What’s the Rush?
The artificial deadline for comments on the proposed ASPPPO bylaw changes has come and gone – 6 p.m. today (Tuesday 9/11/2018).
We wonder: Why the rush? Why is it so critical that the ASPPPO Board vote on this matter on September 20? The full membership won’t vote on the bylaw changes until the annual meeting next spring.
Isn’t it in our best interests to allow a much longer comment period so members have the time to fully consider the impact of the significant changes recommended by the committee and Charlie Miner? What’s the rush?
Below are the comments from Alliance that were submitted to the designated feedback site prior to the deadline.
This is a draft of the feedback from The Alliance for Sea Pines Future. A final copy will be emailed to Charlie Miner, distributed via Alliance channels, and posted to the Alliance website.
Comments on Proposed ASPPPO Bylaw Changes
The first major concern is the short comment period for such a substantial revision. The aggressive deadline for RPO review gives the impression the board is rushing the bylaws changes through without adequate time for discussion and agreement. Since the membership vote will be held in the spring of 2019, if we wish to avoid the time and expense of a special meeting the Board can certainly make their considered recommendation later this year or early next.
In general: We are opposed to any and all transfer of homeowner rights.
Specific comments and concerns:
MISSION – The entire section (Article III) describing the purpose of ASPPPO has been diluted down to a single general sentence that could be dismissed as powerless. What could be more worrisome? We must have a clear and strong reason to exist as the consequential voice of the owners of residential property, spelled out in significant detail. As the committees are required to have a detailed purpose under these proposed changes, how in the world can we leave out the same for the organization itself?
ASPPPO needs to sustain its current responsibility to provide a channel of communication and forum for homeowners to formulate and advance ideas and projects that benefit them. This should be a fundamental benefit of membership.
And in particular, what is the justification for deleting Section 3.2, which currently protects ASPPPO from disappearing? Removing the requirement for a two-thirds membership approval of any merger of ASPPPO into another organization allows the elimination of current property owner rights and protections.
VOTING RIGHTS – The bylaws must protect the membership vote. Turning the vote over to just the elected Board members is unacceptable – irrespective of what South Carolina law may say about non profits. Just because you can does not mean that you should. … Why let a very small group of elected representatives control every decision with no check on their actions? As a membership organization, members must be able to contribute to the strategic direction of the organization.
If possible and legal, we must also amend the Articles of Incorporation to make certain that only the total membership is allowed to vote on matters of substance. We must find a way to protect the members against improper use of a statute by as few as five people acting as Board members.
CAPRICIOUS OUSTER – The new Section 6.6 (Removal) allows that a board member may be kicked out for sheer personal dislike or any other bias or whim by five other members. This section must remove the words “without cause” from the Board’s removal power. Similarly, for similar reasons, “without cause” must be deleted from the new Section 10.4 regarding removal of Board officers.