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BSW News Blasts > BSW Covenants Sign Restrictions Enforcement
BSW Covenants Sign Restrictions Enforcement

Feb 27, 2023

In Oct 2022, your Association attempted to relax the sign restrictions stated in paragraph 17 of our Covenants, which do not allow any signs to be displayed, except "for sale/rent" signs. However, the amendment failed to pass; in fact, less than 400 ballots were even returned in the provided self-addressed, stamped envelope, when 67% of all owners (774) needed to vote in favor of the amendment. This means most signs on display in our neighborhood are noncompliant. You may be thinking that you have a 1st Amendment right to display signs on your property. However, remember that the 1st Amendment protects us from government restriction of free speech. A private organization, such as a homeowners' association (HOA), does have a right to restrict speech within the limits of the law, especially since we all agreed to the Covenants when we purchased our properties.

The Covenants are a legally binding contract between the HOA and each owner, which the board of directors has a fiduciary duty to uniformly enforce. After input from the homeowners present at the regular January board meeting, the directors voted unanimously to enforce the sign restrictions going forward, and at the regular February meeting, the Board unanimously approved a deadline of April 30, 2023, for noncompliant signs to be removed. This means that all signs, except for the types listed below, need to be removed from display, and no new noncompliant signs may be displayed.

There are only three official exceptions and one security-based exception: 1. For sale/rent signs 2. Signs with religious messages 3. Political signs during election campaigns. 4. Small notices not visible from the street on a dwelling, such as for security systems, "no soliciting," "no trespassing," or "beware of dog." Note that signs must not contain mixed messages; for example, they may not contain both a religious message and another message in order to sidestep the restrictions.

Texas law requires HOAs to allow election signs and religious displays, but it also allows HOAs to place some restrictions on them, such as when and where they may be displayed. Any such restrictions must be in a dedicatory instrument, such as properly adopted rules and regulations, which BSW calls "policies and procedures" or “guidelines.” Therefore, the Board issued a very limited set of guidelines on the display of political signs during election campaigns. The wording of the guidelines is copied almost verbatim from the Texas Election Code, Section 259.002. The guidance on display of political signs is available at https://bit.ly/PoliticalSignsGuide, and the guidance on display of religious items is pending legal review and will be posted after the completion of the 2023 Texas Legislative Session (May 29, 2023).

We would like residents to comply with the Covenants sign restrictions no later than April 30, 2023. We will clarify issues and answer questions as they arise and share them via News Blast and in our Newsletter. After the deadline, residents with noncompliant signs will be issued property action notices in accordance with our Residential Property Maintenance Policy and Procedure (http://www.braun.ahoybuilder.com/f/Property_Management.pdf). We would appreciate residents' cooperation in following our Covenants—it helps keep our community one of the best looking neighborhoods in the area!

This message is being cross-posted to both the old listerver and new BSW News Blasts Group. If you receive both, you can safely unsubscribe from the listerver messages, which will be discontinued soon.

Keith Riggle
President, BSWCIA







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Community Improvement Association
8630 Tezel Rd
San Antonio TX 78254
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