Question: Our secretary only records the Strata committee minutes, including what she wants our owners corporation to hear. What can we do to get our processes back on track?
Our NSW strata committee members are frustrated and concerned that our secretary only records (in Strata committee minutes), what she wants our owners corporation to hear. As many lot owners are absent investors Strata minutes represent their only official record of on-site proceedings. The actions of a strata committee secretary with their own agenda that distorts, abridges or fails to accurately minute committee decisions and undertakings have become most distressing for fellow committee members. As a result, our SC minutes are repeatedly at odds with the message the committee members want to share with residents and owners. Even when our chairperson requests alterations to better reflect meeting content, their request is often ignored.
To get contributions recorded accurately it has become necessary for committee members to document their responses to agenda items in advance, then read them verbatim at the meeting before supplying the secretary with emails containing what was said for inclusion in the minutes.
This is not always successful, requiring committee members to distribute their meeting contributions independent of meeting minutes, or insisting that they are attached as an addendum. This activity in combination with repeatedly not approving the minutes of previous meetings is making our secretary even more likely to record what they wanted to hear rather than actual meeting deliberations.
What steps can we take to appoint an alternative to get our processes back on track?
Answer: Under the strata legislation, the minutes must be a full and accurate record of decisions made.
In terms of the minutes, under the strata legislation, the minutes must be a full and accurate record of decisions made.
Under Section 45 of the Strata Schemes Management Act, 2015 (NSW) the strata committee or owners corporation may remove the Secretary from his/her office:
45 Vacation of office by officer
- An officer of an owners corporation vacates office as an officer:
- if the person ceases to be a member of the strata committee, or
- on the receipt by the owners corporation from the person of written notice of the person’s resignation as an officer, or
- if another person is appointed by the strata committee to hold that office, or
- if the owners corporation, by special resolution, declares that the person’s office is vacated, or
- if the person dies.
Question: If the strata committee has been unable to provide an immediate answer to a question can the explanation be added as a note/addendum to the minutes of the meeting?
Additions to owners corporation meeting minutes.
On occasion, our Strata committee has been unable to provide an immediate answer to a question by an attending observer (on invitation) the facts and figures being available only after the meetings conclusion.
In such instances and where the answer is of interest to the entire owners corporation, is it possible to have the answer/explanation added as a chairperson, treasurer or Secretaries’ note/addendum to the minutes of the meeting at which the question was first raised?
Answer: There is no legal issue with making such explanatory notes in the minutes, as your intention is to heighten transparency.
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Please note that this article is provided for information purposes only and is not a substitute for professional legal advice.