Elections – Resignations – Appointments – What Do the Bylaws Say?
Elections were last November and we’ve already had 2 resignations from the BOD: Bonnie Houston (appointed by the BOD as President at the Annual Meeting) and Laura Corbin. That left the RVSCA BOD at 5 directors. Association bylaws require 3-7 directors, and the following roles must be filled: president, secretary, and treasurer (may be someone not on the board, e.g., an outside accountant). The Association has not had a treasurer since July 2014, although the phrase “finance board liaison” appeared next to John Zipprich’s name in the last RoundUp newsletter (he declined this responsibility at the April BOD mtg). BOD meetings only occur quarterly now, so we have less transparency than ever.
The bylaws also require a standing Nominating Committee to help recruit directors and fill vacancies (amongst other duties), which has not been in place since 2013. The BOD is allowed to appoint directors and the bylaws require that we follow Roberts Rules of Order which generally recommend reviewing election results and choosing the next person in line who received the most votes (see Election Results). This makes sense in associations that have trouble finding people to serve. More importantly, President Thompson set a precedent by using this method to allow Valerie Magliani to fill the vacancy left by Susan Warren’s resignation on a previous BOD. Since the 2012 – 2014 BOD violated numerous bylaws and followed past precedent only when it was convenient for them, the current BOD re-appointed Ms. Thompson as president, allowed Laura Corbin to return to the BOD after her resignation in January, and most certainly will not allow any of the other candidates who ran for the board to be appointed to the seventh position (they are viewed as the “opposition”).
Associations have problems all over the country because apathetic residents don’t attend meetings or serve on boards. Rescheduling board meetings for 1PM on Tuesday was a deliberate attempt to prevent active residents with 9-5 jobs from attending board meetings. The rest of you out there need to carry the baton!
Edmund Burke once said, “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.” If you don’t attend board meetings and hold directors accountable, you end up with budget overruns and repeat offenders. Attend the BOD meetings! Ask your directors why we still don’t have a proper audit or reserve study, why minutes still are not being published in a timely manner, why the irrigation engineering study hasn’t been released by the BOD, and why bylaws violations still occur. It’s your association – and your money.