News


Pleasanton HOA firm sued for discrimination

Blackhawk couple say kids told not to play outdoors

A couple who say their children have been barred by their homeowner's association from playing or trick-or-treating in their own neighborhood have filed a federal lawsuit against the HOA's Pleasanton-based management company.

Seth and Carolynn Neri filed the complaint in federal court against the HOA of the Tennis Villas at Blackhawk and the association's management company after alleged repeated discrimination against the family and their three children.

The suit alleges that the HOA and its management company, Pleasanton-based Community Association Management, discriminates against families with children and bans them from accessing common areas within the community.

Calls to Community Association Management were not immediately returned.

According to the lawsuit, the family of five moved to the gated community of about 30 single-family homes in the upscale area of Blackhawk, east of Danville, in the spring of 2012.

Since that time, the Neris, who are the only family in the housing development with children, were told that their three kids weren't allowed to

play in front of their home, on the street or in the community's common areas, the suit alleges.

When the family went to put up Halloween decorations last year, they were told that holiday decorations, not to mention trick-or-treating, were prohibited, according to the complaint.

After the family tried unsuccessfully to work with the homeowners' association, two of the children decided to write a letter to their neighbors introducing themselves and asking them to consider changing the no-playing rule.

However, the complaint alleges, rather than receiving positive responses, the Neris got anonymous letters in their mailbox that said "No move!!" and "No Way! Move!"

In May, Carolynn Neri was told that if her children violated the HOA's no-playing rule, a lien would be placed on the family's home, the suit alleges.

Additionally, when she approached the president of the housing development's board of directors about the rules, the lawsuit states, Carolynn Neri was told that some residents in the gated community were "upset that (Carolynn and Seth Neri) were a mixed-race couple."

According to the complaint, because of the HOA's "discriminatory housing practices, plaintiffs have suffered violation of their civil rights, economic losses (and) emotional distress" including depression, panic attacks, sleep loss and other ailments.

— Bay City News Service

Comments

Posted by Maggie, a resident of Valencia
on Nov 11, 2013 at 8:28 am

Were the decorations, trick or treating, and playing rules in the homeowner documents? If not, good luck HOA company. If so, then the family is at fault for moving there if they weren't prepared to abide by the rules.


Posted by John, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 11, 2013 at 8:53 am

HOA covenants tend to document the very worst in human nature. They're designed to sterilize diversity. If it is true that members of this community are uncomfortable with a mixed race family and can't stand the sight if children playing, then they are merely isolationist & seek some kind of ideal perfect sterility. Certain clauses in covenants are illegal. The community cannot ban a mixed race couple, but they may be allowed to restrict children. That doesn't make it right.


Posted by interested, a resident of Oak Hill
on Nov 11, 2013 at 10:02 am

The homeowners association documents clearly posted on line and dated 2009 state. "In the common, open areas or streets, there is to be absolutely no skateboarding, roller- skating, ball playing or other games. Bicycling is restricted solely to ingress or egress." Why would a family with 3 children even consider moving to this neighborhood?


Posted by Les Young, a resident of Danbury Park
on Nov 11, 2013 at 10:09 am

I would think if the place had a 55 or older community the HOA would have a position past that ?? Is it a concentration camp? Were the rules posted in th HOA's did the seller agent warn of the existing issues with having children in the community? And finally what century are we in that the color of a persons skin plays in their housing, I thought there were laws against discrimination. Or is Black Hawk a separate country?


Posted by HOA Member, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 11, 2013 at 10:13 am

I agree that HOA covenants document the worst in human nature. So do the cites we live in. Why do we need laws about long-term parking of RVs on streets? Why do we need rules to make sure people keep their yards kept up? It is because some people don't care about how their actions impact others. Like John blaming the HOA for discriminating based on race. Maybe this has nothing to do with race and everything to do with neighborhood aesthetics. Maybe there is one racist jerk in their small neighborhood. Maybe John thinks that all white people are racist. Isn't that a form of racism John?? Maybe we should wait to see what the judge rules. Maybe I am right and this family is violating a rule they signed up for when they accepted the CC&Rs and there is one or more jerks living in their neighborhood. I see no reason to call out the HOA based on the information provided. I do however see John's remarks inflammatory and see his underlying desire to create a racial issue when one may not exist.


Posted by Renter, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 11, 2013 at 10:21 am

The article say "they MOVED in". I did not see the word 'purchased or owner'. I would say if they are 'leasing' they are out of luck. Every renter in every HOA MUST READ, SIGN, and OBEY the rules of the Association.
Some in lease situations are sloppy in legal procedures, but should be a heads up for owners, or the association will be on them big time...if it's a quality association.


Posted by Renter, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 11, 2013 at 10:27 am

I see the Neri family says they have been discriminated against repeatedly. Maybe the HO 'Association' seems like a good 'group' or company-like organization that would be a profitable body to sue.


Posted by Vernon, a resident of Castlewood
on Nov 11, 2013 at 11:05 am

Next time read the CC&Rs


Posted by bankrupt CAM, a resident of Birdland
on Nov 11, 2013 at 12:00 pm

Actually, they say in the CC&Rs no games but part of the common area includes tennis courts where people play 'games' all the time. This couple is clearly being targeted.

The judge is going to nail this HOA, the HOA board members will lose their homes paying legal fees, and likely bring CAM down along with it.


Posted by Jackie, a resident of San Ramon
on Nov 11, 2013 at 12:13 pm

I actually know this family really well. There is much more to the story than what the article posts.

1. They are home owners and have lived in Danville a long time in other hoas
2. The sellers agent lives in the neighborhood and never told them or the buyers agent about the neighborhood overall feelings towards children.
3. The hoa docs are many pages long and this rule was buried in those pages (they are not the only family that did not see those rules)
4. A rule can be changed at anytime with an HOA, the board and management did not notify the other residents that a rule change request was made by the Neri family for a majority resident vote, they acted like it never was requested at a board meeting. I am on my board hoa and we want the rules to be fair to all residents not target a group. If the majority of residents are over 55 yr old they are typically not avid skateboarders or play games in common areas. It would be the same thing to say no wheelchairs in the common areas, or no walkers in the common areas.
5. The hoa has sent out vote for rule change for other issues.
6. Adults use the common areas walking their dogs, socializing with block parties in common areas, but when this family even steps outside their kids are stared down by members of the board even shaking their heads at them.


Rules have been changed in this hoa before so they deserve the same treatment as the other residents. I know that Carolynn has been trying to work with them for many months only to be treated like her family is not welcome there. When moving into a HOA it is a neighborhood democracy it should not feel like you are living in a separate world with their own laws and rules. And even if a rule is listed as a "rule" if it violates law and targets a minority group is it against the law. And from what I have heard about this HOA company and the management company treat them differently. The whole street does not feel this way against the Neri family, in fact from what I have heard if it went to a vote the majority would want the rule adjusted. It is a few people and they so happen to be on the board. To be on a board you are to act fairly and with no agenda.

Prayers to the Neri family, we are lucky to have them apart of our church community.


Posted by Patricia, a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Nov 11, 2013 at 1:17 pm

Is there anything in the CC&Rs prohibiting intolerant adults from acting like children?
;-)


Posted by Right, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 11, 2013 at 1:41 pm

Wait, other members stared them down and shook their heads? And Mr. Neri is an Oakland cop.....maybe John will advocate for a justified shooting. This is clearly a case of racial discrimination since shaking your head in disapproval is obviously blatantly racist. I amazed at the lazy thought process of your self righteous, left leaning dolts.


Posted by Renter, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 11, 2013 at 3:22 pm

bankrupt and Jackie are a bit knee-jerk in responses. Now they're JUMPING in adding "they're being 'targeted"!!! OMG ! TRYING to MAKE a race issue out of not liking children. Hope you're never on a jury sprinkling in your own additives. IF children are the exception, I can understand some neighbors being irritated, like 'you knew there are 8 children in 100 homes', or WHATEVER, and still choose to 'move' in. I live where that is the case....and I really don't understand parents choosing neighborhoods not 'intended; for children. You 'pick' your neighborhoods. People that make EVERYTHING ABOUT RACE are very narrow, shallow, and lack ability to see a whole picture.


Posted by Renter, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 11, 2013 at 3:24 pm

I'm with you, Patricia.


Posted by Danville, a resident of Danville
on Nov 11, 2013 at 4:01 pm

I also know this family from school and baseball. I have listened to them talk about this since moving there in April 2012. The Neri's have been more than hopefull to work with this HOA board and Management company. I live in Danville in a HOA and we do not have these rules in place. Many parents play outside with their kids, it is supervised play. I know that when they were looking to buy a home they did not care that it was Blackhawk. When buying the home it was to stay connected to their schools they were already attending. They have been residents here in Danville for years.

They were not aware of this rule and they were not aware that there was no other children living there when they moved in. We live in the next gate off Blackhawk Rd and our kids play outside, we have a seperate board and HOA. Blackhawk is a great place to raise your kids, it seems that there are a few racist anti kid bullies still around on this court.

Who would think after living here and already established in Danville that one would expereince this type of treatment. I do know that a board member told Carolynn that "rednecks" were upset that they moved into the Villas. I also know that the complaint they got was when Seth (who is of color) was playing outside with his children. Seth is a Marine Vet and a OPD Sergeant, having him outside is an added plus to the neighborhood. I know I would feel safer knowing he lived on my court. Instead when he would waive at people and board members people did not respond and they looked away from him, then someone filled a complaint againts him and the kids for playing. If we had more fathers playing outside with their kids I think that would only be a positive impact not get a negative response.

When they found out about the rule that is when they requested to have it change leading to issues with the board and management company. When I heard about the "No move" letters in their mailbox I was shocked. This is a great family and Danville is a great place to raise kids, they do not deserve this. All families should never have to go through this. I agree though the realtor that sold the house who also lives on the court should have said something before taking a commission and leaving them exposed to the wolves. Tennis Villas is not a senior livng neighborhood, but the board members have told them that it was supposed to be senior living and that they had managed to keep it that way for 30 plus years. How by bulling people out? Having rules like these in place to make families not buy there? That is a violation of Fair housing laws alone then adding the "redneck" comment.

I have had their middle child over for playdates and has said that they are looked at when they even get the mail or get out of the car after school...I am sure they will move after this but good for them to take a stand and bring awareness to an issue we thought was long gone here in Danville.


Posted by Renter, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 11, 2013 at 4:23 pm

It's NOT the HOAs FAULT !!!


Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore
on Nov 11, 2013 at 4:27 pm

If this case actually goes to trial, please post so that I can show up and observe the proceedings.

signed,

Cholo Pololo Mololo


Posted by Danville, a resident of Danville
on Nov 11, 2013 at 4:42 pm

Sounds to me like RENTER is one of the rude redneck neighbors living at Tennis Villas.


Posted by Renter, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 11, 2013 at 5:45 pm

Is that illegal too ?


Posted by bankrupt CAM, a resident of Birdland
on Nov 11, 2013 at 6:24 pm

Actually, the HOA board and CAM is operating outside the scope of well litigated state law. In any residentially zoned property in California, small family daycares are allowed in every area including in HOAs. Many times HOAs have rejected small family daycares by inserting some illegal 'no playing' bylaw in the CC&Rs that judges throughout the State have said are illegal.

There are many superior court, appellate court and supreme court precedents that have stricken down these blatantly illegal bylaws. The families with children have prevailed.

Also courts have stricken out language where HOAs have attempted to call private property that a person owns 'common area.' A person's front yard that they own or a back yard that they own is not a 'common area.'

If anyone would consider hiring CAM in the future for HOA maintenance, given this lawsuit, they would be out of their minds.


Posted by Right, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 11, 2013 at 8:15 pm

Danville and b-cam, ignorance of the rules the homeowner agreed to is not an excuse. When they moved on, they were presented with the how rules and had to sign in agreement not to break the rules. Not reading a document they signed is not an excuse in any court of law, even in Oakland.


Posted by bankrupt CAM, a resident of Birdland
on Nov 11, 2013 at 8:42 pm

"Rules" that are illegal and discriminatory are null and void. Rules banning children from playing have been struck down by the courts because it is illegal to have rules prohibiting children from being present in residential neighborhoods in the State of California. The David Stirling Act recognizes that this type of 'rule' is illegal. After all, the adults are allowed to play games of tennis on the tennis courts so these 'rules' are only meant to target children.

Web Link

Restrictive covenants that used to be in East Bay cities prohibiting the sale of residences to minorities were struck down by the courts long ago.

Due to CAM's apparent ineptitude and the Tennis Villa's HOA's apparent cluelessness in their actions, they will probably be fined hundreds of thousands of dollars and have to pay attorney's fees for the petitioners.


Posted by Homeowner, a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on Nov 12, 2013 at 9:10 am

That particular Association Company ONLY advises a Board on the legality of any Board action.

They do not advise the board members on COMMON SENSE.

We've seen it over the past 15 years in our association where Board members enact assessments, rules and regulations to "maintain property value".

To a person, none of those past and current members have had any background in HOA management or residential building, codes or code enforcement.

A past Board used it's position to mandate residents to upgrade a property feature that cost each homeowner $300 to install. It was later revealed that the board thru the management company purchased the required property feature and used a board member's connection to install the units. When exposed, the requirement was quietly dropped.

Rather than telling the Board members, "Have you thought this thru and here's why you shouldn't . . .", their repeated history has been to appease the Board and keep their client.

My advice: Get thru the law suit and sell the business. This is no business you have the business doing business in.



Posted by HOA board member Pleasanton, a resident of another community
on Nov 12, 2013 at 9:51 am

This HOA and CAM is so backwards. This family is a protected class under the federal housing laws. I am on my board and we take annual classes to stay up to date on federal laws. You can not target a minority group and children are protected under that. You can not have a rule like this when there is proof or comment made about it bring a senior living. If it is proven that board members made comments to this family in regards to race, and having it a senior living neighborhood they will get finned. On top of all this the board is in the wrong for knowing and allowing this family to be harassed. CAM is responsible as well for the boards actions. A representative for CAM would have been involved in all this and even attending board meetings. If that representative knew about this rule and didn't tell them it was illegal then they are just as much at fault. These no playing rules are one of those cover up rules for discrimination. Even if the family read it before buying or after buying the rule is illegal and fair housing laws protect them. You can't put up a rule with hopes to turn away a buyer with kids because of the rules. In the state of CA judges see right through that. Now if there was a history of kids playing and getting hurt the rule may stand a chance, but sounds to me there hasn't been children living there for that to happen. And if the HOA and CAM say its a safety issue that won't stick. Even if you hit a child while they are playing with that rule in place you are still liable and responsible for your actions. If adults are walking their dogs in the common areas or getting their mail etc... They can get hit too. If safety is a concern then the HOA should place slow down signs kids at play. This is clearly an attempt by the board to keep their neighborhood senior populated. Tennis Villas was supposed to be senior living and the state did not approve it. The fact they managed to keep it that way for so long shows a history of a bulky mentality and backwards out of date board members.


Posted by John M, a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Nov 12, 2013 at 11:31 am

The race card in this case is being brought up to solicit public sympathy towards the couple and stick it to the HOA, which is very unfortunate.

I myself have young kids and when I moved into the tri-valley area my first question to the realtors were about schools, the neighborhood, crime statistics etc. You can fix up a home but not the neighborhood. Looks like this couple were not told all the facts when they bought the home. Typical of a realtor not to disclose the most important details.

I have absolutely no problem with a group of adults who would like to live in a community free of kids. Kids are a royal pain to older folks not because the kids are white, black, brown or mixed. Kids aways misbehave, and kids who have partners in crime misbehave even more. The problem these days is that most parents think their kids are gods greatest gift to mankind and hence should'nt be admonished.

What surprises me is that so many responses here are from people who want to go out of their way to annoy those who don't want to be around kids. What is the need to thrust kids down the throat of people who want to live in a kid free community. Live and let live.
I myself am looking forward to the day I can live in a nice secluded gated community where the only kids I see are on TV. If such a kid free law does not exist, I am going to petition for one.


Posted by Maggie, a resident of Valencia
on Nov 12, 2013 at 11:55 am

What about the people that already live in the neighborhood...and bought there based on the rules? Just because this one family was too lazy to read the complete document doesn't make the rules wrong or mean they should change. That's like saying you don't have to repay a debit because you didn't know you had to repay it - because you didn't read through the documents you signed when you applied for the load. They learned a lesson - move or live with it.


Posted by Carolyn, a resident of Danville
on Nov 12, 2013 at 12:35 pm

bankrupt CAM - you need to do some reading!

The David Stirling Act says a daycare can be run on the premises (homeowner's property) and recreational facilities (i.e. pool/tennis courts) in accordance with the CC&Rs. If your CC&Rs only allow 2 guests at a time at the pool, the day care has to follow that rule. No where in there does it say the patrons of the day care can run around on the streets of the development.

With regard to the tennis courts and pool, they are both outside of the gated tennis villas. Any Blackhawk resident can use them provided they pay for the privilege with a membership.

And finally, I don't doubt their attorneys will have a good safety issue argument for the no roller skates, skate boarding, bicycling on ingress/egress etc. CC&R as it is a one road development and makes it dangerous for everyone living there.

There are two families who defend them here and to those two, I am sure they have made a great impression on you and are probably very nice people, but the argument about not caring that it was Blackhawk to keep them in their current schools is a little flimsy. There were plenty of houses they could have moved into and still kept their kids in their current schools and they also could have petitioned the district. It really comes across that they wanted to be in Blackhawk, because as one poster wrote, "They are home owners and have lived in Danville a long time in other hoas." So why did they move from their previous Danville home? Was it not good enough for them?

I do think it is a shame if the Tennis Villa residents are treating them poorly because of race, but on the flip side, they should have done their due diligence about the CC&Rs and neighborhood before signing on the dotted line. There are so many other developments around here that would have happily welcomed them for Mr. Neri serving his country, keeping the streets safe and bringing kids to an aging area. They should just save the stress this is going to cause them, drop the suit and move to Saddleback, Silver Maple, Blackhawk (proper) etc, or even head over here to Bettencourt or Shadow Creek. Life is just too short!


Posted by Denise , a resident of Avila
on Nov 12, 2013 at 3:06 pm

The people that keep posting that they should have read the rules are totally missing the point. The rule is against the law under fair housing period. And we do not know all the details except this issue in court is that the rule is agsinst the law. An HOA still has to follow federal law. And who know and why does it matter if they lived in other home and moved there. They could have rented and wanted to buy, why does that matter. If this community was trying to keep this court a 55 yr old community and the state of CA didn't allow it to be as such the HOA will be in trouble with the state. Funny people make such assumptions with why a family would buy somewhere. That's not the issue the issue here is that a family is exposing an issue that has been there for years and the HOA got away with it for years. There are other issues here. Like harassment , if they spoke up to change a rule like they have a right to do, and they were harassed by residents for doing so and the board knew about it that's another issue. Also if its proven that adults are allowed to use the common areas for socializing, walking dogs etc.. That shows discrimination towards children. If the community wants to be 55yr and older that's great! But you have to file and get approved through the state of CA to have that approved. You can't simply put up rules that are clearly for kids only and expect that to be legal. That's red linning . They could have requested the rule change and got discriminated and harassed before, during and after. Because it's an HOA that's falls under the FHA as a violation. Children are a protected minority with the FHA. If the state finds out that they acted like a 55yr older community after being denied it that's going to be a huge issue for the HOA with the state separately. And about race, people who accuse other people as using the race card should shut up! Then odviously you have never experienced color discrimination before. Fact is that racism is still here and we can clearly see it by these comments. We also see that there is an issue with discrimination against children by these comments. So that's testimony enough for the Neri's what they are stating is going on. Rossmore is the legally approved gated senior living community here in the area. These seniors should moved there to follow legal state laws, not put up rules and harass prople that move in with kids. People can make assumptions but the bottom line here is that the HOA and management company are breaking the law. We don't even know if the Neri's still live there by the article. So telling them to move is not anyone's place. People that stand up agsinst bullies that have a self entitlement issue should be applauded. And people that do not know the facts about what they went through should not even comment.


Posted by Wallace, a resident of Stoneridge
on Nov 12, 2013 at 3:29 pm

Face it, most of us moved into these parts in order to escape those kinds of families that are too lazy to read the rules. They shouldn't have been allowed to move into the neighborhood - what was the realtor thinking? - and there's plenty of neighborhoods like in Oakland where they'd probably feel more comfortable among their own.


Posted by Carolyn, a resident of Danville
on Nov 12, 2013 at 3:48 pm

Denise - you are missing the point. If you actually go and read the rules, it only states,

4. In the common, open areas or streets, there is to be absolutely no skateboarding, roller- skating, ball playing or other games. Bicycling is restricted solely to ingress or egress.

The kids are more than welcome to walk their own dog and socialize in those areas along with the adults and bicycle on the ingress/egress, and by the way, adults do ride bikes so they are also being told where they can and cannot ride. No where does it say "no children allowed." The kids are more than welcome to be on their own property doing the things that are not allowed in the common areas as they belong to the entire neighborhood.

Also, the trick or treating thing falls under rule #10 which applies equally to all as it states,

10. No solicitation of any kind is allowed.

There is no law that says you have to open your door to trick or treating, so that shouldn't even be an issue for them.

I have two teenagers myself and when they were little I wouldn't have wanted them playing in the streets. Seems a bit irresponsible. Now with them driving, they go slow in our development, but we have pre-school and elementary school kids in one family who are always out without adult supervision and have almost gotten hit from running in front of the car without looking. I don't think it's a bad idea to ban kids from playing in the streets. Do you?


Posted by bankrupt CAM, a resident of Birdland
on Nov 12, 2013 at 4:22 pm

All these posters like Wallace ranting on about reading the 'illegal' rules and such sound to me like probably live in the development in question.

Now that a lawsuit has been filed against the Tennis Villa HOA, property values of the lunatic residents in this development who want to ban children and children playing have probably fallen $50,000 to $100,000 overnight. Good luck selling any of these places because who in the world would want to live there. Any title search on a property being sold is going to uncover the pending lawsuit and no one will buy a property where they have a possible liability of hundreds of thousands of dollars in damages.


Posted by Danville , a resident of another community
on Nov 12, 2013 at 5:49 pm

Gee God forbid neighbors who are responsible adults slow down and waive at kids. Every time residents there post things acting like they don't live there shows what cowards they are and what the Neri family has had to deal with. Like the cowards that placed move notes in their mail box. It is really transparent

This is shameful .. seriously these people sticking up for the HOA is only hurting the neighborhood. The HOA should just settle , change the rule to allowing game playing in the common areas under adult supervision and safely. shut up and act like good people. TENNIS VILLAS is outdated.... Behind the times from all the other Blackhawk neighborhoods...change the rule and say sorry for the behavior of some residents and call it a day so that Danville families can start moving in there home prices rise back up and move on. The time of trying to keep it a 55yr and older community is over, you have been exposed!

Carolyn you live there. And I have been there many times inside the gate. Hardly any cars drive by, there is a LARGE grass area that is common area that the kids could be allowed to play off the street and a large grass area in front of their home. If you raised your kids in a bubble that's on you but you have no right to judge another family of what they deem as safe. Like I said we are on the next gate over and the kids all play outside safely. Does that mean you do not have to watch for kids anywhere else? Seriously what a stupid comment.

That's very sweet of you to offer that they can walk their dog and socialize with ADULTS. These are children not robots. I feel so sorry for your kids. They must be super repressed to have a mother with such a ridged outlook on children.

These comments speak volumes and give testimony enough.





Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore
on Nov 12, 2013 at 6:39 pm

Historical photo of Plutonia: Web Link

I think it still resembles this ole cow town!


Posted by Carolyn, a resident of Danville
on Nov 12, 2013 at 6:44 pm

Danville - you obviously chose not to move into the Tennis Villas because you knew better with kids. I am not sure why you think I live there because had you actually read what I wrote, you would realize I have two teenagers and the Neris are the only ones with kids there. Guess you must be illiterate. You think I raised my kids in a bubble because I kept them out of the streets, so apparently you think the streets are a great place for kids to play - hope you don't end up at a funeral for one of them.

The Neris saw a $640,000 bargain in Blackhawk and instead of doing their due diligence, jumped at it. You know the saying "buyer beware," it really applies here. I thoroughly read the CC&Rs where I live BEFORE the dotted line was signed. You must be one of those who thinks everyone else is to blame when you choose not to be informed.

BTW the HOA is only enforcing what the Tennis Villa residents have voted in, so get your facts straight.


Posted by The Lone Stranger, a resident of Ruby Hill
on Nov 12, 2013 at 9:18 pm

"Well, if the Neris didn't want to sacrifice their first-born child to the dark good Baal, they should've read the CC&Rs before moving in!"

The bleating of sheep is not a pretty sight, especially when the sheep walk on two legs. As long as some pack of petty dictators takes the time to write up their RULES in a "legally binding document", you can bet 90% of the sheeple will support it, no matter how inane or illegal.

What kind of neighborhood bans children from playing outdoors and riding their bikes?

Well, at least nobody has burned a cross on the Neris' lawn.

Yet.


Posted by bankrupt CAM, a resident of Birdland
on Nov 13, 2013 at 12:30 am

The coverage of the Fair Housing Act in 1988 was amended to prohibit discrimination based on the presence of children under the age of 18 (known as familial status). CC&Rs cannot violate Federal Law.

Criminal penalties can also be assessed along with jail time. Examples:

"Threatening, intimidating or interfering with persons in their enjoyment of a dwelling because of the race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, or national origin of such persons, or of visitors or associates of such persons." 24 C.F.R.(c)(2)

"Intimidating or threatening any person because that person is engaging in activities designed to make other persons aware of, or encouraging such other per-sons to exercise rights granted or protected by this part." 24C.F.R.100.400(c)(4)"


Posted by William Tell, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 13, 2013 at 8:35 am

They should just go back to allowing white only communities, then people will definitely know when they're not welcome, instead of finding it out after the fact.


Posted by Catherine, a resident of Danville
on Nov 13, 2013 at 9:30 am

This really seems like a lose-lose situation. Even if the Neris win, you can't tell people how to treat them and they will be shunned even more. There are no laws that say you have to be nice to your neighbors or open your door for trick or treating. So they either stay and are made to feel worse, or they move which is what the Tennis Villas wanted in the first place. Money won't make up for the bad life experience


Posted by Mitch, a resident of another community
on Nov 13, 2013 at 9:40 am

Let the courts decide. It is past time someone slapped back an HOA that goes too far in controlling what people do.

Most HOA meetings are filled with bitter, controlling and resentful people who hate their lives, and then a few people with legitimate issues.

No Trick or Treating? No playing in your own front yard? Miserable people living miserable lives, nothing more, nothing less.


Posted by Palookas and Dolts, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Nov 13, 2013 at 10:02 am

We should have had more HOAs in Pleasanton. That would have prevented some idiots from painting their houses with putrid colors that lower the value of their neighbors homes. There is a certain ethnicity that loves to paint their home exterior the color lime green. I saw one the other day that was purple with light green trim. Then there are the dolts that have zero landscaping -- for years; and the palookas that park their RVs and/or boats in their front yards.


Posted by Karen , a resident of Kottinger Ranch
on Nov 13, 2013 at 11:13 am

I am a Law student and we just covered this topic last quarter.

The HOA is in clearly in violation. The Neri's are covered under the Unruh Civil Rights Act. Children are a protected class under this act and if of mixed race that is covered as well. The California court system is fully aware that discrimination towards children is a problem. And the courts will see right through this. The fact that Blackhawk originally built it to be a 55yr and over community proves that that was the intent of the rule when established. Another poster stated that adults ride bikes too, that is a stretch they ride to a destination not around in a common area unless with their children, children ride bikes in their neighborhood for motor skill development and exercise. Adults go to the gym and work out children don't.. This HOA could have changed the rule to be adult supervised play is allowed in the common areas, but they didn't do that so that also shows they are directing the rule towards children and are not educated on the laws that protect children. The Neri's state that they are targeted, if this rule would only apply to them and any other families that may move in with kids that is wrong. Who is to say what "playing games" is. So if they are walking the dog and skipping and laughing with their friends or siblings that is play? What if they got out of there car and like kids do run around and happen to step on the common area, is that considered play? What if they played board games, cards in the common area? I bet that is the issue here with the Neri's. It is not like they are asking for hours or play with no adults running a muck around the common areas. Seriously this HOA can't allow 20 min of outside play?

In regards to Trick or Treating that is not against the law to not allow it, but it will show a pattern of discrimination towards children. Telling kids that they can not go around their own neighborhood because there is a rule against soliciting targets children. So does that now mean that your neighbor can't come over for sugar or knock to say hello. I bet many of these residents socialize by knocking at ones door or talking outside. Trick or treating is a activity that children do to get out in the neighborhood and socialize. The HOA could have said that they know there are not other kids in the Tennis Villas but that they are welcome to do so if residents want to participate. How hard would it have been to buy 3 treats for the Neri's children (report states that they have 3 kids). The HOA and CAM should just settle, change the rule, hire a new management company, offer an apology to the Neri's, and let time pass and take education classes on discrimination laws. The HOA board has probably made some huge mistakes with this. It probably does not represent all the residents.

The HOA and CAM should settle otherwise they will face going to court, hit with BIG fines, more media attention, property values dropping, no one can sell or refi during and possibly more trouble with the state of CA if it is proven they have been running Tennis Villas as a 55yr and older community.

In regard to residents that have already lived there. So the Neri's did not read the rule, you did not read the LAW and see that it was in violation of Civil Rights Laws! And even if they did read the rule and they wanted to buy there that is their right under the Fair Housing laws that protect the right to buy a home where ever you want and get treatment that if fair and clear of discrimination.

Why not just have grocery stores saying no kids, gas stations, places to eat having a rule that says no laughing or playing games at the table... That is the same thing as WHITES only rules or colored water fountains. Men Only signs posted at voting polls.

God speed Neri's




Posted by Catherine, a resident of Danville
on Nov 13, 2013 at 11:50 am

Karen - I have two wonderful children, but there are those who choose not to have any and don't want to deal with them. That doesn't mean I agree with everything that is going on here, but we get some pretty shady characters at our door on Halloween and other times of the year so I can understand the 65+ bunch not wanting to answer their door.

Aside from the possible violation of the law, people really should take responsibility for not reading things (which you should know as a law student especially if you have gone over contract law), but the playing thing in the Tennis Villas is a bit warped.

Although, since you are only a student and probably don't have kids (?), I love the new trend that has started at some restaurants around the country. I really enjoy being a mom, but do appreciate a nice dinner out with my husband and not having to hear or see other people's out of control children.


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