Quarter Two 2020

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The Quarterly

Quarter Two 2020

For those of you who have read our previous articles, you may recall that there have been efforts to push through new legislation to update the current Unit Titles Act 2010. This Bill was offered to improve some of the shortfalls of the current Unit Titles Act, including improvements to the disclosure regime on the sale of a unit, better governance for committees and body corporate managers, and changes to long-term maintenance planning.

In addition, there were some proposed changes to allow for owners to attend AGMs virtually – an issue that came into the spotlight during the Covid lockdown, when it was impossible to hold General Meetings of the body corporate. While many meetings could be delayed, some bodies corporate needed to hold meetings to raise funds. Under the current legislation, the AGM, for example, cannot be held by postal voting only, and the current Act does not permit holding of virtual meetings.

After pressure from various quarters to address this issue, the government introduced some temporary changes to the Unit Titles Act under the COVID-19 Response (Further Management Measures) Legislation Act 2020. This enabled all meetings of owners to temporarily be held virtually. Scope Strata used this change to facilitate meetings for some of our clients and, overall, this was found to be quite successful for many of our clients, including those overseas. We look forward to permanent changes to the Unit Titles Act that will provide this option in the future.

As this article is being written we are also aware that within the last week, the proposed amendment Bill has been drawn from the members ballot in Parliament (a random ballot) and has been introduced; meaning that it will be put to the vote at the first reading to progress through the Parliamentary process. However, given the number of sitting days prior to the upcoming general election, it is understood that it is unlikely that the Bill will be passed before the country goes to the polls. It is possible, therefore, that a decision will be made to delay this Bill until after the election in September.

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Steve Plummer