Welcome To The May Edition Of "The Green Marble" Newsletter

The May Issue Includes:

- What Is The Legislature Up To NOW?
- Who's The Most Awesome In Your Association?
- Upcoming Seminars/Events/Meetings
- "I Volunteer"
- Want To Be A Better Board Member?
- Document Organization Service
- Did You Know?
- Quote Of The Month
- May Birthdays
What Is The Legislature Up To NOW?
By: Partner, Brian Hess

It was a very busy last week of April in Tallahassee.  A number of bills which could result in significantly increased burdens on Homeowner, Condominium, and Co-Operative Associations took important steps forward last week (some seemingly out of nowhere), and are now moving through both the Florida Senate and House of Representativ es and to the Governor's desk .  We are bringing the most potentially detrimental of these bills to your attention now, as we expect these bills will be presented to the Governor soon We urge you to contact the Governor and ask that he veto all of these bills in support of our state's Associations.  

You can contact Governor Scott as follows:
* House Bill 735/Senate Bill 1046:   This bill was approved by the House in the afternoon of May 2, and is currently being finalized for presentation to the Governor.  It could be very detrimental to Associations, by placing additional burdens on homeowners Associations in order to maintain their covenants as applicable to all parcel owners.  Especially surprising is that in last year's legislative session, a bill w as proposed to remove the applicability of the Marketable Record Title Act (MRTA; F.S. 712) to Homeowners Associations completely.   Among the proposed changes is that MRTA corrective actions may now require a written approval of 2/3 of all parcel owners, rather than a vote of 2/3 of the Board Members; or, potentially, a Board may be able to perform corrective actions, but such would need to be performed every five years.  Moreover, for those Associations that do not perform MRTA corrective actions in accordance with the timelines under the statute, covenant revitalization may now require an approval of 2/3 of the parcel owners, rather than a simple majority.

* House Bill 653/Senate Bill 744:   This bill was approved by the House in the afternoon of May 2, and is currently being finalized for presentation to the Governor. The bill, which relates to Condominium, Co-Operative, and Homeowners Associations, could be detrimental to Associations by placing additional burdens on each type of Association in various ways.  While a good portion of the changes in the bill would be considered by many to be beneficial, we do have concerns with regard to some of the proposed changes.  The bill implements certain restrictions on the use of e-mail by certain types of Board Members, amends certain financial reporting requirements for certain types of Associations, and implements certain changes regarding the election of Board Members.  Moreover, some Associations that are currently allowed exceptions to statutes that would otherwise require more complex forms of financial reporting to their 
Members may no longer be able to use such exception.  Finally, most Associations may face enhanced notice requirements for regular or annual assessments. 

*House Bill 1237/ Senate Bill 1682:  This bill, which relates only to Condominium Associations, seemingly was approved within nearly record time by both houses (by the afternoon of May 1) and will soon be sent to the Governor for approval. This bill arose out of a recent grand jury investigation from Miami-Dade County, where a number of Condominium Associations and their Board Members were, at best, acting poorly with regard to their Associations. While some of the provisions within the bill would be considered by many to be good changes, nevertheless, some of the changes are quite worrisome, and again, place increased burdens on Condominium Associations.  The most significant and potentially detrimental changes are to recall procedures and conflicts of interest provisions for Board Members, Managers, and even Association attorneys.  Additional changes as provided for in the lengthy bill include implementation of term limits for Board Members under certain conditions, requirements for Association websites for Associations larger than 150 units, and limitations on the use of debit cards by Associations, Board Members, and Managers. 


Who's The Most Awesome In Your Association?
Do you know of a Board Member or 
Community Association Manager who has:

  • Gone above and beyond the call of duty? 
  • Has dedicated themselves to the Association or the Community Association industry?
  • Deserves recognition for their hard work and perhaps years of service?

Well, then nominate them!  Each quarter, Clayton & McCulloh hosts the contest to find the Most Awesome Board Member and Most Awesome Manager in the land.  Any Board Member or Community Association Manager (whether they are a client or not) may be eligible to win.  It's a great way to recognize your favorite Manager or Board Member!  Each quarter, we accept nominations through our website for the Most Awesome Manager and/or Most Awesome Board Member.  Clayton & McCulloh, the law firm that Embraces Community, would like to recognize the fabulous talent in the community Association world that goes unnoticed so many times.  It's a small gesture of appreciation.

With the exciting announcement of our 2nd Quarter Most Awesome Board Member and Manager set for our next issue of the Green Marble; We hope that you will take the time to make a nomination for that special Board Member or Manager that you know for the 3rd Quarter Most Awesome Award. We know there are a lot of very deserving Managers and Board Members out there that need more recognition. 

The Deadline for Nominations for the 3 rd   Quarter 
Most  Awesome Award  is July 6!

What does the Most Awesome Manager or Most Awesome Board Member win?
  • A feature article in our "Green Marble" newsletters with their picture(s) distributed to thousands of Board Members, Managers, and committee persons throughout the twenty-five counties that we service;
  • Congratulations Posting on our Facebook Page;
  • A full feature posted on our website;
  • A $25 Visa Gift card;
  • A framed Certificate;
  • Recognition by their peers; and
  • Press releases will be sent to local media for publication with various social media or print publications. 
Use the buttons bellow to nominate a Manager or Board Member you know who has truly gone above and beyond the call of duty for your Association. Be sure to elaborate  and make sure we know why your nominee is the Most Awesome!

Upcoming Seminars/Events/Meetings

Our upcoming seminars and events are listed below.

Check out our website for information on specific classes by clicking  here.  

Tuesday, May 9  - Hosted by Clayton & McCulloh
Maitland Office. Registration begins at 11:30 a.m. Founding Partner, Neal McCulloh, will be presenting "Snooze? You Lose!" This complimentary class includes a fully catered lunch from TooJay's Deli.
For more information click  here.

Thursday, May 18 - Hosted by Clayton & McCulloh
Melbourne Office. Registration begins at 11:30 a.m. Founding Partner, Neal McCulloh, will be presenting "Snooze? You Lose!" This complimentary class includes a fully catered lunch from TooJay's Deli.
For more information click  here.

Wednesday, May 31  - Presenting an HOA, Condo, and Co-Op Board Certification Class
The Country Club of Highland Fairways.  3222 Highland Fairways Blvd, Lakeland, Florida 33810. Registration for this event begins at 4:30 p.m. Clayton & McCulloh Attorneys will be presenting a complimentary HOA, Condo, and Co-Op Board Certification class hosted by Sentry Management. This event features light dinner items and refreshments. For more information or to register click  here.

Tuesday, June 6 - Hosted by Clayton & McCulloh
Melbourne Office. Registration at 6:00 p.m. Partner, Jennifer Davis, will be presenting an "HOA Board Certification Class." This complimentary class includes appetizers and a complimentary glass of wine. For more information click  here.

Tuesday, June 20 - Hosted by Clayton & McCulloh
Melbourne Office. Registration at 6:00 p.m. Partner, Jennifer Davis, will be presenting an "HOA Board Certification Class." This complimentary class includes appetizers and a complimentary glass of wine. For more information click  here.

Thursday, June 22 - Hosted by Clayton & McCulloh
Maitland Office. Registration begins at 2:00 p.m. Partner, Russell Klemm, will be presenting "Friendly? Really? How Friendly is FL Friendly Landscape." This complimentary class includes appetizers and a complimentary glass of wine. For more information click  here.

"I Volunteer"
By: Partner, Russell Klemm

Volunteers are the lifeblood of Florida Community Associations. Board of Directors, Members, and officers of Florida Community Associations, as Not-for-Profit Corporations, are, after all, volunteers.  An Association must also depend on volunteers to serve on any committees (Architectural Review Committees, Social Committees, etc.) established by the Association.  The Association must, however, be careful not to utilize volunteers for matters and tasks that should be performed by licensed professionals or other trained personnel.  

Want To Be A Better Board Member?

Want to be a better Board Member?  Then consider joining BCAM (Brevard Community Association Management).  BCAM is a non-profit organization based in Brevard County (but accepts members throughout the State) designed to assist Board and Committee Members and Managers tackle the challenges that Community Associations bring on a daily basis.
Six times a year, BCAM hosts seminars on a wide range of topics affecting Community Associations.  Each event features an expert in their field, a great buffet with two entrees, door prizes, and a 50/50 drawing.  As a bonus, a community law attorney is at every meeting to answer any questions you may have regarding the topic featured at the meeting or something that you are experiencing at your own community.  Network with a group of professionals in one room from such fields as accounting, law, disaster recovery, landscaping, insurance, roofing, painting, aquatics, pest control, and more. 
In October of each year, we hold the Legal Update which covers all the laws passed that year (which also features complimentary wine, beer, and appetizers).  Additionally, most of our meetings feature an optional one hour Round Table Discussion either after or before the event.  The Round Table features a moderator who speaks for five minutes on a topic. Then, the discussion is open to the Board Members, Committee Members, and Managers present to answer questions and start an informal discussion on how others have solved the challenges facing Associations for the balance of the hour.  It's a great way to exchange ideas.  You can bring up any topic!  Why invent the wheel when someone else already did!

Three meetings are held at the Hilton Rialto at the Airport (200 Rialto Drive, Melbourne) and the other three are held at the Holiday Inn Space Coast Conference Center (at the intersection of SR 520 and I-95). 
If you would like more information on this professional organization created just for you, then please call our Director of Public Relations, Arlene Ring, at any of our offices or on her cell phone which provides you access after business hours and on weekends.  Don't be afraid to call her!  She is available 24/7!
Document Organization Service 

The Document Organization Service is offered to existing clients so that they can avail themselves of the benefits offered pursuant to this Service.    We created this Service to provide our clients with a cost-effective way to organize their Governing Documents in a custom Document Binder. Your Association will be provided with its own set of your Governing Documents obtained pursuant to a Governing Document Title Search.  We will set up the Document Binder wherein we organize, tab, and index your Governing Documents to facilitate the use of same by your Association and even this law firm.   An attorney will then conduct a cursory review of the Governing Documents considering about 52 issues that commonly arise with Governing Documents.  In addition, we will provide your Association with its own Document Binder.  This Document Binder will also be provided in both print and searchable CD format.

Another key benefit of the Document Organization Service is the significant assistance it renders to our firm when we are being asked to provide legal opinions to your Association which requires us to review your Governing Documents.   This Service may help reduce the amount of time our professionals spend reviewing the Association's Governing Documents to understand issues and be able to provide legal opinions regarding matters you have raised.  Researching a specific issue may be substantially expedited, which may result in significant cost savings.   Thus, the Association may see considerable savings in attorney's fees, in comparison to an Association who does not take advantage of this Service.

The fee for this Service depends upon various factors including whether your community is a "Standard Community" or a "Complex Community".  Which type of Community is yours depends on a review and analysis of your Declaration, Articles of Incorporation, Bylaws, and Rules and Regulations.  Such would indicate your Community is a "Simple Community". If your community is a "Complex Community", your Association has not only the aforementioned Governing Documents recovered in the Governing Document Title Search, but also additional documents, such as amendments, amended and restated documents, supplemental documents, etc.  Other factors that are taken into consideration in evaluating your situation are title search fees, whether your Association is a master or sub-association, and whether your Association is a phased-community. 

The fee for this Service includes (a) locating and identifying the Association's Governing Documents through a Governing Document Title Search, (b) organizing, tabbing and indexing these Governing Documents into a Governing Document Binder and (c) having an attorney review and include his comments and analysis in the Comment Letter regarding all Governing Documents in the Document Binder.  Upon request, our Client Services Department will provide you with an estimate of this cost of this Service for your Association.  For more information, please call the Public Relations Department if you are not currently a client.  If you are currently a client, please call our  Client Services Department.

Document Organization Service includes:
(Please allow 4 - 6 weeks for this service.  This time frame commences with the receipt of the results of the Governing Document Title Search)
  • Governing Document Title Search
  • Document Organization Service including the Comment Letter advising the Association of our findings and your Governing Documents placed on a searchable CD 
  •  Client Copy of the Governing Document Binder
  •  One Hour Consultation with the Attorney who Performed this Service at our office location nearest to you to discuss our findings

For more information please contact  our Director of Public Relations, Arlene Ring, at  (407) 875-2655 x129.
Did You Know?
Are you currently a client of Clayton & McCulloh?  Has your Board of Directors changed from what you last provided us? If so, you may register your new directors via our website by clicking on the picture bellow, or by clicking here. By providing us with changes to your board, we can provide your Association with many of our complimentary and/or flat rate services such as:


  • Our Community Association Newsletter. Each of your directors will receive our complimentary newsletters, "Community Connect" and "The Green Marble," which are sent electronically.  Both newsletters were created especially for directors of community Associations. "Community Connect" is published approximately each quarter and "The Green Marble" is published monthly.
  • Invitations to our Seminars. Our clients receive advance notice of these seminars, have reserved seating (the best seats in the house) and a complimentary gift in their program package.
  • Notification when a Member of the Firm is a Guest Speaker. Whenever a Member of our firm is a guest speaker at another organization's event, we will issue a special invitation to you so that you may attend.
  • Our e-mail service. Our e-mail service notifies you of new laws, late breaking news in the industry, upcoming seminars, and new services which will assist your Association.
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Join Us In Celebrating These May Birthdays!

Brian Hess - Partner, Clayton & McCulloh - May 3
Judah Burton - Manager, World of Homes - May 7
Sara J LaPointe - Manager, Bayside Management Services and Consulting - May 22

A Huge Thank You to our Community Connect Chat Partners
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Orlando Office: Maitland
The Clayton & McCulloh Building
1065 Maitland Center Commons Blvd.
Maitland, FL  32751
Phone: (407) 875-2655
Fax: (407) 875-3363 
Melbourne Office: Suntree/Viera
Baytree Corporate Park
1301 Bedford Drive, Suite 101
Melbourne, FL 32940
Phone: (321) 751-3449
Fax: (321) 751-3450 
Toll Free: (888) 793-1486
After Hours / 24/7: (407) 808-2553
You are receiving this e-mail as you fall into one of the following categories: 

* You are currently a client or client's manager; and/or
* You have requested to be on our mailing list.
*as a member of BCAM, you are provided complimentary Legal Updates.

If you elect to be removed from this e-mail service, we will no longer be able to send you seminar invitations, information on changes in the law concerning Community Associations, newsletters, or any other information regarding the Community Association industry.  You will not receive solicitation for business unless you have requested that information.  We sincerely hope we can continue to assist you with the challenges that face Community Associations today through this service. 

When replying with a question please include your full name 
and the legal name of your Association  (no acronyms).