Condominium Owners: Do you long for smoke free living? Do you wish you could convince your condo board to restrict second hand smoke inside units? Smoke Free Condos provides step-by-step procedures for amending your condominium association declaration and documents to create a smoke free environment.
Dr. Joyce Starr addresses recent case and state law on secondhand smoke in condominiums, the Law of Nuisance, Quiet Enjoyment of Property and amendment procedures. She explains amendment milestones, the importance of the right attorney and costs. Smoke Free Condos is the first comprehensive guide condo and homeowners associations, community association law firms, nonprofit organizations promoting smoke-free policies and government agencies. Smoke Free Condos provides a path to smoke free multifamily housing.
The author fought a four year battle against second hand smoke in her condo association. After numerous setbacks, she was elected to her condo board, and thereafter as treasurer, where she led the effort to amend the Governing Declaration to restrict smoking inside units and to define secondhand smoke as a nuisance. A single misstep could have undermined the entire endeavor. According to available records, her medium-sized condominium complex was the first in Florida to amend the Governing Declaration for this purpose. The challenges and hurdles faced - and overcome - are vividly presented.
"It was an uphill fight until the very last vote was counted, with a colorful cast of proponents, doubters and vigorous opponents. Naysayers warned that we would fail in the best of times, let alone during a difficult economy. Opponents stated with certainty that we would be sued and lose. They raised the specter of staggering legal costs that would sink the condominium association. Defending their castle, they compared the smell of secondhand smoke to garlic and bacon."
Smoke free condo advocates typically confront fierce opposition, including personal threats. For the author, backing down was not an option. Prior foes became supporters and one determined ally helped bring the vote across the finish line. Smoke-free amendments do not "magically" pass. This back story can help others succeed.
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