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Do's and Don'ts of Taking Meeting Minutes

Keeping coherent board meeting and annual meeting minutes is of the utmost importance for every association.  Meeting minutes serve as an important record for board members, property managers, and owners for the near and distant future.  Keeping good minutes is also vitally important so that boards have a written record of their decisions in case a board action comes under scrutiny by an owner, or even a judge.  Most importantly, keeping good minutes protects your association.

So, what do “good” meeting minutes look like? The most important fact to remember about meeting minutes is that they are a record of what was DONE and NOT what was SAID by every member or guest. 

You should include:

-Kind of meeting (regular, special, adjourned)

-Name of board members present

-Date and time of meeting

-Place of meeting, if it varies

-Whether President and Secretary were present, or name of substitute

-Whether minutes of previous meeting were read and approved

The results of any roll call vote should be noted.  If there is a ballot vote, those results should also be noted.  Be sure to note the hour of adjournment. In addition, the secretary should sign the minutes once he or she has reviewed them.

These items should NOT be included in the meeting minutes:

-Remarks by guest speakers

-Personal opinion on everything said or done, including the opinions of board members, property managers, or association counsel

-A transcript or recitation of every discussion

Also, make sure that any meetings taken in executive session are maintained separately from the regular board meeting.  Ohio law protects executive meeting minutes from disclosure to owners.  Executive minutes should be kept when discussing collections issues, enforcement issues, ongoing litigation, vendor contract bidding, and employment decisions.

When in doubt, you may refer to Robert’s Rules or feel free to contact our office with any questions you might have regarding the proper content of the meeting minutes.

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