Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Condominium Corporations, Residents Associations and Home Owner’s Associations across Alberta have been required to change how they conduct governance procedures in order to comply with corresponding restrictions and guidelines related to public gatherings.
Like those in other jurisdictions, many Property Managers and Board Members across Alberta have seen conducting their Annual General Meeting (AGM) virtually as an ideal solution that will allow them to comply with both COVID-19 restrictions and legislative timelines of the Condominium Property Act.
While promising in theory, the credibility and legislative compliance of virtual AGMs held since August 15th, 2020, has largely been questioned by Property Manager, Board Members, and owners across Alberta. This comes as a result of the expiration of the Public Health Act on August 14th, 2020, and the lack of clear legislation on whether the use of electronic means to conduct an Annual General Meeting was permissible under pre-existing Condominium Property Act legislation.
Aware of the potential impact this lack of clear legislation may have on Condominium Corporations, Residents Associations and Home Owner’s Associations across Alberta, the provincial government has since clarified the legitimacy of virtual AGMs through the implementation of Bill 53: the Service Alberta Statutes (Virtual Meetings) Amendment Act on March 26th, 2021.
What are the changes to the legislation and what do they mean for Condominium Corporations, RAs and HOAs in Alberta?
Under Bill 53: the Service Alberta Statutes (Virtual Meetings) Amendment Act, Condominium Corporations, Residents Associations and Home Owner’s Associations across Alberta are now permitted to provide meeting notices, conducting meetings and holding votes through the use of electronic means.
This means that unless bylaws clearly state otherwise, corporations are permitted to conduct notice distribution, meetings and voting through electronic means with no changes to their bylaws required. Retroactive on August 15th, 2020, these legislative amendments also ensure the credibility of virtual AGM's conducted by corporations after the expiration of the Public Health Act on August 14th, 2020.
For corporations with bylaws that clearly prohibit the use of electronic means to provide meeting notices, conduct meetings, and hold votes, these applicable bylaws must be adjusted to align with the proposed legislation before proceeding with these governance procedures through electronic means.
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