Private Homeowners Associations

Private Homeowners Associations

Q: Does the Brown Act apply to private Homeowners Associations or only to local and state gov’t? I want to discuss dismissing a management company and I’m being kept from discussing their removal except in their presence at a Board meeting by other Board members.

A: Under Government Code section 54952(c), the governing body of ahomeowners association would be subject to the Brown Act under either of two circumstances:

1.  The association is created by an elected legislative body in order to exercise authority that may lawfully be delegated by the elected governing body;

– OR –

2.  The homeowners association (a) receives funds from a local agency (e.g., a county, city, town, etc) and (b) the membership of the governing body of the homeowners association includes a member of the legislative body of the local agency (e.g., if the agency is a city, a member of the city council) whom the legislative body appoints to the governing board of the homeowners association as a full voting member.

If the association is entirely private, which is typically the case with homeowners associations, it is under no obligation to follow the mandates of the Brown Act.