Did you know? How is a Board vacancy filled?

If a Director leaves, the Board may fill the vacancy by appointment, provided that a quorum of at least four Directors remains. Note, the Board may fill the vacancy but is not required to do so. In recent years the Board has advertised to give those interested an opportunity to apply but, again, that’s not required. The Board could simply appoint whomever it chooses or leave the vacancy unfilled.

If a new Director is appointed he or she serves the remainder of the term of the Director who left. For example, if the Board decides to fill my position, that newly appointed Director will serve until the 2017 AGM. To continue on the Board he or she would have to run for election.

For more info, see the Condo Act, Article 34.

There is more concerning removal and replacement of Directors that will be covered in a later Did you know.

Did you know? Confidentiality

Boards at Frobisher Place have frequently been consumed with a perceived need to maintain confidentiality of their discussions.

Citing confidentiality is legitimate in cases of:

  1. personnel matters. Example: performance appraisals and salary adjustments for Supers
  2. transactions with outside firms where competitive advantage could be an issue. Example: bids for contract work from different companies
  3. transactions with individual owners. Example: condo fees in arrears for a particular unit
  4. circumstances where a legal opinion is needed. Example: a resident has experienced a problem that may fall within Human Rights policies and legislation

As I see it, there has been excessive reliance on confidentiality. The result is poor communication with owners who have a right to know what their Board is discussing and how it reaches its decisions. At the last Board meeting I attended there was discussion of 35 topics. In my opinion, only 6 of those could be considered confidential according to the above criteria. The other 29 were matters owners not only could but should know about.

Considering 1 and 2 above, we could narrow the need for confidentiality even further. Owners should know the fact that the Board will be discussing staff performance and salary but owners should not be privy to the outcome of those discussions. Similarly, owners should know that the Board will be discussing bids for fire system upgrades but owners should not get the details before contracts are awarded.

Did you know? Quorum

What is “quorum” and why is it important?

For any board, committee or meeting, a quorum is the minimum attendance needed to transact business. Quorum for the Frobisher Place Board is 4 Directors. If at least 4 Directors are present at a legally called Board meeting, they may conduct business.

A quorum at an owners meeting, including an Annual General Meeting, is defined by the current Condo Act, Article 50 as 25% of owners. That means 52 owners in our case because there are 206 units at Frobisher Place, not counting the guest suite and corporation-renting units. Owners may be present in person or represented by a proxy (a person who acts in place of an absent owner). More about proxies in a later DYK. An owners meeting cannot proceed without quorum.

Our current By-law #3, Article IV 6, however, says quorum is one third of our owners. That means 69 at Frobisher Place but a newer version of the Act seems to rely on the 25% requirement. Confused? Assume 25% or 52 owners make a quorum at Frobisher Place.

Attendance at the last three AGMs:

In 2014, 65 owners

In 2015, 81 owners

In 2016, 63 owners

Did you know? Director qualifications

What are the qualifications required to be a Frobisher Place Director?

Do you have to be an owner? Reasonable guess but incorrect.

Must you live at Frobisher Place? Reasonable again but also incorrect.

In fact, you need only to be at least 18 years of age, not bankrupt and not declared mentally incompetent.

For more details, see the Condo Act., Article 29 and our By-law #3, Article VI, 3., included with our Declaration.

Please watch for more “Did you know?”. I intend to make it a frequent feature on this site.

Meeting to discuss concerns

I have heard from many residents concerned about issues I noted in my letter of resignation from the Board. To give us an opportunity to discuss our concerns together, we met at the Ottawa Public Library, Alta Vista Branch on Monday, October 24.

We decided to raise our concerns with the Board at the scheduled info meeting in the Party Room on November 1. Please watch this post for more detail before then.

I hope to see a good turnout of residents on Nov. 1.

To request more info