powerful is our U.S. Constitution?
Opinion By Jan Bergemann
to the Community Associations Institute and their specialized attorneys, the
United States Constitution is not even powerful enough to supersede deed
restrictions created by some developers. If these attorneys were right, then
citizens are signing away their constitutional rights at the gates of these
it seems the tide is turning and our courts are starting to realize that there
is something basically wrong with this theory!
we all know, the U.S. Constitution has existed since 1787, long before the
deed restrictions of these communities, and definitely it supersedes these
private "agreements" that -- in the opinion of many -- are not even
real contracts. A legal contract is a binding agreement between two parties
who voluntarily agree on certain provisions. These deed restrictions are no
real contracts, because there is only one deal: Take it or leave it -- no
something as vague as that should supersede the U.S.
deed restrictions contained restrictions about satellite dishes – plainly
forbidding owners to install these dishes. But then came the
Telecommunications Act of 1996 – and suddenly these restrictions became null
our Constitution less powerful than FCC satellite dish rules?
are listening in the moment to the heated arguments in the media about a
soldier’s wife refusing to take down a sign: “Support Our Troops!”
is not a debate about right or wrong of the war, not a debate about politics.
We all should support our troops and their families! They deserve our support
– I don’t think there should be any argument! Our troops didn’t make the
decision to go to war in Iraq – our politicians did! Want to blame someone? Please
blame the politicians at the next elections!
what’s wrong with a soldier’s wife putting up a “Support Our Troops!”
sign? According to proponents of strict rule enforcement in mandatory
associations -- absolutely everything. For
citizens using common sense – absolutely nothing!
look at the video at: http://www.ccfj.net/HOAFLtroops3.html
and you will see that there are a lot of other issues in that Westchase
Association that should be taken care of before sending a soldier’s wife a
violation letter with threats of heavy fines!
Considering what can be seen on this newscast, trying to enforce the
rules would most likely be considered selective enforcement and would be
thrown out of court by any judge in a heartbeat.
guess that’s why the attorneys are pushing to reinstate liens and
foreclosures for fines into FS 720.
Florida’s 2004 legislature had already eliminated those unfair laws.
It is not fair to remove due process and enable a kangaroo court to force a
homeowner to pay up – right or wrong!
community has a long history of neighborhood fights. Even some neighbors have
obviously had it.
think this e-mail (received on 3-10-2006) says it all (quote):
don't have the energy nor the desire to fight these folks anymore.
The whole roof/budget/speeding issues were enough for me.
A lady in our neighborhood was fined $3000.00 for not cleaning her roof
when demanded. She was renting
the house to others and supposedly never got the notices.
Regardless, to fine someone $100 a day is absurd.
have decided that we are going to move. I think that what this board is doing
with the excessive fines will start to affect home sales which will be the
incentive for the residents to mount a mutiny.
The bottom here line is something that my son told me years ago, "You can't fix stupid". The board members and property manager just don't have a clue.” (end quote)
more explanations necessary?
saw the issue about signs and freedom of speech in the US
Supreme Court decision ‘City of Ladue vs. Gilleo.’
Do associations have more rights than cities?
Court Of New Jersey -- Appellate Division -- surely didn’t think so. The
court decided that the residents in
homeowners’ associations have constitutional rights -- the same as anyone
else in America.
can read all about it at: “The
Battle At Twin Rivers”!
know that in Florida we will hear the same arguments we heard before.
Like we heard from attorney Stephen Mezer (quote): "I
admire the guy," said Tampa lawyer Steven Mezer, attorney for the Tudor
Cay homeowner's association. "He has a right to push the First Amendment,
but the law doesn't apply". Mezer
lost the Tudor Cay case anyway! For
your info: Stephen Mezer is as well the attorney on record for Westchase
Community Association, mentioned earlier in this article!
these attorneys are so adamant about owners not having constitutional rights
in associations, maybe they would be willing to agree to add these two short
sentences to the mandatory pre-sale disclosure form:
signing this contract you’re signing away your constitutional rights!
founding forefathers fought and died to enact the U.S. Constitution. They paid
dearly to give us the freedom we so cherish!
soldiers have died to protect the freedom granted to us by our Constitution.
Support Our Troops!
Let’s fight for our constitutional rights to make sure that no attorneys can take those valued rights away from us!
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