Mama “Goes Grizzly” on HOA Bully

guest blog by Nila Ridings
Just when I think I’ve read my craziest HOA story yet…here comes another!
Burl Fluharty, head of Westfields Condominium Association in Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania must be on some kind of power trip. He’s decided that kids from an adjacent HOA-free subdivision should be subjected to his dictatorship, too! The two neighborhoods share a street, and Fluharty demanded they quit riding bicycles there….or he’d call the police!
Dorene Akujobi pounced like an Alaskan Mama bear protecting her cubs.  If her kids ride their bikes on the shared street, she’ll protect them from Burl’s verbal abuse.  She growled and showed her teeth and maybe her claws, too. “Bully Burl” has no jurisdiction outside of his HOA fiefdom. And Mama Grizzly stood her ground.
Fluharty, realizing his threats to call the cops weren’t scaring Dorene, tried another tactic. He had his HOA attorney, Robert Stewart, write a letter threatening a lawsuit. Fluharty must have been thinking “if I can’t scare her with the threat of cops, I’ll scare her with the threat of going to court! If it works on my turf, it should work on hers!” (And how nice that his HOA gets to pay this guy’s idiotic legal bills!)
As Fluharty continued to press his case, he argued that the real reason he wanted the kids off the street was because elderly drivers in his condos might not see them! It apparently didn’t dawn on him that elderly drivers who can’t see kids on bikes probably shouldn’t be driving.
But there was a lovely followup to the story as related in one of the comments below from a fellow neighbor: It seems the Township’s attorney wrote a letter to Fluharty telling him to cease and desist flinging his threats around the neighborhood. Even if he is an HOA president, there are limits to his power.   
Back to Mama Grizzly: “Way to go, Dorene!”

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Ward Lucas is a longtime investigative journalist and television news anchor. He has won more than 70 national and regional awards for Excellence in Journalism, Creative Writing and community involvement. His new book, "Neighbors At War: the Creepy Case Against Your Homeowners Association," is now available for purchase. In it, he discusses the American homeowners association movement, from its racist origins, to its transformation into a lucrative money machine for the nation's legal industry. From scams to outright violence to foreclosures and neighborhood collapses across the country, the reader will find this book enormously compelling and a necessary read for every homeowner. Knowledge is self-defense. No homeowner contemplating life in an HOA should neglect reading this book. No HOA board officer should overlook this examination of the pitfalls in HOA management. And no lawyer representing either side in an HOA dispute should gloss over what homeowners are saying or believing about the lawsuit industry.

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