A "virtual meeting" is not an email meeting between directors (which is disallowed) but rather a video or teleconference meeting where other directors can participate in real time. Starting January 1, 2012, board members in different locations can attend board meetings electronically.
Board Meetings. Board members who cannot physically appear in person at a board meeting (whether regular, special, emergency or executive session) can attend electronically by telephone or video. They can attend if the absent director can hear all other board members and all other board members can hear the absent director. Attendance in this manner counts as if the director were physically present in the meeting. (Corp. Code §7211(a)(6).)
Member Attendance. If an open board meeting is entirely virtual (by video or teleconference), notice of the meeting must identify at least one physical location where owners can attend and listen to or observe the board's meeting. (Civ. Code §4090(b).) That means a conference phone or monitor must be at that location so members can observe directors conduct the meeting. The arrangement must allow for members to participate during Open Forum.
Zoom Meetings. The pandemic of 2020 made Zoom video conferencing popular. It became the number one choice for holding board and membership meetings due to its ease of use. The other feature that made it popular is the ability to telephone into the video conference if a person does not have access to the internet. If a board is conducting an open meeting by video conference, it needs to include instructions in its notice on how to log into the meeting (or dial in by phone) so members can attend.
Membership Meetings & Elections. Everything described above also applies to membership meetings. Associations with members out of town or with absentee owners may find it more convenient to hold virtual membership meetings. When it comes to the opening and counting of ballots by the inspectors of election, a camera can be trained on the table so members can observe the counting.
Recording Meetings. With the board's permission, the secretary may record open board meetings to assist in the preparation of minutes. Once minutes have been approved by the board, the recording should be erased. Even though the secretary may record meetings for the purpose of preparing minutes, the board can disallow recordings by others, whether it be members or other directors. If an association has kept recordings of its meetings, members might request copies. If so, the board can, but is not required to, provide access to the recordings. Minutes must be provided by statute but recordings used to prepare minutes are not on the list of records required by statute to be made available to members for review and copying. See Records Not Subject to Inspection.
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