Private community bill moves ahead
"An amended bill requiring the state Attorney General’s Office to investigate or mediate alleged violations by operators of common interest communities is expected to be approved next month by the Pennsylvania House Urban Affairs Committee, Chairman Scott Petri said.
The amendment to the bill offered early this year by Rep. Rosemary Brown, R-189, would require the homeowner(s) who files a complaint and the homeowners association or developer the complaint is lodged against to try to negotiate a resolution. If no settlement is reached, the complaint will be forwarded to the state Attorney General’s Bureau of Consumer Protection for investigation.
There is a provision that would allow the parties to continue negotiating for a second 60-day period, if all sides agree.
“We want to have an interim process to try to resolve the issue,” Petri, a Bucks County Republican, said. “That way, homeowners can hold their homeowners association’s feet to the fire.”
House Bill 1774 would mandate the Bureau of Consumer Protection to “investigate or mediate” complaints filed by a unit owner against his or her property owners association alleging violations of community bylaws or the Unit Planned Community Act. Brown said she has received several complaints from homeowners in common interest communities that law enforcement is hesitant to prosecute violations, forcing homeowners to engage in costly civil suits to redress a problem.
Brown’s district encompasses eastern Monroe and Pike counties, which has one of the highest concentrations of common interest communities in Pennsylvania."