The Prince William Committee of 100 is hosting their next program on March 16, and this time they’re talking about Homeowners Associations.
According to a release, the “Homeowner Associations: Petty Tyrants or Neighborhood Protectors” program will be held from 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. at Heritage Hunt Golf and Country Club at 6901 Arthur Hills Drive in Gainesville.
The program is no cost to attend, and begins around 7:30 p.m. Dinner begins at 6:30 p.m. and costs $25 for members, and $30 for non-members. RSVP to Carol Proven at firstname.lastname@example.org.
More on the program and panelists, from a release:
An advocate for homeowner associations on our panel observes: “Condominium and Property Owners’ Associations are representative democracy in action – elected volunteers donate their time and talents for the greater good. When owners and residents are active and engaged in their Associations, there are no better advocates for the aesthetic and financial integrity of their communities.”
Others see associations as less benign as private citizens on association boards seem to wield powers similar to a government. Lawsuits have broken out over whether an owner could build a treehouse (Westridge), post a sign supporting the candidate of one’s choice (Alexandria), display an American flag on a mailbox (Montclair) or have a mailbox that wasn’t metal and monogrammed with the letter W (Bowie, Md.). In the latter case, brought by one of our panelists, 96% of the homeowners had incurred a cost of $500 each for the mandated mailboxes before his legal challenge was decided by the court.
Is the protection of property value worth the surrender of individual choice to architectural review boards and the like? What mechanisms are there to keep leaders of homeowner associations from “going too far?” Do new laws like the 2015 Virginia Homeowner Bill of Rights restore the balance of power?
The distinguished panel consists of:
Manassas attorney, who focuses on representing homeowner associations
Dr. Keith Strong, Bowie, Md.
Scientist and homeowner, who recently won a judgment against his homeowner association
Sen. Scott Surovell
Fairfax Co. attorney, who represents homeowners challenging decisions of homeowner associations
Lake Ridge Business Woman
Committee of 100 Treasurer,
A military lawyer residing in the Montclair community