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Candidates Meet And Greet | August 18, 2016

CANDIDATES MEET AND GREET

 August 18 at 9:30 am, with all of the Pasco County candidates that are running for the upcoming election. The Primary Election is August 30, 2016. This will be your chance to help make your decisions. A list of Candi­dates attending August 18 will be posted to our website conapasco.org once compiled.

Please sign up for e-mail notifications online so that you are up to date with all CONA events,
notices and important updates and information that is sent out.

The “Candidates Meet And Greet” event is located at:

Gulf Harbor Civic Association Center at

4610 Floramar Terrace,

New Port Richey, FL 34652

Contact Jessie for assistance: 813-433-2016.

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CAN ALERT: Hurricane Season Starts NOW!

Hurricane Season Is Here

Dear Dominick,

Ready, Set, Go! Today, Wednesday, June 1st, marks the 1st day of the Atlantic hurricane season. The NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration ­ a federal agency responsible for monitoring climate and the environment) believes this Atlantic hurricane season will have more activity than the past few years and may bring 1 to 4 major hurricanes. The hurricane season, starts today and ends November 30th 2016. This year we’re projected to have a “near normal” year, which may not sound like a big deal, but we’ve had unusually low activity the past few seasons. Our recent perception of a “normal” hurricane season is skewed.

So what does a “near normal” Atlantic hurricane season look like? The NOAA, this year predicts a whopping 70% likelihood of 10 to 16 named storms, with many becoming major hurricanes with winds of 111 mph or higher.Hurricane Season Starts June 1
Now mentally you may be brushing this information off, saying to yourself “eh, I’ll believe it when I see it,” and that’s understandable, given the fact that the last hurricane to make landfall in Florida was Hurricane Wilma on October 24, 2005, 11 years ago. But it’s always important to be prepared from both a safety, economical, and fiduciary duty standpoint. Here are four things you can do now to get your community association prepared:

(1) Review Your Documents and Take Lots and Lots of Pre­storm Pictures: Make sure all of your insurance policies are up to date and reflect the proper amount of coverage. For example, if you have repaired or made improvements, you may want to increase your policy limits. You also want to make sure you have the right type of coverage so that you will be compensated for the full cost of replacing your association’s property and not the depreciated value. Make sure each member of the board and manager has copies of all of the insurance polices. You may also want to take date­ stamped photos of everything in the lobbies and common areas and store on a memory device in a safe place. Contact your manager or attorney for guidance.

(2) Make Your Grounds Safe: Look around your community property and see what could be a potential hazardin the event of a storm. Schedule a tree trimmer (licensed and bonded!) to discard any dead branches. Set up a roof inspection to ensure tiles are secure, caulking is updated, and other roof elements are maintained.

(3) Make a Plan: Have a plan for your community in the event of a storm which may include moving elevators to a higher floor so they don’t flood, informing residents that the building will close several days before the storm via email or social media, and distributing an evacuation plan.

(4) Get Supplies: Provide residents with a list of things they should have in their possession should a storm make landfall. We all know the essentials such as flashlights, batteries, food, and water ­ but what many residents may not be thinking about is securing their Social Security Card, passport, credit cards, proof of residency, insurance policies, prescriptions, and photos of their unit.

Please do not underestimate the seriousness of Florida hurricane season. It’s important to be prepared, have a plan, and try and ensure each resident is doing the same. For more information on how you can be prepared, visit https://www.ready.gov/hurricanes

As always, wishing you and your loved ones a safe and happy week.

Yours in Community,
Alan Garfinkel, Esq.
Katzman Garfinkel, Founding Partner Community Advocacy Network (CAN), Chairman

 

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Civic Group SWOT (West) Meeting – posted for Pasco County

Civic Group SWOT West Meeting

Civic Group SWOT (West) Meeting

SWOT analysis sessions in anticipation of the Strategic Plan Update for FY20-21.
Please attend on Monday, September 26 at 5:00 p.m. at:
Starkey Park, 10500 Wilderness Park Blvd. New Port Richey, FL 34655.
Register today: http://www.conapasco.org/NEWS.html?entry=civic-group-swot-west-meeting
To attend the meeting please check in by clicking on this link and follow the instructions: http://doodle.com/poll/qbbkycf4mn8pgtxw
– posted for Pasco County by Management and Associates.

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“What’s Going on up there in Tallahassee?” | May 18, 2016

Tallahassee FL May 18 Mgmt Assoc

“What’s Going on up there in Tallahassee?”

Wednesday, May 18th, 2016!

The event’s Guest Speaker is State Representative Amanda Murphy.

The “What’s Going on up there in Tallahassee” event is located at:

Gulf Harbor Civic Association Center at

4610 Floramar Terrace,

New Port Richey, FL 34652

Reserve your seat! More details are coming soon!

Contact Jessie for assistance: 813-433-2016.

Learn more about CONA at www.conapasco.org.

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Board Certification Course | April 20, 2016

Board Certification Course April 20 Mgmt Assoc

BOARD CERTIFICATION COURSE!

April 20, 2016 – BIG EVENT!!!

SEATING IS LIMITED PLEASE REGISTER NOW!

This “Board Certification Course” is FREE to CONA Members!

Non-members pay $15 for the Cer­tification and become a CONA Member.

Re­freshments will be provided along with a pro­gram booklet. The event sponsors will be at the class to provide you with their company infor­mation and some goodies to hand out.

Click Here To Register For The Board Certification Course!

The Board Certification Course is located at:

Gulf Harbor Civic Association Center at
4610 Floramar Terrace,
New Port Richey, FL 34652

Contact Jessie for assistance: 813-433-2016.

Learn more about CONA at www.conapasco.org.

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CAI-FLA 2016 Florida Legislative Session Report

CAI-FLA 2016 Florida Legislative Session Report

March 14, 2016

Working in efficient cohesion, the dedicated volunteer advocates of CAI’s Florida Legislative Alliance (CAI-FLA) protected Florida’s common interest ownership communities during the just-completed 2016 Legislative Session. For CAI-FLA, a multi-disciplinary group made up of 21 volunteer Delegates from across the state, the focus is always on the millions of residents and resident-volunteers who choose to live and invest their money, time and hearts in Florida’s diverse and vibrant neighborhoods. This Session, they were the winners.

The 2016 Florida Legislature could have produced a far different outcome when both Chambers adjourned sine die around 7 P.M. on Friday, March 11. In fact, when the earlier-than-usual Session began in January, good money was on the possibility of many damaging changes being made to Florida’s common interest ownership statutes — Chapters 718, 719, and 720.

CAI-FLA Delegates identified and tracked 44 bills that would impact community associations in some manner, virtually all of them detrimentally. That was only the very beginning. Delegates were assigned the various pieces of proposed legislation and tasked with diligently analyzing and summarizing what that impact would truly be. Discussions among the entire group provided cross-disciplinary and multi-regional insights, leading to adopting positions on whether to support, oppose, or offer their expertise to the bill’s sponsor on how to mitigate and “fix” the proposed legislation. Throughout the legislative session, Delegates held weekly conference calls to discuss what had occurred that week and how to best address the week ahead. Besides legislative initiatives filed as bills, this session had an inordinate number of amendments trying to become attached to all sorts of other bills. Along the way, Delegates found community associations-related amendments being filed to bills as diverse as those dealing with ad valorem taxation, regulated professions, etc.

CAI-FLA was at the forefront addressing all the issues, high and low profile. Representing our very diverse membership, CAI-FLA Delegates carefully and collaboratively engaged all stakeholders to affect the best results possible all CAI members. There were “high profile” issues that received a great deal of publicity and had numerous legislative committee hearings, such as the 2016 version of the estoppel certificate “reform” fight. The House bill, HB 203, had three separate Committee hearings, and a compromise was finally reached in the final hearing within the House Judiciary Committee. However, the bill was never heard again, as some of the original proposers of the bill were not interested in passing the bill after it was amended to remove their “pay-at-closing” provision. The Senate “estoppel bill,” SB 722, passed one committee and was never placed on another agenda, so it failed accordingly.

Another bill, SB 1122, would have regulated HOAs, and collected fees from homeowners to do so. This legislation would have made other changes to HOAs, such as implementing mandatory binding arbitration of HOA disputes, including disputes related to assessments; removing the ability of an HOA to lien for fines; creating annual reporting requirements to DBPR, etc. This bill had one committee hearing and CAI-FLA, alone, offered testimony raising concerns. The bill was voted down in committee – a rarity in the Florida legislative process. A few weeks later, the sponsor attempted to run an amendment, containing much of the same language, into a bill in the Senate Appropriations Committee. Once again CAI-FLA, alone, offered testimony, and the amendment was withdrawn. The sponsor filed the amendment to several bills on the Floor in the final days of session. One of the bills, the Department of Business and Professions legislative package (HB1187/SB1050) passed the House after numerous community associations-related amendments were filed and then withdrawn. The bill was available to be taken up at any time by the Senate. The Session ended with CAI-FLA communicating concerns to numerous Senators, and the bill (with community associations-related amendments filed to it) sitting on the Calendar of bills available for a vote, was not taken up.

Additional legislative proposals CAI’s Florida advocacy team successfully addressed include:

• Opposed changes to adopting additional rental restrictions; (SB 792, subsequently adopted into SB 1292);

• Sought to refine problematic proposed legislation attempting to create a method for absentee owners to name a “liaison” for law enforcement to contact should inhabitants of a short term rental property become unruly — “spring break” challenges being experienced primarily by beach-front communities. (Failed amendment to SB 1292);

• Opposed the mandating of certain HOA and condominium associations to maintain a website and prescribing what information must be made available on the site; (HB 1357, amended to HB 1405, and failed amendment to SB 1292);

• Sought to exempt HOA covenants and restrictions from the Marketable Record Title Act (MRTA) (HB 7031, and failed amendment to SB 1292);

• Supported the responsible elimination of the “less than 50 units” exemption requiring audited financial reporting (SB 1292 prior to objectionable amendments, HB 1405 prior to objectionable amendments. amended into SB 1050);

• Opposed provisions that would have eliminated the ability for HOAs to use a third party to collect unpaid assessments; (HB 1357, similar language attempted to be amended into SB 1292, HB 1405);

• Opposed requiring HOAs to set up a payment plan for unpaid assessments before utilizing a third party collector, and after 24 months the debt to the association seemingly disappears…some type of “statute of limitations” on unpaid assessments. (HB 1357, failed amendment into SB 1292, HB 1405)

To get a feel for the complicated and burdensome legislation proposed during the session that CAI-FLA advocated against by working the halls of the Capitol in Tallahassee nearly every day, review the content of these:

HB 653 by Cortes

SB 1122 by Hays

HB 1357 by La Rosa

These are just three of the 44 pieces of proposed legislation CAI-FLA was actively engaged in during the Session…and don’t forget those multiple amendments being attached to bills like gnats on honey on a humid Florida Summer night!

As CAI members, you are each an invaluable part of our team. Thank you for being engaged, knowledgeable, diligent and passionate. Only together, with that level of commitment, can we foster wonderful neighborhoods and resilient, livable communities.

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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

Powered by CQ Roll Call

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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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