Q Our building is 75 percent shareholders, 25 percent sponsor units (renters). The sponsor units fall under the Emergency Tenant Protection Act (ETPA) of 1974. My question is, doesn’t everyone in the building, shareholders and sponsor units alike have to adhere to the house rules and any fair and reasonable decision of the Board of Directors? Do you have any case law that addresses this issue, as well as statutory law?
—Board President in Yonkers
“The issue becomes complicated when house rules are promulgated by the cooperative, which the ETPA or rent stabilized tenant does not have to comply with pursuant to his or her lease, (e.g. laws concerning placing rugs on 80 percent of the floors or any other rules of the cooperative, which are not enforceable against the ETPA tenant pursuant to the Department of Housing and Community Renewal regulations)—notwithstanding that the rules may be fair and reasonable decisions of the Board of Directors.
The cooperative should consult with its legal counsel who is familiar with the cooperative’s offering plan, proprietary lease, bylaws, rules and regulations, as well as Department of Housing and Community Renewal regulations with regard to specific rules and regulations and the case and statutory law with regard to the aforesaid rules.