a recent e-mail to legislators you wrote about Cyber Citizens For Justice, Inc. (quote): “That organization, as you know, is extremely vocal in
expressing contempt for condo associations/boards and for DBPR.”
can assure you that quite a few of the legislators to whom your
e-mail was addressed do not share your evaluation of our Consumer
Alliance, because they hear the same complaints from many of their
there are still elected officials in this country who take the
task of serving their constituents very seriously!
seems you are not getting the point.
Or you feel that you rather refer to the propaganda used by
CALL (Becker & Poliakoff, P.A.) or the Community Associations
Institute – instead of listening to the facts and doing
something about it!
is a huge difference between the word CONTEMPT and the word
to Merriam-Webster Online:
lack of respect or reverence for something
the act of criticizing -- usually unfavorably
you prefer the word contempt, let’s make it very clear:
Yes, we have contempt for people not obeying the laws and
rules and/or people getting paid for something they are failing to
are expressing contempt for people that don’t follow the
laws and an agency that wastes taxpayers’ money by letting
violators get away with clearly breaking the laws.
Over the last few years we went through four (4) DBPR
secretaries. All of those DBPR secretaries were more interested in
covering up the inefficiency of their Department rather than
trying to rectify the obvious shortcomings.
don’t forget, the names of the secretaries changed, but not the
people who are involved in the day-to-day business and are -- in
my opinion -- actually the ones who caused these secretaries to
it or not, we are criticizing the way business is run in our
associations that cost Florida homeowners and condo-owners
millions of dollars each year – tendency climbing!
We are offering suggestions to remedy these problems.
you would care to read our proposals, you might realize that we
are asking for enforcement of the laws and rules, for a regulating
agency that reins in wayward boards and service providers.
We are asking to hold the people in charge accountable for
their actions. And we
are asking to implement a system that helps all owners, especially
owners with lower income and retirees on fixed incomes!
People who just can’t afford to hire legal eagles to
fight for their rights!
And even if we had the money, we don’t want to waste it
on useless litigation where the winners are the attorneys and the
losers are always the owners.
pay annual dues into the condo trust fund to obtain a certain
protection against abuses. Looking
at the complaints on a daily basis (the same complaints received
by everybody who deals with these issues), it is pretty obvious
that the consumers’ trust in the DBPR is very low!
But from all the actions we consumers see, it seems that
the top executives of the DBPR would rather shoot the messenger
than try to remedy the situation.
writing this letter, I received this e-mail from a Miami condo
owner. The important
sentence (quote): “Our current
board was investigated by the DBPR.
They found seven violations and unjustified expenses of
around $30,000.00. But
and service providers laugh about the so-called “warning
letters” issued by the DBPR – and do business as usual,
meaning that they continue to violate the laws and disregard the
rules, to the detriment of the owners.
the government agency supposedly regulating these associations and
protecting owners from abuses is proud to announce in this recent
quote from Deputy Secretary Andy Edwards: “According
to division data, the average time to complete recall arbitration
is 61 days.”
make it very clear: The Arbitration Section of the Division
sometimes seems to think they missed their calling and should be
the Florida Supreme Court. It
takes them forever to come up with rulings and they allow parties
to file motions that are clearly attempting to prolong the process
– nothing else! Arbitrators
have to realize that they are in a position to create a process
that allows parties to get a fast ruling, without jumping through
all the hoops and cost of court proceedings.
There is no doubt that the Arbitration Section of the
Division leaves a lot to be desired.
waste valuable resources on an investigation that leads to nothing
other than “warning letters”?
Many condo-owners have given up filing complaints with the
DBPR, even in very obvious cases. I hear from many owners that “it is useless
to file a complaint with the DBPR” – because nothing comes
out of it!
many years OPPAGA has tried to tell the DBPR that their system
needs serious improvement.
There are many OPPAGA reports available that criticize
-- or was it show contempt of? – the work of the DBPR.
But instead of trying to resolve some of the problems, the
DBPR used its staff to find excuses and try to explain that the
damaging report is not as bad as it looks!
Advisory Council on Condominiums listened to lots of public
testimony about the inefficiency of the DBPR.
Criticism ranged from “waste of money” to
if you read the annual report of the Council, you will see barely
any mention of this testimony about the DBPR shortcomings.
I guess that’s the way if the report is written by Jon
Peet, a Division staff member, and sanctioned by the specialized
attorneys who are running the Council.
These attorneys are only too happy to see the DBPR being
ineffective – a toothless tiger!
is about time that the executives of the DBPR see the writing on
the wall. More and more big consumer organizations are realizing the
problems of these associations.
We will see bill proposals coming from these consumer
organizations demanding protection of owners and enforcement of
if the specialized attorneys and service providers try to downplay
the many problems, in the long run nobody can ignore the
increasing demand for consumer protection.
Jeb Bush appointed you as Secretary of the Department of Business
and Professional Regulation.
Many Floridians were hoping that this appointment would
improve the dismal service of this Department.
Florida homeowners and condo-owners are asking this question of
you: “Do you really want to improve the service and take the
necessary steps to solve the many existing problems – or do you
just want to be added to the long list of secretaries of the DBPR
who failed their calling?”
may call it what you want: CRITICISM or CONTEMPT!
We will continue to be vocal about our opinion to make sure
that Florida’s citizens receive the service from your Department
they rightfully deserve!
We are not looking for excuses and/or cover-ups!
are looking for serious improvement of the services we are paying
Cyber Citizens For Justice, Inc.
League of United Latin
American Citizens (LULAC)
Owners Association in the Villages (POA)
Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 11
Fair Housing Center of the Greater Palm Beaches (FHCGPB)
TO DBPR SECRETARY MARSTILLER
CYBER CITIZENS FOR JUSTICE, INC.