**Petition Threshold Reached**, Wednesday ZOOM 6PM, Boards Special Meeting by Kevin Wine, Sep 05, 2022, 3:15 PM, reply, branch, edit
As of September 5th, we just crossed the 278 petition threshold needed to order the Board to call a Special Election within 60 days!
There are still several petitions promised and in-bound in the the mail, which are critical to have in case the Board tries to reject some petitions. This fight is not over yet and we need as many backup petitions as we can get.
At the same time, we also have plenty of signatures on the second petition, which was to call a special meeting to amend the By-Laws to allow for electronic voting in the annual elections, and to appoint an oversight committee with specific powers to oversee the entire annual election process start to finish.
The next step will be to make backup copies of all the petitions and submit them to the Board, via the Association's legal counsel. The Board is then legally obligated to call a Special Election meeting within 60 days, but since the regular annual election is less than 60 days away, they have to combine the two election meetings. This means there will be 6 board seats up for election this fall - not just two.
For anyone interested in the legal details behind the removal petition, it is covered in section 5:28-8.11(d) of the PREDFDA amendment (page 100 in the pdf):
For the procedure to amend the By-Laws, the relevant laws are PREDFDA section 5:26-8.13 (page 105 in the pdf above), and the Association's By-Laws, section 11.00 (page 16 in the pdf) and 3.04 and 3.05 (page 2 in the pdf):
Note that the 75% affirmative vote requirement was over-ruled by PREDFDA 5:26-8.13(c), requiring a majority affirmative vote of the entire eligible membership. This is still a considerable threshold, but much more feasible than 75%. This means about 240 owners would have to vote in favor of the amendments. Presumably if around 280 people signed the petitions, we should be able to pass this amendment.
I do want to thank everyone who took the time to respond to the petitions, and the numerous owners that rose to the occasion and helped with the petitions by reaching out to their neighbors and other owners, investigate "The Hill" story, analyze the situation, meet with the Township of Piscataway, propose other solutions, participate in numerous ZOOM meetings, and reason with the current Board members. This was by far the largest multi-pronged owner-driven effort in our history. It has had the positive effect of networking many owners together working toward a common goal. The fight is not yet over - we will have more forms to sign and ballots to return shortly, so hang in there and stay in the loop!
The Wednesday Tuesday Meeting
There will be another ZOOM update meeting on Wednesday at 6PM, just like last week, so there isn't much point in having the regular Tuesday Zoom. The full invite was emailed to all owners on the savethehill community email distribution.
Topic: Society Hill Home Owners - Special Assessment
Time: This is a recurring meeting to Meet upcoming Wednesday
Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 827 6230 3583
One tap mobile
+13126266799,,82762303583#,,,,*911274# US (Chicago)
Dial by your location
+1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)
+1 646 931 3860 US
+1 929 205 6099 US (New York)
+1 301 715 8592 US (Washington DC)
+1 309 205 3325 US
+1 719 359 4580 US
+1 253 215 8782 US (Tacoma)
+1 346 248 7799 US (Houston)
+1 386 347 5053 US
+1 564 217 2000 US
+1 669 444 9171 US
+1 669 900 6833 US (San Jose)
Meeting ID: 827 6230 3583
The topic are:
-HOA Special Meeting (Sept. 13) prep and questions for that meeting
The Board's Possible September 13 Special Propaganda Meeting
On August 31st, the management emailed a tentative announcement for a Tuesday September 13 Special Board Meeting. You might recall that about a month ago several owners were asking the Board to call a special meeting so those owners could present their independent findings concerning the Hill, and other approaches and solutions to the problem. The Board declined to call such a special meeting, and instead has now called an alternative special meeting in which they plan to:
"...invite engineering experts, legal, contractor as well as Township inspector and/or representative to speak directly to our homeowners."
Hopefully "engineering experts" is meant to include more than just the Board's engineering experts. Several owners, including ones with engineering backgrounds, spent a lot of time researching the Hill issue, and it seems the Board should at least extend them the courtesy of allowing them to present their findings and suggestions to the Board and any owners in attendance. There are also several issues of material fact, such as the volume estimate of the Hill (way over-estimated), and the level of soil contamination (not serious), which need to be sorted out by cross-examination of the Board's "experts". If none of this is allowed to happen at the September 13th meeting, it should leave no remaining doubt as to the current Board's true intentions.