20% Quorum – Reasonable or Unreasonable?

Somersett United
Somersett United

Following is an interesting comparison between what the current Somersett BOD is proposing (i.e., via the proposed CC&R amendments) and a 4000+ Del Webb Sun City Summerlin community in Las Vegas. The comparison sort of supports those CC&R Amendment opponents who believe the proposed 20% quorum provisions are too low and the $500K threshold to high.

Homeowner vote required for annexation of property into the community:

  • Proposed Somersett CC&R Amendment: Simple majority vote of members based a 20% quorum requirement. (Note: a 20% quorum equates to 500 out of approximately 2500 SOA homeowners, a majority of which would be 251. That is, for the vote to be valid, a minimum of 500 votes would have to be cast, of which 251 would be needed to approve the measure)
  • Sun City Summerlin CC&R’s: Two thirds (2/3) vote of all voting members, or 2667 out of 4000.

Homeowner vote required for annual assessment increases above established CC&R limits, as it relates to the acquisition of real property, lease of real property or funding of capital improvements:

  • Proposed Somersett CC&A Amendment:   Simple majority vote of members based on a 20% quorum.
  • Sun City Summerlin CC&R’s: Two thirds (2/3) vote of members constituting a 60% quorum.

Homeowner vote required to levy of a special assessment above established CC&R limits, as it relates to the acquisition of real property, lease of real property or funding of capital improvements:

  • Proposed Somersett CC&A Amendment:   Majority vote of members based on a 20% quorum.
  • Sun City Summerlin CC&R’s: Majority vote of members constituting a 60% quorum.

Spending limits subject to homeowner vote related to the acquisition of real property, lease of real property or funding of capital improvements:

  • Proposed Somersett CC&A Amendment:   $500K (approximately 10% of annual budget), above which requires a majority vote of members based on a 20% quorum.
  • Sun City Summerlin CC&R’s: Five Percent (5%) of annual budget, above which requires a majority vote of members based on a 60% quorum.

It should be noted that under the current Somersett CC&R’s, the SOA BOD cannot levy a special assessment that exceeds 25% of the annual assessment, or increase annual assessments more than 15% in any year without a majority vote of all members. However, under the proposed CC&R amendment, it would lower this requirement to only a majority vote of a 20% quorum if such increases relate to “acquisition of real property, lease of real property or construction of capital improvements”. The Summerlin CC&R’s do not make any distinctions regarding member voting requirements for annual increases or special assessments.

It should also be noted that in the proposed SOA CC&R Amendments, nowhere is the applicable quorum percentage mentioned. Nor did the BOD reveal the applicable percentage in any of their “information” documents accompanying the CC&R Ballots.  It is only by default that another existing CC&R provision points to a 20% quorum. A figure that was never intended to apply to acquisition of real property or the increase in annual or special assessments to accommodate such.

Makes one question what was the BOD thinking, or not thinking, when they thought it appropriate to enter into a $2.75M purchase agreement with the SGCC and, if necessary, levy a special assessment or increase annual assessments above established limits to accommodate such, all based on a simple majority vote of homeowners constituting a minimum 20% quorum.  Perhaps, in their quest, they just wanted to make it easier to pass!