Executive Sessions: When are they proper?

         Most association boards are aware that they can convene into an executive session to decide certain ‘confidential’ or ‘sensitive’ matters. An executive session simply means that the board is meeting privately for a period of time in the absence of other non-board member owners. Since Colorado law favors transparency and openness of discussing association related matters, CCIOA sets forth very specific, limited examples of matters that can be properly addressed in executive sessions. Prior to entering into an executive session, the board chair should announce the general nature of the discussion.

         The exhaustive list of matters that can be discussed in executive session are:

  • Matters pertaining to employees of the association or the managing agent’s contract or involving the employment, promotion, discipline, or dismissal of an officer, agent or employee of the association;
  • Consultation with the association’s attorney regarding disputes that are the subject of pending or imminent court proceedings or matters that are privileged or confidential between attorney and client;
  • Investigative proceedings concerning possible or actual criminal misconduct;
  • Matter subject to specific constitutional, statutory, or judicially imposed requirements protecting proceedings or matter from public disclosure;
  • Any matter the disclosure of which would constitute an unwarranted invasion of individual privacy;
  • Review of or discussion relating to any written or oral community from legal counsel.

        If a particular topic is not covered in one of the six items above, then it must be discussed in an open meeting. If you have any doubt whether a particular agenda item falls within an exception, I recommend that you speak with your legal counsel prior to the commencement of the meeting.

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