What follows is a letter I sent to various recipients. So far, the ADRE has responded (they can't help), and the newspapers have shown no interest in the story. I'll be following up with the AG. And maybe you can do something. If not, I guess we just wait until our HOA goes bankrupt.
To whomever may be able to help:
Please know that everything that follows can be easily verified with court documents, the Minutes of meetings, recordings of meetings, emails, the HOA's CC&Rs and Bylaws, etc.
At the February 2014 Annual Meeting, Community Association Manager/Flagstaff Regional Director Melanie Lashlee of HOAMCO stated that it would cost $800,000 to replace the HOA's roofs, which are now, on average, twenty years old. Since then, no effort has been made to raise the necessary funds. Instead, more than $200,000 has been spent on projects not allowed for in the CC&Rs, not authorized by the homeowners, and, in Melanie Lashlee's own words, could bankrupt the HOA. What follows is part of an April 2017 email exchange between Melanie Lashlee and a homeowner:
Am I understanding the board determined that, though other units were completely painted, ours was
only deemed necessary to have only touch ups? Again, I ask, Where is the fairness? We pay the same Home Owners fee, don 't we get the same for our dollar?
[Homeowner's name removed] , there is only so much money the HOA has to spent every year. They are doing a fence replacement project which you and every other member know about which is very expensive ! They are doing the best they can to get everything done for everyone without having to SPECAIL ASSESS the membership ! If there is something you need done on your unit it will be done . The HOA cannot do everything that needs to be done all at once as it would bankrupt the association !
To make matters worse, the last time a Board was elected was in 2018. Since then, every Annual Meeting failed to achieve a quorum and was canceled or adjourned without an election taking place. So, instead of a Board of Directors, the HOA now has a small group of former directors who can't get re-elected and yet have repeatedly increased the Annual Assessment, have twice changed the Rules and Regulations, and have adopted a set of Architectural Standards.
So, why don't I do something about it? Believe me, I have tried, but what my efforts have taught me is just how uneven the playing field is.
Re: No. 19F-H1918019-REL-RHG
In September of 2018, long after the HOA had started booting vehicles parked on Association streets, and had still not given Notice that there had been any change to the HOA's Rules and Regulations, I petitioned for a hearing with the AZ Dept. of Real Estate. Unfortunately, the Judge decided:
> the Board could change the HOA's rules at any time;
> the Board had no obligation to give notice that the rules had changed;
> the new rules were valid even though they were clearly in violation of the ARS 33-1803, which requires an opportunity to appeal before any penalty is applied.
Also, when I entered the hearing room, the judge was having a discussion with the lawyers for the HOA. At the end of that discussion, the judge made clear she did not want any opening statements. With hindsight, I have no doubt that the matter was decided during that discussion, and that I never had any chance of winning.
In order to have some of the abuses since HOAMCO began managing the HOA become part of the public record, I filed a lengthy Petition Statement for 19F-H1918019-REL-RHG, which I posted on my blog http://greenlawtownhouses.blogspot.com/2018/ . Then, for the 2018 election of Directors, though I withdrew my candidacy before the election, I became a candidate and used the election process to inform the homeowners that my Petition Statement was posted online, where it has remained for more than four years. Please know that it was posted with the full knowledge and approval of Melanie Lashlee and the lawyers she consulted.
The following are excerpts from that Petition Statement.
On September 3, 2014 I emailed the following motion: I move that the Board obtain a test sample, to find out if the above-ground PRVs installed on our sprinkler systems are worth the cost to the HOA every time one is replaced, by instructing the contractor to replace the next twelve (12) above-ground PRVs that fail with an appropriate section of pipe; the ongoing results will be determined by keeping track of the relevant work orders.
On Wed, Sep 10, 2014 at 3:52 PM, Susan Jennings <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
I am calling a
special meeting for the purpose of requesting approval from the
membership to remove Bill Lee from the Board. For notice requirements
to the membership I would like to have this meeting on September 30th
at noon. Please confirm your availability so Melanie can send notice
to the membership.
“Several years ago, Susan Jennings, Judy Kyrala, Cindi Sorrentino, and Melanie Lashlee did, after conspiring to do so, use fraudulent means to remove Vice President Bill Lee from the Board of Directors. At that time, the Board provided no evidence of any kind to support any of the charges HOA President Susan Jennings made against Mr. Lee. When Mr. Lee filed a complaint with the Dept. of Fire, Building, and Life Safety, Judy Kyrala and Melanie Lashlee testified at the hearing where they lied under oath bearing false witness against Mr. Lee, thereby committing perjury which is a felony under state and federal law.”
“Also, concerning the testimony of Community Association Manager Melanie Lashlee, if the Minutes of all meetings had been available to me at that same hearing before Administrative Law Judge M. Douglas, I could have proven then and there that Melanie Lashlee's testimony was a complete fabrication when she claimed that at the meeting at which we interviewed landscapers, I was out of control, screaming at a landscaper which caused the landscaper to withdraw the bid and leave the meeting.”
End of excerpts.
From the Minutes of the aforementioned meeting to interview the landscapers:
Special Meeting of Board of Directors
March 20th, 2014
Present: Melanie Lashlee (Property Manager), Susan Jennings(President), Judy Kyrala (Secretary),
Bill Lee (Board member), Barbara Tauritz (HOA member)
I. President Sunan Jennings called the meeting to order at 7:03 PM.
II. A quorum was established.
III. Election of Officers
A. Motions were made, seconded, and passed to elect Susan Jennings as President,
Bill Lee as Vice-President
and Judy Kyrala as Secretary/Treasurer.
IV. Landscape bids
A. Presentations made by representatives from Northern Lights and Agassiz Landscaping.
B. Motion was made, seconded and passed to accept the bid from Agassiz...
C. Judy made note of the improvement in the look of the trees in the neighborhood as a result of last year's tree-health contract with Mick's Tree Service, LLC.
RE: CIC 19-009773 / HOAMCO
In 2019, because of the frequent repairs to the sprinkler system at my townhouse, I requested the invoices relevant to those repairs. Following the failure of Melanie Lashlee to provide most of those documents, I filed a Failure to Provide Documents complaint.
In response, the lawyer for HOAMCO repeatedly claimed that “all documents have now been provided” while at the same time providing additional documents that had not been provided before; also, as the lawyer repeatedly stated, these claims were made under “pain of perjury”.
Based on the lawyers reasons for not providing all the documents I requested, it is apparent that HOAMCO is systematically destroying the records of the almost 400 HOAs it manages.
Tax records are kept for seven (7) years.
All other records are kept for three (3) years.
I eventually gave up on obtaining the documents I originally requested, and instead requested financial statements to be presented to me at the Annual Meeting.
So, did I get those financial statements? Of course not. The Annual Meeting was canceled and never rescheduled, and there has not been an election of directors since.
Based on Melanie Lashlee's 2014 estimate of $800,000 to replace our roofs every homeowner in the HOA is going to have to pay $6,300 for roof replacement. In addition, in 2013, then Director Pat Mount (a retired contractor) recommended using $300,000 as the assumed cost of repaving our loop drives, which are now almost forty years old. Instead of preparing for these essential capital improvements, tens of thousands of HOA dollars are now being spent to replace all the rain gutters throughout the association. If anyone reading this is a homeowner, have you ever even considered replacing your rain gutters?
I don't know what information Melanie Lashlee and others have been providing to banks, insurance companies, new home buyers, real estate agents, lawyers, contractors, etc.; however, I can't imagine they are telling them the truth. What I do know is that directors are elected for a one year term, and the last election we had was in 2018. And yet someone keeps renewing HOAMCO's contract and spending the money that HOAMCO collects from the homeowners. Currently $240,792.00 annually. Compare that to the $1,100,000 estimated for replacing the roofs and repaving the loop drives; and then add the probable cost of repairs due to leaking roofs that are, on average, twenty years old.
This HOA is in serious trouble, though I sometimes get the feeling I'm the only one who knows it. Please, we need your help.
Greenlaw Townhouses Unit Two
Response from ADRE
3/1/2023 2:29:40 PM
3/1/2023 3:17:44 PM
Reply: Homeowner Association (HOA) Dispute Process
Please review the attached HOA Dispute Brochure. It will help provide an overview as to what ADRE's role is within the HOA Dispute process. ADRE does not regulate HOAs and we do not conduct investigations. HOAs, HOA Management Companies, and HOA Boards are not regulated by the State of Arizona. Additionally the HOA Dispute process is very limited in what circumstances are disputable. The HOA Dispute Process is an alternative to civil court and not every court will be able to grant you the same relief. If you have questions about which court to file your dispute in, you will need to seek legal advice from a licensed attorney.
If you would like to file an HOA Dispute Petition, please CLICK THIS LINK as it contains the process your Petition will follow while with ADRE.
The Department is unable to provide you with any legal advice and you may want to contact your legal representative for any interpretation and/or changes of law(s) and/or statute(s). The Department cannot advise on what an HOA or an HOA Management Company is and/or isn't allowed to do. You may want to look into your HOAs CC&Rs and Bylaws for clarification.