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  • #73562

      Hey flatchatters

      If a strata management agreement delegates the roles of chair, secretary and treasurer to a strata manager, where do the responsibilities lie in relation to the strata committee and holding meetings?

      Our strata committee (small block of 12, NSW) haven’t had an official meeting, other than the AGM, for years. There are no minutes, and they have (so far) refused to forward correspondence relating to a current dispute. The strata manager is now being actively obstructionist and quite rude.

      The committee recently made some decisions that some of us have issues with – both in substance and process (see my post in Common Property re BBQ Conundrum if you really want the details).

      I’m trying to figure out if I have a case against them for not fulfilling their responsibilities.


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    • #73785

        I agree JT

        But the act does not confer decision making power to the strata manager.

        In cases where there is a lack of interest or a lack of expertise, the strata manger should be deferring decisions by way of generals meetings. At least everyone knows what is being decided and maybe the owners get sick of incessant general meetings and step up to the plate.

        As an aside, where there is a lack of expertise, maybe te committee should employ some consultants to provide independent advice.

        But I agree , when strata mangers overstep their authority, it can get nasty to steer the ship back on course ( as your tales have shown)


          JT, section 52 provides that the OC can delegate powers to the strata managing agent. It doesn’t relate that to office-bearer functions (although the treasurer and secretary are discussed separately). That begs the question: what are the chair’s functions? Apart from controlling meetings if present, the SSMA is unhelpful on what the chair is supposed to do. Perhaps the next batch of amendments will clarify.

            …a strata scheme can – if they’re not engaged or unaware- vote to delegate all powers to the strata manager…

            As far as I know, we’re working under a pretty standard strata management agreement. The basic roles are delegated to the SM but I’m not aware that the power to actually MAKE decisions for our small strata has been delegated.

            How would I find out? Would a specific resolution have to have been voted on at a previous AGM?

            I can attest that this resolution has not been presented to owners in the 8 years I’ve been living here.


              …That begs the question: what are the chair’s functions? Apart from controlling meetings if present, the SSMA is unhelpful on what the chair is supposed to do.

              YES!! I have the same question!!

              If the Chair is just a gavel banger then where does the power to affect change actually lie? IMHO it’s the secretary who can really exert some control and steer the ship back on course – That’s the role I was planning on assuming – although the SM is still necessary in this role from a purely practical POV for communicating with non-resident owners who remain disengaged.

              Conversely, if the role of Chair has been delegated to the SM in an agreement… how does this reconcile with committee meetings that are not General Meetings? The SM doesn’t come to those. Is the Secretary allowed to also act as the chair of a committee meeting? (I intend to use an audio transcription app to take minutes).

              Strata Answers
              (from NSW)

                A typical Strata Management Agreement sets out the areas of delegation to the strata manager and whether this is Full delegation or only delegation Subject to  Instructions.

                Even if it is Full delegation, then the Agreement will contain a clause to the following effect….

                “Nothing in this Agreement will prevent the owners corporation or the strata committee from performing all or any of the agreed services or additional services”
                The Agreement may delegate the roles of Chair or Secretary / Public Officer in full, but these office bearers retain paramount power and can exercise it whenever appropriate.
                In other words they can tell the strata manager “where to get off” – the problem is that they may not do so.



                  Thanks @Strata Answers … That’s good to know.

                  Our committee does not function. I intend to rectify that next AGM. (although I am keeping in mind an article I read by @Jimmy T about the 3 stages of a strata committee… and hope not to become a dictator)


                    @slicendice you wrote that ” I intend to put a series of resolutions to the meeting….. requested she give me notice. She has told me the meeting will be held in June (our FY ends May 31) ….I … intend to send her the resolutions before the end of the FY”.

                    First of all, may I correct you  it’s motions not resolutions that you will send the strata manager.

                    You are thinking like a reasonable person. Not everyone is. She has the power to corner you.

                    1. You say you asked her to give you notice of a meeting, i.e. a heads up (ideally long) before the official notice of meeting is circulated presumably several weeks’ notice. I do not see that she agreed. And even if she did, what if she later decided not to give the notice? Or forgets? As Jimmy often says and I can prove it…”there are no strata kops” on the beat to police such behaviour; and

                    2. While the SSM Act requires her to give a minimum notice of 14 days of the AGM, some strata schemes give more notice. Much more in some cases. The only reason I can think of is to catch owners out by shutting down the opportunity to provide motions. This happened to me a few years ago. Owners were given the notice, from memory, 8 weeks before the meeting was held. It stopped me in my tracks submitting any motion.

                    3. Fact: You have no idea when in June the AGM will be held (if indeed it’s in June, maybe it’ll be in May or July) or how early the notice will be sent out.

                    I suggest you spend this w/end writing the motions. Then either on Sunday or Monday email them to the strata manager and copy in the committee Secretary.

                    That maximises the chance that your motions will be listed in the agenda. By that I mean they cannot shut the door on your motions claiming the agenda was sent out already or she was working on it (so far out from the AGM’s due date).

                    If developments come to pass that you want to withdraw the motion, you can do so before the agenda is sent out (it’ll be like they never existed) and in the event that the strata manager claims they are already listed in the agenda, you can a I did, withdraw them at the AGM or amend them at the AGM.

                    Show her you’re alert to what’s going on and you’re no sucker.

                    Good luck!





                      @TrulEConcerned Yes… I agree with your concern and fully intend to get the motions in as soon as I can. You’re absolutely right that she could try to undermine me.

                      She responded to an email I sent the other day with the most extraordinary tone. I reminded her that we are not numbers… we are people… and we are people trying to live together and manage an asset worth millions of dollars.  Right now the only obstacle to doing that in a civil manner is her. She has not responded (funny that).

                      I’m working on my motions as we speak. 😉 I’ll let everyone know how it goes!!

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