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TCAA Minute - February 22, 2019 

TCAA Minute - March 1, 2019

TCAA Minute - March 11, 2019

 

 

 

 

 

 

INTRODUCTION

 The Texas Community Association Advocates (TCAA) legislative team has turned its focus to the Texas Legislature, which began its 86th Regular Legislative Session on January 8th, 2019. TCAA looks forward to another productive and successful session for community associations and the homeowners that we serve. Since the Texas Legislature only meets in regular session for a few months every other year, it is important for TCAA and its members to hit the ground running. Preparations and activities are already well underway to ensure the continued protection and support of community associations across the state.

CAPITOL ACTIVITY

 Legislative Leadership

There are several defining issues in the 2019 legislative session. The first is the transition to new leadership in the Texas House, as Speaker Joe Straus steps down after first being elected Speaker in 2009 and serving for five regular legislative sessions. After a brief tussle among several contenders, Rep. Dennis Bonnen was unanimously elected the new Speaker of the House. It remains to be seen whether Bonnen’s tenure will be marked by the same adversarial relationship with the Texas Senate and Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick, but both sides – along with Governor Greg Abbott - have already pledged to work closely together in the coming months. Early priorities for legislative leadership include public education, school safety, and Hurricane Harvey recovery.

Committee Activity

The Senate Finance Committee and the House Appropriations Committee have already been meeting for long days of testimony on the state budget. Other House and Senate committees have been appointed and will soon begin considering and passing legislation. Due to constitutional constraints, legislative committees generally may not consider bills during the first 60 days of session unless the governor has declared the subject of the bill an emergency. The committees most relevant to TCAA and its members are: the House Business and Industry Committee, chaired by Rep. Trey Martinez Fischer from San Antonio; the House State Affairs Committee, chaired by Rep. Dade Phelan from Beaumont; and Senate State Affairs, chaired by Sen. Joan Huffman from Houston. TCAA has strong working relationships with each of these legislators and looks forward to a productive legislative session.

TCAA PRIORITIES

TCAA will be monitoring hundreds of bills during this legislative session, as well as communicating regularly with legislators, stakeholders, and the TCAA community. The highest priority for TCAA in these efforts is to preserve the existing power of community associations to be largely self-regulated and self-governed, without undue government interference, so that they may continue to best serve homeowners in Texas. TCAA will also continue to monitor implementation of recently adopted regulatory changes, including numerous changes relating to notices, elections, meetings, and liens. The bottom line is that TCAA is proud of the work being done by local community associations and professionals in Texas, and wants to empower you and your neighbors to continue that success.

 

 

Changes to HOA Board Meetings Include Online Options

Close-Up on Laws Affecting Board Meetings

Effective September 1, 2015, the laws for notice for HOA board meetings have changed. These laws are not applicable to condominium associations. The new laws apply regardless of what an HOA’s governing documents require in terms of notice. HOA board members should familiarize themselves with the meeting notice requirements to ensure that no inadvertent violations occur.

The new requirements include:
  • ALL board meetings may now be held electronically or by telephone;
  • A board no longer needs to provide notice of a meeting when the board acts on an item (it’s now immaterial whether it’s “routine and administrative” or “a reasonably unforeseen emergency or urgent necessity”) so long as the item is not one of the “magic 14” (these items are outlined in the article); and
  • Seven new items now require a board meeting before being discussed or acted on.
    Read the full article.

TCAA Thanks Lawmakers for Supporting Legislation to Improve Homeowners’ Associations

Governor Greg Abbott Signs SB 1168 into Law

Texas legislative session

 Texas Community Association Advocates (TCAA) today praised the 84th Texas Legislature for passing legislation that demonstrates a strong commitment to improving the operations of homeowners’ associations in the State of Texas.  Legislators supported TCAA’s Affirmative Legislation, SB 1168,  which will increase consumer protections and allow greater transparency. The law goes into effect on September 1, 2015. 

Some key provisions of SB 1168:

  • allows associations to have more flexibility and offer longer payment plans to homeowners;
  • provides greater transparency in open meetings by allowing members to attend open board meetings by video conferencing;
  • requires important votes to be taken at an open meeting such as selling land or adopting a deed restriction;
  • provides privacy protection for voting by allowing associations to adopt rules regarding use of secret ballots, and by making it clear that any person who tabulates or recounts votes must not disclose to anyone how an individual voted.

Read the TCAA press release about the bill.

Log-in to read the TCAA June Legislative Update update SB 1168 and other bills slated for passage.