Condo Media - August 2011 - (Page 22)

HOMEOWNER’S CORNER Volunteering in Your Community An Opportunity to Make a Difference ommittees are an important part of any association’s operation. Committees, through their volunteer members, help keep communities vibrant; and, by augmenting paid staff, they can save associations thousands of dollars each year. Associations just wouldn’t be what they are without active and effective committees. Community association volunteers deserve the sincerest thanks from the entire community. However, to be successful, associations need to cultivate fresh ideas and encourage additional resident involvement in committees throughout the year; so, association boards should reach out to residents to ask for their help and owners should get involved to serve on a committee. Committees give the board a way to gather information, offer new ideas and opinions and provide a training ground for future board members. Committees are advisory to the board unless given specific decisionmaking authority by the board or condominium documents. C • Standing committees, such as finance and facility management committees, may be established by the board for an ongoing and specific purpose. These committees generally make recommendations to, and act under the supervision of, the board. • Ad-hoc committees, which could include a summer picnic committee, can be established by the board as needed for specific projects and tasks. When the task is complete, the committee is disbanded. If you're thinking about running for the board and want to learn a little more about association operations first, or if you’re interested in helping improve your community or just want to get out and meet neighbors, talk to your association about committees and how you can help. association. This doesn’t just mean approving the budget, but also developing and enforcing policies. Board members are required to step outside their immediate circle of family and neighbors and make decisions based on the greater good of the community. A Board Position If you are considering running for the board, you should take a few moments to ask yourself three questions: Do I have the time? As a board member, you will need to devote several hours of your time each month to association business. In addition to board meetings, you will need to be active in discussions and occasional special meetings. Some board members may spend a little more time than others if they work with a committee. Can I make tough decisions when it’s required? The primary role of the board is to conduct the business of the Committee Details The board should provide each committee with a job description, goal and mission statement to help it succeed as a community resource. Different types of committees may be established to help with different tasks including: • Administrative committees, like an architectural control committee, may be set out in an association’s bylaws and documents. These committees are ongoing, permanent and often have clearly defined power and authority. Can I do all this and have fun too? It isn’t all about policies and tough decisions. Communities and associations are only as good as their residents and members make them, and establishing and maintaining a sense of community is part of a board member’s responsibility. Planning and attending functions, such as social events and being a presence in the community, are as important as any policy decisions board members may make. Being a community association volunteer leader whether on a committee or board requires a commitment of time and devotion to the association and members. And while serving on a committee or board may be frustrating at times, it also may be one of the most rewarding ways you’ll find to volunteer your time improving your community for the benefit of your neighbors, friends and family. CM 22 CONDO MEDIA • AUGUST 2011

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Condo Media - August 2011

Condo Media - August 2011
From the CED’s Desk
Editorial Board
CAI News
CAI Regional News
Asked & Answered
Homeowner’s Corner
Smooth Operations
Vendor Spotlight
Industry Perspective
Advertisers Index
Classified Service Directory

Condo Media - August 2011