city, condo association will pay to settle age-bias case
The city of Santa Rosa, Calif., and the association of La Esplanada Condominiums have reached a settlement with the federal government, agreeing to pay $5,000 each for violating a law meant to prevent age discrimination in housing. The city and the association changed the age to purchase a condo in the complex to 40 even though the community was zoned for 55-and-over living. "I think the feds wanted to send a message to cities that if you're going to have land zoned for senior housing, you can't just put this zoning category on it and walk away. You've got to monitor it and make sure it stays senior housing," fair-housing lawyer David Grabill says.
delaying work can sometimes create a more effective workplace
Procrastination may not be considered a virtue, but delaying action for legitimate reasons is, law and finance professor Frank Partnoy says. Partnoy says delaying action in the workplace can be a benefit if you need more information to make a decision, if you believe a problem may resolve itself with a little time or if you simply have more important things to accomplish.
associations spar with owners on solar panels
Georgia residents Angel and David Dobs supported a measure in the Legislature to expand property owners' rights to add solar panels after their homeowners association denied their request; the issue is heating up nationally and pitting environmentalists against developers. The Georgia bill failed. About two dozen states have laws that restrict homeowners associations and local governments from banning the installation of solar panels.
Martin shooting could have a high cost for homeowners
Residents of the Retreat at Twin Lakes development in Sanford, Fla., could face high costs for the shooting death of Trayvon Martin by a member of the community's crime-watch program. "They may wind up getting sued and getting hit with hundreds of thousands of dollars in legal fees and damages," says Donna Berger, a lawyer who specializes in homeowners association law. "Who will pay is every member of the association, and they will have to make special assessments. ... It's a cautionary tale for other associations."
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