Annual General Meetings
The Condominium Act, 1998, (the "Act") requires each condominium corporation to hold a general meeting of owners annually within 6 months of the fiscal year end at which primary matters of governance are considered or occur.
Condominium corporations are not restricted in the number or type or frequency of meetings that can be held, but the Act requires that at least once each year there shall be a general meeting of the owners called and held by the board of directors. The first "Annual General Meeting" (or "AGM") must take place within 3 months of the registration of the declaration and description creating the condominium, and subsequently must take place within 6 months of the end of each fiscal year of the corporation.
What you need to know…
…as a Unit Owner
Owners should consider it a responsibility and a privilege to attend and participate in the AGM of the corporation. This is the primary opportunity for the board and auditor of the corporation to express accountability, report to and answer questions from the membership. Typically, the AGM is when elections of directors will be held, financial statements reviewed, auditors are appointed, and other significant governance matters are raised. The AGM is also the only meeting of the corporation at which owners are entitled by the Act to raise any matter relevant to the affairs and business of the corporation for discussion. (At all other meetings of the corporation, discussions at the meeting may not veer from the topics set out in the agenda for the meeting.)
…as a Board Member or Manager
The board and property manager, if any, must carefully observe the requirements of the Act relating to notice of meetings. See the Condopædia entry, "Meetings, Notices of" for more information about these requirements.
If there is to be an election at the AGM it is advisable for the board to issue a pre-notice sufficiently in advance to allow potential candidates for the available position(s) on the board to submit their names to be included in the notice of meeting pursuant to sections 28(2) and 28(3) of the Act.
The notice of meeting for the AGM must include the names and addresses of each person who has notified the board in writing of his or her intention to be a candidate for election to the board, provided that the person has given such notice at least 1 day prior to the date on which the notice of meeting is to be sent if the person wishes to stand for election tothe position on the board that is reserved for election by owners of owner-occupied units (see the Condopædia entry, "Owner-Occupied Director") or otherwise at least 4 days prior to the date on which the notice of meeting is to be sent. Persons notifying the board outside of these time limits need not be listed in the notice of meeting, but (subject to the by-laws of the condominium in question) are not thereby prevented from becoming candidates at the meeting.
If a vacancy has arisen in the board since the previous AGM and a replacement director was appointed by the board as permitted under section 34(2) of the Act, such replacement director remains in place only until the next AGM regardless of the original term of the director being replaced, and if the term of such position on the board has not ended, then the owners shall, at that AGM, elect a person (who could but need not be the same person the board had appointed) to continue to fill that vacancy. (See the Condopædia article, Board, Vacany On, for more information.)
The board is required to place before the owners at the AGM: the financial statements (as approved by the board before the meeting); the auditor's report; and any and all other information regarding the financial position of the corporation that the by-laws of the corporation require. The financial statements and auditor's report are to be attached to the notice of meeting when it is sent to the owners.
…as a Declarant
Declarants very often remain in control of the condominium corporation for more than 3 months following registration of the declaration and description and in such cases it would be the declarant's appointed board of directors that is responsible to ensure the first AGM of the corporation takes place within that time period. If the requirements for a Turnover Meeting are met within that time period, then these meetings can be combined.
The declarant should ensure that the first-year budget for the corporation (which the declarant is required to prepare as part of its disclosure package for purchasers) includes provision for the costs of the AGM as well as other meetings and business that the Act requires to be carried out within the first year of operation.