Forum: Seeking speaking permission & rising damp


Rising Damp - the classic Britcom (but nothing to do with Flat Chat)

There’s a genuine “Catch-22” hidden in one of our questions this week.  How can you ask to speak at a strata committee meeting when you aren’t allowed to speak?

The rules on non-committee members speaking at strata committee meetings are quite clear. Section 13 of Schedule 2 of the strata Act says “an owner … is entitled to attend a meeting but is not entitled to address the meeting unless authorised to do so by resolution of the strata committee.”

So how do you ask the committee to take a vote on whether or not you can speak when you aren’t allowed to address them?

Of course, in reality, you could ask before the meeting started.  And it would only be the most controlling chair who didn’t let you speak during the meeting when all you wanted to do was to ask if you could.

But, to be fair, we’ve been at meetings where non-members just spoke anyway, even when they were told they weren’t allowed to.

All of which reminds us of our ongoing campaign to have Fair Trading and its equivalents in other states issue “model” standing orders to guide people through the procedures of meetings.

We provide model by-laws, which can be tweaked to suit your building.  So why not a set of procedural rules that give participants guide rails along which to run the meeting?

And there’s another issue raised by the Flatchatter who asked about speaking at meetings.  If you ask in advance, do you have to tell the chair what it is that you want to speak about?  That’s HERE.

Elsewhere in the forum, a couple of questions about pets (of course!)

  • Am I right to be concerned about an American Bully (that’s a dog, not a former President)? That’s HERE.
  • And is the chairman allowed to impose a cats-only rule for pets.  That’s HERE.

There are also two questions about rising damp (not the TV series in our main picture).

  • Can I charge my neighbour for damage caused when damp from his neglected apartment affected my flat?  The surprising answer is HERE.
  • And who’s to blame when neither the rental agent or the tenant noticed a huge patch of rising damp on a wall?  That’s HERE.

Finally a question from Victoria about waiving fees (levies) reveals what strata committees must do when levies are overdue and what they can do.  That’s HERE.

Needless to say, there are heaps of ongoing discussions with which you can catch up or chip in.  All you need for that is to register and log in. Easy-peasy.

One Reply to “Forum: Seeking speaking permission & rising damp”

  1. SiteMan says:

    Good Morning,
    Can I take it that questions/articles/comments/replies apply only in NSW unless another State is specifically mentioned ?
    It would assist if the state (s) that the advice pertains to could be identified clearly at the start of each article – is that possible ?


    PS: I enjoy reading your newsletter. I get more from Flat Chat than I do from Strata Management companies.

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