Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Budget Ink Drying and Community Association Bill en Route to Governor

Representative George Moraitis (R-Ft. Lauderdale), CAN's House Sponsor, proudly announced that his bill, 1195, was passed by the Florida Senate and is on its way to the Governor to be signed into law. This association package contains numerous consumer-friendly provisions and provides community associations and their homeowners with additional clarity.

Although a freshman lawmaker, Rep. Moraitis worked this bill through the process like a veteran. His door was always open and he reviewed each concern and every argument with a careful and thoughtful eye. As a result, this very good legislation made it through the process during a very difficult legislative session. Your involvement, as a member of CAN, also played a critical part in the success of this measure. And it’s not just me saying so; please see this message from Representative Moraitis:
Thank you Donna - you and your team provided invaluable assistance in ensuring that we passed a great bill. I have received several compliments from other members and attribute much of the success to your participation and advocacy on behalf of our association residents.
I look forward to working on the next bill and to celebrating the passage of this bill for our residents.

The Senate companion, SB 530, was sponsored by Sen. Mike Fasano and co-sponsored by Sen. Maria Sachs. Sen. Jeremy Ring was also supportive and helpful with shepherding this bill through the process.

Below is a brief summary of HB 1195 and CAN's Legislative Package included therein.

A key provision of HB 1195, referred to as “Master/Sub” language, will remove financial hurdles for sub associations that want to foreclose on delinquent property in their communities but are reluctant to do so for fear of being jointly and severally liable to a master association for the debts associated with that property The language now found in 1195 removes that hurdle thereby encouraging sub associations to move forward on their foreclosure to get paying owners or tenants in those properties.
In addition to assisting homeowners and associations managing Florida’s foreclosure crisis, the CAN legislation would:
• prohibit felons and delinquent homeowners from serving on HOA boards;

• permit associations to install impact glass and other code compliant windows for hurricane protection;

• grant homeowners in HOAs the same rights as condominium owners with regard to speaking at meetings; and clarify that full rent can be collected from tenants in delinquent properties.

Additional policy changes and technical corrections that were permitted in HB 1195

Florida Legal Aid worked with stakeholders to include language that requires a form notice for tenants when associations are collecting rent from them. This measure should clarify the process of collecting rent from tenants when the owner/landlord and hopefully lead to a smoother process for associations and less litigation.

Additionally, there were numerous glitch fixes added to this bill, such as language that clarifies that homeowners are permitted to access salaries and compensation records of association employees and allow condominium associations to create phone or email directories for homeowners.

For a more thorough analysis and to read the final bill language, please go to CAN’s website.

HB 1195 bill analysis:

HB 1195 final language:

Budget News – The ink is still drying on the 2011-2012 budget. Legislators must wait 72 hours before voting on the final plan, which sweeps $5.8 million from the Division of Florida Condominiums, Timeshares, and Mobile Homes and allots $7.2 million for its programs.

This work by Donna DiMaggio Berger, Esq. is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 Generic License.

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