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30/01/2020 at 2:29 am #48286
Here’s an all-too typical tale of strata power struggles, law-bending, alleged vote-rigging and a Trumpian inability by key players to accept that they might have got it wrong.
I’m not going to name names – that would not be fair to the other owners in the building who have had no part in this – but this is a …
https://www.flat-chat.com.au/strata-vote-strife/27/02/2020 at 5:23 pm #48662WirihanaFlatchatter
Thanks for an excellent story here Jimmy, a daunting situation
But there was one point you raised that I wanted to ask you about – you said ” Firstly, candidates for election can’t be nominated by people who are standing themselves”
I was unaware of this – can you refer me to legislation on this point?
Many thanks27/02/2020 at 5:38 pm #48666scotlandxStrataguru
Golly – it must be an amazing by-law.27/02/2020 at 6:01 pm #48668
OK, I may have been guilty of over simplification (again!).
According to Section 1 of the Act, an owner may only nominate one person to the committee (Section 31.3) and a candidate who is not an owner can’t be nominated by someone who is standing for election themselves (Section 31 [d]), which covers precisely the scenario outlined in the story.
Re-reading all the other whys and wherefors in the NSW strata Act, it seems it may be possible for two owners, for instance, to cross-nominate each other, but you have to ask why they would when they could just as easily self-nominate.
And since the rule is you can only nominate one person, then neither of the cross-nominees would be able to nominate a third party, and neither would they if they self-nominated.
But one thing is clear, an owner standing for election can’t nominate a tenant or outside party and they can’t nominate more than one person, so if they self-nominate, then they’re donePersons who are eligible to be appointed or elected to strata committee
The following persons are eligible for appointment or election to the strata committee of an owners corporation—an individual who is a sole owner of a lot in the strata scheme,a company nominee of a corporation that is a sole owner of a lot in the strata scheme,an individual who is a co-owner of a lot or a company nominee of a corporation that is a co-owner of a lot in the strata scheme, if the person is nominated for election by an owner who is not a co-owner of the lot or by a co-owner of the lot who is not a candidate for election as a member,an individual who is not an owner of a lot in the strata scheme, if the person is nominated for election by an owner of a lot who is not a member, or is not seeking election as a member, of the strata committee.
To avoid doubt, an individual who is a sole owner of a lot may nominate himself or herself, and an owner that is a corporation may nominate the corporation’s company nominee, for election as a member of the strata committee.
A sole owner of a lot in a strata scheme may not nominate more than one person for election as a member of the strata committee, except as provided by subsection (5).
Only one co-owner (including a company nominee of a co-owner) of the same lot may be a member of a strata committee at the same time, except as provided by subsection (5).
A person who is an owner of more than one lot in the strata scheme may nominate one person for election as a member of the strata committee for each lot for which the person is an owner.28/02/2020 at 5:41 pm #48675MirandaFlatchatter
Thanks Jimmy, what a nightmare. Excellent reading though. I hate to say it but this made my day. I’ve been feeling things were bad here, but in comparison it’s a rose garden.01/03/2020 at 10:01 pm #48693WirihanaFlatchatter
Thanks for the clarification on the committee eligibility Jimmy. The section of legislation that you have included has an interesting implication for our strata plan where two co-owners are on the committee on the basis that they own two lots.
Although section 4 states that “only one co-owner of the same lot may be a member of a strata committee at the same time, except as provided by subsection (5)”, it is not really clear whether this still applies if two co-owners own two lots.
And where it says “except as provided by subsection (5)” how could this change the eligibility?
Subsection (5) refers to multiple nominations, not multiple positions on the committee. “An owner of more than one lot in the strata scheme may nominate one person for election as a member of the strata committee for each lot for which the person is an owner”. Does that necessarily over-ride section 4?
If, for example, there was a strata plan of six lots where I own two, two co-owners own two and two others own one each. The two co-owners could have control on a committee of three (which was them and me), even though I own as many lots as they do. I suspect that this is what the legislation was intending to avoid.
Do you think both co-owners can be on a committee in this situation?01/03/2020 at 10:08 pm #48700
The co-owners of two lots can both be on the committee, because they are effectively different lot owners.
However, you could nominate or get someone to nominate another person (who doesn’t even have to be an owner) as the representative of your second lot, under the same rule.
It would be better to have a third, neutral person as the third member of your committee but if you can’t do that, why should the couple assume that they can have the majority on the committee.
Also, votes for elections are supposed to be counted by unit entitlements. If you have more UEs then you could certainly fill two of the vacancies yourself and with your nominee.
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