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The Florida Statutes

The 2023 Florida Statutes (including Special Session C)

Title XL
Chapter 719
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F.S. 719.128
719.128 Association emergency powers.
(1) To the extent allowed by law, unless specifically prohibited by the cooperative documents, and consistent with s. 617.0830, the board of administration, in response to damage or injury caused by or anticipated in connection with an emergency, as defined in s. 252.34(4), for which a state of emergency is declared pursuant to s. 252.36 in the area encompassed by the cooperative, may exercise the following powers:
(a) Conduct board meetings, committee meetings, elections, or membership meetings, in whole or in part, by telephone, real-time videoconferencing, or similar real-time electronic or video communication after notice of the meetings and board decisions is provided in as practicable a manner as possible, including via publication, radio, United States mail, the Internet, electronic transmission, public service announcements, conspicuous posting on the cooperative property, or any other means the board deems appropriate under the circumstances. Notice of decisions may also be communicated as provided in this paragraph.
(b) Cancel and reschedule an association meeting.
(c) Designate assistant officers who are not directors. If the executive officer is incapacitated or unavailable, the assistant officer has the same authority during the state of emergency as the executive officer he or she assists.
(d) Relocate the association’s principal office or designate an alternative principal office.
(e) Enter into agreements with counties and municipalities to assist counties and municipalities with debris removal.
(f) Implement a disaster or an emergency plan before, during, or following the event for which a state of emergency is declared, which may include turning on or shutting off elevators; electricity; water, sewer, or security systems; or air conditioners for association buildings.
(g) Based upon the advice of emergency management officials or public health officials, or upon the advice of licensed professionals retained by or otherwise available to the board of administration, determine any portion of the cooperative property unavailable for entry or occupancy by unit owners or their family members, tenants, guests, agents, or invitees to protect their health, safety, or welfare.
(h) Based upon the advice of emergency management officials or public health officials, or upon the advice of licensed professionals retained by or otherwise available to the board of administration, determine whether the cooperative property or any portion thereof can be safely inhabited or occupied. However, such determination is not conclusive as to any determination of habitability pursuant to the cooperative documents.
(i) Require the evacuation of the cooperative property in the event of a mandatory evacuation order in the area where the cooperative is located or prohibit or restrict access to the cooperative property in the event of a public health threat. If a unit owner or other occupant of a cooperative fails to evacuate the cooperative property for which the board has required evacuation, the association is immune from liability for injury to persons or property arising from such failure.
(j) Mitigate further damage, injury, or contagion, including taking action to contract for the removal of debris and to prevent or mitigate the spread of fungus, including mold or mildew, by removing and disposing of wet drywall, insulation, carpet, cabinetry, or other fixtures on or within the cooperative property, regardless of whether the unit owner is obligated by the cooperative documents or law to insure or replace those fixtures and to remove personal property from a unit or to sanitize the cooperative property.
(k) Contract, on behalf of a unit owner, for items or services for which the owner is otherwise individually responsible, but which are necessary to prevent further injury, contagion, or damage to the cooperative property. In such event, the unit owner on whose behalf the board has contracted is responsible for reimbursing the association for the actual costs of the items or services, and the association may use its lien authority provided by s. 719.108 to enforce collection of the charges. Such items or services may include the drying of the unit, the boarding of broken windows or doors, the replacement of a damaged air conditioner or air handler to provide climate control in the unit or other portions of the property, and the sanitizing of the cooperative property.
(l) Notwithstanding a provision to the contrary, and regardless of whether such authority does not specifically appear in the cooperative documents, levy special assessments without a vote of the owners.
(m) Without unit owners’ approval, borrow money and pledge association assets as collateral to fund emergency repairs and carry out the duties of the association if operating funds are insufficient. This paragraph does not limit the general authority of the association to borrow money, subject to such restrictions contained in the cooperative documents.
(2) The authority granted under subsection (1) is limited to that time reasonably necessary to protect the health, safety, and welfare of the association and the unit owners and their family members, tenants, guests, agents, or invitees, and to mitigate further damage, injury, or contagion and make emergency repairs.
(3) Notwithstanding paragraphs (1)(f)-(i), during a state of emergency declared by executive order or proclamation of the Governor pursuant to s. 252.36, an association may not prohibit unit owners, tenants, guests, agents, or invitees of a unit owner from accessing the common elements and limited common elements appurtenant thereto for the purposes of ingress to and egress from the unit when access is necessary in connection with:
(a) The sale, lease, or other transfer of title of a unit; or
(b) The habitability of the unit or for the health and safety of such person unless a governmental order or determination, or a public health directive from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, has been issued prohibiting such access to the unit. Any such access is subject to reasonable restrictions adopted by the association.
History.s. 16, ch. 2014-133; s. 18, ch. 2021-99.