CCFJ.NET: Crack down on condo association abuses
Article Courtesy of The Miami Herald
By Miami Herald Editorial Board
Published March 26, 2016
Allegations of fraud by condominium associations in South Florida is nothing new, but the latest case to come to light is shocking in its scope.
And it reveals something else: That investigation into such abuses by local authorities is too infrequent, and many condo residents are left frustrated without the help of the agencies created to protect them.
Last week, el Nuevo Herald reporters Brenda Medina and Enrique Flor, focused the spotlight with their in-depth investigation into possible fraud at The Beach Club condo complex in Fontainebleau Park and other condos in South Florida.
The probe, conducted with the help of Univision 23, uncovered numerous complaints filed by Beach Club residents alleging disturbing irregularities in the administration of their condo complex.
Among the most egregious discoveries is the forging of signatures of up to 84 condo owners — many linked to an election held last November to select Beach Club board members. The reporters also found that the board awarded a multimillion-dollar contract to a company for complex roof repairs without a proper bidding process, as required by law. Get this: The companies that were listed as offering competing bids were fictitious, el Nuevo’s investigation found.
Days after the first installment was published, Miami-Dade police announced that it is launching an investigation into the allegations of fraud at The Beach Club, which is west of Miami International Airport.
This marks progress, because, in the past, authorities have ignored complaints from several residents of the complex — that’s another one of the series’ findings. Read more: