The State of the Association: A Tale of Mismanagement and Corruption.
The Board of Directors has once again interfered with the Association's electoral process, ensuring that they remain in power and that members have no say in the Association's affairs. They have appointed new members to the board of directors who have never attended meetings, as well as one controversial choice for officer.
By any objective measure, the Association is in poor condition. The roads are in disrepair, the common area is neglected, membership fees have increased dramatically while services have virtually disappeared, and the Board has imposed a complete information blackout on members. DANA Properties was hired for unexplained reasons, and their mismanagement and incompetence have left members confused or unaware of the many changes that DANA has unilaterally imposed.
Why has the Board of Directors not informed Association members that DANA Properties has been hired to perform association management?
Members have received a number of mailings from DANA Properties, but nothing from the Board of Directors. Homeowner associations are required to be transparent with their members and to provide them with notice of major decisions, such as hiring a management company. This is usually done through a newsletter, email, or website post. Nondescript mailers from a management company could be confusing or misleading to members. Members may not realize that the management company has been hired, or they may not know what the management company's responsibilities are.
What has been accomplished by the Board, its committees, and management company in 2023?
What is the design review process for 2023?
What is the enforcement process for the Association?
- First, it can be difficult for HOA members to know what the consequences are for violating the HOA's rules. This can lead to confusion and frustration, and it can also make it more difficult for the HOA to enforce its rules.
- Second, a lack of written enforcement process and schedule of fines can make it more difficult for the HOA to be fair and consistent in its enforcement of the rules. For example, if there is no written process, the HOA board may be more likely to enforce the rules differently against different members, depending on the board's personal preferences.
- Third, a lack of written enforcement process and schedule of fines can make it more difficult for the HOA to collect fines from members who violate the rules. If there is no written schedule of fines, it can be difficult for the HOA to prove how much it is owed.
Who are the people responsible for enforcement?
What is the fines process for the Association? Who are the people responsible for assessing and collecting fines?
What fines and fees may be imposed by the Association? By DANA Properties?
What are the new charges showing up on billing statements from DANA Properties?
Why has DANA made no effort to explain changes they are making to members?
Are changes made by DANA legally binding upon members? How?
Why are the activities of the Board and its management company secretive?
For example, DANA Properties has instituted a credit reporting system that has had significant negative consequences for members of other HOA's they manage. Why has this not been disclosed to members of the El Mirador subdivision?
I suspect that the first year billing from DANA will be a shock to everyone involved.
As I write this, I cannot think of anything that the Board or DANA Properties has done that could be considered a benefit to Association members. Also, for the record, I have always made it known that DANA Properties has not been legally retained by the Association. The meeting of February 23, 2023 was improperly noticed to members and it did not conform to statutory requirements for electronic meetings. The resulting contract contains wording that directly conflict with our community documents and should never have been signed by the professed President, Richard Doyle.
DANA has secretly instituted a credit reporting system designed for the submission of negative reporting against members who have unpaid dues or fines to third-party credit collection agencies. It is unclear why the Board has agreed to allow DANA to submit our confidential information to third-party credit reporting agencies. There is no member benefit to this policy. For the record, DANA, as Agent for the Association, has the same fiduciary obligations to maintain our information confidential that the Board has.
The behavior I have witnessed demonstrates that DANA Properties has no intention of adhering to our community documents. For example, they negotiated a new contract for services from Henry Trost. It's unclear how this could be possible, because our community documents are very clear about issues like this, and nothing I have heard demonstrates that our rules and guidelines were followed in this process of spending our money. This lack of regard for the rules and guidelines of the Association can be interpreted in many ways, but I consider two of them to be the most likely scenarios:
- Members suffer the consequences of the Board's corruption and DANA's mismanagement in silence. You pay DANA's arbitrary fees and fines and submit to their unilateral rule changes. Or,
- Members understand that if those in charge do not follow the rules, then there are no rules.
I choose No. 2. Become ungovernable. The Board's corruption is complete. If a governing body does not follow the rules it sets for others, it has no right to demand obedience. When those in charge breach their fiduciary obligations and abandon all pretense of fair administration, any agreement between them and the governed is void. Silence in such matters can be construed as consent. I refuse to be ruled by a corrupt faction or its thuggish minions.