Thursday, April 02, 2015

Nevada state legislator proposes to repeal all HOA and condo laws

Ira Hansen, a far-right Nevada state legislator, has introduced a bill through his control of the judiciary committee that would repeal all the Nevada statutes that regulate common interest housing. This article explains that the intent is to somehow magically have somebody else do this, because the state legislature can't be bothered.  This proposal is so dumb that only somebody of Hansen's caliber could have produced it.  Nevada has a fairly comprehensive set of laws on HOAs and condos, and all of it was put in place to deal with real problems.  Now Hansen wants to scrap the whole thing.

You can read up on Hansen at Wikipedia. He's a piece of work. Former right wing radio talk show host and columnist.  Here's a taste:
"In his columns, Hansen has written that the Oklahoma City bombing was a false flag operation orchestrated by the administration of President Clinton, that women do not belong in the United States Armed Forces, that President Obama is a "negro", that he owns and flies a Confederate battle flag, that gays are disproportionally prone to engaging in child abuse, that a "grossly disproportionate" number of crimes are committed by Latinos, and that the relationship between "Negroes and Democrats" is that of a "master-slave relationship with the benevolent master knowing what’s best for his simple minded darkies."


robert @ colorado hoa . com said...

Back in 2003, Colorado libertarian activist Ari Armstrong -- who now self-identifies as "a 'free market advocate,' 'radical capitalist,' or 'defender of individual rights,' not a libertarian", wrote a series of editorials defending H.O.A. corporations.

In Defense of Homeowners Associations
February 12, 2003 (scroll down)

Homeowners Associations Debated
February 17, 2003

Is a Homeowners' Association a Contract?"
February 26, 2003

Legislation vs. Contracts for Property Rules
September 24, 2003 (scroll down)

Johnson, Armstrong Debate HOAs, Gambling
September 29, 2003

Long story short: like Ira Hanson, Ari Armstrong is also against state regulation of H.O.A. corporations. It's probably no coincidence that "Ari" is an anagram of "Ira". I've never seen the two of them together in the same place at the same time. In his pro-H.O.A. editorials, Armstrong wrote:

"Obviously property rights are the foundation of libertarian theory. That's why statist interventions in voluntary contracts such as homeowners associations (HOAs) are so bad."


"But whenever somebody suggests replacing voluntarily arranged contracts with forced legislation, the appropriate response -- the libertarian response -- is skepticism."


"Legislation interfering with property development and HOAs should be repealed."

Armstrong also claims that the free market, and even the courts, will protect home owners.

"Free-market HOAs are a form of governance that are an important alternative to statist property rules."

"Johnson is simply mistaken that HOAs are not subject to the courts (barring state-imposed bans). Indeed, if I were him I would contact a lawyer. All contracts are subject to judicial advisement. At the same time, not all contracts are accepted as valid by the courts; a number of issues might cause a court to declare a contract (or part of it) invalid. Certainly the courts would invalidate the extreme sorts of injustices about which Johnson hypothesizes. Of course, it also pays to investigate one's contracts prior to signing them. On the market, people would come up with a wide range of HOA agreements to meet specific needs. For instance, a condo complex needs a unique set of rules."

"Johnson's suggestion that HOAs are somehow more inherently capricious than are state (city, county, state, federal) governments is absurd. It is precisely the state that generally imposes arbitrary, unjust rules."

Anonymous said...

I believe a more acceptable approach that would accomplish reforms would be a simple S/E as follows:

“The CC&Rs or Declaration for any planned communities, condominium associations or homeowners associations shall state, or be amended to state, or in the absence of such wording be interpreted accordingly that,

‘Notwithstanding any provision of governing documents or state statutes to the contrary, the association hereby waives and surrenders any rights or claims it may have, and herewith unconditionally and irrevocably
agrees to be bound by the US and State Constitutions and laws of the State as if it were a local public government entity.’”

The HOA will be subject to the same state laws and constitutional provisions as applied to local municipalities -- the same due process, the same elections procedures, the same civil penalties that municipal employees face for violating the law, etc. The HOA will not die! The HOA can still function with its private amenities, rules & regs, etc., but now subject to government oversight. If it cannot, then there’s the proof of a defective legal scheme fostered on the public.

robert @ colorado hoa . com said...

Nevada is a “right to work” state, that prohibits involuntary membership in a labor union as a condition of employment.

Title 53. Labor and Industrial Relations
Chapter 613. Employment Practices
Miscellaneous Provisions
§ 613.130. Unlawful Agreements Concerning Membership In Labor Organizations As Condition Of Obtaining Or Continuing Employment

“It shall be unlawful for any person, firm or corporation to make or enter into any agreement, either oral or in writing, by the terms of which any employee of such person, firm or corporation, or any person about to enter the employ of such person, firm or corporation, as a condition for continuing or obtaining such employment, shall be required not to become or continue a member of any labor organization, or shall be required to become or continue a member of any labor organization.”

Since Republicans believe in “right to work” laws — look at the collective orgasm they had a few weeks ago when Wisconsin became the 25th “right to work” state — why don’t Republicans simply introduce legislation to prohibit involuntary membership in an H.O.A. corporation as a condition of home ownership? For example, Nevada’s “right to work” law could be modified to become:

“It shall be unlawful for any home owner or H.O.A. corporation to make or enter into any agreement, either oral or in writing, by the terms of which any member of such H.O.A. corporation, or any person about to enter the membership of such H.O.A. corporation, as a condition for continuing or obtaining ownership of residential property, shall be required not to become or continue a member of any H.O.A. corporation, or shall be required to become or continue a member of any H.O.A. corporation.”

In plain English, under my proposal, home owners would have the statutory right to opt-out of their H.O.A. corporation, without having to give up their home.

Yet during the 2014 election cycle, every Republican I talked to was 1) adamantly in favor of allowing workers to opt-out of labor unions, and 2) adamantly opposed to allowing home owners to opt-out of H.O.A. corporations. Their rationale was that workers are “forced” to join labor unions, but home owners freely, knowingly, and willingly agree to join H.O.A. corporations; and allowing home owners to opt-out would be “government interference with private contracts”.