Stop HOAs from Violating our freedom!

I am developing bullet points for rebuttal- any thoughts on the below? Also some private comments from friends and neighbors:
BoD meeting this Thursday- have yet to get any input from PWC GOP “leaders”- Corey Stewart; Pete Candland; David Ramadan; Dick Black….my vote is not free

Main Points for rebuttal:

Violation of Freedom of Speech
Email blasts to a largely unwitting resident is not appropriate for the topic.

Over reach of BOD/Managing Agent

HOA rules don’t apply to non- residents; which CMC is

Is anyone being paid to spend time and effort drafting this? If so, are we the homeowner ending up with the bill?

CMC is a service provider; the Homeowner is the customer. These relationships are difficult in all fields. It seems this policy is being written for non-members. A more appropriate tool is an employer code of conduct, which it seems a large part of the language here is being taken from.
Have lawyers reviewed this? Have they considered the cost to the community even if it were to pass? Simply cannot be enforced and DVOA would lose in court.

VA Code states HOAs cannot violate any VA or US Law. Both provide recourse for inappropriate uses and application of Freedom of Speech

The HOA is not a body of authority; The BOD is not a board of authority. You are a board of governance.

I respectfully submit to you that the job the MA is hired for is not being done well, and that instead of focusing on human behavior they should focus on community appearance and operation.
Example:
I have been continuously told by your managing agent that I do not have a right to know the status of a complaint I submitted in May for a deck that is filthy with peeling on the rails and food waste in plain view of myself and all who are neighbors.

Harry, I overheard a resident say she felt threatened by you.

As you can see, it’s a very dangerous slope, highly subjective; unenforceable, and troublesome.
I would encourage the Board to change the manner in which they bring actions to the community. It is at the very least assumptive, presumptive, and at the most, an arrogant overreach of the duties we elected you to do. In addition, the managing agent was not hired to write social policy; they were hired to manage day-to-day operations of this community.

Additionally, we did not elect the members of the board to establish social rules for us. You are acting out of bounds and in direct violation of the US and VA Constitution.
Constitution of VA, Article 1, Section 12, Bill of Rights states:
Any citizen may freely speak, write, or publish sentiments on all subjects; being responsible for the abuse of that right.

COMMENTS from others:

I’ve never seen such an absurdly amateurish attempt to extend an authority beyond its established limits. This “Policy” seems to be contrived and comprised of purely fabricated legal invention with absolutely no foundation in statutory authority. These vague references of investigations and taking appropriate enforcement action all sound very threatening but I’m not sure where they’re finding the legal authority to take any action against anyone much beyond forcing communication in writing. Sure, if someone literally breaks a law (I mean, a real one) they can certainly call the police, but anyone can do that. Beyond this, in real life, an HOA’s sanctioned authority is limited to approving paint colors and the like. For an HOA to attempt to encroach into the realm of mandating an individual’s personal behavior? Like you say, good luck defending that! Maybe this is the first HCA … Homeowner Control Association?

This resolution is offensive as well as un-American and unconstitutional. People who use bad behavior and bad language are using intimidation to feel they are in control and create reactions. Drafting this resolution falls right into their ploy for a dramatic emotional reaction and uses the same intimidation tactic to feel in control, disguised as a resolution. Another word is bullying. It is hard to believe that any American Association in 2015 could come up with such an egregious idea.

Should the resolution be drafted, the negative publicity which can easily travel nationwide, would make Dominion Valley Country Club a place people would not want to come to and live, because it would not represent the perfect world desired with this resolution.

vahoafreedom

Hello world! I am an American who believes in the US Constitution because it is the basis for a civil society and it is the reason we are the most tolerant and GREATEST nation on earth!  This post is created to bring awareness to Home Owner Associations trying to take away our 1st Amendment Freedom of Speech. Please read, comment and circulate the below “Resolution for Healthy Behavior” that the Dominion Valley Owners Association in Haymarket, VA wishes to implement. Please help me get this published in local and national news!  I am former active duty Army (13 years) and want to do more to help stop the erosion of freedom! From Mark Levin’s new book Plunder and Deceit:   “Will you acquiesce to a government that overwhelmingly acts without constitutional foundation—or will you stand in your own defense so that yours and future generations can live in freedom?”

DOMINION VALLEY OWNERS ASSOCIATION…

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Stop HOAs from Violating our freedom!

Hello world! I am an American who believes in the US Constitution because it is the basis for a civil society and it is the reason we are the most tolerant and GREATEST nation on earth!  This post is created to bring awareness to Home Owner Associations trying to take away our 1st Amendment Freedom of Speech. Please read, comment and circulate the below “Resolution for Healthy Behavior” that the Dominion Valley Owners Association in Haymarket, VA wishes to implement. Please help me get this published in local and national news!  I am former active duty Army (13 years) and want to do more to help stop the erosion of freedom! From Mark Levin’s new book Plunder and Deceit:   “Will you acquiesce to a government that overwhelmingly acts without constitutional foundation—or will you stand in your own defense so that yours and future generations can live in freedom?”

DOMINION VALLEY OWNERS ASSOCIATION POLICY RESOLUTION NO. 11

REGARDING MAINTAINING A RESPECTFUL COMMUNITY AND WORKPLACE

WHEREAS, Article 4, Section 4.1 of the Bylaws for Dominion Valley Owners Association (“Bylaws”) states that, “The Board of Directors shall have all of the powers and duties necessary for the administration of the affairs of the Association and may do all such acts and things as are not required by the Act or the Association Documents to be exercised and done by the Owners;” and,

WHEREAS, Article 4, Section 4.1(2) of the Bylaws provides that the Board of Directors shall have the authority to, “Designate, hire, dismiss and, where appropriate, compensate the personnel necessary to provide for the Upkeep of the Common Area, Common Easement Area and the genearl administration of the Association;” and,

WHEREAS, Article 4, Section 4.1(4) of the Bylaws provides that the Board shall have the power to enact and amend any reasonable rules and regulations not inconsistent with the Association Documents; and

WHEREAS, Article 1, Section 1.3(d) of the Declaration for Dominion Valley (“Declaration”) states that, “The Board of Directors is responsible for the management and Upkeep of the Property and the administration of the Association. Unless otherwise specifically provided in the Act or the Association Documents, all rights, powers, easements, obligations and duties of the Association may be performed by the Board of Directors on behalf of the Association without the joinder or approval of any members, Owner or holder of a Mortgage (including in all cases any holder qualifying as a Mortgagee);” and

WHEREAS, Article 8, Section 8.2(d) of the Declaration provides that no person shall, “permit or engage in any activity, practice or behavior that results in unreasonable annoyance, discomfort or disturbance to any Person lawfully present on any portion of the Property;” and,

WHEREAS, Article 8, Section 8.2(f) of the Declaration provides that, “No Person shall engage or direct any employee of the Association on any private business of the Owner or otherwise direct, supervise, or in any manner attempt to assert control over such employee during the hours such employee is employed by the Association;” and,

WHEREAS, Article 8, Section 8.3 of the Declaration provides that, “The Board of Directors shall have the power to adopt, amend and repeal Rules and Regulations restricting and regulating the use and enjoyment of the Property or of any portion thereof, which may supplement, but may not be inconsistent with the provisions of the Association Documents;” and,

WHEREAS, the Board of Directors has engaged a managing agent and other personnel as are necessary to facilitate the operation of the Property and to provide appropriate services to the Owners in connection with running the affairs of the Association; and,

WHEREAS, the Board of Directors has become aware that some Owners and/or their tenants, guests, or invitees, have had interactions from time-to-time with the Association’s personnel that failed to demonstrate a level of respect, professionalism, and courtesy to which the Association’s personnel is entitled and with which the Association expects all Owners and/or their tenants, guests, or invitees to act; and,

WHEREAS, the Board of Directors has determined it to be in the best interest of the Association, its personnel, and its members to establish a clear policy that demonstrates the Association’s strong commitment to maintaining a respectful and professional environment for all Association personnel, officers, directors, Owners, residents, and guests.

NOW, THEREFORE, the Board of Directors adopts the following resolution regarding maintaining a respectful community and workplace, which shall supersede any current regulations of record or previously adopted rules on the same subject matter.

Association Commitment

Dominion Valley Owners Association (the “Association”) is committed to ensure that our place of work and our community in general is free from negative, aggressive, and inappropriate behaviors, and that the environment is aimed at providing high quality services in an atmosphere of respect, collaboration, openness, safety and equality. We believe that all Owners, residents, employees and guests should be treated with dignity and respect (our “Policy”).

All complaints of negative and inappropriate community and workplace behaviors will be taken seriously and followed through to resolution, and personnel who file complaints will not be retaliated against for reporting inappropriate behavior.

Definitions

For purposes of this document, the following definitions, which might otherwise not be stipulated in the Association’s governing documents, shall apply.

“Employee” means a person or contractor, including the community management firm, working for the Association for pay. As used herein, the term “employee” may refer to persons who are not direct employees of the Association. The term is used for convenience and ease of reference and not as an assertion or admission by the Association that any person is a legal employee of the Association for tax, worker’s compensation, or any other purpose whatsoever.

“Guest” means a person or contractor who has been invited to spend some time or perform a service at an Owner’s or resident’s home or who might be conducting business with the Association within the confines of the Dominion Valley community.

“Owner” means one or more persons who own a Lot in fee simple, but does not mean any person having an interest in a Lot solely by virtue of a contract or as security for an obligation.

“Resident” means a person residing in Dominion Valley who is not an Owner of a Lot.

“Volunteer” means an Owner or resident who performs a service for the Association willingly and without pay.

Scope

Protection from negative, aggressive and inappropriate behaviors extends to board members, management, employees, Owners, residents, guests, customers and other business contacts and extends beyond the worksite and to all other community activities, meetings or events. It is our collective responsibility to provide a healthy workplace and community environment to peers, co-workers, Owners,residents and guests, where all communication and interactions are marked by dignity, civility and respect.

Acceptable and Healthy Behaviors Defined

Acceptable and healthy interpersonal and workplace behaviors are behaviors that promote respect and civility throughout our community. They include, but are not limited to:

  • ·  Using respectful, supportive, and positive language in all interactions, no matter the subject of conversation
  • ·  Questioning another politely rather than aggressively or rudely
  • ·  Listening with an open mind
  • ·  Giving others direct, non-personal feedback as opposed to criticism
  • ·  Expressing appreciation when someone does something correctly and in a timely manner
  • ·  Respecting Association rules and Policy
  • ·  Approaching conflict with maturity and a true desire for resolution, rather than as a fight or opportunity to belittle another, be it an employee or resident
  • ·  Maintaining a positive and enthusiastic attitude in all interactions

Inappropriate and Unacceptable Behaviors Defined

Inappropriate and unacceptable behaviors are defined as negative and/or aggressive acts or comments directed at one or more individuals, causing them to feel hurt, embarrassed, incompetent, disrespected, anxious, threatened, upset, or depressed. Examples include, but are not limited to:

  • ·  Yelling, using profanity, emotional outbursts, berating others, using a harsh tone of voice
  • ·  Talking down or condescendingly to others or using degrading remarks or tone of voice either in person or within a group
  • ·  Making threats; using intimidating or bullying tactics
  • ·  Treating some less favorably than others
  • ·  Withholding pertinent incident or work-related information; undermining another’s ability to complete tasks or resolve issues
  • ·  Any malicious behavior a reasonable person would find unprofessional, disturbing and harmful to their psychological health
  • ·  Making jokes that demean others, name calling or using nicknames that may be offensive
  • ·  Purposely invading another’s personal space
  • ·  Unwanted physical contact or violence.

These types of behaviors have damaging consequences on the recipients, others who observe the behavior, the Association and the community as a whole and are therefore not tolerated.

Board of Directors Responsibility

The Board of Directors and others in positions of authority have a particular responsibility to ensure that healthy and appropriate behaviors are being exhibited at all times and that complaints to the contrary are addressed speedily. The Board of Directors will:

  • ·  Provide a good example by treating all with courtesy and respect
  • ·  Promote awareness of the Policy and complaint procedures
  • ·  Provide a positive and harmonious work environment for employees
  • ·  Be vigilant for signs of inappropriate behaviors on Association property and take action to resolve the behavior before it escalates
  • ·  Deal sensitively with all involved in a complaint, whether as complainant or alleged aggressor
  • ·  Explain the procedures to be followed if a complaint of inappropriate behavior is made
  • ·  Ensure that anyone making a complaint is not retaliated against for doing so, and seek resolution of such behavior if it occurs
  • ·  Monitor and follow up following any investigation of the situation to prevent any recurrence of the behavior.

Owner/Resident/Employee/Guest Responsibility

Owners, residents and employees play an essential part in fostering a respectful community and workplace within the Association. And Owners, residents and employees are responsible for the respectful behavior of their guests or visiting contractors while within the community.

Anyone who believes that they have been treated improperly or has witnessed others being treated improperly should report any such incident by following the procedures and practices listed below. Owners, residents and employees should also cooperate with preventative measures and remedies suggested by the Association, and recognize that a finding of unacceptable behavior within the Association will be dealt with through appropriate enforcement procedures. Equally, a finding of vexatious complaints will also be dealt with through appropriate enforcement procedures.

Training

Training for Board members, appropriate volunteers and contractor staff will be provided and scheduled by the Association as needed. Training will identify factors that contribute to a respectful community and work environment, familiarize participants with their responsibilities under our Policy, and provide steps to investigate and remedy any violations of the Policy. As a matter of practice, management will advise contractors of the Policy and ask their cooperation in complying with it.

Process and Procedures for Addressing and Resolving Community and Workplace Issues and Complaints

The following scenarios describe the processes and procedures that address several types, but not all, of the situations in which unacceptable or inappropriate behaviors might arise. The intent is to provide mechanisms to end a bad situation and initiate such steps as are necessary to prevent a recurrence. The process may be as simple as ending a conversation or as much as an investigation and legal action. In all cases the goal is to avoid or terminate negative activity and to promote the community and workplace that our Owners, residents and employees deserve and want.

  • Abusive or offensive language to or yelling at an employee on the phone

The employee will request that the caller use appropriate language and/or lower his or her voice.
If the language and/or yelling continue, the employee will ask once more with the message that the call will otherwise be terminated.

With the continuation of the language and/or yelling the employee will hang-up and provide the General Manager a record of the incident, including the time, name of caller, name of any witnesses, description of the reason for the call and a description of the language and/or tone of voice used.

If this is a repeat offense the General Manager will report the repeated incidents to the Board of Directors, with a full description of the circumstances. If deemed appropriate, the Board may contact the individual via a letter and inform them that a repeat of such a call will result in the Association office being directed to no longer take their calls and that all future communication will be conducted in writing. The individual will be provided with all applicable due process prior to any restrictions being imposed upon him or her.

  • Abusive or offensive language to or yelling at an employee in person

The employee will request the offender use appropriate language and/or lower his or her voice.

If the language and/or yelling continue, the employee will ask once more that the language and/or yelling be discontinued and, if possible, ask another employee to join the conversation.

If the situation continues, the employee will tell the individual to leave and provide the General Manager a record of the incident, including the time, name of individual, name of any witnesses, description of the reason for the visit and a description of the language and/or tone of voice used.

If this is a repeat offense or if it is egregious the General Manager will report the repeated and/or egregious incident(s) to the Board of Directors, with a full description of the circumstances. If deemed appropriate, the Board may contact the individual via a letter and inform them that a repeat of such behavior will result in the Association proceeding with its enforcement policy and imposing suitable sanctions against the offending person, including restricting the individual from visiting the Association office in egregious incidents. The individual will be provided with all applicable due process prior to any restrictions being imposed upon him or her.

  • Inappropriate behavior or language at a community meeting or function
    If an employee, Owner, resident, guest or volunteer is behaving or speaking in an abusive or offensive manner at an Association meeting or function, the Association representative that is administering, chairing, organizing, or otherwise responsible for the event will request the offending party comply with Association Policy with regards to language and behavior.
  •  If the situation continues, the Association representative will attempt again to convince the offending party to comply—including the warning that failure to do so will result in their being found to be out of order and could lead to their expulsion from the meeting or function.
  •  If the offender is expelled from the meeting or function the Association representative will provide the General Manager or Board (as appropriate) a record of the incident, including time, name of individual, name of any witnesses, description of the event and a description of the language used or behavior experienced.o If the offending party is an Owner or resident or personal guest, the Board may contact the Owner/resident via a letter and inform them that a repeat of such behavior will result in the Association proceeding with its enforcement policy and imposing suitable sanctions against the offending Owner/resident or their guest (as appropriate), including being restricted from attending Association functions and meetings in egregious incidents. The individual will be provided with all applicable due process prior to any restrictions being imposed upon him or her. If the offending party is an employee, the Board may notify the appropriate contractor that the employee is no longer welcome at Dominion Valley and will have to be replaced.
  • Offender initiates unwanted physical contact or is either violent or threatens violence
  •  If a person in any circumstance (i.e., telephone call, in person, or at a meeting or function) makes a threat of violence or harm, takes physical action, or if the Association representative or employee, or any other individual at the Association office, meeting or function is touched in an aggressive fashion or feels threatened with violence, immediate action shall be taken.
  • If possible, the threatened party will attempt to ensure the presence of others.
  • The offender will be told to cease the threatening behavior immediately and leave.
  • If the offender does not immediately leave, the police shall be called, preferably in the presence of the offender.

The Association representative, employee, or other individual will remove themselves and others from the presence of the offender to the degree possible.

The Association representative, employee or other individual will be asked to submit a complete description of the incident to the General Manager and the Board of Directors, who will take action, as appropriate

Investigations and Other Enforcement Actions Taken by the Association

Our complaint process includes a thorough investigation of any alleged violations of our Policy. In most cases, written statements will be taken, documents and other evidence reviewed and interviews of all necessary witnesses to the alleged misconduct will be conducted. The General Manager will compile the information as required by the Board and for the Board’s review.

Anyone filing a complaint should take special care to ensure the complaint contains the precise details of each alleged incident, including dates, times, locations and any witnesses. All complaints should be filed with the Board of Directors. The person accused of the violation will be promptly notified in writing by the Association of the charge. The matter will be thoroughly investigated, objectively, with sensitivity and appropriate confidentiality. The investigation will be completed as quickly as possible.

Once completed, the Association will make a decision regarding the alleged misconduct. That decision will be reported to the individual making the complaint and the individual accused of misconduct. Appropriate corrective action will be taken promptly against anyone who violates our Policy or otherwise acts in a disrespectful manner to another within the Association.

Such corrective action may include, in appropriate circumstances, proceeding with the Association’s enforcement policy and imposing suitable sanctions against the offending person. When individuals refuse to abide by restrictions imposed due to previous actions, the Association may find it necessary to take formal legal action. Or, in the case of excessively egregious actions such as threats or physical acts, legal action on the first instance may be required.

It is not the goal of this policy to punish. To the contrary, the goal and intent is to encourage and foster respect and civility at all times throughout our community.