Ministerial order clears the way for strata corporations to meet electronically
April 22, 2020
BY Kevin Zakreski
Late last week, the minister of public safety and solicitor general issued an order (PDF) under British Columbia’s Emergency Program Act enabling all strata corporations in the province to hold meetings electronically.
The order applies to any “strata property meeting,” which is defined as “a meeting authorized or otherwise provided for under a strata property enactment [i.e., the Strata Property Act, a regulation made under that act, or a strata corporation’s bylaws], including, without limitation, an annual or special general meeting.” Under the order, any strata property meeting may be held electronically, even if a strata corporation lacks a bylaw enabling electronic meetings.
The order refers to individuals participating in a meeting “by telephone or any other electronic method, if the method permits all persons participating in the meeting to communicate with each other during the meeting.” In a news release announcing the order, the ministry of municipal affairs and housing provides some more detail on holding a meeting electronically:
Each strata corporation will need to determine what electronic meeting method works best for them. The strata council may choose from options such as Zoom, Skype or telephone conference calls, as long as it allows everyone to communicate with each other during the meeting. If an online meeting platform is chosen, alternatives for owners without a computer could include:
- attending by telephone;
- participating by proxy by giving their voting instructions to someone who will be attending the meeting; or
- attending in person, ensuring the two-metre physical distancing order is followed.
The order is only in force temporarily, for the duration of the provincial state of emergency declared in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.