Q&A: Transparency at Board Meetings

Q. I am a condo board member and often hear my fellow members say at our meetings “What goes on in here, stays in here.”  How can that be fair to our unit owners? Shouldn’t everything go in the minutes except for names and amounts owed and the like? Transparency is forgotten too often since too many vendettas are ruling the meetings.

                                        —In the Dark

A. “In Las Vegas, people say what happens there stays there,” says attorney Stuart J. Lieberman of the Princeton-based firm Lieberman & Blecher, P.C., “condo boards are not Las Vegas.  If they were, a lot more people would volunteer for them.”

“When a unit owner buys a unit, that owner usually becomes a member of the condominium association  And as a member, he or she has a right to an open government.

“New Jersey state government is subject to laws that require open government; namely the Open Public Records Act and the Open Public Meetings Act – also called the Sunshine Law.  These laws require that government take place in the open.

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