(a) An association shall adopt rules, in accordance with the procedures prescribed by Article 5 (commencing with Section 4340) of Chapter 3, that do all of the following:
(1) Ensure that if any candidate or member advocating a point of view is provided access to association media, newsletters, or Internet Web sites during a campaign, for purposes that are reasonably related to that election, equal access shall be provided to all candidates and members advocating a point of view, including those not endorsed by the board, for purposes that are reasonably related to the election. The association shall not edit or redact any content from these communications, but may include a statement specifying that the candidate or member, and not the association, is responsible for that content.
(2) Ensure access to the common area meeting space, if any exists, during a campaign, at no cost, to all candidates, including those who are not incumbents, and to all members advocating a point of view, including those not endorsed by the board, for purposes reasonably related to the election.
(3) Specify the qualifications for candidates for the board and any other elected position, and procedures for the nomination of candidates, consistent with the governing documents. A nomination or election procedure shall not be deemed reasonable if it disallows any member from nominating himself or herself for election to the board.
(4) Specify the qualifications for voting, the voting power of each membership, the authenticity, validity, and effect of proxies, and the voting period for elections, including the times at which polls will open and close, consistent with the governing documents.
(5) Specify a method of selecting one or three independent third parties as inspector or inspectors of elections utilizing one of the following methods:
(A) Appointment of the inspector or inspectors by the board.
(B) Election of the inspector or inspectors by the members of the association.
(C) Any other method for selecting the inspector or inspectors.
(6) Allow the inspector or inspectors to appoint and oversee additional persons to verify signatures and to count and tabulate votes as the inspector or inspectors deem appropriate, provided that the persons are independent third parties.
(b) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the rules adopted pursuant to this section may provide for the nomination of candidates from the floor of membership meetings or nomination by any other manner. Those rules may permit write-in candidates for ballots.
- Civil Code Section 4515. Rights of Assembly and Non-Commercial Speech.
- SB 407 (Wieckowski). Common interest developments: noncommercial solicitation.
- AB 1426 (Irwin). Common interest developments: association governance: elections.
- Corporations Code Section 7514. Voting by Proxy or Written Ballot.
- Corporations Code Section 7513. Action without Meeting by Written Ballot.
- Civil Code Section 5115. Ballot and Voting Procedure.
- Civil Code Section 5100. Elections Held by Secret Ballot.
- Civil Code Section 4340. “Operating Rule” and “Rule Change” Defined.
Related Case Law
- Wittenburg v. Beachwalk Homeowners Association
(2013) 217 Cal.App.4th 654
[Elections; Equal Access] Where a board utilizes HOA media to advocate its point of view regarding an upcoming election, equal access to such media must also be provided to any member advocating a point of view on the issue.
- Friars Village Homeowners Assn. v. Hansing
(2013) 220 Cal. App. 4th 405
[Election Rules; Director Qualifications] Court upheld association’s authority to adopt election rules which prohibited closely-related members from being nominated to serve as directors.