HOA Board Response to Demand Letter from Attorney Terry Revere
The Board members and HOA manager are KB homeowners just like the rest of you. We represent the owners who are not on the Board. We volunteer our personal time to make sure our home neighborhood is a place of aloha and beauty for everyone, as we hope each of you in turn will do someday. In keeping with our commitment to total transparency, we have a duty to keep owners apprised of all matters that affect the HOA. Any actions taken against the Board are taken against all owners and the consequences will affect all owners; therefore, all owners have a right, possibly even a duty, to participate in defending our neighborhood. You need to know how your Board and HOA Manager are currently being attacked and having their time wasted by a tenant who insists on running a school at 42 N Laelua in contravention of our DCCRs and County ordinances. The Board's open response to the two separate attorney demand letters will be presented here on the website so that all owners can follow along and support us in fighting this bully and his lawyers. Our response to these letters is more to inform the homeowners than to answer John Anthony's demands, which we consider pure harassment. Bullies often have a public persona that is pleasant and convincingly credible. They get away with hurting innocent people who stand up to them only because no one knows what they are doing behind the scenes. Their lies need to be exposed so that their actions can be tried in the court of public opinion. This applies to bully lawyers too, and passive aggressive liars in general.
On Oct 11/2020 the KB Board received a 6-page demand letter from attorney Kai Lawrence and on Oct 28/2020 a 5-page demand letter from attorney Terry Revere. I haven't finished the rebuttals yet because the response letter below took so long, but I'll get them done asap. You can read the attorneys' letters on the rebuttal pages.
Revere and Associates LLLC
Terrance M Revere
November 11, 2020
Not Subject to Rule 408 of the Hawaii Rules of Evidence
Parties shall be defined as follows:
HOA Board President & HOA Manager: Darlene Brothers aka Aaron Brothers
HOA Board Secretary: Tom Atkins
Landlords: Marine ("Jono") Gonzalez Fadriquela and Carla E McGuire Fadriquela
Landlords' Property Manager: William 'Buz' Moffett
Clients/Tenants: John T Anthony & Lauren Erin Anthony
Note: John Anthony aka John T Anthony, John Tapia-Grassi, aka John Anthony Tapia-Grassi, aka John A Tapiagrassi, aka John Tapia are all one and the same person.
Dear Mr Terry Revere:
I must admit I was taken aback when I saw your name as the source of a demand letter representing John Anthony against the Kuau Bayview HOA (KB) and me personally. You are legendary as the lawyer who won a $3.9M case against an abusive Board on Molokai in 2013, the largest monetary judgment of its kind on record anywhere in the country in this type of case. Your name was used to threaten us so that is why I tracked you down and you agreed to defend our HOA in January 2016 (and again in August 2016) when our resident malcontent's lawyer sent us a demand letter very similar to yours. Our engagement went as far as your sending me a signed retainer agreement. The lawyer never filed so we ended up not hiring you, but I shared a substantial amount of very confidential information with you in preparation, some of which appears to have been used in this case against us. I regarded you as our KB lawyer and would have called you if Kai Lawrence had pursued his case. I consider this a huge conflict and may be against the Hawaii Rules of Professional Conduct, specifically Rule 1.18 pertaining to prospective clients. And then in January 2017, I arranged for you to meet Michael Baskin who did in fact retain you and is currently your client. Michael Baskin owns two properties in Kuau Bayview, ie. two memberships in the Association. And did you ask your associate, Magdalena Bajon, how she knows me? She has been assisting me for over a year with a probate for Lot 61 in Kuau Bayview. The Lot 61 owner and I tried to hire Magdalena in August 2019 but could not because of a conflict at her previous firm. I have offered her money several times but she can't take it because of the conflict. Also, Magdalena is currently Rick Markham's lawyer. Rick Markham owns two properties in Kuau Bayview. Now you and she are taking an action against me and the owners of Lots 1, 7, 61, 75, 76, and 92. How can your firm threatening to sue your current clients' Association (which would cost Mr Baskin & Mr Markham twice what it would cost everyone else) not be two more huge conflicts? That makes four conflicts in your one firm, all without informed, written consent.
Putting aside the conflicts for a minute, I suspect that you and Magdalena unwittingly fell into the same trap we did. Although your clients are John & Lauren Anthony of Aloha Vacation Tutoring, LLC, we all know that the impetus behind this letter is really John Anthony & the former HOA president whose agendas are aligned in their desire to eliminate me as the defender of Kuau Bayview. The public personae of these two are very convincing but the evidence reveals their true character and real intentions. Rather than rebut your letter line by line, or lie by lie -- which I am compelled to do elsewhere in keeping with the Board's commitment to total transparency with the KB membership -- I am simply going to tell you what is really going on here and let you ask yourself if your attack on the KB Board is in keeping with your firm's motto of "We believe in the Pursuit of Justice."
I am an original KB owner and have been heavily invested in caring for and protecting the HOA and the members of the community to the best of my ability since 1997 because it is my home. Like the Ke Nani Kai Condo Association, years ago Kuau Bayview went through its own 'Lord of the Flies' period. We had to fight long and hard to bring the Association back into compliance. Over the years I have become known as the person to call to get things done or to solve problems. I am the Grievance Committee Chair by default because no one wants that thankless job, including myself. But somebody has to do it as there can be no peace in a neighborhood if grievances are not addressed quickly. It is not necessary to get into the details of KB history. Suffice it to say that as soon as the new Board rescued the neighborhood in 2012, we wrote the Board Mission Statement and the Code of Conduct to prevent such a thing from ever happening again. And we have been very successful, until this year. It is very difficult to find good candidates for Board positions. We had invited three new owners onto the Board, not realizing that some had personal agendas that ran contrary to the best interests of the HOA. When they started violating state laws, KB Board Policies, KB Bylaws, spreading falsehoods, and acting in bad faith, I reminded them that they had pledged to abide by the Board Mission Statement and, since they had accepted the positions under false pretenses, should consider stepping down. This was before the Anthonys even moved into Kuau Bayview.
THE SCHOOL OPERATING AT LOT 45:
About this time, John & Lauren Anthony opened their school at 42 N Laelua Place (Lot 45) and neighbors started calling the landlords in Oregon to complain. The landlords called Mr Anthony so Mr Anthony went knocking on doors to see what complaints people had made. According to Mr Anthony, when he knocked on the former president's door and asked if she had been one of the complainants, she introduced herself as the President of the HOA and told him there was nothing in the Bylaws that prohibited schools, so he could carry on. She obviously hadn't read the KB governing documents. She not only misinformed Mr Anthony but she spoke unilaterally for the entire Board in violation of our Board Policy, and, worse, didn't even inform the other Board members of the encounter. So she was the only Board member who even knew about the school & the complaints for over ten days yet she made no effort to speak with neighbors to learn of their concerns. Finally the situation boiled over and an owner across from the school contacted me on Aug 26th and asked me to address the grievance. Within 20 minutes I went to N Laelua and started asking people to describe the problem and express their concerns. That was the one and only time I met the Anthonys. I offered to do them the favor of finding out what the true complaints were and then send them a list. Mr Anthony acknowledged that he realized that what the neighbors say to his face would be very different from what they share with me considering they know and trust me. Over several days I spoke with all the neighbors from Lot 37 to Lot 46 plus the landlords, their property manager, and the Anthonys. I made a list of all the restrictions everyone had proposed to see if we could arrive at a win-win-win resolution whereby all parties could coexist. Mr Anthony promised to abide by the two main restrictions which had been proposed by the majority - no skateboarding and drop-off at the top of the street. So everyone was looking forward to relief as of Monday morning. But then the former president (who hadn't bothered investigating) without authority interfered in a proper grievance procedure and told Mr Anthony that I was operating "outside the HOA" and to disregard my email, which he did. He broke his word to me and the owners and let the kids skateboard and carry on as before. To say we were disappointed is an understatement.
So the only opportunity we had to find an amicable solution was sabotaged by the former HOA president, whom I had encouraged the other Board members to appoint to the Board. No one knew her or voted for her; they had trusted my choice. The owners were so offended and angry that Mr Anthony had thumbed his nose at their valid concerns that they decided they wanted the school activity out of KB. After intensive investigation trying to determine school definitions and what laws, agencies, and DCCRs applied to the situation, I appealed to the landlords to handle it based on the lease violations. The Lot 45 Property Manager (Buz) & the Landlords (Jono) had sent me a signed copy of the Lot 45 Rental Agreement and it was clear that the lease stated:
10. Residential Use Only. TENANT may use the Unit only for residential purposes
The Property Manager (Buz) told me that the Landlords (Jono & Carla), back when the complaints had started coming in, had already told the Tenants to cease & desist from operating the school on their property. Carla later denied saying that but that is definitely what Buz told me. Buz asked me to send him a Notice of Violation on KB letterhead "so that [he] could act." So I sent the first Notice of Violation on Sept 16, 2020 at his request and he apparently posted a curable Eviction Notice on Lot 45's door on Sept 18, 2020. At 7:35pm that evening, John Anthony called me. I was on a ladder installing something over my kitchen sink so I asked him if he could please call back the next day as it was getting too late to hammer. He agreed but then kept me on the phone for an hour. If I had been treating the Anthonys in the abusive way you claim, no reasonable person would believe that he would call me and insist on talking so long. Get Mr Anthony to play for you the recording of the call and it will prove that your claims of harassment are bogus. I even told him, "If it will help you sleep tonight, I am very sure no one wants you evicted." I also told him that the problem had a very simple solution - operate the school somewhere outside of Kuau Bayview, such as the Paia Community Center or one of Rick Markham's empty rentals in Paia. Mr Anthony wanted to meet with me over the weekend to go over the Notice of Violation "line-by-line" and I said I would. I asked him to send me the eviction notice because I had never seen it, but he refused and said he would bring it when we met. I have never been anything but courteous, honest, and helpful to Mr Anthony. On that call, more than once he said he might need me to testify for him in court because I told him that, despite what Buz had told me, Carla had never informed me that she had asked them to shut down the school and I had my doubts. But I was not privy to any communications between Buz and Carla. Buz had told me in no uncertain terms that Carla & Jono had granted him authority to act on their behalf so I had to take him at his word. I emailed Mr Anthony the next day and asked him to please put his counterpoints in an email and send it to me that evening. I offered to meet with him briefly on Sunday as long as he realized I could not step between a property manager and the landlord/tenant. Instead he ran to Bonnie and told her the whole fiction about being "harassed in a way that I have never experienced in my life." Here are Mr Anthony's writings.
I did NOT give Buz permission to give the Notice to the Anthonys or to blame his decision on the HOA. It was my understanding that he was basing his action on the violations of the lease so I was quite dismayed when I finally saw his eviction notice. The wording implies that, if it were not for the HOA Notice of Violation, the tenants would not be in violation of their rental agreement. This unfortunate wording enabled the former president to intervene and rescind the Notice of Violation which gave Buz the wrong impression that the tenants were not in violation.
THE RESIGNATIONS OF BONNIE McCRYSTAL, VERONICA MENDOZA, and SYDNEY SCHNEIDER
The neighbors were furious at Ms McCrystal for taking the side of the tenant against them and against the best interests of the HOA. On Sept 27, 2020 I sent the Board a formal request for the resignations of Ms McCrystal, Ms Mendoza, and Ms Schneider. If they didn't step down, a group of owners were prepared to call a Special Meeting to remove them from the Board. Their resignation letters came two days later. Their resignation letters were analogous to employees quitting after being fired. They should have just said, "We resign," and we would have thanked them for their service and that would have been the end of it. Instead Ms McCrystal filled the letter with malicious falsehoods blaming everything on me and Tom then provided Sydney's letter to John Anthony to use as 'evidence' for you and Kai Lawrence to use against the Board, which you did. Ms Schneider is not pleased that Ms McCrystal sent Ms Schneider's letter instead of her own. It was without her permission or knowledge. She wrote on Oct 26th, 2020, "Aaron, I have never at any time had any contact with the lawyer for the school and certainly did not provide my resignation letter to him. - Sydney."
The vast majority of owners in Kuau Bayview do NOT want a professional management company. A broker's license is not required to manage community associations in Hawaii; only condominium association managers must register with the state. Not to mention I do not do any leasing or rental activities. Most people agree that I do a far better job than any management company our HOA has had in the past. Except for Ms McCrystal & Ms Mendoza, everyone appears to be very happy with our management. The fact that our fees are so low is a testament to what a good job Tom & I are doing. Sour grapes from three Directors who were rejected by the owners should not be grounds to harass the remaining Board members and cost the HOA money. It is quite reprehensible. Oh, and those ladies never asked for the homeowners' contact info, which I would have provided -- they asked for the email list (which I created by knocking on doors). They could have done the same. The email list is kept private as I have given my word to every owner never to give out their email address or phone number without explicit permission. I keep my word. They could have asked me to send out something for them, which is how it has been done since 2012, but they didn't. It seems they wanted control, plain and simple. Even one person emailing the entire neighborhood with personal gripes would be a disaster. Use of the list is restricted to meeting notices, statements, fee collections, announcements, polls, proxies, and other such Association business. This policy has been posted on the website for years under Owner Resources - Mailing Lists. It is a fake drama manufactured by the three ladies.
COMPLAINTS ABOUT THE SCHOOL
And now I am again being accused of having fabricated the complaints even though I had the owners put their complaints in writing and I posted them on the Homeschools page on the website. I have the original emails from the owners to prove it, plus the owners themselves can attest to it, but I wouldn't ask them to for fear of their becoming your clients' next targets. Why would I fabricate complaints about something that doesn't bother me? I am simply the conduit for the voice of the owners. The only one I added to the original list was "#7. Tenants and visitors should consider themselves guests in the neighborhood and treat owners and their properties with mutual respect and consideration" which was based on the general sense of indignation expressed by everyone. John Anthony has no evidence that I fabricated anything. He apparently has a tendency to be quite aggressive and has been witnessed confronting neighbors and yelling in their faces. Three people have told me this, so you can imagine no one wishes to criticize his school to his face. Frankly, the neighbors are afraid of him.
THE POSITION OF YOUR CLIENTS' LANDLORDS
It is entirely inappropriate for your clients to have involved the HOA in what was essentially a Landlord-Tenant issue from the beginning. The HOA's responsibility in this matter is to ensure that the Kuau Bayview Lots are used for single-family residential purposes only [ DCCR 10(a)(i) ], and the owners' responsibility to the HOA is to ensure that their Lot complies with the DCCRs. The HOA has no jurisdiction over the contract between the landlord and your clients. The property manager for the Lot 45 owners has made their position clear and encouraged Mr Anthony to operate in an alternate location. No one EVER suggested that the tenants be evicted.
On 10-07-20 4:13 PM, Buz Moffett wrote:
FYI - I do not care if the HOA approves the school or not - we will never agree to a school being operated on that property - ever... I will be doing periodic drive by inspections and if I ever find the school open I will be posting an eviction notice... One of the students parents it turns out is a very good friend of mine. I found this out last night. He is aware of the situation and has had a very strong talk with john this morning. In addition he has offered john a temporary location in haiku for the school available now. Hopefully john will take advantage of this and your community can return to the quiet peaceful neighborhood we all strive for. I hope that this will help settle the violations and we can put this to bed. - Buz Moffett
According to the landlords, your clients failed to disclose their intention to open a school prior to signing the lease. If they had, the landlords would not have accepted them as tenants. Your clients claim they would not have rented Lot 45 had they known it was in an HOA. Both landlords and tenants made a mistake, but it is the HOA that is being blamed and the neighbors who are being made to suffer for that mistake. As soon as the tenants discovered they were in an HOA, the responsible choice would have been to find a rental that is not in an HOA and move there, or at least find another location for the school. I'm sure the landlords, who want to follow the rules, would be happy to let them out of their lease early. But no -- your clients insist on putting their landlords into violation and trying to destroy the HOA rather than accept responsibility for their own mistake and follow the rules. This is a terrible example for children to witness.
NO CONFLICT OF INTEREST
A conflict of interest is defined as a conflict between a person's private interests and public obligations. There is NO conflict of interest because my private interests are the same as my fiduciary obligations, ie. to look after the best interests of the Association and the owners. I have a 23 year history of doing just that. Ask anyone who has lived in Kuau Bayview long enough. There is not one instance of my acting against the HOA or of discriminating against any owner. I consider the KB owners my family. There is no way I can personally benefit from devoting years of my personal time to doing unpaid labor for the community. Unlike a realtor, I cannot gain financially by having access to the email list or upcoming sales data. Owners are not potential customers for me. It is the KB owners who gain financially by having me in the HOA. I have personally brought in $26,800 cash to the HOA funds and that does not count the money saved during the two years I did the landscaping for free or the two years I did the bookkeeping for free. I started creating the KB website back in 2001. I have never received a cent for it to ensure I own it 100%. People from Oahu and the mainland have complimented me on the site and a few HOAs have asked if I would do a site for them (no). I put a lot of time into preserving the history and records of Kuau Bayview for current owners and for those who come after us. Tom Atkins is the only other owner who has ever shown any respect for the KB records. I do the landscaping because previous landscapers did such a terrible job and I want to see beauty everywhere I look. Kuau Bayview is very fortunate to have Tom and me living in the community because we are willing to let the community benefit from our skills, our hard work, and our good will simply because Kuau Bayview is our home. Once I cleaned the curbs all the way to Paia and a group of people walking by said, "I wish you lived in our neighborhood" and helped me push the bin. There is no conflict and a lawyer cannot create one simply by making a statement that one exists. If there were indeed a conflict, after 23 years it would have manifested as detriment to the community and the members would certainly not still be supporting me with their votes. There was a huge conflict with a realtor as president, but we have corrected that mistake.
NO IMPROPRIETY BY THE HOA
To date, all actions taken by the Kuau Bayview HOA (except those taken by the former three Directors) were in accord with the Policies and Procedures approved by the membership and the authority granted by the governing documents of the Association. The truth is that all the actual work is done by the Committees and the HOA Manager. Not one of the KB Committees works with, requires the approval of, or reports to "the full Board." This has never been done. Article IV, Section 4 of the KB Bylaws states that committees "shall have and may exercise the powers of the Board of Directors in the management of the business and affairs of the Corporation." The Grievance Committee rarely has to resort to formal grievance procedures because most people are reasonable and are willing to come into compliance once they understand the problem. Most people do not want to bother their neighbors. Proper
NO EVIDENCE OF HARASSMENT:
Harassment, a petty misdemeanor, is a form of disorderly conduct aimed at a single person, rather than at the public. The intent to harass, annoy, or alarm another person must be proved. COMMENTARY ON <§>711-1106
Despite our Nov 3/2020 email requesting clarification, you have failed to substantiate your claims with even one shred of evidence. Since virtually all of the accusations in your demand letter are about me, I know for a fact that you have zero evidence because I know irrefutably that none of it is true. Your allegations of fact are false. The whole premise of your letter is false. I met the Anthonys only once, I never phoned them, and I sent them a total of eleven emails. Hardly "exorbitant amounts." Please read every email I ever sent to John Anthony and tell me if you find any harassing or threatening words. All emails from Mr Anthony (which I have seen) are available here.
Mr Anthony & Ms McCrystal may have been able to convince you that their narratives have merit, but Mr Anthony knows that I know that he is well aware that what he is saying is not true, and so does Ms McCrystal. But, apparently, they don't care. In the rebuttal to the false allegations in your letter - which I provide elsewhere for the membership - I present hard evidence of both John Anthony and Bonnie McCrystal making false statements with actual knowledge of the falsity thereof. These are intentional, deliberate, and willful untruths, something beyond mere inaccuracy. You, Magdalena, Veronica, Sydney, Tom, and I - it would appear we have all been played by two very skilled deceivers.
And the result is that YOU in this case have, I hope unwittingly, assumed the role of the bully who is harassing, intimidating, and intentionally inflicting emotional distress on an innocent group of homeowners who volunteered their personal time to defend their community from the actions of your clients. You have allowed two seemingly passive aggressive bullies to use you and Kai Lawrence to inflict intentional damage on good people. Unlike what you have done to me in your letter with your baseless ad hominem accusations, I have no wish to embarrass, insult, or libel you, or to cause your reputation as the champion of abuse victims to be sullied by your assuming the bully role in this case; but you are attacking people I care about who have done nothing wrong and who have rallied for the good of their community. I know you enjoy beating down bullies, but these people are the victims of your clients and now you. These are real people with real lives you are hurting and I will fight you to the death to protect them. Your threats have already scared off four owners from the Board and two more have been shuffled off to the side to keep them safe. The stress engendered by your threats has resulted in people losing weight, being unable to sleep, having panic attacks, exhibiting adverse health effects, and more. One had a nervous breakdown and is now in therapy after your client kept demanding that she provide a statement for Kai Lawrence even after I had provided him with the retraction he requested.
At this point your attack is in reality against only two people, Tom Atkins and myself. You would be hard-pressed to find a kinder, more generous, more selfless human being than Tom Atkins. He has devoted himself to Kuau Bayview since he moved here in 2012 and he refuses to be paid a cent even though he has saved the HOA many thousands of dollars. Everyone in Kuau Bayview respects him and is immensely grateful for all his hard work. Tom is 75 years old and what you are doing could be considered a cruel form of elder abuse. The stress from your attacks caused Tom to be hospitalized for a mini-stroke last week. He is still undergoing intensive testing and monitoring by a team of specialists and has been advised by his doctors to reduce the stress in his life. Tom has actual documented compensatory damages whereas your clients have none.
In the greater scheme of things, what you are doing is punishing good people for doing what is right. That is the type of discouraging action that little-by-little drains hope from people's lives and hearts.
"The world is not a dangerous place because of the existence of evil men but because of all the good men who stand idly by." - Albert Einstein
These good people stood up to protect their homes, their families, their neighbors, and their right to peaceful enjoyment of their properties, and then you & Kai Lawrence came along and threatened them. Kuau Bayview is a group of 92 homeowners who comprise a wonderful little community where we look out for each other and strive to create a beautiful oasis of peace and aloha wherein families can safely raise their children. People have told me that Kuau Bayview is considered one of the most desirable subdivisions on Maui. That is no doubt why the Anthonys decided to move here. Within weeks your clients had disrupted more residents than has any other grievance in the 24 year history of Kuau Bayview. And now you are trying to destroy the two owners who are indispensable in preserving the very successful self-management system we have developed since 2012. I daresay every owner is very pleased with the way KB has been run since 2012. We have probably the lowest fees and the highest level of transparency and efficiency of any HOA in the nation. We are a model subdivision that is the envy of many. This is evidenced by the voluntary votes of a majority of owners to keep the present system, especially this year when so many have explicitly appointed me as their proxy-holder for the Annual Meeting next week. It is not disgruntled, former Directors or non-members like your clients who decide issues for Kuau Bayview; it is the membership, and the majority are firmly in support of Tom and myself. Your efforts to undermine and overthrow the democratic process that selects the Board of Directors of our Association, a microcosmic governing entity sanctioned by state and federal laws, are misplaced.
THE ANTHONYS' DEMANDS:
(a) That the Board and Ms. Brothers immediately cease and desist from further retaliation against the Anthonys;
It is virtually impossible to cease doing something you weren't doing in the first place. We never once asked for the Anthonys to be evicted or said anything against the children, especially their daughter. See the attached so-called Eviction Notice which states, "The owners/landlords and HOA all would like you to remain as tenants...." There has been absolutely no "bullying, harassing, abusive, and improper conduct" coming from anyone but your clients and their lawyers. No actions were taken against your clients, only against the use of the property allowed by the owners. An HOA ensuring that its owners are not violating restrictive covenants, or an HOA filing a Request for Service with the County to check for compliance with County ordinances cannot be considered harassment. You have failed to substantiate your claims with evidence, but you have definitely won the insult contest.
(b) That the Directors issue a retraction of the Notice of Violation sent to the Anthonys and allow them the continued use of their home;
The HOA has not sent any Notices of Violation to the Anthonys, only to the landlord. The HOA has no jurisdiction over tenants, only over owners, ie. members of the Association. If the Grievance Committee were to receive a formal grievance and not address it, it would be a dereliction of duty. There were two Notices of Violation. We asked you to clarify which Notice you wanted retracted and you refused, so this demand is also unclear. If it makes your client happy, we'll retract the first Notice because it seems the disturbance caused by the school has diminished quite a bit. Thank you for that. So the only active notice will be the Oct 5th Notice of Violation as corrected on Oct 11, 2020. Considering the Anthonys were never denied the continued use of their home -- as far as we know they have spent every night at 42 N Laelua since they moved in -- this is a non-issue.
(c) That Ms. Brothers be removed from office.
A tenant who is not a member of the Association has no say in Board matters. Even if he were a member, he would have only one vote. Please refer to Article IV, Section 1 d. of the KB Bylaws. Not even a majority vote of the Board can remove a Director prior to the expiration of his or her term. After accusing me of "disregard for the governing documents," your clients are now ordering the Board to do just that. Do they consider themselves to be dictators to the Board, that they should be able to override the votes of the majority of the membership? This demand is as unreasonable as it is impossible to fulfill.
(d) That the Anthonys be reimbursed their fees and cost incurred which are currently minimal, but are likely to increase exponentially unless they are left alone.
We consider your clients' choice to hire two different lawyers to threaten our Board to be egregious, deleterious, undeserved harassment. No one should have to pay for someone to harass and lie about them when they are simply doing their job. Our considerable damages are still being tabulated.
The tenants, John & Lauren Anthony, are not members of our Planned Community Association and have no standing with our HOA. As non-members, the tenants have no right to invoke HRS 421J-13; however, we would be willing to attend mediation as long as your clients pay all costs. We can't imagine what beneficial outcome could be achieved by mediation considering we have not ever harassed your clients and we would gladly have no further contact with them if they would stop putting their landlords into violation of our DCCRs which then makes the Board members duty-bound to enforce our restrictive covenant 10(a)(i). It is a false statement of law to claim that your clients' homeschool group "fits squarely" as a permitted use under Section 19.08.20 of the Maui Comprehensive Zoning Ordinance. Both you and Kai Lawrence have been intentionally vague by refusing to state which section applies. It is clearly not D or H, leaving only J as a possibility. As a J. Home Business, it can have only two students at any one time so it doesn't fit there either. I suggest you look under 19.08.030 Special Uses and then 19.67.050. We posit that your clients would need to obtain a Special Use Permit from the Planning Commission in order to operate their homeschool group legally in a residential district. But even that won't work in Kuau Bayview because it would still violate DCCR 10 (a)(i) and no landlord would allow a tenant's actions to increase his real property taxes pursuant to 19.67.050 B. The school needs to operate in a commercially zoned area. There are several other homeschool groups operating legally on Maui. One is Chad Kistler of RescueTutors.com up in Makawao. You could call him at 808-633-1171 and he'll tell you why he does not run his homeschool groups out of his home and instead leases a commercial location.
- As members of the KB Board, we are duty-bound to enforce the provisions of our governing documents in a consistent manner for all residents. Your client may not have liked the counsel given to him by the Grievance Committee relating to his obligation to follow the rules and regulations of the HOA, along with recommendations offered in a sincere effort to assist him in establishing his hard-to-define startup enterprise of unique character in a more appropriate location in accord with applicable County, State, and Federal laws, but the intent was to be fair and helpful to the tenant and neighbors alike, as Ms Brothers has been for the past many years.
- Perhaps your clients don't realize that pretty much everyone in the neighborhood knows Aaron Darlene Brothers. Many have known her for 23 years. Everyone has witnessed how much she loves children and animals and how friendly she is. Trying to say that she is anti-child or anti-family or abusive is laughable to anyone in Kuau Bayview. Your claims are simply not credible. Ask anyone with kids. Ask Michael Baskin. Threatening Civil Rights and Fair Housing actions is way beyond the pale. Your clients have no evidence and appear to be making false accusations in an attempt to coerce money from our HOA insurance to pay their business legal expenses. Have they no concern for the harmful effects this malevolent atmosphere must be having on the children who are forced to endure such needless controversy? Children learn from the words and actions of the adults around them. What are the children overhearing in that house, especially their daughter? Are the children learning that it is acceptable to make false statements about innocent people and bully and threaten them to extort money? Is this what Aloha Vacation Tutoring, LLC is teaching the impressionable minds of other people's children?
- If the landlords had not been on the mainland such that they needed to ask for Ms Brothers' assistance, the HOA would never have been involved in what is really a landlord-tenant issue. If the former president had not interfered with the Lot 45 property manager's so-called Eviction Notice, the school would have been happily operating in an alternate location since Sept 21st and everyone would be at peace now. It was the landlords' and your clients' mistake and they should have corrected it themselves instead of disrupting the entire neighborhood and leaving it for the HOA to sort out. What your clients are running is not a "tiny home school" and John Anthony told me on August 26th that its inception had nothing to do with Covid-19. Assigning "noble" motives to Mr Anthony's enterprise is misguided. By insisting on operating this homeschool group business in a residential neighborhood contrary to County Zoning Ordinances, enforcement necessarily falls under the jurisdiction of the County Planning Department and is out of our hands. We all await the outcome of their determination. The only enforcement the HOA can and must do is to ensure that the owners are in compliance with the DCCRs. The HOA could be sued by owners if we were to allow an operation to continue that disturbs so many owners and is in contravention of the DCCRs and County Ordinances. We cannot afford to set such a precedent. With such a litigious tenant, we suspect that the Lot 45 owners have been intimidated and are too afraid to stand up to you and your clients.
- As members of the HOA Board, we are duty-bound to inform violators when there are violations of our governing documents. In this case, the landlords/owners of Lot 45 were notified of violations related to the misuse of their property resulting in excess noise, traffic, stress, and liability concerns as neighbors watched their cul-de-sac being treated as a schoolyard. There were Covid-19 health concerns and the fear of children being injured by cars backing out of driveways in the congested cul-de-sac. The denial of peaceful enjoyment of their properties, along with the attendant increase in parking and traffic congestion was found to be objectionable, along with property devaluation concerns. The Board fulfilled its obligations to the Association members by relaying this information to the owners of Lot 45; and immediately, on discovering one inaccuracy in the October 5th Notice, a corrected Notice was sent. Note that both the original and the corrected notice were sent ONLY to the owners of Lot 45, and not, as your clients claim, that they were sent by Ms Brothers to them as an eviction notice. The HOA does not have the authority to force an eviction of a tenant and, therefore, would not attempt to do so, and did not attempt to do so. In fact no one ever suggested your clients be evicted and you have no evidence they did. The only request was to relocate the school. The power to evict a tenant in our Association rests solely with the Landlord. Please direct your clients' issue with the so-called eviction notice and the unauthorized use of the HOA's Notice of Violation to the Landlords who used the document without permission from the HOA. Apparently the property manager posted the HOA's Notice to the Landlord as part of the curable eviction notification to the Tenants which should have been based on the lease violations instead. We regret that your clients were inadvertently misled by the property manager. Mr Anthony's allegation that this document was sent to him by Ms Brothers is false. The HOA should never have been dragged into this Landlord-Tenant issue in the first place, and your firm should never have allowed itself to be used to harass a group of innocent homeowners based entirely on false and malicious hearsay, especially considering all of the conflicts. This does not reflect well on you or your firm.
We demand that your clients henceforth cease and desist from harassing, threatening, and making false allegations about the KB Board, Ms Brothers, and the neighbors on N Laelua Place. There are more people ready to put up 'No Trespassing' signs if Mr Anthony does not leave them in peace.
We demand that there be no more attorney demand letters to the KB Board members from your clients. The only party with whom your clients have standing is their landlords. The Anthonys must leave everyone else out of their drama.
We demand that your clients cease their campaign whose obvious intent is to shatter the governing structure of our Association. Damage has already been done to our little group of volunteer Board members through your clients' baseless attacks.
We demand that your law firm acknowledge in writing your clients' lack of standing with the Kuau Bayview Association and your firm's conflicts of interest regarding your involvement in this matter. We want assurances that you will not be bothering us any further.
The incredibly wild, reckless, underhanded, hurtful, and blatantly false and malicious accusations heaped on Ms Brothers and the other Directors that contend that the Board has an official policy against children and families is beyond the pale of decency and unsupported by evidence, to say the least. The heartlessness of your firm and your clients in making such libelous allegations are apparent to all those acquainted with Ms Brothers and the Board members. For you to then add that we are also in favor of forcing children out of their homes is additionally a monstrous, malicious, and false accusation, also beyond understanding. These baseless claims have already inflicted a great deal of damage on the HOA, Ms Brothers, and members of the Board. The toll has not yet been completely tallied. We are looking into whether such malicious attacks with no evidence may be criminal.
We hope that this needless conflict regarding the school will be resolved soon to our community's satisfaction and that your clients will work in good faith with the County and their Landlords to come to a mutual understanding that will bring peace back to Kuau Bayview.
Darlene Brothers aka Aaron Brothers, President
Tom Atkins, Secretary
Kuau Bayview Board of Directors