Boards can vote on matters in executive session. They are not required to convene into an open meeting to cast their votes. For example, if a board meets with the association's attorney to discuss a pending mediation and authorizes settlement at a certain dollar amount, the vote should be done privately. To require that this vote be done in an open meeting would make negotiations impossible since the board's negotiating position would be published to the entire community. As the Court of Appeals noted:
It is no secret that crowds cannot keep them [secrets]. . . . "[o]ne can only imagine the sleepless nights an attorney and the Board of Directors may incur if privileged information is placed in the hands of hundreds of homeowners who may not all have the same goals in mind." (Smith v. Laguna Sur Villas.)
Accordingly, boards can meet in executive session and vote on matters in executive session. The board's actions are then generally noted in the minutes of the next open meeting (such as: "The board discussed issues related to the pending mediation."). (Civ. Code § 4935(e).)
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