MORE LAWS – NO ENFORCEMENT!
Published July 29, 2022
Let’s face it: The recently enacted CONDO SAFETY REFORM BILL
(SB 4-D) is definitely well intended, trying to avoid
another catastrophe like the collapse of the Champlain Towers
South building that cost the lives of 98 people, but it has two
It comes many years too late and will cause financial
hardship for many condo-owners. Safety comes with huge cost,
especially for owners in buildings that have for many years
voted down fully funded reserves. In my opinion we will see
many “emergency-sales” and foreclosures for
unpaid maintenance fees and special assessments.
It’s adding more laws without any real enforcement. The
Legislature again put the enforcement of the provisions of
this bill in the hands of the
Division of Florida
Condominiums, Timeshares and Mobile Homes.
We all know that this is just another totally useless
government agency that has for years failed to do its job.
Many condo-owners, filing complaints with the Bureau of
Compliance, have received “form-letters” after a certain
period of time, saying that no violations could be found.
But the wording of these “form-letters” showed
that the “investigator” never looked at the
documents that accompanied the complaint, nor did he contact
the witnesses listed as proof for the validity of the
complaint. They all said that they were never contacted by
anyone from the Division. Because of the known lack of
enforcement many unit-owners voted down fully funded
reserves in the past, because these reserves had the
tendency to be used for pet-projects of board members or
even worse. Remember: Florida’s condos are listed as the
No.2 Ranked State when it comes to scams and
embezzlement as various statistics show.
With other words: The bill contains many ambitious laws with
again no enforcement. Will that really help? Boards and their
attorneys are already looking for loopholes in the wording of
the bill in order to circumvent the “safety-provisions”.
In my opinion the bill was well intended, but due to the lack of
enforcement many boards, CAMs and attorneys will try their best
to ignore many of the provisions.
THE NO.1 PRIORITY FOR NEXT YEAR’S LEGISLATIVE SESSION: CREATE
SERIOUS ENFORCEMENT WITH SERIOUS PUNISHMENT FOR BAD ACTORS!
Jan Bergemann is president of Cyber Citizens For Justice,
's largest state-wide property owners' advocacy group.
CCFJ works on legislation to help owners living in
associations. He moved to
in 1995 - hoping to retire. He moved into a HOA, where the
developer cheated the homeowners and used the association dues
for his own purposes. End of retirement!
CCFJ was born in the year 2000, when some owners met in
- finding out that power is only in numbers. Bergemann was a
member of Governor Jeb Bush's HOA Task force in 2003/2004.
The organization has two websites to inform interested
homeowners and condo owners:
News Website: http://www.ccfj.net/.
Educational Website: http://www.ccfjfoundation.net/.
We think that only owners can really represent owners, since all
service providers surely have a different interest! We are
trying to create owner-friendly laws, but the best laws are
useless without enforcement. And enforcement is totally lacking