720, F.S., relating to cooperatives & homeowners’ associations, respectively.
Status:  1st Reading – 01/12/2016
Number:  FL [R] HB 849 – Updated (Status 01/13/2016)
Sponsor:  Rep. Cynthia Stafford (DEM-FL)
Title:  Landlords and Tenants
Abstract:  Revises provisions relating to defenses to action for possession of dwelling unit; provides conditions under which court may waive requirement that tenant pay rent into registry of court; revises provisions relating to default judgment upon waiver of tenant’s defenses.
Status:  1st Reading – 01/12/2016
Number:  FL [R] HB 1073 – Updated (Status, Hearing 02/05/2016)
Sponsor:  Civil Justice Subcommittee
Title:  Military Support
Abstract:  Requires landlord, condominium association, cooperative association, or homeowners’ association to complete processing of rental application submitted by servicemember within specified timeframe; provides applicability.
Status:  Now in Local & Federal Affairs Committee – 02/04/2016
Number:  FL [R] HB 1357 – Updated (Hearing 02/05/2016)
Sponsor:  Civil Justice Subcommittee
Title:  Community Associations
Abstract:  Requires specified documents to be provided on association’s website; revises duties of outgoing and recalled board or committee member; provides director & officer conflict-of-interest requirements; provides requirements for board membership; prohibits association from enforcing certain traffic & criminal laws; provides requirements for amendment of association declaration; provides meeting notice requirements; provides election requirements; requires developer to deliver certain information to association; provides powers of association related to past due assessments owed by member; provides requirements for association transferring right to collect past due assessments to third party; provides requirements for association transferring lien to third party.
Status:  Favorable with CS by Business & Professions Subcommittee – 02/02/2016
Number:  FL [R] HB 1375 – Updated (Status 01/16/2016)
Sponsor:  Rep. Charlie Stone (REP-FL)
Title:  Homeowners’ Associations
Abstract:  Revises uses of Florida Condominiums, Timeshares, & Mobile Homes Trust Fund; increases damages to which member of homeowners’ association is entitled for denial of access to official records; provides cause of action for member against community association manager or management firm; prohibits reimbursement to community association manager or management firm for certain fines; provides & revises reporting requirements; provides that fine may not become lien against parcel; revises provisions relating to election of officers; provides presuit mediation for election & recall disputes; provides for binding arbitration by DBPR for certain disputes between parcel owner & homeowners’ association; requires DBPR to provide training & educational programs; authorizes DBPR to enforce & ensure compliance with Homeowners’ Association Act & specified rules; provides DBPR with jurisdiction to investigate certain complaints; provides caus! e of action against developers by HOA or nondeveloper members of HOA.
Status:  Now in Business & Professions Subcommittee – 01/15/2016
Number:  FL [R] HB 1405 – Updated (Status 02/04/2016)
Sponsor:  Business & Professions Subcommittee
Title:  Community Associations
Abstract:  Revises records required to be maintained by condominium and homeowners’ association; provides requirements relating to posting of specified documents on condominium and homeowners’ association’s websites; provides that physical copies of certain official records of association are open to inspection by certain persons; requires an outgoing homeowners’ association board or committee member to relinquish administrative rights or controls of an association’s website or other digital or electronic asset of association; deletes provision authorizing condominium, homeowners’, and cooperative associations to prepare report of cash receipts & expenditures in lieu of certain financial statements; provides remedy for condominium, homeowners’, and cooperative associations failing to provide unitowner with copy of financial report; provides responsibilities of Division of Florida Condominiums, Timeshares, & Mobile Homes.
Status:  Now in Government Operations Appropriations Subcommittee – 02/02/2016
Number:  FL [R] HB 7031 – Updated (Status 01/26/2016)
Sponsor:  Judiciary Committee
Title:  Marketable Record Titles to Real Property
Abstract:  Revises exceptions to marketability by including homeowners’ association & mandatory property owners’ association covenants & restrictions; authorizes mandatory property owners’ association to file notice to preserve covenant or restriction; provides exceptions; authorizes certain homeowners’ associations & mandatory property owners’ associations to revive certain covenants & restrictions that have lapsed.
Status:  Added to Second Reading Calendar – 01/25/2016
Number:  FL [R] SB 406 – Updated (Status 01/14/2016)
Sponsor:  Sen. Eleanor Sobel (DEM-FL)
Title:  Playground Safety
Abstract:  Playground Safety; Citing this act as the “”Playground Safety Act””; requiring certain new and existing playgrounds to comply with specified safety standards and guidelines; authorizing counties and municipalities to require permits and charge fees for the construction or renovation of certain playgrounds, etc.
Status:  Introduced -SJ 32 – 01/12/2016
Number:  FL [R] SB 704 – Updated (Text, Status 02/04/2016)
Sponsor:  Community Affairs
Title:  Building Codes
Abstract:  Building Codes; Revising the certification examination requirements for building code inspectors, plans examiners, and building code administrators; authorizing local boards created to address specified issues to combine the appeals boards to create a single, local board; requiring all new and existing high-rise buildings to maintain a minimum radio signal strength for fire department communications; creating the Construction Industry Workforce Task Force within the University of Florida M.E. Rinker, Sr. School of Construction Management, etc.
Status:  Now in Appropriations Subcommittee on General Government – 02/03/2016
Number:  FL [R] SB 722 – Updated (Status 01/16/2016)
Sponsor:  Sen. Kelli Stargel (REP-FL)
Title:  Residential Properties
Abstract:  Residential Properties; Revising requirements relating to the issuance of an estoppel certificate to specified persons; requiring that an estoppel certificate contain certain information; requiring that the authority to charge a fee for the estoppel certificate be established by a specified written resolution or provided by a written management, bookkeeping, or maintenance contract, etc.
Status:  Now in Judiciary -SJ 184 – 01/14/2016
Number:  FL [R] SB 786 – Updated (Status 01/14/2016)
Sponsor:  Sen. Maria Sachs (DEM-FL)
Title:  Electric Vehicles
Abstract:  Electric Vehicles; Directing the Southern States Energy Board and Office of Energy within the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services to develop and administer a program to assess mileage-based user taxes for battery electric vehicles; providing a sales and lease tax exemption for electric vehicles and a sales tax exemption for electric vehicle replacement batteries; creating a right for owners of condominium units, cooperative units, and parcels in homeowners’ associations, respectively, to install and use electric vehicle supply equipment, etc.
Status:  Introduced -SJ 59 – 01/12/2016
Number:  FL [R] SB 792 – Updated (Status 01/14/2016)
Sponsor:  Sen. Garrett Richter (REP-FL)
Title:  Homeowners’ Associations
Abstract:  Homeowners’ Associations; Specifying requirements for revising or amending a homeowners’ association declaration; providing that nonmaterial errors or omissions do not invalidate a properly adopted amendment; providing that an amendment to a recorded governing document is effective when recorded; providing that an amendment restricting a parcel owner’s ability to rent his or her property applies only to certain parcel owners, etc.
Status:  Introduced -SJ 59 – 01/12/2016
Number:  FL [R] SB 1028 – Updated (Status 01/14/2016)
Sponsor:  Sen. Maria Sachs (DEM-FL)
Title:  Online Voting
Abstract:  Online Voting; Authorizing online voting by members of a corporation not for profit; requiring written consent by a member for online voting; providing that a member voting electronically is counted as being in attendance at the meeting; requiring a corporation to establish procedures and deadlines for members to consent to or opt out of online voting, etc.
Status:  Introduced -SJ 78 – 01/12/2016
Number:  FL [R] SB 1122 – Updated (Status 02/04/2016)
Sponsor:  Sen. Alan Hays (REP-FL)
Title:  Homeowners’ Associations
Abstract:  Homeowners’ Associations; Revising the uses of the Florida Condominiums, Timeshares, and Mobile Homes Trust Fund to include reimbursement of costs to the Division of Florida Condominiums, Timeshares, and Mobile Homes for the administration and operation of the Homeowners’ Association Act; requiring the community association manager, the management firm, or the association to annually provide a specified report beginning on a specified date, and to resubmit the report under certain circumstances to the Division of Florida Condominiums, Timeshares, and Mobile Homes; authorizing the department to enforce and ensure compliance with the Homeowners’ Association Act and specified rules, etc.
Status:  Unfavorable by Regulated Industries, laid on Table; YEAS 4 NAYS 6 – 02/03/2016
Number:  FL [R] SB 1292 – Updated (Status 02/05/2016)
Sponsor:  Regulated Industries
Title:  Community Associations
Abstract:  Community Associations; Deleting a provision authorizing certain associations to prepare a report of cash receipts and expenditures in lieu of specified financial statements; requiring certain condominium, cooperative, and homeowners’ associations to provide financial reports to the Division of Florida Condominiums, Timeshares, and Mobile Homes under certain circumstances, etc.
Status:  Now in Judiciary – 02/04/2016
Number:  FL [R] SB 1502 – Updated (Status 01/16/2016)
Sponsor:  Sen. Darren Soto (DEM-FL)
Title:  Homeowners’ Associations
Abstract:  Homeowners’ Associations; Renaming the Division of Florida Condominiums, Timeshares, and Mobile Homes as the Division of Florida Condominiums, Homeowners’ Associations, Timeshares, and Mobile Homes; requiring funds collected by the division to be deposited into the Florida Condominiums, Homeowners’ Associations, Timeshares, and Mobile Homes Trust Fund, etc.
Status:  Introduced -SJ 194 – 01/14/2016
Number:  FL [R] SB 1512 – Updated (Status 01/16/2016)
Sponsor:  Sen. Darren Soto (DEM-FL)
Title:  Community Association Managers
Abstract:  Community Association Managers; Renaming the Regulatory Council of Community Association Managers as the Board of Community Association Managers; specifying that a community association management firm must be actively registered with the Secretary of State; requiring rather than authorizing the Department of Business and Professional Regulation to refuse to certify an applicant under certain circumstances; specifying that the department may not renew a community association manager’s license under certain circumstances, etc.
Status:  Introduced -SJ 196 – 01/14/2016
Number:  FL [R] SB 1526 – Updated (Status 01/16/2016)
Sponsor:  Sen. Dwight Bullard (DEM-FL)
Title:  Homeowners’ Associations
Abstract:  Homeowners’ Associations; Repealing provisions relating to an exemption from provisions governing the transition of association control in a community that has a homeowners’ association, etc.
Status:  Introduced -SJ 197 – 01/14/2016
Number:  FL [R] SB 1532 – Updated (Status 01/16/2016)
Sponsor:  Sen. Darren Soto (DEM-FL)
Title:  Community Associations
Abstract:  Community Associations; Renaming the Division of Florida Condominiums, Timeshares, and Mobile Homes as the Division of Common Interest Communities; revising and providing provisions relating to the creation of common interest communities and the contents of declaration; revising and providing provisions relating to maintenance, limitation upon improvement, display of flag, hurricane protection, display of spiritual decorations, access ramps, window decals, xeriscape, and mold and mildew; revising and providing provisions relating to assessments, liability, lien and priority, interest, and collection, etc.
Status:  Introduced -SJ 197 – 01/14/2016
Number:  FL [R] SB 1656 – Updated (Status 01/16/2016)
Sponsor:  Sen. Greg Evers (REP-FL)
Title:  Military Support
Abstract:  Military Support; Limiting the amount of advance rent or deposit money that a landlord may require or receive at the beginning of a rental agreement from a tenant who is a servicemember; requiring condominium and homeowners’ associations, respectively, to complete the processing of a rental application submitted by a servicemember or a servicemember’s spouse within a specified timeframe, etc.
Status:  Introduced -SJ 206 – 01/14/2016
Number:  FL [R] SB 1716 – Updated (Status 01/22/2016)
Sponsor:  Sen. Travis Hutson (REP-FL)
Title:  Community Associations
Abstract:  Community Associations; Revising the documents that constitute the official records of an association; providing requirements relating to director and officer conflicts of interest; prohibiting an association from enforcing certain laws and related penalties; providing options for an association that is owed past due assessments by a member; providing certain notice requirements before collection rights are transferred to a third party, etc.
Status:  Introduced -SJ 225 – 01/20/2016
Totals 25 Bills

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CAN Alert: New Partnership: CAI joins CAN to fight Estoppel Bills

CAN Alert: New Partnership: CAI joins CAN to fight Estoppel Bills

Community Association Institute (CAI) Joins Forces with the Community Advocacy Network (CAN) in the Fight against taxing homeowners. Vote No HB 203/SB 722.CAI is an international organization with more than 33,000 members and 60 chapters. CAI asked to join forces with CAN and place its considerable weight behind CAN’s Petition.

“CAI’s Florida Legislative Alliance has been advocating for strong public policy in Florida’s communities for decades and this partnership is part of our grassroots advocacy efforts to educate legislators on the negative implications HB 203 and SB 722 would have on the 9 million residents living in Florida condominiums and homeowners associations,” said Dawn Bauman, Senior Vice President, Government and Public Affairs, Community Association Institute, “We recognized the incredible tool CAN created in the Petition campaign and we knew collaborating would be an excellent complement to our advocacy efforts.”

In 2015, CAN wrangled and convinced the disparate coalition groups, representing community associations and leaders to form one unified voice. CAN then coordinated a monumental email and relentless grassroots campaign educating Legislators and the 9 million Floridians owning property in Florida’s community associations. It worked last year but the bad bills are back again.

CAI’s Partnership with CAN ensures one unified community Association voice in Tallahassee.

Please click the following link to sign the “Vote NO on HB 203 and SB 722” Petition, https://www.change.org/p/vote-no-on-hb-203-and-sb-722#petition-letter. Every signature counts.

Thank you for helping CAN, your neighborhoods and homeownership.

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Legislative Update February 2016!

Week 1 Legislative Highlights and More Association Bills Filed – CALL Alert for January 19, 2016

The 2016 Florida legislative session kicked off last week and we are now onto Week 2. Governor Scott appeared before a Joint Session of the House and Senate to deliver his “State of the State” address, which focused on tax cuts and job creation.

I personally had a busy week, which included work opposing the “estoppel certificate bill”. The Senate version, SB 722, was heard last week in the Senate Regulated Industries Committee. As you may recall, the bill would prohibit an association from collecting the estoppel certificate fee at the time the certificate is prepared. Rather, the association would have to wait until closing to collect the fee. If the sale does not go through and there is no closing, the Association must collect the fee from the seller/owner. I personally met with a number of Senators on the Committee and opposed the bill at the Committee meeting on behalf of CALL. The bill narrowly passed the Regulated Industries Committee. The vote was 6 to 4, with Senators Abruzzo, Diaz de la Portilla, Margolis, and Sachs voting “no.” Unlike the House version (HB 203), SB 722 does not have a “cap” on the amount that can be charged for the estoppel certificate fee. The sponsor, Senator Stargel, stated at the Committee meeting that she would have liked to include a cap, but there was no agreement among the stakeholders as to how much the cap should be, so she left it out of her bill. It remains to be seen whether the House will keep the cap provision in the House version of the bill.

At the time of this writing, there are no community association bills that will be heard during Week 2. However, there are a number of bills that have been filed that you should be aware of and that we are keeping on eye on:

(1) SB 792, by Senator Richter, Relating to Homeowners’ Associations (Rental Restrictions): This bill will limit the ability of a homeowners’ association (HOA) to restrict rentals. It provides that any amendment prohibiting parcel owners from renting their homes, altering the duration of the rental term, or specifying or limiting the number of times parcel owners are entitled to rent their homes during a specified period applies only to parcel owners who consent to the amendment and parcel owners who acquire title to their homes after the effective date of the amendment. This may sound familiar to condominium associations, as a similar provision is currently in the Condominium Act. CALL is opposed to this bill. We believe that the owners in a community should have the ability to amend their rental provisions such that they apply to everyone in the community. Otherwise, the amendment will create two classes of owners, those who can rent under the “old rules” and those who must comply with the “new rules.” In addition, an owner who buys into a homeowners’ association knows, or should know, that the governing documents can be amended by a vote of the owners.

(2) SB 1292, by Senator Ring, Relating to Community Associations (Financial Reports): This bill would require all associations to provide the financial report based on the amount of revenues collected by the association, regardless of the number of units in the association. The bill also provides that if an association fails to provide the financial report to the owners pursuant to law, the association may not waive the required financial report for 3 years and must provide a copy of the financial report to the Division of Condominiums, Timeshares and Mobile Homes for 3 years. This bill is supported by the accounting industry. Donna Berger and I recently met with the stakeholders regarding the bill and expressed our concerns and how we think it should be amended and we look forward to working with them on compromise language.

(3) HB 1357, by Representative La Rosa, Relating to Community Associations: This bill was recently filed. It is a 44 page bill that significantly impacts condominium and homeowners’ associations. For a more complete summary of the impacts of the bill, click here. The bill deals with the following subjects: (a) requiring a digital copy of some official records to be placed on a website (applies to associations of 7,500 units/parcels or more); (b) requiring competitive bidding for professional services; (c) requiring additional disclosures for any activity that may reasonably be construed as a conflict of interest; (d) requiring an HOA to appoint additional board members (applies to HOAs of 7,500 parcels or more); (e) prohibiting HOAs from enforcing traffic laws or criminal laws; (f) requiring HOA amendments to contain the full text of the provision to be amended, with underlines and strike-throughs or in a “substantial rewording” format; (g) limiting the ability of an HOA to enforce amendments prohibiting rentals, changing the duration of a rental term, limiting the number of times a home may be rented, or limiting the number of occupants in a home; (h) requiring HOAs consisting of 7,500 or more to place a copy of all notices of fining and suspension hearings on the association’s website at least 14 days before a hearing; (i) limiting the ability of an HOA to collect past due assessments that are outstanding for 24 months or more; (j) requiring an HOA to offer a payment plan to a delinquent owner before it can transfer the right to collect past due assessments to a third party, transfer a lien to a third party, or file a complaint to obtain a judgment in foreclosure; (k) requiring certain notices to the delinquent owner before an HOA may transfer the right to collect past due assessments to a third party.

Yeline Goin
Executive Director
Community Association Leadership Lobby (CALL)

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