39. What’s the difference between a regular board meeting, a members meeting, a special meeting, a committee meeting and an annual meeting?

Regular Board Meeting usually monthly, bi-monthly and in some cases quarterly or every 6 months. Depends on the size and number of activities of your association. Your Board of Directors meet to handle the business of the association. You elected them from among your peers. As a member you must be provided with date, time and location so you can attend these meetings. Typically these meetings are for the Board (your peers) to make certain they are completing required time-sensitive fiduciary responsibilities governing your association.

Annual Meeting is exactly that – once a year, typically outlined in your governing documents and certainly required by WV Law. Some HOA’s may call this meeting a Members Meeting, try not to be confused. The Annual Meeting must be advertised with date, time and location, too and including an agenda with a proposed budget for ratification, and a proxy in formal form. At the Annual Meeting it is required to record & certify proxy forms (they are counted toward a quorum), take written attendance, and the Board of Directors must present proof of notice. You are encouraged to attend the Annual Meeting. It is a corporation meeting of ALL MEMBERS once a year. If you cannot attend you should complete the proxy and transfer your right to vote to another (typically, another owner of record in your community) at this meeting.

Special Meeting is a formal activity for emergencies, you must be provided with date, time and location as soon as possible and you are encouraged to attend. An emergency situation may involve a one-time assessment increase of a sizable amount of money that must be obtained immediately. This is usually due to a major expense not outlined on an approved budget. It is a one-time one-issue vote of the members.

Committee Meeting is a relaxed activity for a committee that has been delegated with a specific task by the Board of Directors and does NOT require advertising date, time and location to the full membership of the association. The committee meets when they agree to their own convenient time, date and place. They are responsible to carry out a specific task and report back to the Board of Directors. A committee is usually made up of 3 or 5 members. Some examples could be a policy committee, a website committee, a landscaping committee, or perhaps an architectural review or newsletter committee. There can be many types of committees in an association depending upon need.

Members’ Meeting might be an informal gathering of two or more members that does not necessarily require advertising date, time and location to the full membership. Often members simply get together and discuss issues that they may decide to present to their Board of Directors. It is a relaxed environment and information is openly shared with those in attendance. It would be a good exercise to preserve notes or minutes of this type of meeting for future reference. There are no votes required at this type of meeting.