There is less than a month to go in this year’s State Legislative Session. Here is an update on the Bills that were identified of importance to Montgomery Village HOAs and condominium associations.
HB313 to require state-wide reserves studies was amended to exempt HOAs with assets that cost less than $10K when initially purchased. As of March 17, it had not had a vote in the full House. HB567, applying only to Montgomery County, was heard in the House Environment and Transportation Committee, but no vote has been taken to pass it on to the full house.
Establishing Quorum for Annual Meetings
Montgomery Village’s Senator Nancy King has introduced SB0535 this session, which will make it easier for associations to establish a quorum. HB593 on the same topic was cross-filed in the House, passed in February, and is awaiting hearing with Senator King’s Bill in Judicial Proceedings. Passage of the Bills is likely, but could be delayed if other Bills get priority consideration in the last few weeks of the Session.
Maryland Swimming Pool and Spa Standards HB109/SB254
HB109 passed in the House and is awaiting a hearing with SB254 in the Judicial Proceedings Committee. These Bills were carefully drafted over a number of years with input from the county health departments, private industry and state agencies, and have the support of the Maryland Association of Counties. The standards cover both construction (administered by the Department of Labor) and operations (administered by the Health Department).
In Montgomery County, the county health department is responsible for both construction and operations, and believes that the new standards for construction will be beneficial, because the old standards did not fully address new pool features such as “beach” entries. Passage of this Bill is likely.
Other Bills MVF is monitoring include:
HB0110/SB0144 – Requires common ownership communities to permit electric car charging stations. Passed in the House. Awaiting action by JPR Committee in the Senate.
HB 248 – Prohibits communities from regulating composting by unit owners. MVF has worked with the sponsor to amend the Bill to allow reasonable restrictions as to location of composting activity. Passed in the House and awaiting action by JPR Committee in the Senate.
HB 0322 – Prohibits communities from unreasonably restricting low impact landscaping, such as combinations of rocks and vegetation that do not require watering. Passed in the House. Awaiting action by JPR Committee in the Senate.
HB0367 – Requires community mangers to be licensed. The Bill does not require MVF mangers to be licensed because they only provide services to MVF-affiliated communities. Awaiting action by JPR Committee in the Senate.
HB772 – Permits debtors, such as delinquent MVF owners, to retain up to $2,600 in bank accounts that a creditor seeks to garnish after obtaining a judgment. Bill was withdrawn by Delegate Queen.
HB0826 – Creates a dispute resolution process for HOAs and condos whose governing documents do not include a process. Passed in the House. Awaiting action by JPR Committee in Senate.
HB1023 – Expands the authority of associations to permit boards and committees to meet virtually. No action taken by committee on House Bill. Senate Bill voted favorably by JPR Committee. Not heard by full Senate yet.
HB1305 – Reduces required insurance coverage on detached condominium units. No action taken by the House.
As the Session continues, MVF will continue to provide information to the MVF communities about bills that could affect them.