The Ontario Government has announced that electric vehicle charging stations are coming to condominiums in the province.
The Condominium Authority of Ontario (CAO) has an article about this which gives you a lot of information about the issue.
It is interesting to note that there are two main ways through which the condominium’s Board of Directors may install charging stations on its own initiation:
- If the Board feels that the installation would not have a negative impact on the condominium and the cost of installation would cost less than 10% of the annual Budget, the Board can provide 60 days notice and then install the chargers.
- If the cost exceeds 10% of the annual Budget or the installation would “cause a material reduction or elimination of the use or enjoyment of the units that they own or the common elements” then a vote of owners could occur.
I have an issue with this. If the cost would be over 10% of the annual Budget then a vote of owners should be required. And I’d like to know why the Board is given such lenience when it comes to interpreting that this would be a “reduction or elimination of the use or enjoyment of the units that they (the owners) own or the common elements.” The Board could claim anything would not infringe on this.
I would prefer to see this be worded that if the cost to install the chargers would be less than 10% of the annual Budget that the Board must provide notice of its intention to install the chargers but that the owners can requisition a meeting to over rule the Board’s decision. However, if the cost is over 10% of the annual Budget that the Board must call and hold an owners’ meeting to approve the installation.
Plus, if there are any concerns whatsoever about the affect on the common elements or the units, then a meeting must be held – not that the Board simply state that there may be an issue and the owners are free to requisition a meeting.
Again, this puts the power in the Board’s hands, not the owners’ hands were the power belongs. The Government needs to be giving the owners in condominiums more power, not allowing the Board to simply decide what is, or isn’t, always in the best interests of the condominium. Let’s have some real democracy in condominiums!