Florida lawmakers may again consider condo oversight

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — When former Rep. Julio Robaina toured Florida in 2007 talking to condo owners, he quickly learned that while many condos are efficiently run and prepare for long-term costs, not every condo board is as proactive. His solution was a law requiring inspections and a reserve fund for major repairs.

“The majority of boards in Florida are honest, decent, hard-working people that do the right thing, but we do have almost 40% that are not, so my job was to protect owners against these types of boards,” said Robaina.

The law he helped pass in 2008 went a long way towards giving that oversight and protection, but by 2010, term limits had forced Robaina out and the law was repealed.

READ: Surfside condo collapse: Death toll rises to 95; 14 remain unaccounted for

Now, in the wake of the condo collapse in south Florida, the state is once again looking at what it can and should do to ensure condo owners are protected.

“Well look we’re going to have to figure out how to handle it,” said Representative Randy Fine (R - Palm Bay) but says the question will be is it a matter of oversight or a matter of enforcement, since Miami-Dade has an ordinance requiring inspections of condos. “Is it an issue where the law wasn’t followed or is it a problem where the law wasn’t adequate?”

READ: ‘We’re doing our best’: Orlando district fire chief describes recovery efforts in Surfside

House leadership has indicated they may look at this issue as early as September when they return to Tallahassee for committee week.