Below is a helpful tip from the Davis-Stirling.com Newsletter by ADAMS | STIRLING PLC regarding HOA Community landscape decisions without a vote.
QUESTION: The board is removing our greenbelts and replacing them with succulents. Can they do this without a vote of the members? I know it will save water and maintenance costs but I would rather pay more to preserve the overall appearance of the community. – Nicki S.
ANSWER: When it comes to common area maintenance, boards have wide discretion. If the greenbelt project does not require a special assessment over 5% of the current fiscal year’s budgeted gross expenses, the board can approve the project without a membership vote.
Judicial Deference. If members were to challenge the board’s decision in court, they would likely lose. The courts defer to board decisions involving management of the common areas. (Harvey v. Landing) So long as the board acts upon reasonable investigation, in good faith, and in a manner the association reasonably believes to be in the best interests of the association and its members, its decision will be upheld. (Lamden v. La Jolla Shores) Due to ongoing drought conditions, public policy has been to encourage associations to replace grass with drought resistant plants and artificial turf. I don’t see this trend reversing itself.
DISCLAIMER. The Davis-Stirling.com Newsletter by ADAMS | STIRLING PLC provides commentary only, not legal advice. For legal advice, you’ll need to hire legal counsel. You can hire ADAMS | STIRLING PLC; Keep in mind they are considered corporate counsel to associations only.