Governor Brown Vetoes Turf Bill

For the second time, an artificial turf bill has been vetoed by California’s Governor. In vetoing the bill, Governor Brown reasoned, as Governor Schwarzenegger did when he vetoed AB 1793 last year, that CIDs should not be micromanaged by the State Legislature.

CAI-CLAC reported yesterday that for the second time, an artificial turf bill has been vetoed by California’s Governor. In vetoing the bill, Governor Brown reasoned, as Governor Schwarzenegger did when he vetoed AB 1793 last year, that CIDs should not be micromanaged by the State Legislature.

The Legislature’s passage of the bill was due largely to the fact that it was marketed as a water conservation measure and as such explains the impressive vote in favor of it. The veto of this bill is a victory for local control rather than state mandated regulations.

The bill was sponsored by the San Diego County Water Authority and supported by the Association of California Water Agencies, and the City of San Diego, and opposed by CAI-CLAC.

Here is the Governor’s veto message, followed by an article in the press:

To the Members of the California State Senate:

I am returning Senate Bill 759 without my signature. Under this bill, homeowners associations that govern Common Interest Developments would be forced to approve the installation of AstroTurf. The decision about choosing synthetic turf instead of natural vegetation should be left to individual homeowners associations, not mandated by state law. For this reason, I am returning this bill.

 

Sincerely,

Edmund G. Brown Jr.

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July 15, 2011

Jerry Brown vetoes artificial turf bill backed by conservationists

Gov. Jerry Brown has vetoed legislation that would have required homeowners associations to let people replace their lawns with artificial turf, the governor’s office announced today.

Senate Bill 759, by Sen. Ted Lieu, D-Torrance, was supported by water conservationists and passed by the Legislature with some bipartisan support. It would have prohibited associations, which often govern the aesthetics of a neighborhood, from banning artificial turf.

“A decision to choose synthetic turf over natural vegetation is best left to individual homeowners associations, not mandated by state law,” the Democratic governor said in his veto message.

Lieu fired a testy Twitter message or two at Brown last month after the governor vetoed the first budget passed by Democratic lawmakers. But Lieu said this afternoon that he didn’t think the veto was in retribution.

“It does appear to me that Jerry Brown is looking at each bill on its merits and then making his decision,” he said.

** Sacramento Bee Newspaper

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HOA, for better or worse

Before you reach for your light saber, though, consider this: Homeowners associations (HOAs) often can be a force for good, cleaning up snow, maintaining the pool and ensuring that the neighborhood looks its best when potential buyers come to call

Lisa Rauschart has an interesting story in today’s Washington Times discussing living in an HOA, and pointing out some of the benefits an Association provides it’s members. An excerpt of the story is below. You can read the entire article here.

You’ve heard the horror stories: The elderly woman forced to move from her condo because she couldn’t carry her cocker spaniel across the common-room floor, the Virginia couple fined because they posted a “Happy Birthday Jesus” sign on their front lawn shortly after Thanksgiving, the California man called on the carpet for planting too many roses. There’s even an old “X-Files” episode that has the president of a homeowners association conjuring up a Tibetan monster to kill residents who broke the rules.

Before you reach for your light saber, though, consider this: Homeowners associations (HOAs) often can be a force for good, cleaning up snow, maintaining the pool and ensuring that the neighborhood looks its best when potential buyers come to call.

Robert DeNichilo has contributed to the Following Articles at HOALeader.com

When Pets Do Damage in Your HOA

In pet-friendly homeowners associations, fights can erupt over whether common-area damage is the result of pets—and over whose pets are the culprits.

Here’s a common example: In one Chicago condo association, owners are bickering over whether the brown spots on the lawn are from a new dog’s bathroom habits and what the owner must do to fix the problem.

Here, we cover how to determine the cause of and get reimbursed for pet damages to common areas. Click here to read the entire article.

Guard Your HOA’s Membership List Carefully

If an owner or someone else asks to see your association’s member list, can you say no? If your state requires that you provide members your list, can you redact some information? Are there restrictions on how members can use the list?

To answer those questions for your association, you’ll need to review your own state’s law and your governing documents. Here’s how a sampling of states address the issue. Click here to read the entire article.

When to Turn to Small Claims Court for HOA Collections

In this week’s tip, we give you the skinny on when it’s wise and not-so-wise to go after delinquent homeowners in small claims court. Many attorneys recommend against it, but there are exceptions.

“In certain circumstances, small claims is a very viable option, such as when it’s a small amount of money,” says Robert M. DeNichilo, an attorney at DeNichilo & Lindsley LLP in Irvine, Calif., who specializes in representing community associations.Click here to read the entire article.

How Open Must Your HOA Meetings Be?

Your owners’ tenants are beginning to show up at association meetings. And on occasion, a potential vender stops by. This week’s tip addresses whether you can and should boot those nonmembers.Click here to read the entire article.

Who Can Attend Your HOA Meetings?

Does your state or homeowners association have rules covering who can attend owners’ and board meetings? Here we explain potential restrictions and whether your board can and should allow exceptions.

How you treat “outsiders” depends on your state’s laws and your governing documents. Click here to read the entire article.

Can You Use Small Claims Court to Collect Unpaid HOA Fees?

One California small claims judge’s opinion has caused confusion over homeowners associations’ ability to use small claims court to collect unpaid fees. Here, we explain the California brouhaha and offer insights about using small claims court in other states as well. Click here to read the entire article.