Texas Court Says HOA Lacked Authority to Compel Owners to Use a Trash Service Provider Chosen by the Board of Directors

Texas Appellate Court decision (July 26, 2017).

The case involved a dispute over whether a homeowners association (“Association”) had the authority to compel owners and residents within the common interest community to use and pay for a particular waste and recycling collection provider selected by Association’s Board of Directors. Based on a provision in Association’s CC&Rs, since its inception in 1998, Association has required the individual owners and residents of the community to acquire and pay for their own garbage collection and disposal services. The provision contained in Association’s CC&Rs stated: “All refuse garbage and trash shall be collected or disposed of by Owner, at his expense.”

In 2014, Association’s Board of Directors accepted for consideration, a proposal that it consider requiring all residents to use a single trash collection company. The basis for the proposal was to reduce the number of days that the trucks from all the different garbage collection companies that were servicing the residents of the community were in the community collecting trash and recycling materials from the homes. After considering various companies, Association’s Directors decided on one company and entered into a contract with that company which designated the company the sole and exclusive provider of waste collection services to the community. The contract also provided that the individual residents were to pay for waste collection services directly to the vendor. No further action was taken by Association to amend the provision in its CC&Rs that stated the owners and residents of the community would acquire and pay for their own garbage collection and disposal services.

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