HOA news updates — security cameras and sinkholes

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By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities June 2019 — Former HOA private security guard sentenced to 30 years for murder in shooting incident. Crews stabilize an landslide and work on temporary fix for massive sinkhole threatening a condo building. Homeowners and civil rights groups speak out against License Plate Reader cameras monitoring HOA gates. Former HOA private security guard sentenced to 30 years in prison on murder charges (VA) Two years ago, a former Citywide Continue ReadingHOA news updates — security cameras and sinkholes

FL First Amendment dispute: condo HOA threatens fines, lawsuit if meeting videos posted on YouTube

We the people Constitution

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities Should Florida condo owners be fined and potentially sued by their association for posting a video recording of a meeting on YouTube? Or do owners have a First Amendment right to publish condo meetings? That’s the latest legal question to be tested in the Sunshine State. The dispute began when two owners of condo units in Key Biscayne, Matt  Bramson and Maria Bueno, videotaped an association meeting in January. Continue ReadingFL First Amendment dispute: condo HOA threatens fines, lawsuit if meeting videos posted on YouTube

Like city government, HOAs impose abusive fines and fees

We the people Constitution

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities Housing consumer advocates have spent the past several years exposing abusive fines and fees imposed by homeowners, condominium, and cooperative associations. Unfortunately, most advocacy groups ignore HOA abuse, even though it closely mirrors the behavior of some oppressive local government leaders. Local governments have long had the authority to impose fines for violations of health and safety codes. But recent trends reveal that city and county leaders are enacting Continue ReadingLike city government, HOAs impose abusive fines and fees

States enact new laws regulating short-term vacation rentals (AZ, MA, WA – 2019)

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities City and town governments have been regulating short-term and vacation rentals for several years, especially with the growing popularity of online rental platforms such as Airbnb, HomeAway, VRBO, and others. The battle over short-term rentals is controversial, often pitting neighborhood residents against owners and investors who earn substantial profit sharing their home. Local regulation typically results in inconsistent, piecemeal regulations from town to town. Not wanting to miss out Continue ReadingStates enact new laws regulating short-term vacation rentals (AZ, MA, WA – 2019)