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State Legislature should review HOA disclosure policies

Q: I read your column every Sunday. Thank you for all of the valuable information you have passed along over the years. I have saved many of those articles and keep them handy so that I have them available should a similar issue arise for our community. I appreciate the time you put into answering so many inquiries from your readership.

I have a question about conflict of interest regarding potential or newly elected board members. Since Nevada Revised Statutes 116.31084 (9) requires the disclosure forms to be included with the mailed ballot, it has always been the practice of our homeowners association board to include them as required. However, this past year, we hired a new management company that did not include them with the ballot mailing, and said they were not required to, according to their attorney. However, they did re-distribute the mailing in order to “please the homeowner who complained about the omission.”

One of the candidates running for the board owes the HOA reimbursement costs for common area damages and has an issue with installing an improvement on their residence without first submitting an architectural review request that they had been appealing for several months. When this potential candidate submitted their disclosure form, they neglected to disclose any of this information. The community manager says that it is not their responsibility nor the board’s to correct that information with the prepared ballots to the membership. Is this correct? That seems odd that they would not at least be required to disclose it, if they, in fact, have firsthand knowledge that the homeowner has potential conflicts and monies owed (hard costs not fines) to the HOA.

If the management company and the board are not required to correct the disclosure forms, are there any repercussions to the homeowner for failing to disclose that? If no one is held accountable for omitting the conflict of interest items, why would NRS have a condition to regulate it in the first place? What could be the point of a statute with no penalty? Does the board have any responsibility to take any action? Can a complaint be filed against the homeowner for failure to disclose their conflict of interests? Any information you can provide would be helpful.

A: NRS 116.31034 (9b) states, “The candidate must make all disclosures required pursuant to this subsection in writing to the association with his or her candidacy information.”

The law does require disclosure, unfortunately, it does not state that the candidate can be disqualified by the association, nor does the law state the association has the right to inform the membership of information that should have been disclosed by the candidate that would deem that candidate ineligible. During this legislative session, some legislator should review this section of the law and make appropriate changes.

Q: Recently, a resident was voted down by the board in a request for reimbursement of a towing charge, having been towed from the red zone in front a fire hydrant. A board member sent an email to other board members, saying if the request was not approved he would pay it out of his own pocket. Is that proper?

A: If the notification and towing was in accordance with state law and your association’s governing documents, the board member should not offer to reimburse the homeowner whose vehicle was towed. The vehicle would also be in violation of county or city ordinance.

Barbara Holland is a certified property manager, broker and supervisory certified association manager. Questions may be sent to holland744o@gmail.com.

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