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Habitat Magazine Business of Management 2021

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Board president wants all owners to vote on building issuesNov 16, 2021

I live in a small condo. Several years ago there was a large assessment and many owners were upset at the cost. The Board President now wants all financial decisions to be voted on and approved by all owners. However, our By Laws state that financial decisions are the responsibility of the Board. How can I convince the Board President that we must restrict these decisions to Board members? Otherwise, we will never have another maintenance increase or assessment approved and the building will decay. As it is, it's been several years since we had a maintenance increase and we have been financing repairs through our reserve fund and of course the reserves are now much lower than before.

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All shareholders voting on financial issues - Carl Tait Nov 17, 2021

How do the other board members feel about the president's odd position? Assuming the president is in the minority, that's the end of the matter. If a majority of the board has voted to raise maintenance or impose an assessment, the president has no override power.

If a majority of the board feels the same way, then it's trickier. At least in our Proprietary Lease (we're a coop), maintenance is "as determined by the Board of Directors." This grants power to the board to make the decision on its own, as is customary. However, I don't read this as a *prohibition* of using a shareholder vote to make the determination. I do agree it's a bad idea that abrogates one of the primary responsibilities of being a board member.

On the other hand, I'm not a lawyer, so you may want to consult one.

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Board president wants all owners to vote on building issues - Steven424 Nov 17, 2021

Have your co-op attorney, accountant, and/or managing agent talk to the board president to explain the need for a maintenance increase each year, and why not raising maintenance is a really *bad* idea. Maybe the president will listen to professionals.

If your president is intransient and still wants a shareholder vote, have your professionals attend the next shareholder meeting to give the same presentation. This may sway enough votes to get an increase passed.

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Board president wants all owners to vote on building issues - peoples choice #1 Nov 18, 2021

Why do you feel Steven424 that the maintenance has to be raised every year.
Money can be raised by raising all amenities and sales of the apartments. Also the building can also have a yearly assessment, raising the maintenance is not the answer. Finding a way of lowering cost and cut building expenses would help.
The problem is the condo owners, they complain about the high assessment, why do you think they will except a yearly raise in maintenance. Everyone is moaning about the decision that the President wants everyone to have a say in running the building since they know best.
Let the owners write to the board about their concerns, no one I repeat no one should contact the building lawyer or accountant that is the Executive Boards job. Have a Happy and safe Thanksgiving

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