Governor Greenlights Condo E-Meetings
On July 1, 2022, Governor Hochul signed a new law which allows condominium boards to conduct electronic meetings with its unit owners. Effective immediately, this bill amends the New York State Condominium Act -- Real Property Law §339-v(b) -- and authorizes the new format.
During the height of the pandemic, many buildings held virtual meetings. And even though COVID “appears” to be on the wane, boards were interested in continuing that modified format without having to undertake the often-times challenging process of amending their by-laws. (This follows similarly enacted legislation which permitted cooperative buildings to hold remote meetings via an amendment to the Business Corporation Law.)
The pertinent section of the law now reads, as follows:MEETINGS OF UNIT OWNERS MAY BE HELD AT SUCH PHYSICAL PLACE AS MAY BE FIXED BY OR UNDER THE BY-LAWS, OR IF NOT SO FIXED, AS DETERMINED BY THE BOARD OF MANAGERS. PROVIDED, HOWEVER, THAT THE BOARD OF MANAGERS MAY, IN ITS SOLE DISCRETION, DETERMINE THAT THE MEETING BE HELD SOLELY OR PARTIALLY BY MEANS OF ELECTRONIC COMMUNICATION, THE PLATFORM/SERVICE OF WHICH SHALL BE THE PLACE OF THE MEETING FOR PURPOSES OF THIS ARTICLE. NOTHING CONTAINED IN THIS PARAGRAPH SHALL PROHIBIT A BOARD OF MANAGERS FROM HOLDING A MEETING AT A PHYSICAL PLACE AND ALLOWING UNIT OWNERS THE OPTION OF ATTENDING SUCH MEETING EITHER AT SUCH PHYSICAL PLACE OR BY MEANS OF ELECTRONIC COMMUNICATION.
It is hoped that this flexibility will lead to unit owners' increased participation and will aid condos in obtaining quorums, thus allowing for important building related matters to be addressed more expeditiously and efficiently.