Attorney and columnist Rohn Robbins' view of CCIOA (Colorado Common Interest Owners Act, circa 1990) falls short of explaining the reality of Colorado's "Kiowa."
He paints a rosy picture that is not the full story.
Common interest associations, aka homeowners associations, have a challenging task of providing fair governance of their owners. Many states have passed laws defining governance processes in order to prevent the abuses of owners by developers, and Colorado enacted their Kiowa law in 1990.
It has been amended many times, and another round of amendments is now before our legislature. Why have there been so many amendments? I don't know why, but the short answer is that Colorado's Kiowa is eyewash.
Some of the grosser abuses:
- Continuing control by the developer after the required legal relinquishing when 75 percent of the property has been transferred to new owners.
- Excessive charging for copies of association documents specified by Kiowa (to deter such requests?).
- Non-election of the governing board of directors. Kiowa requires election by owners, not by appointment.
- Unfair allocation of representation on the board of directors when the property is a mixed-use facility: i.e., residential, interval (timeshare), and commercial.
- Conflict of interest when the developer-controlled board of directors is also the managing agent.
- Attendance at executive sessions of the board of directors.
Why do these abuses continue after Kiowa mandated their discontinuance? Simply because there is no enforcement provision. Developers and boards of directors can do whatever they what to because there is no recourse by the owners.
Hence Kiowa is a fantasy, and our Legislature should stop wasting time and effort mucking around with amendments until they provide a process for enforcement of Kiowa. Otherwise it is a paper tiger and a sham on the common interest owners.