What Happens in Covenants?
One of the responsibilities of the HOA Board, and their least favorite duty, is to review all citations of alleged violations of the community’s governing documents (CC&Rs, By-laws, Rules and Regulations, etc.). These violations range from trashcans not being removed from the street by midnight on trash day, to reckless driving or abusive language, and a plethora of items in between.
When an alleged violation occurs, a notice is sent to the homeowner (not a tenant) about what the options are to deal with the citation, including how to appear before the Board and explain their side of the situation. These notices must go to the homeowner on the deed per legal requirements.
If the homeowner does wish to come before the Board and explain the situation, the homeowner is scheduled to come to a Covenants Meeting. The Covenants Committee is made up of your HOA Board of Directors. At this meeting will be the five Board members, the General Manager, the Community Safety Director, and an administrative assistant. If the violation is a traffic issue, the homeowner is shown a copy of the violation video, if one is available, and then the homeowner will have an opportunity to discuss what is on the video. After listening to the homeowner, the homeowner leaves and the Board members then discuss what they have heard from the homeowner, the information from security and the video, and then make a determination. This could range from turning it into a warning, levying a fine according to the fine schedule, fining and suspending, for a period of time, or dismissing the ticket. Fine and suspend means the fine is noted in the record of the homeowner but no money is paid and, if there are no further citations issued in the period noted, it is removed from the record of the homeowner.
If the issue concerns Design Review Committee violations, the homeowner is again given a notice of the alleged violation and a period of time to correct the situation. After that date, if there is no correction, the matter comes before the Covenants Committee and, as with traffic citations, the homeowner is given an opportunity to come before the Board and explain the situation. The Board then reviews all the information and makes a determination.
It is never comfortable having to serve as judge and jury against your neighbors, but when serving on the Board it is required in order to enforce the governing documents and maintain the homogeny of our community.