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August 09 Edition Cover

Owners’ corporation groups sprouting

30 Oct 2014

Owners’ corporations across Melbourne are joining forces, with three different groups formed over the past year.

While not all of the group are officially registered associations, they all involve networks of owners’ corporation members, including representation from Docklands, Southbank and the CBD.

The Owners Corporation Network of Victoria (OCNV), which is headed up by Docklands Community Association president Roger Gardner, was formally registered in July and, according to Mr Gardner, has 10 committee members.

The group is modelled on similar bodies interstate and Mr Gardner said he was liaising with these groups and, in the long-term, it was hoped a national network would be developed.

“The OCNV is intended to do a lot of good, as has been done interstate,”  Mr Gardner said.

Apart from the OCNV, a separate group, the Metropolitan Owners Corporation Committee Association (MOCCA) started meeting in September.

Group co-ordinator Helina Marshall said, the group was not currently a formal, registered association and said this may or may not happen depending on how the group developed.

She said the group was formed to allow OCs to share information and knowledge and learn from each other and did not currently have a political agenda.

Currently 11 buildings are involved with the group, with representation from the CBD, Yarra’s Edge, NewQuay and St Kilda Rd.  All but one Yarra’s Edge tower is represented in the group.

The third OC group to recently form is the Chairman’s Council, a network of owners’ corporation chairs from building managed by strata management group The Knight Alliance.

The group is not currently an official association, with only preliminary discussions having taken place so far.

Discussions about developing an OC network were initiated by The Knight Alliance’s Robert Evans after holding a “Chairman’s Supper” attended by 65 chairs from within The Knight Alliance’s property portfolio.

The three groups are currently operating independently, although there has been some communication between the groups.

It’s understood the Chairman’s Council has had representation from Mr Gardner and has been contacted by MOCCA about collaboration.

Mr Gardner confirmed he had presented to the Chairman’s Council and said some members had expressed interest in joining the OCNV.

He described the Chairman’s Council as a “subsidiary group” and said it was “in no way a rival body”.

“I was invited to address their group to explain the OCNV. As a result some of their clients are joining the OCNV and one is on the committee.”

Mr Gardner said he had not heard of MOCCA until asked about the group by Docklands News.

He said: “It is not hard to guess that a few disaffected chairs in Docklands have formed their own group which, again, hardly competes with the OCNV.”

“Unfortunately egos can get in the way and whilst any divisiveness occurring is a shame it is unlikely to make any significant difference.”

It’s understood some of the individuals involved with MOCCA had initially been involved with the OCNV before forming the alternate group.

Mr Gardner said both MOCCA and the Chairman’s Council were different to the OCNV and did not see them as competing groups.

“There is no competition, there may be other groups but they are not the official association which will be liaising with government.”

According to Mr Evans, in order to have an effective voice for owner’s corporations there needs to be one representative body.

“This is now the task of all interested parties to make it happen,” Mr Evans said.

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