We have the same/but slightly different issues and have formed what I'd call an "owner's possie". We've had 6+ years of controlling boards. Of which 5 were illegally formed (too many people per the by-laws) - so that was the start of our getting control of the board and our issue - they weren't fixing anything if they didn't want to - self-serving is a good word.
We have now been able to force the board to communicate with us in a backward manner.
Our Board President flat out lies and everyone is now aware of it. As an example, we get copies of ie. invoices and pass them out. Facts are facts.
When our Board doesn't inform us, we gather the info and print up what is going on and give it to everyone. We get the info by talking to the vendors on site. One time walking around in the morning with no clothes on and men on the deck was enough.
The By-Laws are very specific about what the Board has to give us ie. minutes when we request them. It's a breach of their fiduciary duty if they don't give us the minutes. They have to allow us to look at all financial etc. documents per by-laws.
We have had to hire an attorney to remind them of the laws - By-Laws, Declaration, State and Not-for-Profit. One letter, that was about $100 - so cheap divided by a couple people. We got what we wanted. Most of this is a breach of the Boards fiduciary duty to owners by law and we've have to let the Board know every time they don't follow the laws.
Negligence can also come into this.
We send emails documenting what "they aren't doing" whatever. We let them know they are breaching their fiduciary duty by not ... and then quote the By-Laws, etc.
After a number of times, they will realize you are serious. Documentation is everything. And a gentle reminder to the Board.
As to getting on a committee, it has two sides - the good we know, bad, check your liability first. We formed a landscaping committe per the board, followed their "rules" and put in hours of physical time, got bids, gave it to the Board and they didn't acknowledge any of it. One day we got an email which went to everyone saying they were waiting for the information. The next thing we knew - they had a Board meeting and said we'd done nothing and it went out to everyone. Committee over.
Our Board for the past 6 years had no D & O insurance - we actually just found this out. Even if they did, D & O and E & O sometimes will not cover fraud or negligence of a Board.
Learn your legal rights and let the Board know that you know them, and then document everything via email. You will start seeing things done and more communication even if it's not full disclosure.
We had so many issues the board "wouldn't" fix - we called in the local city building inspector and in increments (about 6 times) had them cite the Board for code violations. The Board never told the owners they had these citations, pushed back the work - but the city forced them to make the repairs. And our Board was fined for non-compliance by the City several times. Sort of sociopathic behavior on the Boards part. They aren't "better" than the City.
Our Possie printed out the info and provided it to owners.
Everyone knows we are getting things done so this 6 million dollar building doesn't fall apart. We had 30 citations. The worst, none of our emergency exit lights worked in the building and the fire department couldn't get in one time and had to bang on the door - the correct keys weren't in their box. We live in a secured building.
Amazing - how the Board fought us on these things. They lally gagged, we finally got the keys ourselves and gave them to the fire department. And then the Board duplicated the effort when they found out we'd already done it.
Almost everything is fixed, but the water/mold that I wrote about before. They never told the owners about these 30 citations - they minimized it - but the work is done.
We just wrote a 5 page Demand Letter after nicely asking for months. The Board had an experts report in April and they put off fixing the water issues all year until we forced it.
Everyone got a copy of the Demand Letter. The Board had a meeting never acknowledge any of this in their Board Minutes from last week. But they turned the letter over to an attorney. Water and mold - why waste the associations money. They have to fix the issues.
We had one owner who is now on the Board owing an average of 2,000 per month for several years. Was added when someone resigned. He was allowed to continue to be late with no fines, liens, etc. We passed out the Summary Balance last month for everyone to see what was owed since the Board was doing nothing about it. In September they owed almost 3 grand. It's down to about 1 now. A step in the right direction.
We had to step in and force them thru the back door. I don't know why some people get into this power control mode. We all just want the repairs to be made. Money has never been an issue here.
Now the joke is this - the Board just started putting out a What's New around ... But the only reason anything is new is because of our Possie. You'd think everything was perfect here if you read this and the Board was doing an incredible job. Amazing. None of it would have been corrected still.
I was on a committee re security once and did an unbelievable job and presentation to owners. They booted me off the committee next day and refused to use the info and follow the experts recommendation. We had to change insurance companies because of not having the cameras. You have no control on a committee. When we have vandalism now, we call the police in.
Check your By-Laws, Declaration, state condominium law and if you are a not for profit, those laws.
There are ways to go forward. Like Sara Palin - sometimes being in a Lame Duck situation is not the most effective use of your time.