Closed – Due to COVID-19 see below:
As Pennsylvania Governor Wolf’s long-term plan to reopen the Commonwealth on a regional basis is now underway, community and condominium association leaders must consider the possibility, safety, cost and advisability of reopening their amenities such as swimming pools. While Southeastern Pennsylvania remains in the “red” zone of Governor Wolf’s reopening plan – pools must remain closed. Even in the more relaxed “yellow” zone, pools appear to fall within “recreational” and “entertainment” restrictions against social gatherings and in-person activities. Fortunately for association boards, compliance with governmental mandates leaves no room for discretion. It is thus entirely possible that in certain areas of the state, there will be no 2020 pool season by virtue of governmental prohibitions – not as a result of decisions made by an association’s board.
However, the eventual lifting of governmental restrictions must not be seen as a mandate to open. The decision of whether to re-open falls squarely within the broad powers granted to governing bodies of associations to operate their facilities in a manner they believe to be in the best interest of the community. All board decisions are subject to the appropriate standard of care: board members must act in good faith, “in a manner they reasonably believe to be in the best interests of the association and with such care, including reasonable inquiry, skill and diligence, as a person of ordinary prudence would use under similar circumstances.” In performing their duties, members of the board are entitled to rely in good faith on opinions, reports, or statements from experts and professionals within a particular field (for example contractors, consultants, attorneys, insurance professionals). We will continue to monitor and inform.