By: Rana Goodman
There Are None As Blind As He Who Cannot See:
Over the past few years our daily newspaper and television stations have carried stories of the continuing FBI probe into the home owner association (HOA) fraud investigations they have been conducting. Parallel alongside of that, well known newswoman Darcy Spears’ series on Channel 13 entitled, HOA Hall of Shame that has been a regular feature for more than 2 ½ years crisscrossing associations all over the valley. Amazon even rates 5 stars for the book about living in an HOA, called Neighbors at War by Ward Lucas.
So I ask you, would you be as shocked as I was to hear Assemblyman Richard Carrillo state on the record in an Assembly Judiciary Committee hearing, that he had walked his entire district while campaigning and no one ever complained about their HOA. He was, amazed, he said, at the testimony that there was so much angst between board members and residents living in some of the areas HOAs.
One short week later, Senator Justin Jones said to a constituent who was giving testimony on a bill that he simply cannot believe that any HOA board member would deliberately retaliate against a resident. Senator Greg Brower from the Northern part of our state said May 17 “Clark County is one big HOA soap opera.”
I have to say that these three gentlemen must be living in the land of Oz, a few witnesses might be overstating the facts, but when faced with documented proof, case after case, even a lawyer like Senator Jones must admit if it looks like a duck, waddles like a duck……. YUP, it’s a duck!
On May 14 Darcy Spears aired a new segment of her HOA Hall of Shame, calling Boulder Ranch, the worst case she has seen of abuse by a board, their legislator just happens to be Assemblyman Richard Carrillo. Either he cut his walk short or many people were not home when he came calling, because they had no qualms about telling Ms. Spears just how unhappy they were.
The saddest part of this column today is that out of the dozens of homeowner association bills that went through our state legislature this session, so far most have bitten the dust or been so beaten down with amendments and changes that they won’t help the people they were written for at all.
When you have legislators making snide comments to each other like “that’s what you get for presenting an HOA bill” in retort for frustration over numerous changes, it makes it especially difficult for constituents trying to get their representatives to present a bill next time around.
What is the answer? I believe we need legislators who have not forgotten who elected them. I want legislators who pay attention to what their constituents have to say and actually HEAR them, then cast their vote for what is RIGHT… WOW, what a concept! Not because they made a deal with a lobbyist or with other legislators “you vote for my bill, I’ll vote for yours,” I’m still naïve enough to believe that people vote for a politician because they trust that they will do what they promise to do…. Once elected, keep your word.
I also used to believe Senator Michael Roberson almost “walked on water.” I then had a reality check this session when he sponsored a bill to change the requirements for filing problems on construction defects. His bill reduces the time to file a complaint from 10 years down to 3. What was he thinking, or better yet, what lobby group’s Kool-Aid was he drinking, didn’t he remember Kitec, Rehau, Wisbro, anyone living in a Del Webb-Pulte home in the Henderson area would know of these plumbing issues?… sure he did, he apparently just didn’t care. Thing such as this would never manifest themselves within 3 years!
As I wrote in my column last month, once Roberson’s construction defect bill was in the Senate Judiciary Committee, Chairman Segerblom was so worried about being held slightly overtime, he refused to hear comments from the southern part of the state, his home town of Las Vegas and Henderson. It was here that more than one hundred million dollars for those plumbing issues had been settled with Del Webb just a few short years ago.
Next election I want to vote for my youngest grandson. I’d bet we all think our grandchildren can do a better job than who is sitting in office right now, don’t you. I have been trying to convince this young man that he should be President since he was born but he would rather be an engineer. Oh well, I guess I never will get to fly on Air Force One!