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The Bella Vista POA is conducting an election to elect three directors to the board. There are two things a potential candidate has to do to get accepted. One, he/she has to win the election. Two, the candidate has to sign a form called the Statement of Compliance. It is used as a loyalty oath which is a pledge of allegiance to abide by the policies of the association (corporation). The director has signed that he/she will do what they are told or the POA hierarchy will remove them and appoint someone else. Remember, this is a corporate board and not a people board. This is one reason that the board members rarely listen to a member when they are trying to address the board during the public comment segment of the board meetings. The board members have signed a promise to listen to the corporation and not the member.

Immediately after the winners are announced on election night, the winners are taken to a side room at Riordan Hall and are told by the POA staff attorney and the POA president that the word "association" does not mean "members." The word "association" is the corporation Cooper Communities Inc. (CCI) and the POA administration. They go on to say that the corporation knows what is best for the future of Bella Vista and if the members had any control they might make a mistake that would be detrimental to the property owners.

If the candidate refuses to sign the Compliance form, he/she is immediately not accepted to serve and will be replaced by an appointee who will. This happened to me in my 2006 election. There were two elected board members who signed the oath, but were thrown off the board because they were found guilty of breaking their promise by speaking publicly without the corporations' permission. There were three other elected board members who felt they should be allowed to see the then-CEO's contract before they were forced to sign it. All three resigned in disgust. There were two others that, because they voted contrary to the other seven, were so ostracized that they resigned under duress.

In the real world, too many politicians who owe their election to big corporate campaign money tend to listen to the corporations' wishes rather than the people who elected them.

The way our POA board operates is not uncommon in the real world. Most public board and commission members act similarly. Almost any board members or commission members are expected to drink the coffee, munch the peanuts and throw their hands in the air when the COO, CEO or president tells them to. If they want to stay on the board and get re-elected they will never ask any questions or offer any personal opinions. If they do have a different opinion, it is best to stay seated, swallow deeply, blink three times and keep their mouth shut.

Jim Parsons

Bella Vista

Editorial on 02/12/2020

Print Headline: Election for Directors to POA Board

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