Starting January 1, 2008, board meeting agendas must be posted along with the notice of meeting. (Civ. Code §4920.) With the following exceptions, boards are not allowed to discuss or take action on any item not on the agenda. As provided for in Civil Code §4930(a):
- Board members and their agents (including managers) may briefly respond to statements or questions from association members, ask clarifying questions, make brief announcements, or make brief reports on their own activities.
- Boards may refer certain informational matters and administrative tasks to its managers, agents and staff--even if these items were not listed on the agenda.
- Any subject may be discussed and acted upon if there is an emergency, if immediate action is needed on a matter which arose after the agenda was distributed, or if the item was on a recent agenda and was continued to the current meeting.
Sufficient Detail. Black's Law Dictionary defines "agenda" as "items of business or discussion to be brought up at a meeting." A meeting agenda must contain enough information so members can easily understand what will be discussed at the meeting. The descriptions cannot be so generic that members have no idea what business is actually being conducted by the board. For example, if the board intends to discuss installation of a new landscape sprinkler system, re-roofing a building, and repainting the clubhouse, a generic agenda item called "Maintenance" is not enough. No one reading the posted agenda will have any idea what that means. The agenda should list each item of business. That way, members can decide if they want to attend and give their opinions during open forum. See Sample Board Meeting Agenda for open meetings.
Consent Agenda. Boards are allowed to include "consent agenda" items in their meeting agenda.
Executive Session. Notice of executive session meetings must also contain an agenda. (Civ. Code §4920(d).) Because executive sessions are confidential and topics are generally noted in open meeting minutes (Civ. Code §4935(e)), agenda descriptions are more circumspect. See Sample Agenda for Executive Sessions.
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