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Community Associations Institute Honors Sen. Bill Nelson (D-Fla) and Rep. Mark Sanford (R-SC) as Heroes of Associations

5/8/2018  -  Falls Church, VA

For Immediate Release
Contact: Amy Hawkes Repke,, (703) 970-9239
Lauren Fielder,, (703) 970-9222

Community Associations Institute Honors
Sen. Bill Nelson (D-Fla) and Rep. Mark Sanford (R-SC)
as Heroes of Associations

May 8, 2018 – Falls Church, VA – Both Sen. Bill Nelson (D-Fla.) and Rep. Mark Sanford (R-SC) were honored today with Community Associations Institute's (CAI) 2018 Hero of Associations (HOA) Award for their leadership and support for the millions of residents living in community associations, also known as planned communities (e.g., homeowners associations, condominiums, and housing cooperatives). In recognizing the two Congressional leaders for their work on behalf of community association homeowners and residents, CAI effectively designated Nelson as the organization's senator of the year and Sanford as representative of the year.

CAI honored Nelson for his work to ensure that residents living in homeowners associations and condominiums have the ability to protect private contracts and self-govern their neighborhoods. With nearly 10 million residents in 50,000 community associations, Florida has more community associations than in any other state in the U.S.

Rep. Sanford was recognized for his work to provide residents in homeowners and condominium associations with access to federal funds in the wake of a presidentially declared natural disasters. Sanford witnessed first-hand the inequity of the Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) allocation of federal funds in the wake of Hurricane Matthew in 2016 and Hurricane Irma in 2017. As a result, he introduced the Disaster Assistance Equity Act (H.R. 3238) to help homeowners associations qualify for funding for disaster recovery. If it becomes law, this legislation will help community associations in all states impacted by any presidentially declared natural disaster, including hurricanes, floods, wildfires, mudslides, and other calamities.

While state law establishes the framework for the community association housing model, several federal legislative and regulatory issues impact the 69 million people living in America's community associations. CAI estimates that nearly 80 percent of new housing starts in the U.S. are in a condominium or homeowners association. Sen. Nelson and Rep. Sanford's deep understanding of the community association housing model and their leadership in Congress is incredibly valuable to this housing demographic.

The presentation was held at CAI's 2018 Advocacy Summit, where more than 100 community association leaders met with Congressional representatives to discuss regulations and laws that impact Americans who reside in community associations.

“Each time disaster strikes our nation, the effects can be finically devastating for community associations, where homeowners are expected to fund 100 percent of their neighborhood's disaster recovery expenses," says Thomas M. Skiba, CAE, CAI's chief executive officer. “Community Associations Institute and its nearly 40,000 members are deeply grateful for Senator Nelson and Representative Sanford's support of disaster relief fairness to ensure millions of homeowners are given the same federal assistance and protection.

About Community Associations Institute
Since 1973, Community Associations Institute (CAI) has been the leading provider of resources and information for homeowners, volunteer board leaders, professional managers, and business professionals in 342,000 homeowners associations, condominiums, and co-ops in the United States and millions of communities worldwide. With nearly 40,000 members, CAI works in partnership with 36 legislative action committees and 63 affiliated chapters within the U.S., Canada, United Arab Emirates, and South Africa, as well as with housing leaders in several other countries including Australia, Spain, Saudi Arabia, and the United Kingdom. A global nonprofit 501(c)(6) organization, CAI is the foremost authority in community association management, governance, education, and advocacy. Our mission is to inspire professionalism, effective leadership, and responsible citizenship—ideals reflected in community associations that are preferred places to call home. Visit us at and follow us on Twitter and Facebook @CAISocial.

Phone: 703-970-9235