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“Executive” committee members are not special

A committee is elected by ordinary resolution by the body corporate. The committee is comprised of executive members, ordinary members, and non-voting members.

Executive members are the chairperson, secretary, and treasurer. One person can hold all positions. Ordinary members are anyone elected to the committee who is not an executive member. A non-voting committee member is usually appointed by virtue of being engaged as a body corporate manager, or a caretaking service contractor.

The chairperson chairs meetings, conducts meetings, and will declare motions or rule them out of order if required by legislation. The secretary handles correspondence of the body corporate, including sending out notices and receiving votes. The treasurer looks after the financial accounts of the body corporate.

That is the extent of power for executive committee members. They are functionally identical to ordinary committee members when it comes to voting, and at a general meeting, their votes are identical to other lot owners.

In the past, we have seen some executive committee members vote to give themselves more power in meetings, such as authorising themselves to spend money without needing the rest of the committee’s approval. This is not valid, because there are no special privileges for any committee member.

The executive has no special position at a meeting. The executive is not more powerful than ordinary committee members and their votes count the same as ordinary members. No-one has a “deciding” vote. Executive members are identical to ordinary members when it comes to committee decisions. All they do is carry out specific functions in running the body corporate.

It must be remembered that participating in the body corporate, particularly on the committee, is voluntary. Being an executive committee member is not honorary or special – it requires certain tasks to be carried out for the benefit of the body corporate.

This article is intended as general information only and should not be relied upon as legal advice. For specific legal advice please contact us here.


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