SSKB Gold Coast Seminar - SSKB - Strata Managers | Community Experts

SSKB Gold Coast Seminar


SSKB Gold Coast Seminar

Last Wednesday SSKB hosted a Seminar in conjunction with MBA Lawyers. The Seminar featured the Commissioner for Body Corporate and Community Management, Chris Irons.

Hot topics of the night were pets, visitor parking, changes to the BCCM (Standard Module) and the recording of meetings and phone calls.

Chris Irons from the Commissioner’s Office was first to present which included a brief overview of what the Commissioner’s Office can assist with and also key changes which may be implemented in the Draft Standard Module.

Some of the changes discussed were:

  • Timeframes for Committee’s to act – Setting timeframes for the Committee to act on owners’ motions at Committee Meetings as there is currently no obligation in the legislation
  • Quorum – Currently prescribed in legislation however proposed changes will allow owners to change their quorum calculation by Special Resolution at a General Meeting
  • Restricting Power of Attorneys – Generally limiting the holding of  Power of Attorneys to be limited to one per person, with some exceptions

The Commissioner described the three services that the Commissioner’s Office provides which is:

  • Information Services
  • Dispute Resolutions Services; and
  • Engagement Services, such as seminars and webinars

A few tips the Commissioner mentioned were:

  • De-identify emails, if you are a Committee member, create a separate email for only Body Corporate matters
  • Wait 24 hours before responding to emotive emails.
  • Don’t hit reply all in emails and definitely don’t CC in the Commissioner’s Office!
  • Be properly informed, seek information from specialists such as Lawyers, Surveyors and Engineers etc.

If you would like to keep up to date with the Commissioner’s Office you can subscribe to their Common Ground newsletter by clicking here.

Clayton Glenister from MBA Lawyers spoke regarding the three “P’s”: Pets, Parties and Parking.

 Key points were:

Pets

  • There is no such thing as a blanket ‘no pet’ ban in a Body Corporate
  • The best way to control pets in a building is to ensure the Body Corporate has a strong set of By-Laws which places reasonable restrictions on pets
  • By-Laws should be regularly updated to ensure they are still relevant
  • Committee’s must be reasonable in their decision making

Parties

  • Parties must comply with Council restrictions
  • If a party turns into a local authority issue, Police should be contacted if required, not left for Committees and Body Corporate to handle
  • There is currently a strong argument for new developments to have pet classifications however this is an ongoing discussion but a look towards what the future may hold

Parking

  • BCCMA does not define visitor therefore there is only the dictionary definition
  • Regular visitors are still classed as visitors
  • A parked car will fall into three different categories, Owner, Guest, Third Party – unknown

Q&A Panel

The Q&A was the highlight of the night where those in attendance could ask Chris Irons (the Commissioner), Clayton Glenister (MBA Lawyers) and Charlotte Divall (SSKB) questions from the floor.

Some main points from the panel included:

  • Some matters, such as criminal activity, are for Police and local authorities to handle. It is the moral responsibility of the person advising of the matter to make Police aware, not the Committee or Body Corporate
  • Any correspondence submitted is a Body Corporate record and can be searchable by an interested party
  • Building Managers are generally obligated by their Contracts to advise the Committee of potential breaches, however, it is the Committee’s responsibility under the BCCM legislation to act on the matter
  • Committee positions are restricted and are set by the legislation, there is not a position that holds more “power or say” than another. They each have their own roles
  • Under Queensland law private conversations may be recorded by a party to the conversation and consent is not required. A Chairperson may ask those at a meeting at the start if anyone is recording and if anyone objects. It is illegal to communicate or publish a recorded private conversation with some exceptions. Recording of phone calls may have additional regulation under the Telecommunications Act
  • Minutes do not require a “transcript”, they are to be full and accurate recording the vote and resolution
  • Annual general meetings are purely to resolve motions and record votes and are not a forum for discussions

With positive feedback and  turnout for the Seminar, there will be more to come. If you would like to attend our future events follow SSKB on Facebook and LinkedIn to stay up to date.

At SSKB we want our clients to be educated and knowledgeable when it comes to Strata living. Click here to make the switch to SSKB today.



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