Where did the Board Members go?

Where did the Board Members go?

  • Posted: Dec 10, 2015
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Truant Board members By: Mitch Drimmer, CAM With September upon us its back to school for millions of American children, and by law they are required to either attend school or prove that they are being properly home schooled. In a very similar parallel the law in Florida requires that board members of HOAs and Condos attest in writing that they have read the governing documents of their community associations or attend a two hour board certification class. Both students and board members must either prove that they have gone to school or done their reading. The parallel ends here because when it comes to students that are either home schooled or go to accredited schools the government has standards. When it comes to board members in Florida there are no standards, and most certainly two hours of board certification or merely reading governing documents without requiring comprehension is a requirement without any measure of competency.   Without exaggeration there are billions of dollars of real estate assets that are in the hands of boards of directors. People’s homes, investments, security and lives are put into the stewardship of volunteer boards. It’s a democratic process but it does not guarantee the ability of those who are elected to govern your community association, and that is where the trouble begins. Many associations hire community association managers who are required to take at least 20 hours of continuing education classes every two years and although it is a system that is wanting it does require that managers have a modicum of knowledge. Some management companies also have excellent in house educational programs and that is also very helpful. Having trained professionals manage communities may gong a long way, but only if they are allowed to practice their craft. All too often it is the case that boards of directors do not understand what is required of them, and more times than not community association managers are too timid to stand up to a board of directors for fear of being dismissed and losing their jobs when the boards are out of order and need proper direction. It will never come to pass that the attitudes of board members will change and they will forever misunderstand that their job is to set policy, assume fiduciary responsibility, and insure that the managers they hire are doing a proper job. It is not their place to manage and run their community association albeit it is their right. There will always be boards of directors who over reach and interfere with licensed managers or take associations “self-managed.” So how do we address this quandary?   Volunteer boards of directors must do more than just volunteer one hour a month to sit at a meeting, they should assume to take the same CEU courses that are offered to managers. It is very fortunate that in Florida these Community Association Management CEU courses are given often, in many locations, and often for no cost. There are also many good community association schools that provide educational opportunities and any association who budgets and spends money will see a great benefit in return. A month does not pass by when a trade event is not presented in any given area in Florida without a complete curriculum of courses being offered for managers that board members are welcome to attend. From September through December dozens of these courses are offered at no charge to managers and board members by various organizations, trade event providers, and industry specialists. Educational opportunities also abound throughout the year but the season is more towards the end of the year. There are no truant officers for board members and if they want to govern their associations properly they must realize that two hours of a board certification class is not near what they need. Without this education they are going to put their associations in harm’s way and eventually create costs and problems that could have been avoided. Classes and seminars for board members can easily be found in your area with a simple search on your home computer. I urge board members to take the time to come to class and get the education that they need to govern their own associations better.   MITCHELL DRIMMER, VP, CAM Tel: 866.736.3069 ex. 804 Fax: 866.774-2997 e-mail: mitch@snapcollections.com Web Site www.snapcollections.com…

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