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BUSINESS
January 2, 2000
Dear Mr. Azrael: I cannot get minutes and records from my townhouse homeowners' association. I would like to know what do I do now. Lewis Barach Baltimore Dear Mr. Barach: Maryland law requires that, with limited exceptions, all books and records kept by or on behalf of a homeowners' association must be made available for examination and copying by lot owners, or their duly authorized representatives, during normal business hours and after reasonable notice....
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EXPLORE
February 4, 2013
With every new news article about the new Symphony Woods plan a little more information leaks out. It is incomprehensible that CA has performed almost no outreach to its residents about the new plan. The only chance to date for public input on the plan was at a recent CA Board meeting after the plan hit the newspapers, and at that meeting only the proposed "trust," not the plan itself, was on the agenda. Last week's meeting on the plan itself at...
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NEWS
April 29, 1997
THE STORY IN The Sun on Sunday that revealed sloppiness, and perhaps worse, in the Columbia Association's bidding process should give pause to the many smaller, quasi-governmental homeowner associations around, from Crofton to Odenton.In Howard County's Columbia, one of the nation's largest planned communities, the semi-public association that builds and runs recreational facilities must make immediate changes to restore confidence that it is properly spending millions of dollars it collects yearly from homeowners.
EXPLORE
August 10, 2012
Barry Blyveis said it more eloquently than I could ("CA should not be exempt from Homeowners Association Act," letter, Aug. 9), but I would just like to add: What safeguards are going to be in place to protect the CA lien holders once CA makes these changes they say they need? Now at least there is legislation to protect those of us that own property that is controlled by CA. What guarantee do we have that similar legislation will be in place to give us the information we request about the use of our dollars?
NEWS
By Andrea F. Siegel and Andrea F. Siegel,Staff Writer | September 22, 1993
The Parke West Homeowners Association will fade away unless homeowners become more involved and are taxed for the community's upkeep, community activists fear.The association, revived three times in the last 20 or so years, is suffering from dwindling interest and shrinking coffers, said President Richard St. Hilaire.Over-volunteered volunteers are burning out; fewer people are paying dues; nobody has stepped up to be president next year. The organization needs at least 16 people to canvass the 470 homes to try to create a special taxing district, and so far only six have offered, Mr. St. Hilaire said.
NEWS
By Mike Farabaugh and Mike Farabaugh,SUN STAFF | December 18, 1995
The County Commissioners have told developer Martin K. P. Hill that they will not issue grading permits for a 90-unit condominium project until he proves he has permission to store topsoil on property owned by an association of Hampstead homeowners.Hampstead officials requested the delay during a meeting with the commissioners Friday morning.Although Hampstead officials have repeatedly clashed with Mr. Hill over what they say are violations of the town's rules covering adequate public facilities and density, the county was set to issue grading permits for the 4-acre Roberts Field I project.
NEWS
July 7, 1998
THE NEW president of the Columbia Association wants to get off on the right foot. Her start has been complicated, however, by the clumsy way in which the homeowners association board chose her. Complaints of racism have been made because an African-American didn't get the job.The unfounded criticism was fueled by the board's acceptance of Deborah O. McCarty's winning application after it had already narrowed the field to seven.Board Chairwoman Norma Rose said the process began in October, when Padraic M. Kennedy announced he would retire after 26 years in the post.
NEWS
By Shirley Leung and Shirley Leung,SUN STAFF | October 31, 1995
Crofton resident Donna Ceroy, doesn't mind paying a special tax for police protection and landscaping, but she could do without the additional $125 homeowners' association fee.Ms. Ceroy and her neighbor, Lori Price, 33, want to dissolve the Greens of Crofton Homeowners Association and save the neighborhood's 80 homeowners $10,000 a year. They want to give the responsibility of maintaining common areas to the Crofton Civic Association, which manages the special tax district and collects about $21,000 in taxes from the Greens of Crofton.
NEWS
By Katherine Richards and Katherine Richards,Staff Writer | April 25, 1993
If you live in Hampstead and have a case of spring fever -- go fish.The pond at Boxwood Drive and North Woods Trail, which belongs to the Fields Homeowners Association, will be opened to the public for fishing, association President Wayne Thomas said Friday."
NEWS
By Laura Cadiz and Laura Cadiz,SUN STAFF | September 2, 2004
The Alliance for a Better Columbia is accusing the Columbia Association board of violating a number of rules under the Maryland Homeowners Association Act and is threatening to pursue legislative or judicial avenues to make it comply. Members of the watchdog group have been complaining that the board does not follow the state law that applies to the Columbia Association, the homeowners group that manages the planned community's amenities and collects an annual fee from property owners.
NEWS
By Larry Carson, The Baltimore Sun | May 4, 2011
The Columbia Association is looking for a new contractor to complete the dredging of Lake Elkhorn, where a contract dispute and lawsuit left the $5.3 million job incomplete. Mobile Pumping and Dredging Co. of Chester, Pa., began the job in late 2009 and stopped for the winter in December, but work never resumed this spring after the Columbia Association decided not to extend the firm's contract. In March, the company removed its equipment. CA officials have abandoned negotiations with Cashman Dredging and Marine Contracting on a contract to complete the work, and the homeowners association says it plans to request new bids by late May. The company is working on a similar project at Lake Kittamaqundi.
NEWS
By Larry Carson, The Baltimore Sun | July 5, 2010
Racial diversity was one of developer James W. Rouse's founding principles for Columbia, the 43-year-old planned community in Howard County where people of every ethnicity and income level were to live side-by-side in suburban comfort. But while members of many different cultural backgrounds have made their home in Columbia's meandering villages, there is little racial diversity among those who govern the unincorporated town. The 10-person board of directors of the giant Columbia Association, which collects and spends $60 million a year for pools, gymnasiums, tennis courts and landscaping, is all white.
NEWS
By Larry Carson and Larry Carson,larry.carson@baltsun.com | February 21, 2009
Bickering, acrimony, rancor, accusations of racism - not the images typically associated with Columbia, which was founded on the principles of diversity and acceptance. But that has been the experience in recent years choosing a president for the Columbia Association, the homeowners' organization that serves the planned community of about 100,000 residents in Howard County. The latest attempt has been uneventful, compared with previous go-rounds, as the association's board of directors prepares to hold a public forum tomorrow featuring the three finalists for the position.
NEWS
February 15, 2009
No charges for driver in accident that killed teen 2 The driver of a car that struck and killed a 14-year bicyclist in Anne Arundel County on Friday night will not be charged because the accident was caused by error on the part of the teenager, police said. Ashley Nicole Meyers of Pasadena was attempting to cross Ritchie Highway near Hamburg Street in Pasadena at 5:47 p.m. when she was struck by a northbound 1999 Nissan Sentra driven by Katherine Marie Brooks, 30, of Dundalk, according to a county police news release.
NEWS
By Stan Cox and Stan Cox,melissa.harris@baltsun.com | August 29, 2008
Susana Tregobov dries clothes on a line behind her Timonium townhouse, saving energy and money. But her homeowners association has ordered her to bring in the laundry. The crackdown came after a neighbor complained that the clothesline "makes our community look like Dundalk." Ms. Tregobov and her husband plan to fight for their right to a clothesline, but the odds are against them. Although Maryland recently passed a law protecting homeowners' rights to erect solar panels for generating electricity, it is still legal here for communities to ban solar clothes-drying.
NEWS
By June Arney and June Arney,Sun reporter | November 14, 2007
General Growth Properties Inc., the Chicago-based company that controls most of Columbia's downtown real estate, is holding private meetings with community groups to discuss downtown redevelopment. The company calls the meetings "listening sessions," and says they are part of its outreach as it formulates a plan for Town Center. But some who advocate openness in government are concerned that the meetings are closed to the public. "When we hear about this kind of private session, where the press and the public is not invited, it raises a red flag," said Alex Hekimian, an Oakland Mills resident who is president of the Alliance for a Better Columbia.
NEWS
By Laura Cadiz and Laura Cadiz,SUN STAFF | August 12, 2002
A telephone survey shows that the Columbia Association may have rebounded from a period of tumultuous leadership, with slightly more than half of the town's residents responding that they're getting their money's worth from the liens they pay. Mason-Dixon Polling & Research interviewed 807 adults and found that 52 percent of Columbia residents are satisfied with the quality of the homeowners association's services that are partially funded by assessment fees....
NEWS
By Sandy Alexander and Sandy Alexander,sun reporter | May 16, 2007
The two-story stone walls and arched windows of a 100-year-old seminary building stand out architecturally amid Terra Maria's decade-old, closely spaced single-family homes, but emotionally it is an integral part of the Ellicott City development. "It is one of the focal points of the neighborhood," said Randy Citrano, treasurer of the Terra Maria homeowners association. "A lot of people know our neighborhood from this structure." Like many historic structures in the county, weather, use and time have taken a toll on the roofless ruins off Route 144, which were once the social hall of St. Charles College.
BUSINESS
By Ilyce Glink | September 7, 2007
Editor's Note: Beginning this week, Ilyce Glink's syndicated real estate Q&A column will appear each Friday in the business section. Glink is an award-winning writer, author of numerous books on real estate and personal finance, and a radio talk show host. Ken Harney's column, which has been appearing here on Fridays, will move to the new Sunday Real Estate section. We have a judgment against us in our credit file as a result of miscommunication from the title/settlement company to the homeowners association, who placed the amount due with an attorney.
NEWS
By Larry Carson and Larry Carson,Sun reporter | August 29, 2007
The Columbia Association's top officials got hefty cash bonuses on top of salaries that are higher than those of most county and state employees, and a local watchdog group wants to know why. Salary and bonus information released last week by the homeowners association shows that President Maggie J. Brown received a $24,000 bonus for the fiscal year that ended April 30, plus her $183,973 salary, giving her nearly $208,000 plus benefits. Her pay for May 1, 2006, to April 30 this year was 17 percent more than in the previous year.
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