GOVERNOR EXTENDS DECLARATION OF EMERGENCY TO MARCH 31, 2022, (ALLOWING VIRTUAL MEETINGS TO BE HELD WITHOUT A PHYSICAL LOCATION, IF NOTICED PROPERLY)Drew Hendricks
Associations may continue to hold Board meetings or annual meetings virtually or telephonically without designating a physical location for the meeting, at least until March 31, 2022, pursuant to the Governor’s recent extension of the declaration of emergency based on Covid 19.
HISTORICALLY, and without such declaration of emergency being in effect, in order to meet virtually or by teleconference, Civil Code Section 4090 requires the Board to identify and designate a “physical location” in the meeting notice as to where members can attend in person, and requires a board member or designated person to be present at such location.
BUT NOW, and as discussed in our prior Bill Brief, new Civil Code Section 5450 (Senate Bill 391) waives the requirement for the physical location if (1) the association is in an area subject to a governmental declaration of emergency; and (2) gathering in person is “unsafe” or “impossible” (as happened here).
In order to meet legally under the new Section 5450, the following notices are required:
- Notice of the first meeting must be delivered by “individual delivery” (i.e. regular mail, unless due to the emergency or disaster the mail cannot be delivered, or by email to those owners who have consented to receive Association notices via email).
- Notice of each subsequent meeting may be posted (general notice), but must include:
- Clear technical instructions as to how to participate (number and password);
- Telephone number and e-mail address of a person who will provide technical assistance before and during the virtual meeting;
- A reminder that the member may request individual delivery of meeting notices, and;
- The option to participate by phone conference (instead of video);
Directors must vote via “roll call”. For annual meetings, the camera must be directed so that members can see the inspector tabulate the votes (without disclosing the actual manner in which a member has voted).
If (or when) the declaration of emergency ends, the good news is that Associations can continue to meet virtually under the old rule – where they designate a physical location and have someone present, pursuant to Civil Code Section 4090. Stay tuned!